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Crazy Hair, Don’t Care

29 Mar

crazy hair dont care

I’ve been working on this painting for a little while, I rarely paint but this is a birthday present for my dear young nephew, just turned 14 and the owner of some very unruly hair. I painted this from a photograph which I particularly like for its typical teenage insouciance.

I used Liquitex Heavy Body acrylic thinned with water into translucent glazes, which I overlaid, rather like painting with watercolour. It’s painted onto a stretched, gessoed white canvas.

Number 96

26 Mar

Voogd V 96


Almost three years ago, I decided to draw one hundred, thirty-minute sketches of Baby Boomers, people of my generation. I thought it would take me about a year. Wrong! Funny how life gets in the way. I did most of them in 2 years but got stuck on the last handful; it has been so hard to find mutually convenient times. So today I was delighted to draw Number 96! This is a fellow artist visiting from the USA, who is staying with friends nearby. She’s the right age and willing, so I paid her a visit, with home made cake (a jam and buttercream sponge, with home-made loganberry jam – home grown loganberries too) and had a chat about her life experience as a Baby Boomer and then drew her. It was interesting to talk with someone from a different culture because although we are the same generation, much of our experience has been very different.

Baby Boomers are the generation born between 1946 and 1964, a big bump working its way through time.  Eventually, I’m planning an installation featuring all the drawings I’ve done, but that’s a long way off yet. First of all, I have to get the last 4 Boomers into a room and draw them.

Colouring In

19 Mar


I rarely paint, it’s not a medium I feel much affinity with but I’ve been working on a painting the past couple of days, it’s for someone special. The reason I don’t paint much is because I feel that all my creativity goes into drawing and once I’ve got the drawing as I want it, painting just seems like colouring in, which is quite nice but nowhere near as creative, in my opinion, as drawing. Although I know a lot of painters who wouldn”t agree with me on this.

I’m using acrylic paints, thinned with water, to paint translucent layers of pigment onto a white primed canvas. This is a small detail of the painting in progress.



1 Mar


A sketch of a friend relaxing in a chair, using sanguine and white conté crayons and a Faber Castell Pitt drawing pen, size M into my A4 hardbacked sketchbook that I had previously prepared with pieces of brown wrapping paper stuck in with Pritt gluestick. Relaxed pose, relaxed drawing.

Creativity, Comfort And Curveballs

23 Feb

Donna and Kate

And here’s the final drawing I did at the creative salon organised by the artist Fern Smith, a recipient of a Creative Wales Award .  It was the first of “Seven Sundays in Spring: All The Women I’ve Ever Met“ , hosted by the glass artist Chris Bird-Jones. 

I found it not only creative but also very comforting. Life has been throwing some nasty curveballs lately and I was very grateful for the chance to spend a day with such creative and supportive women. I knew about half of the women already and the rest I had never met. It was lovely being with an intergenerational group, from women in their 60s (maybe 70s?) all the way down to a baby girl of seven months. I drew into an A4 hardbacked sketchbook that had been prepared with ripped brown paper stuck in with Pritt Stick, drawing with white, black and sanguine conté crayon and Faber Castell Pitt drawing pens, sizes S and M.

If you want to find out more about “Seven Sundays In Spring“, here’s Fern’s blog about it.


A Higgledy-Piggledy Gothic Place

21 Feb


Here are two more drawings I did last Sunday at a creative salon for women that I went to. It certainly gave me a creative boost and has helped to gel some ideas for development I’d been mulling around.

Jo and Phoebe

The salon was organised by the artist Fern Smith, a recipient of a Creative Wales Award who has organised “Seven Sundays in Spring: All The Women I’ve Ever Met“ to bring together creative salons across Wales (and one in England). This was the first and was hosted by the glass artist Chris Bird-Jones in her lovely Victorian house that clings higgledy-piggledy to the steep hill above Swansea city centre. The striking interior lends a Gothic atmosphere to the drawings.

Tampered With…

20 Feb


On Sunday, I went to a Women’s Creative Salon in Swansea, with a group brought together by the artist Fern Smith. Fern is a recipient of a Creative Wales Award and has organised “Seven Sundays in Spring: All The Women I’ve Ever Met“, inviting women that she’s encountered throughout the course of her life to engage in these consecutive creative Sundays in Wales  and England.

Jo reading

The sketches I did on Sunday were challenging because I wanted to be fully involved in the creative conversations and activities but also wanted to do credible drawings. I drew into an A4 hardbacked sketchbook that I’d prepared by sticking brown wrapping  paper onto the pages with Pritt stick.  I prefer to work on paper that has been tampered with in some way. A pristine white page is terrifying!

A Sunday Scribble

19 Feb



I spent a wonderful Sunday with a group of women artists and makers, brought together by the artist Fern Smith who has organised a series of events called Seven Sundays in Spring. It was a lovely atmosphere, calm, peaceful and supportive and of course, I scribbled. I managed six drawings in all. It’s nice drawing at a small gathering as people tend to be relatively still, but also they’re not sitting for portraits so there has to be an element of speed at the expense of detail. I drew into an A4 hardbacked sketchbook that I’d prepared by sticking brown wrapping paper onto the pages with Pritt stick.  Here’s the first drawing.

Music And Mark Making

18 Feb

Rhodri Davies 2

Husb and I went to the “Gallery At Night” opening at the Glynn Vivian Art Gallery where artist in residence Rhodri Davies was performing on a range of strange instruments, including cymbals arranged on the floor (above) and adapted harps. I quickly got into the zone and scribbled automatically, allowing the music to dictate my mark-making. This is a recent development for me as I normally work in silence, not even listening to the radio. I drew these with a biro (ballpoint) pen into my small cloth-backed sketchbook (approximately A6 size).


The Gallery At Night

17 Feb

Rhodri davies b


Husb and I went to the late opening at the Glynn Vivian Art Gallery last night where artist in residence Rhodri Davies was performing on a range of strange instruments. I scribbled with a biro (ballpoint) pen and found myself almost mesmerised, drawing automatically to the music.

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