Tag Archives: acrylic

Shades of Grey

Siobhan Sheridan shared a photo on Instagram a few days ago. It depicted a grey sea, a grey sky, and some heavy, grey clouds. It’s a lovely moody picture which stuck in my head long after I finished looking at it.

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Over the weekend I took my block of Aquarelle Arches panoramic paper, and loosely recreated the scene from the photo.

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I really enjoyed the ragging technique which I used in the upper third of the image, so much so that I’ve started on a much larger scale version.

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This is a work in progress, you can see the two art works together here for comparison purposes.

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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!

 

Distress Call : A Portrait

Along with colleagues, I’ve been helping to soak up a stressful situation at work lately. It’s been hard – trying to look out for one another and look out for myself too. Over the weekend I ran and gave away some art, spent some lovely time with family too, yet in the background, the stress remained.

On Saturday night, still looking for a release, I opened a few tubes of paint and using only my fingers, I painted a portrait. Portraiture is alien to me, as is not using a brush, and I struggled to make an image.

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Unhappy with what I’d made, I nevertheless left the portrait to dry overnight.

On Sunday I felt no happier with the work in its original form, and I returned to it. After a few more fingerfuls of paint, here’s where I got to.

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I shared this image on Facebook and was a little surprised by the favourable responses. I had been looking to paint a distressed face – what I see is something more stern, more resolute. Although I felt a little happier with this adapted version, I was still mindful to overpaint this canvas, obliterating the distress call.

The day went on. I slowly relaxed, and as I did – I felt closer to the image on the canvas. By Sunday evening I had decided that this canvas should not be overpainted, not for now at least.

This last photo shows the canvas framed by shadow in the Monday morning sunlight. In this photo you can really see the scars in the face, which are a coincidence left behind from a previous painting onto which I painted this one.

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My distress call will remain in the studio for now. I certainly feel a lot better for having him around.

Footnote

I mentioned the distress call portrait is painted over another image. I thought you might be interested to see what lies beneath…

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Elements of this earlier work were initially inspired by a visit several years ago to the Picasso Museum in Malaga. A friend remarked, ‘the [earlier] painting had me thinking about how Picasso and others around the turn of the 20th century were inspired by African artefacts and masks. Maybe they were meant to be together…?’

Winter Ice

I am continuing to adapt the elemental art idea. I recently blogged about Autumn Fire, and this new collection, titled Winter Ice – is a variation on that theme. I painted these images overlaying various shades of acrylic paint, finished with silver leaf.

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Winter Ice : I is sold. If you would like to purchase one or both of the remaining pieces, please contact me by leaving a comment on the blog, and we’ll take it from there. Thank you.

Departure

I heard some very sad news this week. Tim Kitchin, a friend and colleague is no longer with us. I first met Tim back in 2008 when I still inhabited corporate life, and we both had strong interests in sustainability from a business perspective. We stayed in touch and I was the beneficiary of his smart, critical thinking, and his humour, on many occasions. I was very excited when he joined the Ethos partnership of which I too am a part, back in March 2016. This gave us the opportunity to work closer together. That’s over now, and I miss him.

This week’s free art drop is a work made to acknowledge how I am currently feeling about this loss. A couple of people who know Tim and who have also seen the art, say the colours remind them of his warmth. That works for me.

Part of my purpose in the free art project has always been about learning to let go. This particular art drop will be the hardest one I’ve had to let go of so far.

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Edge of Glory

I’m taking part in the 64Million Artists January creative challenge. Each day of this month a challenge is set, and you take part, or not. It’s up to you. I’ve had a go at most of them so far, and this week I made my first painting in response to the following:

Just Imagine …

The great Albert Einstein once said that: ‘Logic can take you from a to b but imagination can take you anywhere.’ Children draw orange trees and blue grass and yellow elephants – they draw what they want to see. Inspired by this, today we would like you to unlock your own imagination and:

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.

This is my response.

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How high could I get? In my mind I climbed high enough to see the curvature of the earth, and painted what was in my imagination. Edge of Glory. Acrylic and gold leaf. This painting will be given away this weekend as part of the We Are All Artists free art project.

Autumn Fire

I know, it’s Winter, and I came up with this design a few months ago. I’m pleased to say it has kept me very busy since.

I made the first Autumn Fire for the We Are All Artists free art project, an abstraction of fire using acrylic paint and gold leaf. Here it is along with a picture of it in situ at the Carshalton War Memorial, before it was found.

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People responded very positively to this design. I like it, a lot, Yet I was surprised by how many folk contacted me about it, to say how much they like it, and to ask if I would make one for them. I happily obliged, and once word got out that I was making a series of Autumn Fire, the requests kept coming. I was asked to scale up, I painted one for someone locally, one went to Cambridge, and another to New Zealand.

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This represents a turning point for me and my art, the first time I designed an art work which resonated so strongly with others. My next post will be about where this art work took me next, a literal twist or two. Until then – here’s a picture of the 2016 New Year’s Eve free art, which I placed at a wedding of some dear friends in St Louis.

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