Sunday, May 31, 2009

Jigsaw - 16 NaBloPoMo - No Problemo!

Close up showing work on the area surrounding Boscastle, The wooden Seagull. we are at the end of the National Blog Posting Month. No problem here as I tend to post almost every day.But looking around at others who have risen to the challenge is inspiring.I find it fascinating to think of all the millions of thoughts and words submitted to the electronic ether are there for all to read...but for what purpose? it a self fulfilling therapy? blogs fill a necessary public service?...there is no doubt that they carry information entertainment and a connectivity between individuals and groups....they provide identity, a presence ...a forum for expression.
I write to give myself a showcase for my work, an opportunity to share in response to those who show interest into the process of creating artworks...the creative nature that gives rise to and drives the artist to do what he does.For me the discipline of blogging has brought and brings me into a wider world, not only for my own gain and satisfaction, but to give me the opportunity to learn and develop my place in the world by connecting with people I'd never have the opportunity to communicate with otherwise.
For this author, blogging was a decision that has altered his life, and altered his life for the better.I do not regret setting out on this journey, perhaps I've said things that I'd rather not have,but on the whole, I've tried to be honest and realistic.I hope you continue to enjoy what I have to share......without you, I may as well pack up now!
See you tomorrow!

Saturday, May 30, 2009

Jigsaw - 15

Still no sign of any jigsaw...but here's something else.A few of you might remember some time back I told the story behind one of my first ever self portraits. This Seagull appears in that picture and appears here only after I'd asked members of the Seagull benevolence union for permission to use his likeness again.They were over joyed by my request because apart from inspiring a million poems and the design of the Super Marine Spitfire, they tend to get the rough end of the deal because they tend to steal your fish and chips then in gratitude, crap on you from a great height.
where was I?....oh yes...This Seagull was pulled out of the sea by me whilst I was on holiday in a lovely little seaside village called Lea Bay (not to be confused with 'Ebay'...that's a web site and that would be silly because you can't take your clothes off and dangle your appendages in the sea on a hot afternoon there no matter how much you try) on the border of Devon and Cornwall.Three days prior to my rescue mission, a great storm had hit the coast and the next village along called Boscastle was flooded as the river that flowed through he middle of the town burst it's banks.Residents were airlifted out by helicopters and cars, homes and belongings were washed into the sea.It made the national news way back in 2004 .I discovered that this little fella was at one time resident in the gift shop at Boscastle which also submitted to the watery deluge...My Seagull who i named unsurprisingly 'Boscastle' still had his price tag stamped to his lower shoreline, and therefore escaped without being bought. I intend to return him to visit the shop in Boscastle one day and pay for him!
Anyway...after all that, why is he here in this picture?...well quite simply , he symbolises triumph over adversity..he survived the rush of the raging torrent, the storm of the century and the depth of the sea...only to be washed up and rescued. He's a survivor despite being battered and bruised and sustaining a crack around his neck...and as such, he fits in very well with the story of 'Jigsaw'.....but that will be revealed another please be patient!
For more on what not to do with Sea birds see :

Friday, May 29, 2009

Jigsaw - 14

Here, I've spent the day working on that sleeve again!..I've increased the depth of dark blue then added the mid blue...It's a very time consuming process as there are dots upon dots..the main aim here is to create an even tone which fades and increase depending on the shadows in the material's creases.The upper part of the sleeve has had the yellow ochre added...the photo below shows a close up view of me adding the yellow.
I've still to master the more intricate adjustments my camera has, so these photos taken in poor light are not accurate colour wise. Back to the manual!

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Jigsaw - 13

I've spent my time today aiming to fill in the basic layer of dark blue on the sleeve.Here you can see that I managed to do that, but have yet to define any creases. The photo below shows in detail the area around the sleeve surrounding my left hand.The dark shade of the jacket is actually made up of 5 different colours...the basic dk blue, then medium blue, then yellow ochre then red. Highlights are created by using a very light blue which is a mixture of medium blue and white ink.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Jigsaw - 12

Passed the 50 hour mark today.This week my children are on half term holidays and Jan is out everyday working for Nottingham Playhouse.So you would think I'd have very little time to spare...but somehow I've managed to put in over five hours dotting each day.Admittedly this has in the main been during the evening, but I'm really enjoying working on Jigsaw at the moment...and there's nothing to make work easier than enthusiasm!

