Archive | December, 2017

Blwyddyn Newydd Dda: Happy New Year

31 Dec

dragons head 2

Here’s Worm’s Head on the Gower Peninsula, named from the Viking Wurme which means Dragon. So it’s Dragon’s Head which in Welsh is Penddraig. Anyway, I drew this yesterday during a very bracing walk on the cliffs at Rhossili, one of the most beautiful beaches in the world. I used black, sanguine and white conté crayon into an A4 brown paper sketchbook and worked very quickly because it was so windy and cold.

It’s the end of the old year and we’re nearly into 2018 so Blwyddyn Newydd Dda i chi, a Happy New Year to you xxxx 😀

Sofa To Sea…..

30 Dec

dragons head 1

Husb and I forced ourselves out of our comfort zone aka the settee and took off to the magnificent Rhossili Bay on the Gower Peninsula for a brisk walk. It was bracing as we headed past the National Trust centre towards Worm’s Head which had been cut off by the ferocious sea this afternoon. I found a spot that wasn’t quite as windswept as everywhere else and did some drawing en plein air, using black, white and sanguine conté crayons into an A4 hard-backed, spiral-bound brown paper sketchbook. I did a quick impressionistic sketch, partly because it was not easy drawing in high winds, and also because I don’t like working naturalistically with land- and seascapes.

Lowest Of The Low

29 Dec

1514579514532-126557606.png

There’s a little Unitarian Church at the bottom of Swansea’s High Street and every year since, well, at least since I was a kid, which is a long time, there has been a glass case with a nativity scene in it and a charity collection box every Christmas. This year, the church has been collecting to support homeless people but someone broke into the collection box and stole the donations. The lowest of the low! What an awful thing to do. They have set up a crowdfunding page to try and raise some money to cover the loss. If you can spare a little and want to donate, please follow the link here.

I stood outside the nativity scene on the street a couple of days ago and had a bit of a scribble on my Samsung Galaxy Note 8 tablet with a Markers app. Here’s Joseph. I find it odd drawing someone else’s art as I want to put my own stamp on it and it looks quite different to the original.

Blowing The Cobwebs Away

28 Dec

beach Dec 28 2017

 

The weather was glorious today, chilly but very sunny, so Husb and I went for a walk on the beach to start to work off the excesses of the last few days and blow the cobwebs away. Of course I had a scribble into my tiny little cloth covered Paper Blanks sketchbook and a biro (ballpoint) pen. It was a very quick sketch but that’s okay, the important thing for me is to draw every day even if it’s only for a minute or two. It’s like a singer practising their scales.

 

beach 28 Dec

A walk on Swansea Beach

The Sky Caught Up With Us

27 Dec

crem

 

This time of year there are many family traditions being played out across the Christmas holidays and one in my own family is to visit memorials of those we have lost. Every year we go to the crematorium to lay flowers and clean memorial stones. I reflected on the ancient use of stone for graves and memorials which is still part of our culture. It makes sense really, stone lasts for aeons. The sky was strange today, brooding and heavy around the white crematorium chimneys. The sky caught up with us and it snowed heavily a few minutes after I did this very quick sketch. I used white, sanguine and black conté crayon into an A4 brown paper spiral bound sketchbook.

Merry Spartapuss

24 Dec

Sparta snowflake

 

Greetings hairless apes. Sparta Puss here.  I managed to get my paws on the pooter when the bald monkeys were not looking. The male monkey drew me with his little tiny pooter box and the she-Simian added some snowflakes. It’s that time of year again when the monkeys send greetings to each other and what could be better than an annoyed kitty?  The apes brought me some special snacks and treats and I’m going off to eat them. So Merry Spartapuss one and all.

 

A Modern Interior

24 Dec

Xmas interior

I went visiting today and had a scribble, of course. I don’t often do interiors and still life but I think that maybe I should do more. When I see historical paintings in galleries it’s easy to lose sight of the fact that these were paintings of modern houses and possessions in their day, a record of everyday life. This is a household getting ready for Christmas, with wrapped and unwrapped presents occupying every nook and cranny around the large flat screen TV. I drew this into my A5 cat lined notebook by Peter Pauper Press with a graphite stick.

 

Impression Of Heat

21 Dec

hot earth 2

I did some quick, impressionistic sketches while I was walking around on my visit to Portugal a couple of weeks ago. The earth is stratified, horizontally and vertically and made up of bright hot colours, reds, oranges, yellows and browns which contrast so vividly with the brilliant blue of the sky and sea.

I used Daler Rowney artist quality soft pastels into a 15cm square Khadi paper sketchbook, The paper is lovely, very textured, heavy and deckle-edged. I think it’s worth paying out for really good quality materials because a little goes a long way. These pastels have lasted me ages and there’s plenty more pigment left.

Banners Are Good…..

20 Dec

Hub 201217a

Banners are good. Banners are a useful way of breaking the ice when I’m running sessions in art. A lot of adults feel intimidated by ‘art’ and that they can’t paint or draw. Doing banners means they can drop by and do a few brushstrokes or they can get absorbed for a couple of hours. The group came up with a starting point of writing words and from then on it was colouring in on a big scale, with acrylic paints (Liquitex). We’ve nearly finished, maybe one more session then on to the next banner.

Art In The Cellar

18 Dec

ogof 2

I am so lucky to work as an art tutor for a charity that helps homeless people. I love it and I love using art to communicate with people and to give people a lift, a sense of achievement. This banner has been going for a few weeks now. People can drop in and do a few brushstrokes or work on it for the whole session as they want. But the really important thing is that it engages with people, it draws them in to talk and make contact with the services that can help them.

ogof 1

The venue is in a basement and provides evening meals and a warm, safe place to spend an evening. It’s a Christian venue but is open to everyone in need. Some of the service users wanted to create a banner that welcomed people and at the same time gave an idea what the place stands for. They had to work together to agree on the basic design, the words and images, and I downloaded stencils for most of the imagery as it makes it inclusive to people who can’t, or who feel they can’t, draw.

 

%d bloggers like this: