Saturday, January 27, 2007

The Naked Dickie Bird (or Spuggy)



I had this crow sitting around the studio and I stripped off its feathers and wings (don't know why). I decided to do a sketch of this poor baldy nekkid bird and added a human eye and called it the naked spuggy- tweet bloody tweet, (don't know why). Here is the sketch, then I painted the eye on the actual stripped down bird, then manipulated a photo of the sketch on the computer. I am thinking I might call my show in October “ the naked dickie bird” or "the naked spuggy: an installation" (bet ya didn't know my family nickname is spuggy). Oh my, I can just see what google search will bring up with that title. hee! hee! My blog entry on the ditty;” tellie tale tit, yer tongue’ll get bit, aaaaaaaal the little dickie birds with come an ave a bit” brought visitors looking for “tit hanging” on the google search engine. Not what you think LOL! they were looking for the bird variety, but I couldn’t stop laughing when I saw it. I put in naked dickie bird into the google search engine and the first entry is about a Yorkshire cricketer called Dickie Bird (didn’t know anybody had that name). The second is about an Australian artist, James Guppy, who said: "The painting is about my response to being in exactly the situation I am in now which is when you are up there, your work is being seen like this, you feel naked.” This turned out to be so appropriate as it is precisely the sentiment I feel about putting my work out there.
By the way "Don't say a dickie bird" is cockney rhyming slang for don't say a word (dickie bird=word).

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Abstract Painting


"moon howl"
acrylic on canvas

Well, again Phillip has inspired another post with a question about abstract art and my interest in it. I painted "moon howl" in 98. I did try to incorporate text into it,but wasn't happy with it and so partly obscured it.


Did these in 2002 and they are acrylic reverse paintings on plastic. These were so much fun to do, just playing with paint, smudging it with my fingers, scratching out paint and layering colours.
Here is a list of some of my favourite abstract painters. Jackson Pollock Rothko Franz Kline Love this Robert Motherwell painting. My all time favourite Howard Hodgkin My mum and I saw his print exhibit at the Laing Art Gallery in Newcastle-upon-Tyne last September and some of the work was beautiful (images on the net don't do them justice at all).

Friday, January 19, 2007

sketchbook: ex-voto painting

"As a child I dreamed of cats howling at the moon
&
heads following in the night.
The wolf stalks, breath is cold and my heart beats & beats & beats.
I prayed let this night be over, be over, be over,
but the head still follows
&
the wolf waits in the dark corners
&
there is no escape
from the demons that haunt us in the night."

Obviously this isn't what the original ex-voto that I used as inspiration for my sketchbook version said. The text is a moment in a child's life, mine.
It is acrylic and pen on paper and then coated it with kyrlon crystal glaze.
I have always had a love of ex-voto's, partly because it uses text in the paintings. I have never quite figured out how to use text in my paintings and so I find them inspiring.
Here is a link to some really beautiful ones.
History of ex-voto paintings.

Thursday, January 18, 2007

A Rose is a Rose


"Rose is a rose is a rose is a rose."
which translates to
"things are what they are".


One of my earliest lessons in drawing was not to draw what you *think* you see, but what it is and what you see. The painting study on the left was about seeing light/dark and shapes (I squinted my eyes when looking at the rose). The drawing on the right is obviously about only seeing edges.
All about Roses
"The rose is the national flower of England amd the United States"
A red rose (often held in a hand) is also a symbol of socialism or social democracy.

Rose Petal Ice Cream

Monday, January 15, 2007

Sketchbook: african violets


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Drawing of African Violets from life using black and white conte crayon on grey drawing paper.
"To the ancient Romans, violets were the symbol of mourning and of affection for the dead...to the ancient greeks the violet symbolized humility, even timidity...In Christian art, the violet symbolizes the Virgin Mary’s humility". Read here why purple violets came to represent mourning.


Ophelia wore a garland of violets around her neck in the painting by MillaisImage source

Monday, January 01, 2007

New Sketchbook: first drawing



Mike Myers was quoted in a New York Times article about his long leave of absence from Hollywood , “There’s process and there’s product...and when you’re too long on product, you forget about your process.” I understand where he's coming from, which led me to decide that 2007 is the year about process. So I started a new sketchbook and my first entry for 2007 is a figure study in conte crayon after Pierre-Paul Prud'hon. It's not quite the same as drawing from a live model, but the main point is to get back into the practice of drawing. This is a photo of my drawing.
Currently Reading:


A Peace to End All Peace by David Fromkin


theSeducer by JanKjaerstad