I think the main reason for this is that i know what's coming and how I'm going to fill all the empty the moment it's just a 'Self Portrait'...but when I've added the rest, it will be an allegorical,metaphorical expression of something special.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Jigsaw - 11

Have worked extensively on the outstretched hand today gradually increasing the amounts of colour. One of the things that causes problems is gauging the level of contrast between shades needed.When I'm working on such a small area in the early stages of a picture, there's a lot of white anything appears bright and dynamic at first. In the photo above you can see the darkness of the sleeve in shadow just below the hand holding the cards...this is the level of darkness the rest of the jacket will be based lots of dark blue dotting to come then...yay.

Monday, May 25, 2009

Jigsaw - 10

Here you can see I've started the right hand by placing a layer of red as base...I'll be adding yellow ochre blue and green...the table surface is very shadowy around the hand so will not be worked on until later ...The dark areas of the jacket despite being dramatic are incredibly labour intensive and I might say lacking in interest, although there will be subtle difference of shade denoting creases in the fabric.
Many people remark when they speak to me at exhibitions about my 'patience'.....I usually agree with them that I posses a very well developed patience..but it's more than just 'waiting' and being's having a well defined vision of what I intend to create and being able to keep my thoughts fixed on that when I'm spending 5 hours a day on one colour in one small area. Total time so far on Jigsaw is just over 40 hours. At the present rate I estimate the total time should be in excess of 200 hours.

Sunday, May 24, 2009

A face in the crowd

Here's an extreme close up of a face which appears in a picture I made back in 2004.I did it as an exercise...I'd never created such a large and complicated picture before (48 x 29cm), and I wanted to find out if there was a limit to the level of detail and concentration I could give . I soon realised that there was no limit beyond what I was physically able to give.I was at the time working full time in residential childcare and the completion of it took around about 6 months working in evenings and days off. It's actually copied from a photo of the crowd at a tennis match played at Wimbledon in 1981, and I use the picture as illustration when I do talks in schools.

I like to explain the way the eye and the mind perceive images by combining many millions of pieces of information and assembling them in the brain. As you know, the retina of your eye is covered in millions of light receptive cells onto which an image received through the iris and focused by the lens is detected.Each cell carries it's piece of information to the brain where it is assembled into what we recognise as a teapot/cow/apple/approaching train etc...

So it is with my art individual dot is easy to perceive and are two dots..three...five....but the brain is unable to register 50...100...1,000,000 dots individually, so 'lumps' them all together, the combination of dark/light areas are combined in such a way that the brain recognises them as representing a teapot/cow/apple/approaching train/smiling ambulance man etc....

you see the photo of the face...he's an individual, but put him in a seat with a few hundred others and he is part of a crowd....a sea of faces.So all these various parts combine....and it's difficult to initially tell them apart.It's part of my future plans to create a full colour crowd picture containing people I know.

oh....and can you spot where my elderly tennis fan is in the crowd?


I've just recieved an email from my friend Preeti who sent me a screen shot of how this blog is appearing on her computer...(see below)

I'd like you to let me know if this is how it appears on your screen too.

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Nottingham Castle - conceptual art experience.

Jan has been working for a theatre company who have been hired to man and talk to visitors to two art installation events at Nottingham Castle. I took Annie along today to see what she's been up to. One of the pieces by Susie MacMurray is housed in the bandstand (above)

As you walk through the door, you are presented by around 1500 individually hung strings from musical instruments.The strings were donated by the Halle Orchestra and various others

All the strings were suspended hundreds of tiny hooks screwed into the ceiling.Visitors were asked for their opinions as to what they thought and if they considered it to be 'art'. The basic concept of the piece was to depict the passage of time and change.
Finally, here is Annie posing with one of the stone lions dating around 500 years old!

