Tag Archives: Pakistan

Workers’ Mates

27 Nov

2017 Punjabi Storm

I’m a gallery artist at the excellent Workers Gallery in Ynyshir where up to 20 invited artists are selected annually to have a square metre of permanent exhibition space and to work with the gallery to develop the exhibition programme and run regular residency and demo days. The Workers’ focuses on art made in Wales but also has a special programme of international artists throughout the year. It’s a lovely gallery, worth visiting.

Supporters of the gallery often become ‘Workers Mates’ for an annual contribution of £20 and in return they receive special exhibition opportunities, offers and VIP invitations. It’s an interesting model of working as it embeds the gallery in the local community through the Workers’ Mates scheme and also gives artists an opportunity to curate their own exhibition area.

I just visited last week and changed my ‘square metre’ to show these fairly new monotypes that haven’t been exhibited before. They’re based on impressionistic drawings I did during my last visit to Pakistan while I was travelling through The Punjab, and I used the 3-colour reduction technique with Caligo Safewash relief inks onto BFK Rives paper. See my Techie section for more about the technique.

 

 

Punjab To Rhondda With Cake

20 Nov

Winter Woodland artist residencies Nov 2017 b

I’m doing a one-day artist residency at The Workers Gallery in Ynyshir this coming Friday so if you’re in the area, or fancy that trip up the Rhondda Valley that you’ve been promising yourself, please pop in and see me. I’ll make a cake. Maybe a Victoria Sandwich.

Victoria Sandwich

When I did a residency in Pakistan, at the Zaira Zaka Print Studio three years ago, I travelled from Rawalpindi to Lahore across the vast expanse of the Punjab through some incredible weather conditions including the most ferocious thunderstorm I have ever experienced. In the car, I did 50 very quick impressionistic drawings of the journey into a small Khadi sketchbook, and these have inspired a series of small monotypes. I have done 10 so far and I’ll be working on some more at my residency in Ynyshir.

I edited the 50 original drawings together into a short video with a soundtrack taken from the sounds around me during my month-long stay. Here it is….

Awkward Little Object

8 Oct

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So it’s now day 7 of the 40 Day Drawing Challenge organised by Green Olive Press in Morocco and I’m working my way through individual objects to draw still-life studies. Today’s was an awkward little thing, a small marble pestle and mortar that I bought in Pakistan about 3 years ago when I was on an artist residency near Rawalpindi. I stood it on a jazzy coaster and drew onto my Samsung Galaxy Note 8 with a free Markers app. The marble was a pain to draw and doing this challenge is giving me so much more respect for artists who work with still-life, it’s not easy.

From Pakistan To Pentre Ifan: Art, Cake And Neolithic Wales

26 Jun

My solo show, “Yr Helfa / The Hunt”, is now on at Swansea’s quirky artspace, Cinema & Co throughout July and we’re finishing with a fabulous event on Monday July 31st from 5.30 pm featuring a film from Melvyn Williams, an illustrated talk from Dewi Bowen and I’ll be launching a new edition of a lino print made especially for the event.

I am exhibiting a series of drawings made of ancestral Bronze Age and Neolithic monuments in the field – mostly muddy fields – drawn on my journey across South Wales over the past 18 months with prehistorian Dewi Bowen and filmmaker Melvyn Williams. This body of work has its roots in a life-changing journey I made to Pakistan some years ago, where I became fascinated by rock carvings over 10,000 years old.

 

Back in February 2016 I started trudging through mud and slurry, fording turbulent streams and climbing over brackish hilltops through hail, rain and snow with Dewi and Melvyn to hunt down Neolithic and Bronze Age burial chambers, ceremonial circles and standing stones that lie scattered across the landscape of Wales. Coming face to face with these ancestral symbols both of a long lost culture and of continuity in a rapidly changing world has had a profound impact on me.

Please check Cinema & Co’s Facebook page for opening times during the exhibition.

 

 

For a limited period I am putting a new drawing of an ancient monument on my Artfinder gallery every day.  If you’d like to check them out, please click on the image below or the Artfinder link at the top right of this page.

 

 

 

Taking It Further….

2 Apr

I’ve been thinking about how artwork develops from my original sketches.

pak2

I always carry a sketchbook and have dozens and dozens stuffed into cupboards with thousands of sketches done over the years and most stay locked away. But occasionally I find something that inspires me to use some of them as the basis for new work, usually some form of printmaking. About 3 years ago I was fortunate enough to visit Pakistan for a month as a resident artist at the Zaira Zaka Print Studio near Rawalpindi. On a crazy car journey from Rawalpindi to Lahore on my birthday in the worst storm I’ve ever seen, I sat in the back of the car and scribbled with my Daler Rowney pastels into a Khadi handmade paper sketchbook, capturing speedy impressions of the ever-changing atmospheric landscape as we drove. When I came back I edited the drawings into a video (below).

