Tag Archives: Carreg Cennen

Before And After

5 Jun

Tair Carn 4

This is a piece of Fabriano Accademica paper, prepared with charcoal, acrylic paint and my home made walnut ink.

Tair Carn 5

And this is the same piece after I have visited an ancient monument and drawn it onto the paper in charcoal and Daler Rowney soft pastels.

The Giant

4 Jun

Tri Crug

I went out drawing up the mountains in the Carreg Cennen area, at Tair Carn Isaf (The Three Lower Cairns). The area is covered in cairns, skipping over the countryside along rocky outcrops arranged like a spine across the landscape. In the distance is a rounded hill – I think it’s called Tri Grug – and legend has it a giant lived upon it and for entertainment, he created the cairns in the area by throwing stones from his hilltop.

Tri Crug 2

I took with me a portfolio stuffed full of Fabriano Accademica paper prepared with charcoal, white acrylic and home-made walnut ink – see how I prepared it here. I used Daler Rowney soft pastels (artist quality) to draw lines representing the contours of the landscape in front of me. It was difficult to do because although the weather was very sunny, there was a ferocious wind up on the mountain which kept buffeting my drawing board and wrenching it around.

 

I’ve been travelling around South Wales with archaeologist Dewi Bowen, who is researching his new book on Neolithic / Bronze Age monuments. His previous book on the stones of Ancient Siluria (South East Wales) can be found here. Also with us  is film maker Melvyn Williams, recording a documentary about our experiences. Some of Melvyn’s short films can be seen here. If you want to see some of my other artworks, please click here.

Bronze Age Piles Of Rocks

3 Jun

Tair Carn 2

Drawing at  Tair Carn Isaf (the Three Lower Cairns) yesterday with Dewi the archaeologist and Melvyn the film maker. It’s a complex site made up of many cairns, large and small, with more in the distance, lining up along a number of large rocky outcrops gambolling across the landscape. The problem for me as an artist is how to approach drawing these monuments which, although Bronze Age graves, are basically piles of rocks and to be honest, one pile of rocks is much the same as another.

Tair Carn 3

For this one, I chose an aspect that shows the most easterly of the three cairns on the Tair Carn Isaf (Three Lower Cairns) site, with two of the three cairns on the Tair Carn Uchaf (Three Upper Cairns) site in the distance. I chose a piece of Fabriano prepared with charcoal, white acrylic paint and walnut ink (that I made myself). Then, with Daler Rowney artists’ soft pastels I used a variety of colours to indicate the contours of the landscape and the shape of the cairns against the sky.

Dewi is researching his new book on Neolithic / Bronze Age monuments. His previous book on the stones of Ancient Siluria (South East Wales) can be found here. Melvyn is recording a documentary about our experiences. Some of Melvyn’s short films can be seen here. I’m currently working on a series of expressive drawings of ancestral sites and if you want to see some of my other artworks, please click here.

Cairns, Castle And Garlic

2 Jun

Tair Carn 1

Back to hunting the wild megalith in South Wales with archaeologist Dewi Bowen and film maker Melvyn Williams, visiting Neolithic monuments on the Trail Of The Boar, a legend from The Mabinogion. Today we took off to Tair Carn Isaf (the Three Lower Cairns) near Carreg Cennen Castle in Carmarthenshire. The cairns were a hefty walk from the road, steeply uphill over rough ground but worth the effort for the spectacular 360° views. The first and largest cairn we came to has been enhanced with a small rock sculpture perched on top. I like the way that modern people interact with the ancestors by adding to the cairns and even making new ones alongside the old.

I drew onto a piece of Fabriano paper I had previously prepared with charcoal, acrylic paint and my own home-made walnut ink. I drew with Daler Rowney artists’ soft pastels. I don’t want to do representational drawings when I’m out with the ancestral stones, rather I want to express my feelings about the place, to create my own personal impression.

Here’s  a bit of trivia. The castle name, Carreg Cennen is Welsh for Leek Rock – the area is covered with wild garlic, or Ramsons, which was apparently the original Welsh leek. We could smell it for miles around as we travelled to the castle for tea and cake after our trek.

Dewi is researching his new book on Neolithic / Bronze Age monuments. His previous book on the stones of Ancient Siluria (South East Wales) can be found here. Melvyn is recording a documentary about our experiences. Some of Melvyn’s short films can be seen here. I’m currently working on a series of expressive drawings of ancestral sites and if you want to see some of my other artworks, please click here.

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