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Artes Mundi

12 Sep

Husb and I were at g39 in Cardiff this evening at the announcement of the Artes Mundi shortlist. This is an internationally focused arts organisation that “identifies, recognises and supports contemporary visual artists who engage with the human condition, social reality and lived experience.” It’s possibly best known for its biennial international Exhibition and Prize which awards a £40,000 prize to the winner.

Of course, I had a scribble…..

artes mundi

Then my pen ran out …..

 

A lot of my artwork is available on my Artfinder gallery.  If you’d like to have a look, please click on the image below or the Artfinder link at the top right of this page.

Gors Fawr, near Mynachlog-ddu in the Preseli mountains, a lush green bog fringed with glowing hills.

 

Lefty!

9 Sep

Day 2 d

I carried on working today at the Creative Bubble artspace in Swansea’s Cradock Street with fellow artist Patricia McKenna Jones. Patricia has taken the space for a few days to develop some new work and invited other artists to join her. I thought I could do with a few days experimenting so I stuck a huge piece of Fabriano Accademica paper on the wall, about 1.5 x 2 metres and started making intuitive marks, first with compressed charcoal and then with Winsor & Newton oil bars.

Pat

Patricia making monotypes based on her sketchbook drawings

The mark-making I’m doing isn’t anything new, the Abstract Expressionists were at it throughout the 1940s and 1950s but it’s new for me. I normally work quite formally from life, drawing from things in front of me. It’s a departure for me to work without subject matter, without realism and without an ultimate aim. It was hard on the first day but now, on day 2, I’m relaxing into it.

From the left, today starting with what I did yesterday, mostly compressed charcoal with some streaks of scarlet and a little Alizarin Crimson, then Yellow Ochre, more Alizarin Crimson and finally Hooker’s Green.

Oh …. and I decided to work entirely with my left hand today (I’m right handed) and it made such a difference, I am much more relaxed and intuitive, the marks more varied.

 

 

A lot of my artwork is available on my Artfinder gallery.  If you’d like to have a look, please click on the image below or the Artfinder link at the top right of this page.

Gors Fawr, near Mynachlog-ddu in the Preseli mountains, a lush green bog fringed with glowing hills.

 

Getting Somewhere

5 Sep

I started this little watercolour a couple of weeks ago, when I was in Ceredigion, using Winsor & Newton half pans onto St. Cuthbert’s Mill watercolour paper. I’m not used to watercolours and the scene before me was very pale and misty and I was a bit disappointed by it, to be honest. So I photographed it into my Samsung Galaxy Tablet and started experimenting with a free Markers app, building up layers of black crosshatching over the pale paint. I’m getting somewhere at last.

 

A lot of my artwork is available on my Artfinder gallery.  If you’d like to have a look, please click on the image below or the Artfinder link at the top right of this page.

Gors Fawr, near Mynachlog-ddu in the Preseli mountains, a lush green bog fringed with glowing hills.

 

Taking A Break

4 Sep

It’s the holidays, so I’ve had a bit of a break from art and blogging for a few days and now I’m ready to get stuck in again. I helped to set up a window display of prints at Volcano on Swansea’s High Street today, with my fellow Plebeian Printmakers. We took part in the recent ‘Troublemakers Festival’, making prints from manhole covers in the streets and we’re showing them at Volcano through September.

Some of The Plebeian Printmakers – Melvyn Williams, Patricia McKenna-Jones, Hannah Lawson and Chris Harrendence

 

Melvyn made a short film of us making our prints in the street – here it is ….

We’ll be doing it again in Cardiff at the ‘Made In Roath’ arts festival on October 21st. More on that later …

 

 

 

A lot of my artwork is available on my Artfinder gallery.  If you’d like to have a look, please click on the image below or the Artfinder link at the top right of this page.

Back To Scribbling

30 Aug

Scribble 1

I returned to scribbling onto recycled prints today. This is an old screenprint that I didn’t like when I did it but it’s on a gorgeous Zerkall paper that’s too good to throw away, so I scribbled all over it. I took some digital photos of the result and here is a small section of it that  I photographed digitally. I spend a lot of time on these seemingly random scribbles, working into many of the marks with my fingers to soften and smudge. I used top quality Daler Rowney soft pastels.

 

 

A lot of my artwork is available on my Artfinder gallery.  If you’d like to have a look, please click on the image below or the Artfinder link at the top right of this page.

Getting Darker

29 Aug

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I’m carrying on drawing experimentally on top of a little watercolour sketch I did en plein air a couple of days ago. I uploaded it onto my Samsung Galaxy Note 8 tablet into a free Markers drawing app and I’m working over it with cross-hatching and scribbling. The version I did yesterday is better than my original, which was very wishy washy and mundane, but today I took it a few stages darker and I’m liking it more. I’m going to keep working over it to see how dark I can go before I lose the subject all together.

