Wednesday, 31 October 2012

No Parking (Neal's Yard 2)

So it might not be the flatiron building, but there is something special about these urban wedge-shaped buildings, particularly where the passage of time and the loss of neighbouring buildings has revealed the shape and - inevitably - a bit of character.

Thursday, 25 October 2012

Nice Cup of Tea and a Biscuit

It felt like ages since I'd painted anything from life. So, today, in between Lemsips, I took advantage of the fact that I was off work with a nasty cold and so had daylight. And no children.

Watership Down (5x7) in free sample paint

I managed to get my hands on a free samples set of Williamsburg oils, which are meant to be very good paints. There were three tubes, each 40ml, in Ultramarine, Yellow Ochre, and Courbet Green. The latter - a rich, dark green that seems well suited to landscape - was new to me. The other two colours were familiar, but are not core elements of my usual palette.

I decided to try and paint a picture using just these colours.

Wednesday, 24 October 2012

New Forest Heather 4 - Path

This isn't the first painting I've made using this source photograph - but the previous work was rather small, and it always was my intention to make a larger version.

Oil on canvas, 16 x 20"

I had a bit of trouble with the photographs. The ones I took outside were clearer but not straight, and with a noticeable blue cast. The ones I took inside were straighter but just a teensy bit blurred. This is one of the latter.

Darwin's Greenhouse

You may recall my painting of Darwin's Houses, painted (mostly) on site in Downe, Kent. Well, this is one end of the greenhouse that appeared in that painting.

Bromley Triptych becomes a Tetraptych

I decided that the leftmost painting in the work formerly known as "Bromley Triptych: Behind East Street" didn't quite work in the context, and that - obviously - what was needed was another painting. Either to replace the leftmost painting, or to go in between that panel and the centre one.

So here is the new painting, tentatively entitled "Corner":

It's not the best photograph in the world, but it'll do for now.

Tuesday, 23 October 2012

Helston Rails

A little painting of a big project. The Helston Railway in Cornwall is a heritage railway under construction. The image shows some of the recently re-lain track on "the Britain's most southerly railway", as seen from a guard van ride behind a Ruston Shunter. From a photograph that I took in August.

Monday, 22 October 2012

Some rather poor photographs of last night's work

Today was misty all day and I was at work for most of it, anyhow. And I haven't got the hang of taking decent photographs under domestic artificial light (flashes reflect off of the shiny surface of the paint). So, please consider these images to be temporary; better photographs, and a few extra words about the panting and/or the subject, will follow in due course.

Saturday, 20 October 2012

Here Be The Books

The Blurb books have arrived! (They actually arrived yesterday, but I've been a bit busy finishing paintings and attending private views...)

Greenham Common Open - Private View

I've never been to a private view before. I didn't really know what to expect - loads of arty types, walking around in haute couture, holding glasses of wine and spouting pretentious nonsense or incomprehensible gossip?

Bromley Triptych: Behind East Street

And here they all are. I'm not 100% sure about the way that the last one fits in. Perhaps I will take it out of the triptych and use a different angle on that building.

The three paintings' original posts are:
The Little Theatre - The Back Stairs - Rear of 41

The Little Theatre: Part 3 of the triptych.

Here's the third and final part of my triptych. I'll put them together in a later post, but for now, here is The Little Theatre.

Oil on canvas, 30 x 30 cm (box canvas)

Friday, 19 October 2012

Chain Painting...

If chain smoking is using the smouldering stub of a cigarette to light the next one (not that I condone smoking in an way, you understand. Unless you're a bonfire, or something), then chain painting is a fairly reasonable description of what happens when you use up the paint left over on your palette after you've finished one painting to start the next.

Wednesday, 17 October 2012

Rear of 41: Part one of a Triptych

The backs of buildings are often rather interesting, I think. Particularly older building in towns. The rear is where the building lets go a little, revealing something more of its function and, crucially, its character.

Monday, 15 October 2012

Sunday, 14 October 2012

The LEGO Book: "Minifigures on Canvas"

Yesterday, I uploaded my data to Blurb, the on-demand publishers. I also ordered a few copies to check out the results. Blurb books are meant to be "bookshop quality", so I have high hopes. But my copies aren't due to arrive until the end of October, so I thought I'd share the link with you now.

