Had a very long day, travelling to Birmingham and leaving at 6am. Arrived back home 14 hours later. First stop was at the visa office to submit my paperwork for a very exciting trip I’m planning for next month – more to come on that. We had enough time to drive into the city centre to visit the most excellent Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery, or BMAG. We saw one of the best collections of Pre-Raphaelites anywhere; Grayson Perry’s ‘The Vanity Of Small Differences‘ and a lovely collection of Japanese antique woodcuts, netsukes and laquerwork. All for FREE! The museum is huge and we only saw a fraction of their collections. We took half an hour for tea and scones in the magnificent Edwardian tea room where I did this very quick scribble, using a 2B pencil into my little A6 spotty sketchbook.
I’ve been carrying on developing a suite of very small lino block portraits that I started a couple of blogs ago (in Process, Process, Process). I did some digital manipulation on Photoshop and got the image to the right size on my laptop and traced the image onto a good tracing parchment using a 3B pencil. Then I flipped the tracing over and covered the back with firm strokes of white conte crayon.
Then I turned it over onto a sheet of dark grey block-cutting vinyl and transferred the image using a 3H pencil, well sharpened. Finally I painted in the areas that will print white using a white acrylic paint and a fine, firm sable brush. This will guide my cutting.
Then I started on the next image. Once I’ve done 9, I’ll cut them apart into neat 4×4 inch squares.
Husb and I have been invited to a party tonight. We don’t usually go to parties (we’re old gits) but this is a come-as-your-favourite-artist/painting-party and it also has curry! No brainer! The painting I’ve chosen isn’t my favourite although I have a sneaky admiration for its kitchness. I thought that if I took the brief literally and went as a visceral Egon Schiele nude, I might get arrested. Plus it’s still cold in the evenings. Plus I’m not skinny! So I chose Tretchikoff’s Chinese Girl, sometimes called The Green Lady. It’s actually a much more complex painting than I’d realised and the artist has great skill, even if the result is a bit kitch.
Husb has done a minimalist take on Salvador Dali. I think he looks scary. I think I look like Hitler in Hallowe’en drag. Never mind, the masks’ll come off as soon as the curry is served. nomnomnom
Here’s another drawing from the Thursday Night Life Drawing Group at Swansea Print Workshop, done on my Samsung Galaxy Note 8.0 with a free Markers app.
Sometimes I’m asked why I draw nudes. It’s because I’m a traditional artist and I work within the European tradition which has portrayed the human nude for around 40,000 years, from Paleolithic cave art, through to the Greeks and Romans, the Renaissance and up to the modern day. It’s embedded in my culture and underpins my art practice.
A daily blog showing the progress of a huge woodcut by Welsh printmaker, John Abell – stunning!
I’ve put parental guidance on this because it goes to my Facebook profile and these days Facebook is a bit finicky about nudity, even when it’s art. It didn’t use to be so. When I joined Facebook, the pictures going round were pretty close to the bone. But now it’s gone all respectable so I’m not sure this will make it through the censors. We’ll see.
I’ve just got back from life drawing at Swansea Print Workshop and I used my Samsung Galaxy Note 8.0 with a free app called Markers. I saved at different stages to make a slideshow of the progression of the drawing.
Another hilarious instalment of this spoof of action heroes in Wales. Marvel / DC, eat your hearts out!
Artists make art, well most of us do anyway. And making art is all about process, starting with a germ of an idea and ending up with something on a wall, or a plinth. And that’s what I’ve been doing for a few days now, as well as fending of a nasty lurgi. I’m planning a group of small lino-block portraits. I’m starting from photographs but I want to work quickly so I’m Photoshopping them to speed up the process. Here’s one, starting with the original photo, then turning it to black and white, reversing it (so it transfers to the block properly), then finding a Filter that will minimise the tonal values. That’s as far as I’ve got today but I’ve been working on 25 of them. Eventually they’ll be printed as 4″ squares and mounted in a 5×5 square format.
Tomorrow I’ll be transferring them to blocks for cutting.
I am such a wimp. I have a cold, not even a particularly bad one, but honestly, manflu doesn’t come into it. I hate being ill so much that a weeny little cold is a major cause of angst. I don’t swan around in bed, that’s even worse, but I can’t manage to do much more than catch up with boring admin stuff or routine photoshop tasks because my brain is packed full of cotton wool.
So I haven’t done a drawing today and I’m not going to because I’m too busy wallowing in viral misery. I did this mixed media piece a couple of years ago and I’m blogging it today because I’ve just submitted it for an exhibition that’s coming up in Swansea later this month. It’s called, “I Know ‘Ew Luvs Me Coz ‘Ew Buys Me Chips”, a well-known local saying. And now I’m going to wrap myself back up in a blanket and rail against the universe.
Grim but important reading. And for those apologists out there, this doesn’t negate the fact that people of all ages and both genders are the victims of murder, but the extent to which women / girls are murdered by men in Britain is disproportionate and pretending otherwise is never going to confront the problem and potential solutions honestly and constructively.