I think it’s an important part of the creative process to take time out to experiment, to play with no pressure to meet deadlines or conform to the brief of a commission. I’m not keen on using either watercolours or digital drawing apps, but they’re good as a means to an end, trying out new ideas that might lead somewhere.

 

 

I am putting my series of drawings of ancient Welsh monuments on Artfinder.  If you’d like to see them, please click on the image below or the Artfinder link at the top right of this page.

St Elvis

Putting It Together

26 Aug

Making an artwork can sometimes be quick and spontaneous but is often a set of processes that finally come together. That’s the way I developed the collage that I made yesterday at the Mill Lane Arts Week in Cardiff. I rummaged around in my plans chest for old discarded prints that hadn’t worked out to my satisfaction, linocuts and screenprints, the paper is too good to waste so they get squirreled away to be reused.

Millane 3

I worked on top of a large discarded linocut and collaged a fragment of a two-colour screenprint that hadn’t worked out.

 

Over the previous week, I had been scribbling over some unused screenprints and also some vintage papers with Daler Rowney soft pastels, working randomly building up layers of colour and texture. I used these extensively to build up detail on my collage.

 

So my final piece started some years ago with disappointment in the print studio – happy accidents.

Millane 4

 

 

A lot of my artwork is available on my Artfinder gallery.  If you’d like to have a look, please click on the image below or the Artfinder link at the top right of this page.

Urban Shredder

25 Aug

Millane 1

Husb and I spent the day in Cardiff at the Mill Lane Arts Week en plein air public art event. Most of the artists there today were painting but I don’t really ‘get’ paint so I did a collage. I’ve been preparing collage papers all week ( please see the last few blog posts) and I got stuck into shredding and sticking the urban cityscape in front of me.

Millane 2

I worked onto a discarded print, a large linocut that hadn’t worked out but turned on its side, it was a good starting point. Then I added some large-ish areas of colour and texture from some unwanted screen prints, then began shredding in earnest to build up detail. I had wondered about working in some linear details with conté crayon or oil bars, but in the end I liked the rough abstract nature of it.

Loads of artists have been working en plein air throughout the week and our work is on display on Level 2, 10, Mill Lane, Cardiff for the next few days, if you’re anywhere near.

 

 

A lot of my artwork is available on my Artfinder gallery.  If you’d like to have a look, please click on the image below or the Artfinder link at the top right of this page.

Somewhere Special To Look At Mobile Phones

14 Aug

chalking 2

Husb and I just got back from Oriel Ceri Richard’s Gallery, at Taliesin Art Centre, which has been at the centre of protests in recent months because of plans by Swansea University to close it. It was opened in 1984 and named after Welsh painter Ceri Richards. It has showcased local, national and international artists, living and dead, over the past two and a bit decades. When we arrived, there was no art on the walls but lots of photos of artists who have exhibited there over the years; there I am above with the 15 Hundred Lives collective, fellow artists Graham Parker and Sylvie Evans.

chalking 1

Someone had brought some coloured chalks so I started scribbling, of course. It’s like being a kid again but without grown ups to tell you off 😀 Once I started drawing I was oblivious to anything else. The University wants the space for ‘an enhanced student experience’. The artist’s impression shows a playgroup-type space with lots of students sitting around on boxes looking at their mobile phones. Because they need somewhere special to look at their mobile phones, don’t they? It’s such a shame that a gallery with such a good reputation is being lost to the area. The University seems to have forgotten that the Taliesin Arts Centre, which houses the gallery, was mainly funded by Swansea’s local communities through a public Development Appeal Fund in the 1960s. And now the public is to be deprived of it.  Here’s a petition if you’d like to sign it.

 

 

A lot of my artwork is available on my Artfinder gallery.  If you’d like to have a look, please click on the image below or the Artfinder link at the top right of this page.

A Gallery Visit

12 Aug

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Husb and I paid a visit to the lovely Workers Gallery in Ynyshir in the Rhondda Valley today. I am one of the gallery artists and I wanted to change the work I’m displaying there. Each gallery artist has a bit of wall to display their work. The Workers also has a Main Gallery for curated exhibitions. It was the last day of Susan Zeppellini’s sculpture and drawing show, “The Crows Descend”, which is fantastic.

I’m exhibiting a large monotype titled ‘Scrutiny’ based on drawings I did working with a life model.

 

 

A lot of my artwork is available on my Artfinder gallery.  If you’d like to have a look, please click on the image below or the Artfinder link at the top right of this page.

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