Friday, May 22, 2009

Jigsaw - 9

Spent 5 hours dotting today and have extended the jacket down a little further and defined the finger nails ..

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Jigsaw - 8

I've spent the day so far refining the hand I started yesterday.This in reality means adding more and more dots to increase the density of the colours by placing dots in the areas between other dots. I now need to pay a Little more attention to defining the finger nails and some of the shadows.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Jigsaw - 7

I've put basic layers of colour onto the hand and brought the base layer of dark blue of the collar of my jacket down to meet it.The jacket is a classic 'dinner Jacket' with shiny collar...I hope I can indicate this in the picture.

The Blind Girl
John Everett Millais

I thought I'd post a couple of photo's of a rainbow seen from my bedroom window last evening.I once heard an art critic talking about rainbows and the apparent impossibility that they cannot be painted in a realistic way. This put me in mind of the well known Pre Raphaelite painting by John Everett Millais (see above).A rainbow is clearly visible in the background. What do you think..was the critic right?

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Jigsaw - 6

I've worked my way down to the next stage of the composition...and in a picture entitled 'Jigsaw' are some playing cards...what story will they tell?

Below is a good close up of the left eye in the just gives an interesting perspective on the grouping of the dots. (click on the pic for an extreme close up!)

Many thanks for the congratulations I received yesterday.I know that many of you long term bloggers will agree with me when I say that it's often a matter dogged determination to continue times it's just too much and we need a break...sometimes we just lose interest..and sometimes it's time to stop. there are no hard and fast fact I know someone who posted just one short piece of writing before retiring from blogging for good.This was right for that person, but it's something I can't understand, because blogging has become part of my's a very integral part of my personal and social development. I have made life changing friendships and have learned about other cultures and short, blogging has made me a better person and a better citizen of the world in which we live.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Jigsaw - 5. 1000th Post!!!!

After writing many draughts this evening and deleting them all...I find words escape me on this the one thousandth post....

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Eurovision Song Contest - 2009.

The Eurovision song Contest is an annual televised event which has occurred annually since 1956 The main aim is for each participating country to submit a song which is performed live on the night and is voted for by viewers and panels of judges. Here in the UK, the contest has become rather an object of ridicule after 'political' voting in recent years has created groups of nations voting for each other irrespective of the quality of the song or performance. But some very notable successes have come out of the contest, most famously Abba who represented Sweden in 1974 and then went on to become a multi million record selling group.

Many participating countries enter a song performed by a famous singer from that country. for the UK, it is usually a complete unknown act which sings a song picked by TV viewers earlier in the year.This year the UK's song was written by Sir Andrew Lloyd Webber who is a respected and internationally known composer (responsible for composing the music for many stage shows such as Phantom Of The Opera,Joseph,Cats....etc). Jade was a performer chosen by TV voters in January and sang 'It's My Time'...the song was voted 5th out of the 25 finalists (42 countries entered the contest ..the number reduced by running two semifinal contests earlier in the week)The winning country then has to host the show the following year. since they won it last year, Russia broardcast this years show form the Olympic Stadium in Moscow.

Each year, two dear friends of ours who live across the road from us hold a party to celebrate the national day of Norway (where they lived for many many years) people from my neighbourhood gather to celebrate and also watch the Eurovision show and try to pick the's usually accompanied by much good food and drink...and what makes it all the more special is the nationalities of those who attend, the majority from neighbouring houses on our avenue....amongst those there I can identify British,German,Norwegian,Italian,Turkish and Americans there last make it all the more special for my friends...the Norwegian entry won the contest..A great evening was had by all and my very warm and respectful thanks go to Andrew and Jane for hosting the evening!

*I have removed the photos from this post I suspect their format was going some way to causing the whole blog to look 'odd' on some people's machines.If you want to see the original photo's, you'll have to see my albums on 'Facebook'..

