Tag Archives: conte crayon

Barcud: Red Kite: Milvus Milvus

17 Nov

kites 1

Husb and I went to Ceredigion for an overnighter, just to get out of the city. We haven’t escaped the area since lockdown started in March so it was a relief to get away, even for such a short time. We called in to the Red Kite Feeding Centre, near Rhayader. Barcud is the Welsh word for red kite, milvus milvus in Latin. They’re amazing birds. We hired a hide because it was raining and I wanted to draw and Husb wanted to film.

kites 2

It wasn’t easy drawing so many moving creatures – they’re really fast! And there were hundreds of them. They’re beautiful and it’s great to see so many; not so long ago they were almost extinct in Wales. I drew quickly, just aiming to get impressions of their flight rather than details. I used white and sanguine conté crayons with a touch of black into a brown paper sketchbook. Here’s a short video of these lovelies in flight.

 

 

A Chance To Own One Of My Artworks

I have some small screenprints for sale, inspired by my drawings of the taxidermy collection at Swansea Museum. I have given these antique artifacts a modern twist by combining them with images of rubbish – old fruit nets, bubble wrap and plastic – highlighting the problem of human pollution and how it affects wildlife.

To buy my work on the Swansea Print Workshop site please click the image to the left and to see the complete image.

Inspired by drawings of the taxidermy collection at Swansea Museum. I have given these antique artefacts a modern twist by combining them with images of rubbish – old fruit nets, bubble wrap and plastic – highlighting the problem of human pollution and how it affects wildlife.

20 percent of the cost of each screenprint sold goes to support Swansea Print Workshop, which receives no public funding.

A Trip To Hinterland

16 Nov

Chasm draw

We’ve been in lockdown for what seems like forever so Husb booked us an evening away at the Hafod Hotel at Devil’s Bridge – Pont ar Fynach – in Ceredigion, for a bit of a break. It’s a very atmospheric part of the world and features a lot in the Cymru Noir crime drama TV series “Hinterland“.

Chasm view

Dusk was already drawing in on a gloomy afternoon when we checked in and we had a lovely room with a spectacular view along the chasm  – the Devil’s Bridge is at the bottom of it. I grabbed some conté crayons and scribbled the view quickly into my brown paper sketchbook before it became too dark.

spooky house

The lovely but spooky Hafod Hotel, right above the Devil’s Bridge.

 

 

 

A Chance To Own One Of My Artworks

I have some small screenprints for sale, inspired by my drawings of the taxidermy collection at Swansea Museum. I have given these antique artifacts a modern twist by combining them with images of rubbish – old fruit nets, bubble wrap and plastic – highlighting the problem of human pollution and how it affects wildlife.

To buy my work on the Swansea Print Workshop site please click the image to the left and to see the complete image.

Inspired by drawings of the taxidermy collection at Swansea Museum. I have given these antique artefacts a modern twist by combining them with images of rubbish – old fruit nets, bubble wrap and plastic – highlighting the problem of human pollution and how it affects wildlife.

20 percent of the cost of each screenprint sold goes to support Swansea Print Workshop, which receives no public funding.

The Labyrinth

4 Aug

labyrinth

Today, Husb and I went to help with the annual maintenance at the labyrinth in Rosehill Quarry, installed back in 1987 by Bob Shaw and Dewi Bowen. It’s based on an ancient Cretan design and is cut into the grass, the incised path filled with crushed cockle shells that are a by-product of the local seafood industry. It’s an important place for Husb and me because this is where we met back in the 1980’s. Britain was in the middle of a recession, there was mass unemployment, especially affecting young people and graduates. Husb and I were both out of work and ended up involved in a job creation programme that paid unemployed people to work part-time on community projects.

Local residents had started a group to reclaim this amazing inner-city wild space and turn it into one of the first urban wildlife refuges in the country. The Cretan labyrinth is a lasting legacy of their vision and foresight and a subsequent generation of residents have been active in keeping Rosehill Quarry maintained and open for all to enjoy.
labyrinth 1

Here I am a while back sketching the labyrinth in chalk, charcoal and soft pastels.

 

 

A Glutton For Punishment

8 Jan

block prep 4

 

So did a couple of hours teaching today and loads of admin- the glamorous life of an artist eh? And a little bit more work on my preparatory drawing for a woodcut. I worked out where the dark areas are to be and started to think about the cutting and registration of the final block. Tomorrow, I’ll trace and transfer to the sheet of MDF in reverse. I’ll probably do a reduction print, or the “suicide method” as we printmakers call it, as it results in the destruction of the block and there’s no room for error. I’m a glutton for punishment.

 

 

A Bit Each Day

7 Jan

tree stage 2

It’s easy to get precious about making art, I’m guilty of that! I spend so much time agonising about what to do that I almost get creative paralysis at times. One of the things I do to overcome this is to start working on a process and just do a bit every day. Sometimes you can work flat out on a piece of art for 7, 8, 9 hours but other times it’s just not possible. So a bit each day is good enough as it gives time to think about it, and thinking time is really important. I carried on redrawing from an original drawing, scaling it up and thinking about the technical problems I’m going to have to work out to develop this into a three-colour woodcut print. I’m using conté crayons in black and sanguine over graphite.

 

 

 

Draw, Redraw And Tidy Up

6 Jan

 

block prep 2

Today I had a good clean out of my working space, sorting out cupboards and boxes, clearing desk tops and shelves, filling recycling bags and setting aside things to give away, a new start for the new year. Then I began to so some preliminary work for a new woodcut. I did a drawing en plein air of a stricken tree back last year that I’ve fancied developing into a print for some time now. I grabbed a piece of drawing paper the size of the piece of MDF I’ll be using to make the woodcut and I started redrawing from my original sketch. I could have just scanned a copy of the original and enlarged it, but by redrawing a few times, I give myself the time and space to work out how I’m going to develop this as a three colour woodcut. The process isn’t easy but I find that this practice of redrawing helps me to focus on the technical details.

 

 

Foggy And Hangliding

30 Dec

worms head

Husb and I met up with some friends today for a good walk down at Rhossili, one of the most beautiful beaches in the world and a short drive from where we live. I took a brown paper sketchbook and some conté crayons to have a bit of a scribble. It was windy, cold and damp which didn’t make it easy to draw en plein air, so I stopped after a quick sketch. We walked down the steep path to the beginning of the causeway to the islands, which were cut off by the tide and then clambered back up the hillside. It was really foggy when we arrived but it lifted and some people took to hangliding above the huge beach.

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.

Running Out Of Time

1 Apr

specs 3

I try to get along to life drawing sessions at Swansea Print Workshop as often as possible as drawing underpins everything I do artistically and I need to practice. This is a fab model, she’s excellent and I love to draw her. Unfortunately, even the most experienced models can get a dead leg and that’s what happened this week, so I wasn’t able to finish the drawing. But never mind, I like the unfinishedness of it. I drew with white, sanguine and black conté crayons, in that sequence, onto brown wrapping paper.

 

 

I have put my series of drawings of ancient Welsh monuments on Artfinder.  If you want to see more, please click on the image below or the Artfinder link at the top right of this page.

St Elvis

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