Sunday, 29 August 2010



Coffee break

Coffee Break

Colour Pencil on Stonehenge Paper

3.5 inches x 2.5 inches

Have just completed this Artist Trading Card for Scribble Talk. Scribble Talk is an online forum for people who love to scribble, be it with graphite, coloured pencil or pastels ( or any other type of pen/pencil). Mostly people post their latest work to the site and receive comments and criticisms (always positive and helpful). A number of people also post WIPs (works in progress) to show how they completed their work. I have actually done one of these myself of the Temple at Side which I blogged about a couple of weeks ago. It is actually a very effective way of making yourself get on with a piece if you know people are “watching”.

They also do an ATC swap about every 2 months. Everyone who wants to take part completes a drawing which has to measure 2.5 inches by 3.5 inches. You post a picture of the card to the person organising the swap. After the closing date, the organiser sorts out who is going to receive which card and the results are posted to the forum. You then contact the person who is sending their card to  you and give them your address….and a couple of days or weeks later (this is a worldwide thing so postal times can vary) an original art works comes through the post. The person who is to receive your card will contact you with their details and you post it off to them.

There are a number of sites which do such swaps but many of them either expect you to do a number of cards for each swap or run them on a weekly basis etc. One every 2 months is about right. Otherwise you could spend your whole time doing cards to the detriment of other great masterpieces you may or may not be creating!

I am off to Brownsea Island for a couple of days next week so look out for an extended Brownsea Blog.

Friday, 20 August 2010

Sunset over Cley Marsh

Sunset over Cley Marsh. Pastel on mountboard 17" x 11"

Yesterday I attended another one of Penny Wilton's excellent workshops. Although I have tried some work with pastels I thought I would have a serious go at trying to achieve something in the medium.
I recently came across a web sight called Paint my Photograph photography and painting meets. Photographers can upload photos for artists to paint and artists upload their paintings for the photographers to see how their photo has been interpreted. Needles to say there is overlap with photographers who are also artists uploading to the sight. I have uploaded some of my own photos and have now uploaded my first painting using one of the photos someone else has uploaded.
The photo was of a view over Cley Marsh in Norfolk which I was instantly drawn to...I just thought it would be an ideal subject to interpret in pastel which I spent yesterday doing.
I am not given to doing landscapes, but I have to say I really enjoyed working on this one. It is done using a mixture of pastels and pastel pencils and is done on mountboard. To give the mountboard some tooth I first applied a layer of pumice gel which gave a slightly rough surface. I then applied a wash of burnt umber acrylic. Many pastel manuals suggest working on a darker backgrounf in much the same way as oil painters do so I thought I would give it a go and it seems to have worked. I think I will be doing more in the medium very soon.

Sunday, 1 August 2010

Temple of Zeus

I attended a workshop with Penny last Thursday and spent some of the time trying to complete a commission which I had started about 6 months ago (at least). It is the Temple of Zeus at Side in Turkey and was done from a photograph taken by my chiropodist when she holidayed there last year. Knowing I liked to paint and draw she asked if I could do a painting of it which I immediately agreed to and then spent weeks regretting it. I was nervous about not doing a good enough job so had not proceeded very far but I decided I must get it done and dusted as it was always in the back of my mind that I must get it finished. Anyway a couple of hours on Thursday and another 10 hours or so work subsequently and the Temple is finished and ready to be delivered. Hooray. I am quite pleased with it. Most of my coloured pencil work up until now has been still life, flowers and wildlife. This is the first building and I really enjoyed doing it so I shall certainly be doing some more, probably old buildings and ruins such as this.

Temple at Side
Coloured Pencil on anthracite Pastelmat