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Jigsaw - 4

What's this 'ere then?...I had a series of interesting conversations recently which have been based around , what is the boundary that marks a drawing as a piece of 'Art' or an 'Illustration'? one more valid than the other? The more I thought about it, I could only come up with the thought that for a drawing/painting etc to be considered as 'art' must illicit an emotional response from the viewer...I wonder.

So it's over to you...what do you think?

Friday, May 15, 2009

Jigsaw - 3

I have my annual exhibition at the historic Cromford Mill in Derbyshire booked for July this year and was to have shared the gallery with a painter who incidentally I shared with last year. However, for reasons best know to her, she decided to pull out of exhibiting this year.So I approached a friend of mine whose daughter is in the same class as my daughter. Philippa is a stained glass artist and was pleased to accept my invitation to exhibit together. you check out Philippa's work here .

This morning Phillipa and I traveled up to see the gallery because it had been moved to a new room within the complex, but equip ed with a brand new hanging system and better facilities. We left feeling really positive and looking forward to showing our work there.
Work on my picture is going well..I have chosen quite purposefully to do another self portrait because the subject matter of 'Jigsaw' is very self analytical and concerns a few weighty issues I've been considering recently...I'll not reveal too much just now, but as usual, I'll tell you about the various aspects and objects within the picture as and when we get there.
It's also a way of showing how accurate my portraiture can be...I hope to gain more commission work doing portraits.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Jigsaw - 2

In 1972 I was an 10 year old lad, and was amazed to find out that I'd won a raffle at my school. the prize?...A football...but no ordinary football. This wonderfully orange leather football was autographed by the recently crowned English first division (now the Premiership) champions, Derby County.They were all there...Roy McFarland..Colin Todd..Kevin Hector,Alan Hinton...and Brian Clough! What a wonderful prize for a young ardent Derby County fan...that is until days later, a group of my friends and I were to go off to our local park to play one had a ball......but I did! I took along my my treasured ball...and stood with pride that I was the one who'd won it and we were playing with a genuine champions football.

Of course, the grass was wet, and all the autographs got rubbed off.....To my 10 year old mind the REAL value of the ball was the fact that it had been played with by our heroes...Had my parents known, I'm sure they'd have stopped me taking it..but I'd sneaked it out of the house.Looking back, I should have kept it safe and sound locked away...gathering value.

Things are valuable for different reasons...the value is determined by by the significance of the 'thing' to an person will pay a fortune for a significant work of modern another it's a worthless pile of bricks.It's an interesting thought.Is there any point to this story?, but it's funny isn't it?

Today I've progressed well with my work.. I love the texture that the dots create,(click on the image to get a closer look) i love the warmth of the colours....and I love the fact that the yes worked and I can look forward to all the hours of work yet to come.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Jigsaw - 1

Here you can see me applying the very first few dots to what will become a large intensely colourful work. But the very beginning establishes the tone of the rest of the picture.So with regard to faces, I like to work on the eyes first...once they are right, the rest will follow....if it's to go wrong, it may as well be now rather than in a couple of weeks. The first thing to do is to lay down a few base colours..I do not use black when working in colour...the pupil here is dark blue overlaid with medium blue. the flesh tones are made up with a base layer of scarlet overlaid by yellow ochre, blue and green...and anything else that seems appropriate at the time. this photo gives a good illustration as to the size of the actual dots. I use the Rotring Isograph Pen with 0.25mm nibs...this is the only gauge I use.

Here a layer or Scarlett has been applied around the eyes, and yellow ochre is being applied's a matter of applying more layers of each colour strengthening the tone and establishing the areas which are darker .
Here I've worked for a few hours, the warmth of the image is coming through now...and yes, it is me yet again, so those of you of a nervous disposition who don't want to look at me for the next month or two...please look away now!
I have so many symbolic references to come in this work and I'm positive it will become my most accomplished work to date. As the days go by, you will see the image spread across the page...remember, you were here at the beginning!

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Jigsaw - Sketch and prep.

