All posts tagged: Photography

Why my paintings are so colourful, and living with an alcoholic.

  I briefly lived in a house with a few questionable characters, dodgy letting agents and a young man in the final stage of alcoholism. This phase seemed to last forever but in actual fact it was a tiny chapter that my mind seems to have blocked. Since this traumatic episode I rarely think about it, let alone speak about it. It really is too sad. I recently found myself carrying some bottles and from the moment I began walking and the bottles would clang together my stomach flipped and a lot of sad memories flooded over me as I walked. It is only through reluctant reflection that I realise this ordeal shaped how my artwork is today. It was evident after only the first night of this man moving in that he had a serious problem. It had barely been a couple of days and the house had been burgled, I had found him sprawled outside my bedroom door smelling of stale urine and dirt, and his late night staggerings had broken furniture and …

Artist Materials – Hog bristle brushes for oil paintings

When I began painting, buying the paints initially was a costly job for me. I had to supply myself with the basic primary colours to set off my collection that I was to build up as I went along, mixing my own colours until I could afford to buy more. Brushes however were not important at all, I would apply the paint with my fingers if I needed to. (And still regularly do…) Although I sometimes buy more expensive brushes for purpose marks, I tend to buy value packs so I am always stocked up on brushes of all sizes and styles. I do this because brushes don’t last me long at all, especially expensive ones. Being eager to use them (since I paint every day, its the equivalent of getting a new computer mouse at the office for me) they often become raggedy and unusable after around 3 weeks. I might often find myself working slightly more gentle in order to preserve them, but sometimes by subjects are void of a certain boldness I enjoy in …

HUGE Peacock Oil Painting – The Last Sessions…

SO CLOSE! But still a lot of fine details to go! This was a particularly fun session to have rounded the painting off with, involving music and stuffing my face with mini eggs. Black and white shows the detail well so I will save the full colour for the finished piece. For anyone looking to paint at a large scale be prepared for a lot of clambering around.                 Look out for the next post which will show the final, finished piece!  

HUGE Peacock Oil Painting – The beginning…

Until the bespoke made canvas was left at my door almost too big for me to hold up, it had not occurred to me the scale of the project I had just undertaken. As I write this I am in the final stages of finishing this piece, but just over 5 weeks ago I couldn’t have imagined having filled a canvas measuring 80×80″ inches squared. I was commissioned to create a peacock painting for an office space. Immediately I knew I was never going to waver on if I would take this project on or not. The symbolism behind peacocks played a large part for the company and its meaning was something that resonated with myself very clearly and personally. The imagery of a peacock in my eyes is one of the most spectacular natural wonders, a peacock feather alone fascinates me. The colours have always been my favourite palette and the elegance is just very ‘me’… I have documented the progress from the first session onwards and hopefully the scale is shown with justice to …

An Artist’s Paint Palette

I love the way that a palette can never really be tidy. As an artist that does not have paint thrown everywhere, but has different liquids, brushes and materials all compartmentalised and all surfaces clean of paint, the one element that stays the same with all artists is that there is no neat way to maintain a palette of paints. The way I lay out my palette has become habitual rather than symptomatic of the colour palette or any functional order. I line the paints as a spectrum, originally because I thought it looked pretty. Take away the colour (greyscale photography) and I can see that different mounds have been more exhausted and spread around than others, I can see how little tone has to do with my arrangement and it makes me wonder what elements of my work might change if I were to pre-think my colour palettes and order the paints accordingly… Contemplating the palette gives a lot more away about the artist, and maybe about why their work in the way that …

New Work!

I have a lot of new work on the go! A series of elegant and detailed wildlife work with areas of serene calm. Here are a few examples of the backgrounds of these paintings (looking for a more dreamy and opulent style)              

King Fisher Charcoal Sketches

I LOVE charcoal! It creates such a beautiful contrast between soft blending and sharp marks. I used to use charcoal in all of my mixed media pieces, which is why I decided to revisit this material. I have finished my first of a set of sketches of large scale charcoal studies. The charcoal can be so complimentative to create the tonal qualities and pick up on the minuscule detailing of the feathers. The geometric shapes just seemed to fit… I really like this idea to bring something new to the sketches and almost a bit of compositional framing and imbalance, which I love. I am excited to create the next two, I have them all set up and ready to go! I am still deciding on the subject. Koi carps are a favourite of mine at the moment and could work beautifully…   Any ideas??