Category Archives: Mixed Media

Edge of The River : A Progression

On our recent visit to Spain I took this photo. I like the pattern the leaves make, and the way the green contrasts with the blue.

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A day or two later, this small sketch appeared in my notebook.

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In readiness for next weekend’s ‘We Are All Artists‘ free art workshop and exhibition, I wanted to adapt the design to connect it to the workshop theme, ‘our community’. I’ve painted this version of the design, titled ‘Edge of The River’, inspired by many walks along the Wandle.

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This piece will be the next free art drop.

Elemental Art : Solar Flare

After a crazy busy few weeks making art in Berlin and taking part in the Carshalton Artists Open Studios, things are resuming a slightly more ‘normal’ pace. Having exhibited several elemental art pieces during the open studios, I’ve been wanting to return to making again, and I’ve been playing with a new design.

Here is the image, unmounted. It’s painted using watercolours, spray paint, acrylic, and gold leaf. With all the fine weather we’ve been enjoying lately, this feels like a timely new design in the series.

The Ghost of Good Fortune

I recently spent a lovely evening in the company of Samia and Paolo Tossio on their excellent Knit and Mix Facebook Live mash up. Samia talks and makes art with a guest while Paulo plays some excellent house music. You can visit Samia’s art page, and watch the recording, it’s a good blend of chaotic tuneful fun.

My plan was to make a free art drop live on the show, integrating some of my favourite artistic themes (the elements, movement, and impermanence), with wool, one of Samia’s favourite materials. Over the course of the two hours we spent together – three pieces of art emerged.

It had originally been my intention for this week’s free art drop to be the art work in the top left of the above photos. I had provisionally titled it ‘Wandering and Wondering’, and overnight – as the images wandered and wondered around my mind, my thinking shifted. Instead I was drawn to the tall striped piece – and this morning i added a koi fish to the painting. IMG_4256.jpg

The koi represents good luck and abundance, and as this koi appears as a simple outline, I decided to call the piece ‘The Ghost of Good Fortune’. This will be the next free art drop – keep an aye out for it if you live in the Wallington and Carshalton area.

The Free Art Project : Week 52. Anniversary

This week marks the one year anniversary of the free art project, I’ve been making and hiding art in the local area, every week for a whole year. Time flies when you’re having fun. This week I’ll give away the 76th art work, and this is what it looks like.

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The work is titled ‘Anniversary’. The painting represents a Chinese red envelope – traditionally used to contain money as a gift for a celebration. We’re looking down onto a carp fish, a symbol which represents abundance, and the characters on the left hand side of the painting represent the word anniversary.

Thank you to everyone who supports this project. I appreciate your ideas, feedback, participation and encouragement more than you know. I’m grateful to Carole and Keira for the many good ideas they share with me, and most recently, thank you to the poet Adrian Thirkell who has started writing verse to accompany some of the recent art works. I’d love to experience more collaborations as the project continues to develop.

I’m really excited to confirm that the free art project has recently been awarded a grant from Arts Network Sutton. This grant will help me develop and extend the project through some community events. Watch this space!

 

Edge of Glory : Revisited

A few weeks ago, I made a piece of art titled Edge of Glory. I painted it in response to this invitation:

Get to the highest point you can, either in your house or office or school or outside, wherever you are. Look as far as you can. Draw what you can imagine there – be as fantastical as you like. Or realistic. Look out and imagine who might be standing there looking back towards you.

Edge of Glory became part of the free art project. It attracted a lot of attention at the time, and I was pleased to be commissioned to make another.

As you can see, I made two versions, and invited the person who commissioned the work, to choose their favourite. They opted for the one on the left.

I had intended to sell the one on the right too, then I met someone after my recent talk on the Art of Resilience, who spoke very movingly about the recent death of his father. I had the painting with me at the time, and felt compelled to offer it as a gift. It was accepted.

I’ve recently had some calling cards made, and I chose to include the original Edge of Glory in the set.

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This is a design I enjoyed coming up with, and I enjoyed reprising it too. I can see this being revisited in different colour palettes too.

 

Morning Coffee

The past week has been really tiring. Preparing for, and delivering the Art of Resilience took quite a bit out of me, and in addition, work’s been tough this week. We’ve been analysing the fallout of an unexpected, and pretty toxic resignation from a partnership I work with. More of that another time on my other blog.

I arrived at the end of the week feeling drained, yet needing to make art for the free art drop. Inspiration had I none. In conversation with one of my colleagues, I said I needed more coffee, and Jenny suggested that maybe, the coffee pot should be my subject this week.

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I took a few minutes to look at the pot in situ, before bringing it to my desk, and drawing it.

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I was concentrating on my observation skills – I took my time over the drawing. On reflection – it’s a bit tight. I was trying too hard to capture the detail of the pot, and you can see this in some of the lines – they lack confidence and directness in places. I’ve also drawn the pot taller and narrower than it is. This observation stuff is hard work!

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I added some silver leaf to give the effect of age, and added in some fineliner to make one or two elements stand out a little more (this photo was taken before the fineliner was applied. This art has since been hidden and found as part of the We Are All Artists free art project.

It’s not my usual style of work – but I like it, I might make another to hang in our kitchen!

 

Seven Years

Our local gift shop, Calladoodles, is about to turn seven years old. I enjoy supporting local independent traders, and I have designed and painted some art to help Calladoodles celebrate.

This art is representative of the red envelopes which are often used to contain money, and given as gifts at times of celebration as part of Chinese culture. I have attempted to overlay the Chinese characters for ‘seven years’ in gold leaf. I hope they are at least reasonably accurate.

Calladoodles will be including one of these art works in their celebration treasure hunt next week, and the other will be given away as part of my free art project.