Tag Archives: Swansea

Making A Start

18 Apr

 

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I’ve got a few ideas to develop and I’m at the starting point, doing some research. I want to do something with figures in very classical, strong poses so I’m flicking through my art history books to analyse how artists in the past have done it. Here are some scribbles of a classical Egyptian statue. It’s a deceptively simple stance that was very hard to draw but it’s giving me an inkling of how to proceed.

All About Eve…

12 Apr

Last night, Husb and I went to our local cinema to see a link up with National Theatre Live in London broadcasting a performance of the play All About Eve, directed by Ivo van Hove and starring the superlative Gillian Anderson, whose performance was outstanding. The whole cast were tremendous and the set design was brilliant. Of course I had a scribble. Just before the lights went down, the TV presenter Kirsty Wark did an introduction and there was just enough light to do a quick sketch of her looming above us.

all about eve

Not a flattering look for her though. The play is wonderful and it’s great to be able to see it locally without the expense of travelling to London.

 

En Plein Air

7 Apr

extinction 2.jpg

There was an interesting demonstration in the city centre yesterday from Extinction Rebellion, raising awareness of climate change. Of course, I had to have a scribble en plein air. Not easy when everyone is moving a lot…

An International Bunch

1 Apr

workstation

A Temporary Print Workstation. This is how I print small blocks at home. I use the top of my plans chest but you can use any surface – desk, table, kitchen work surface… Cover the area with old newspaper (or similar) stuck down with masking tape.

Left to right:

  1. Registration sheet (I blogged about this 2 days ago)
  2. Printing area – where you actually rub the paper onto the inked block – I use Japanese barens
  3. Gluing area – for preparing the chine collé (I use Pritt stick – always use really good glue). Click here to find out more about chine collé.
  4. The inking area – see yesterdays blog for more on this.
  5. At the back I’ve put the stack of pre-cut printmaking paper and the prepared chine collé papers.
  6. I use Cranfield Caligo Safewash relief ink (made in Wales); Hosho Japanese paper for the print; and for the chine collé I use Indian hand-made recycled sari paper. I’ve used vinyl for the block, inked with an excellent roller from Intaglio Printmaker in London. And chine collé is a French term translated as China collage. An international bunch.

 

Little Lino Leftovers

28 Mar

Leftovers

I had a busy afternoon printing up my little “Mari Lwyd” lino block for the annual “Leftovers” print exchange organised by Wingtip Press in Boise, Idaho, USA. Wingtip’s founder, Amy Nack, describes it’s beginnings,

After cleaning out the flat files and finding dozens of little scraps of printmaking papers jamming up the file drawers, the folks at Wingtip Press in Boise, Idaho realized they probably weren’t alone with the dilemma of what to do with all those too-precious-to-toss leftover paper scraps.
An invitation went out to fellow printmakers to participate in a print exchange to use all those lovely little leftover scraps to create a small edition of prints. Artists submit an edition of 15 prints of any size up to and NO LARGER than 5″ x 7″ and receive a dozen prints in return. One print is held for exhibitions and one print is included in a silent auction to raise funds for the Hunger Relief Task Force.”

It’s now in it’s ninth year and attracts entries from printmakers all over the world and also exhibits the prints internationally, across the USA, New Zealand, China and Wales.

A Bit More Cosi

24 Mar

cosi fan 2

Here are a couple more drawings I did at the opera the other evening, Cosi Fan Tutte at The Taliesin on Swansea University’s Singleton campus. It was very dark so I could hardly see the paper, an A4 brown paper spiral bound sketchbook. I used white and sanguine conté crayon, turning the white on its side to block in large areas and then scribbling with the sanguine.

cosi fan 1

My giant woodcut “Here Be Dragons” is going to be featured on Sky Arts TV channel on Tuesday 26th March at 9pm. If you’re a Sky TV subscriber or if you have NOW TV you’ll be able to see a short film of me going through the creative process, with lots about Swansea and footage of Swansea Print Workshop too. It’s part of a whole week of arts programming showing how artists across the UK have responded creatively to Brexit.

finished

 

 

The Pit And The Uniform

23 Mar

It was a new one for me last night as I went with my Mam-in-Law to the opera. I’ve never been before and to be honest, being an ageing headbanger and rock chick, it would never have occurred to me to go except that Husb joined a choir recently and had the chance to perform in the chorus of Cosi Fan Tutti at the Taliesin. He has a lovely voice which he’s never gotten out in public before and he also looked rather spiffing in his Hussar uniform! Of course, I had a scribble.

cozi fan 1

It wasn’t easy scribbling into my little cloth-covered red notebook as it was dark and I was surprisingly engrossed in the opera. I enjoyed it far more than I expected. It was good fun and I was impressed by the quality and skill of the singing. And there was an orchestra! In a pit! I never even knew that Taliesin had a pit!

I drew with a ballpoint pen, very quickly, unable to see much on the paper so it was a surprise when I looked at them. I wouldn’t mind seeing more opera, but the tickets are terribly expensive and if it comes down to a choice between opera and metal, I know which one I’d buy tickets for. (That’s metal, by the way).

 

 

More En Plein Air

21 Mar

Glynn Vivian

 

Sometimes life gets in the way of art and it can be difficult to do something creative every day. If I’m working on a commission or developing an exhibition, it’s easy because I’m at it all the time, but in the in-between times like the past week or two, I find it hard to get motivated. Husb and I went to the Glynn Vivian art gallery this evening, with lovely young nephew, to hear the author Andrew Green give a talk about his new book, “Wales In 100 Objects“. Great stuff. I had a quick scribble. It was dark in the lecture room so I couldn’t quite see what I was doing. Never mind. It’s enough to put pen to paper and do a bit of a drawing every day at the moment.

 

Andrew-Green-Cymru-mewn-100-gwrthrych

A Crafty Afternoon

19 Mar

 

Herb bottle 1

I work a few hours a week for a charity that supports homeless people, teaching crafts and fine art. Today I had a crafty afternoon. I try to make the craft sessions relevant to people, making practical things that they can use in their new home when they get housed. We recycled plastic drinks bottles – around 1.5 litre capacity and, with gardener’s jute twine, we made macramé herb bottles that people can hang up in their kitchens. I bought a selection of supermarket living herbs – coriander, parsley and basil. Here’s one I did as a demonstration and here it is below as a snake-like work in progress.

macrame 1

Swansea Jack

17 Mar

Carl Gough performs “Swansea Jack”

Husb and I spent a lovely couple of hours at a performance of “Swansea Jack”, researched, written and performed by the talented storyteller Carl Gough. We people from Swansea are nicknamed “Jacks”, supposedly after the heroic black Labrador dog who saved many people from drowning in the 1930s. Of course, I had a quick scribble, in my little red cloth covered sketchbook. I used a ballpoint pen, I love them for quick sketches because they flow so easily.

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