The aim was to spend all day working, but as usual, being the other half of a busy actress and father to three means certain duties have to be done that cannot be avoided.The main one today was to do the weekly shop. Now I'm usually quite capable at most things,I've a qualification in childcare...I've worked with young people for years, I trained as a nurse and ....well there's one handicap.....I'm a man.Apparently we men can only concentrate on one thing at a time...and even this is distracted by thinking about sex ... according to some sources, that occurs every 15 seconds...(or more often)..but it also means that shopping is a very different exercise when I do it to when Jan does it.....

Now I know what you're thinking...I bet he comes back with a crate of beer,crisps and lots of cake.Well no you naughty thing....I buy meals for the week, cat food,toilet rolls ...salad etc....I'm quite capable.But when I got home today,swaggering like the architypal caveman dragging the limp carcass of a Mamoth into the family cave, I started packing all the things away and I was sure I'd bought more stuff, but where was it?...I must have left it at the check out.So I rang the supermarket and confessed my slip up...but the lady I spoke to was only in an not only had I confessed my stupidity to one lady, I had to be put on hold to tell the lady at 'Customer Services' as well. Sadly she was too busy (servicing customers I presume) so the first lady took my number and assured me that she would ask the lady in customer services to call me. I've no idea if she eventually did, because I had to go off on the school run.

But I sat and applied my colossal brain to what I'd bought...looked in the cupboard and looked at my receipt and guess what?....I'd not forgotten any bags at the shop, the lack of some vital sundries was due to the fact that i'd just forgotten to buy them......I must have been thinking about something else!

What the heck am I going on about?.....this is supposed to be a post about art...aren't I supposed to be the bohemian one...aren't i supposed to lounge about surrounded by naked models offering me absinthe by the bucket load?.....Ladies and gentle men...I give you the reality....'my reality'....and i wouldn't have it any other way.....................well perhaps with just one glass of Absinthe would be nice...but the reality of being an artist and responsible dad is just this.

Oh, i nearly forgot......The pencil work above is the very beginning of my new picture...and after all that talk yesterday of 'Nebulae' new picture is given the working title of 'Jigsaw'. Tomorrow I shall start dotting.

Below is my workspace...with blank piece of paper before any was a beautiful morning.

Monday, May 11, 2009

A long time ago in a nebula far away.

Did you know that the word 'Nebula' is from the Latin word meaning 'Cloud'...I think I knew that already, but in relation to the Nebula (The Orion Nebula pictured above it) seems almost an understatement. There are various types of Nebulae,but are all characterised by the presence of dust and gas . Now I'm not an astronomer so I'm no position to talk about the types of gas...the formation of stars and planets and the collapse of stars...xray emissions...dark holes etc.... But what fascinates me is the fact that the nearest Nebula to Earth is the Helix Nebula, about 700 light years away . For those of you with brains like mine...let us consider the 'Light Year'. Light travels at 180,000 miles per would have to travel at that speed for an entire year to have travelled a 'Light year'...and you would have to travel for 700 years at that speed to reach the Helix Nebula ( see pic below) can be found in the constellation of Aquarius.

Thus when you look up into the sky , the light you see from these Nebula...Stars and other astral bodies is not how they appear right now....often the light has in some cases been traveling for hundreds...thousands and millions of 'light Years' to reach us.We are therefore 'seeing' into the past.
It is our presence in the 'Now' and the light from the past which will form the background to the concept with which my next picture will centre on.I've spent time today taking photographs and preparing sketches, some of which I will share with you as the week goes on. Regular readers of this blog will be aware that I often change the various factors included in my pictures as the work continues. I hope you will feel able to keep checking back and see the picture develop from the first sketches to the finished picture.
For those of you wanting to find out more about the adventures of Peter Bread and Captain this space.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Captain Kebab #5 self imposed exile from artistic endeavour is coming to an end...tomorrow I shall begin work on a new picture. I can't wait. A week ago I was feeling negative about so many things, and the advice a valued friend gave me was to take a break,to rest. So this I have done, and in doing so I've found that the negativity has gradually melted away and the natural drive which makes me who I am has had time to heal and replenish itself. The urge to start working again has grown so that it's an effort not to....This evening I'm going to imagine it's the last day of the holidays...I'm going to be kind to myself...take a relaxing bath and listen to some music.