 

I also took the sketches into the studio at Swansea Print Workshop and started to work on small full-colour monotypes; if you want to find out more about my technique, please click here.

 

 

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

Blast From The Past….

29 Mar

elephant

Another blast from the past, from The Bagpuss Window, a semi-derelict artspace set up by Melanie Ezra and myself about 18 months ago. It only lasted 3 weeks but we, and lots of other artists and performers, did loads of arty stuff. Swansea Print Workshop lent us a portable etching press so I got stuck in with some paper drypoint plates and produced a small edition based on a little sketchbook drawing I did during my residency in Pakistan a couple of years ago.

Filmmaker Melvyn Williams made some short videos of what we got up to – here are a couple …..

First off, performance poet Rhys Trimble jamming with gong artist David Pitt.

 

And a quick blast of me…..

 

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

That Goldilocks Moment

20 Jan
Pip 1

Taking a rubbing from a woodcut with graphite block. Gives a metallic sheen.

I’ve been experimenting today. I was given some large pieces of robust tissue paper by a fellow artist and invited to do something with them and then give them back to her for her installation. I decided to cover them with rubbings made from a very large woodcut I have been working on. It isn’t finished yet so I don’t have any prints but the rubbings picked up the developed parts nicely.

Pip compare

I tried out a few different drawing materials to start with. First, carbon, compressed charcoal and Bideford Black (looked good but too smudgy). Secondly, Chinese charcoal (too hard, ripped the paper). And finally, Graphite block (perfect, didn’t rip, didn’t smudge, nice metallic sheen). Bit like Goldilocks and the porage.

There are differing opinions on how to spell porage, which is the spelling I always use but many use porridge and, rarely, parritch. I love the stuff, made nice and thin (Husb contemptuously calls it gruel – he likes it thick enough to stand your spoon in) and I put a knob of butter in mine, I’m not fond of sugar. When I was in Pakistan I had porage made from cracked wheat rather than oats, nice but very different.

Inspired By The Punjab: 2

27 Oct

October 1 blue

Here’s the second of the monotypes I made during my recent open studio at Swansea Print Workshop, based on sketches I did during my residency in Pakistan last year. The colours of the landscape and sky are marvellous, so bright, atmospheric and changeable. I normally work with the human form, but this wonderful landscape inspired me. This monotype technique relies on expertise in drawing and mark-making. I used cotton buds (Q Tips), cotton rags, scrim (tarlatan) and rough hoghair brushes to get the marks and textures.

Inspired By The Punjab

26 Oct
October 2 blue

Completed full colour stacked monotype.

I carried on with stages 2 (red) and 3 (blue) of my new monotypes while I was doing the final day of my pop-up studio event at Swansea Print Workshop. Yesterday I posted stage 1 (yellow) for both the first pressing and the second – ghost – pressing. You can see the full set in the slideshow below.

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The monotype was inspired by a car journey through the Punjab during my residency in Pakistan last year. We started in Rawalpindi and drove to Lahore through a spectacular landscape with an ever-changing sky, from brilliant Spring sunshine, to heavy rain, to violent thunder and lightning to giant hailstones and back again. I sat in the car and frantically scribbled into my small square Khadi sketchbook with Daler Rowney Artist’s Soft Oil Pastels.

October 2 blue ghost

Completer ‘ghost# monotype

I did 50 drawings, no more than 2 minutes on each. These drawings are the basis of the monotypes I’m doing. You can see the original drawings, with a Pakistani soundtrack, on the video below.

Stage One And A Ghost

25 Oct
October 2

Monotype stage 1, Process Yellow

It’s been a busy couple of days with the pop up studio at Swansea Print Workshop, a lot of visitors coming in the see our work and talk to Hannah and myself about our residency at the Zaira Zaka print studio in Pakistan last year. It’s been lovely to meet so many people interested in what we’ve done. Today I finally got on with some printmaking, doing the first stage in a three-colour monotype, the Process Yellow. The inked perspex plate is put through the press to take a full colour print and once again with a second piece of paper to make a lighter ‘ghost’ print. You can read more about this 3 colour separation monotype process here.

October ghost 2

The ‘ghost’ monotype, stage 1, Process Yellow.

The image is based on a drawing I did during the residency, while I was travelling between Rawalpindi and Lahore. I did around 50 of them in quick succession, scanned and edited them in succession in this video.

 

Tomorrow, I’ll be going back to complete the monotypes with two more colour plates, Process Red and Process Blue.  If anyone wants to see this in action, please pop in to our pop up, we’re there 10.30 to 5.00.

 

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