Thursday, 31 May 2018

Spring terms life drawing

In the spring term of life drawing the elements we covered were all related to tone - exploring ways of using tone, tone in different media, subtractive tone, tone on dark paper and looking at artists from the renaissance period.

This term I have pre prepared my paper for life drawing classes. I have either used gesso only and a large brush to accentuate the brush strokes or stuck newspaper into the wet gesso to get a reverse print.

I have picked out a few of my favourite life drawings,

I love the light on the shoulders on this drawing

This model was slightly twisted but made an interesting pose

I just captured the torso here, the light was amazing

I love this curled up pose with the head twisted

A wonderful relaxed pose quickly drawn in charcoal

I loved the shoulders on this one and the fall of the light

Again the shoulders were amazing, just catching the light

Tuesday, 6 March 2018

Flower paintings and cards

Over the years I have painted numerous still lifes of flowers. I try to capture the feel and character of the flower. I like to buy flowers for the table if I don't have any in the garden to pick. At this time of the year I mainly buy tulips and roses.

I love it when the light hits the flowers and makes the petals and leaves really shine. I try to capture this in my paintings. I usually start by making sketches of the flowers in pencil, charcoal or pastel. I really look and try to capture what I see and the character of each flower. For instance if the flower is standing up or bowed down. I look at the length and position of the petals. I treat them rather as I would people by looking at their proportions.

Below is a sketch I have done in charocoal

Flowers in a vase, sketch

It is useful to have the sketch as a reminder when panting the flowers. Here is the final painting.

I often do little sketch paintings of my flowers to make personal cards. The following sketches were made of the spring helebores in my garden. I use cards which have a rectangular aperture which allows me to stick these original sketchs in. For these sketches I used paper I had prepared for the first two and brown paper on the last one.

Tuesday, 9 January 2018

Rome Unpacked

Happy New Year! It was great to see the images of Rome in the TV program "Rome Unpacked". It features so many images of Rome, you can see the presenters going around on a Vespa. You can actually see the Trevi fountain and then you learn it was filmed very early in the morning (5am)!

Even so it brought back some amazing memories of the buildings, old town roads and piazzas. I especially enjoyed going to see many of the amazing paintings in the basilicas and also an exhibition of paintings by Caravagio.

I particularly liked the piazzas especially those with cafes where you could linger, enjoy the ambiance, the sun and people watch! Here are a couple of my favourites:-

Café in the sunlight
This painting is of a café in Piazza di Pietra. What you cannot see are the amazing columns of the temple of Hadrian to the left. I was more interested in the low light on the building and the people. 

Café by the Pantheon
This is a painting of a cafe in Piazza della Rotonda with the Pantheon in the background. It is an amazing building with its unsupported dome and oculus (hole in the middle) the only source of natural light. This café was great to just watch the world go by. It was one of my favourite places in Rome although quite busy most of the time.

You can see these and more of my Rome collection at I am looking forward to seeing the second part of "Rome Unpacked".