Saturday, 13 October 2012

Cottington's Poppies 4

This was painted as a gift. It occurred to me that a small painting with just one or two poppies would work well; the recipient is local so I made sure to indicate the location with the radio mast (a distinctive landmark); and because I wanted to be able to give the painting quickly, I used acrylic.

Much as with Fire Hydrant, the background was painted conventionally (with a brush), while the foreground - the poppies - were added with a knife.

Acrylic on canvas, 5 x 7"

Wednesday, 10 October 2012

LEGO® Minifigures 56: Warrior King - SOLD

I thought of several names for this grey-bearded fellow, who is evidently regal. The lion on his breastplate suggests that he could be the Lion King; the big shiny sword makes me think of Excalibur, which could make him King Arthur (but Arthur was a bear, not a lion). Perhaps he is, simply, King LEGO.

Tuesday, 9 October 2012

Fireplane in a frame ... and in an exhibition!

I recently submitted a few paintings into a local Open Exhibition and was fortunate enough to have had Greenham Common Fireplane selected for inclusion.

Saturday, 6 October 2012

Watership Down and Ladle Hill: Drawing Pencil

I really wish that Derwent had come up with a better name for these lovely pencils. They call them "Drawing Pencils", or, sometimes "Soft Drawing Pencils". Which could easily apply to a 4B graphite, say. (Aren't all pencils for drawing with? Even the H family - which I generally shun - are intended for drawing. Very precise drawing.)

I don't think that there is any graphite in these pencils. They are smooth and waxy and come in a range of muted, natural-seeming colours (the range is quite similar to the Sennelier "Nature" box). I now have the tin of 24 colours, which I think is all of them. I already had the earth-toned tin of 6, which I used for Study in Yellow. It's nice to be able to hint at blues and greens, and I think that the full range of colours suit this subject, which is from a photograph taken at around 5:30 pm earlier this month, when the sun was on its way down and the hillsides were in shadow.

Here's a slightly earlier, sketchier version in the earth colours:

Drawing on A4 paper

EDIT: There's a painting, too...

Friday, 5 October 2012

LEGO® Minifigures 55: Artist ("Ceci n'est pas un peintre")

Elements of this figure may be familiar from my avatar (profile picture). This fellow is, quite apart from being a fellow (which I am not*), rather more of a traditional sort of artist than I am. So I decided that he wouldn't suit the clinical whiteness of my default ceramic tile background, and I put him on top of my old wooden palette (which is, of course, for use with oils). He seems, from his clothes, to be a messy painter, so it's fitting that there is paint residue on the palette... which I think makes a good floor for his studio.

Acrylic on canvas, 7 x 7 cm

Thursday, 4 October 2012

Judge a Book by its Cover

Just short of a year ago, I painted the first LEGO minifigure painting. I never really expected the series to get anywhere near as big as it has done; there are now 54 paintings, all 7 by 7cm square, all acrylic on canvas.

LEGO® Minifigures 54: Man with Flower

Is this fellow the gardener? Or does he have a romantic gift for one of the LEGO ladies*? You decide - but I know which side of the garden fence I think he stands.

This will be the last LEGO painting for a while, but you can expect some related news shortly.
EDIT: Actually, there will be two more.

Acrylic on canvas, 7 x 7 cm

*Or gentlemen, of course. Wouldn't want to make assumptions!

Wednesday, 3 October 2012

LEGO® Minifigures 53: The Lady of the House

Another of my daughter's LEGO figures; I think that this lady - and her house - arrived together in the big pink box of LEGO that started her collection a year or two back.

Acrylic on canvas, 7x7cm

Tuesday, 2 October 2012

LEGO® Minifigures 52: Fireman

I've been meaning to do a fireman for ages... ever since I painted the Policeman. Today, I asked my son if I could borrow a LEGO fireman; he took this fellow out of his car and then thoughtfully gave me the car as well. So, I included it in the painting. It seemed like a good, colourful, idea.

Acrylic on canvas, 7 x 7 cm