Saturday, May 09, 2009

Captain Kebab #4

Today I began to seriously consider my next picture. I've put a few ideas down in my sketchbook and have an overall concept about the metaphors I'm hoping to represent. Meanwhile Captain Kebab strip continues. you know, it was the artwork in comics that got me interested in drawing when I was a kid. As a little boy I used to read comics such as 'The Beano' 'The Dandy' 'Whizzer and Chips'..where characters like Dennis The Menace,Corky the Cat, Desperate Dan and The Bash Street Kids were the staple diet of a ten year old,
But my teenage years brought the real serious stuff of comic lore...'Marvel Comics' I was introduced to The Amazing Spiderman..The Avengers..The Incredible Hulk and it was here that my pencils got to work.My school mates would crowd around me at play time to see my drawings of my heroes...and I'd sell them ..I'd even do them to order....and not only comic book superheroes...I drew 'Charlie's Angels'..'Steve Austin The Six Million dollar Man'..'The Bionic woman'...'Starsky And Hutch'...I once even had an order to draw Abba! Looking back now, they were not very good, but they were good enough.

Friday, May 08, 2009

Captain Kebab #3

I must tell you about the thing that happened last night. For a while I'd been detecting a strange smell in the downstairs of our house.I attributed it to my two teenage sons and their various forms of footwear lying strewn around the foot of the stairs...but the smell increased, and popping my head into the under stairs cupboard I realised what it was.....: Gas. This smell had been around for a couple of days and I felt foolish for not realising I rang the gas suppliers emergency number and got a garbled list of do's and don'ts from the young man on the other end of the line. Around 40 minutes about midnight, a gas fitter arrived and quickly found the gas was leaking from an 'Anaconda' pipe..we'd had a new central heating boiler installed in January and apparently, a spot of solder had fallen on to the pipe..the result (I'm told) is that it slowly corrodes the pipe.
Thankfully the gas fitter had a spare Anaconda pipe and was able to fix it and be on his way by 00:30 am....and my family and i would be able to sleep peacefully in our beds and not wake up the next morning and find we were all in orbit!
Reminds me of the old joke: A man jumps out of an aeroplane...he tries to pull the ripcord of his parachute but nothing he pulls the ripcord of the reserve chute...again nothing happens.As he is plummeting earthwards...he sees a man coming up towards the man approaches he shouts out: " you know antything about parachutes?"...The man as he flies past replies: "NO! you know anything about gas cookers?"
They say "Life is a 'gas'"...I think it's preferable to "Life's a blast!".

Thursday, May 07, 2009

Captain Kebab #2

So I've not entirely managed to avoid putting pen to paper and drawing...but I'm keeping work to a minimum...I also managed to pop into derby today and take a few photos...this is in an effort to avoid picking up the sketch book . I don't know if I'll be able to last for much longer...I guess that the point where I'm unable to resist, will be the exact right time to start work again....and that will be soon as I'm having ideas bubbling to the surface already!

Wednesday, May 06, 2009

Captain Kebab. # 1

Here's the first panel in an epic adventure adapted from a mini cartoon strip I drew in the 1980's...join me tomorrow for the continuing adventures of 'Captain Kebab'!

Tuesday, May 05, 2009

National Blog Posting Month.

Last episode,we saw our hero' Dotman' considering his fate at the hands of the evil 'Doctor Despair' who'd infiltrated the labyrinthine depths of our hero's Psyche with a calculated attempt to prevent him from creating more art.
But Doctor Despair had not counted on our hero's famous resilience and the support of his 'Super Friends'...together they fought and destroyed Doctor Despair consigning him once again to his dank and watery hide out somewhere in another dimension.
Dot Man now sits comfortably, wine glass in hand smiling once again.Now a new challenge awaits out dotting hero...that challenge is to write a blog post every day for the duration of May...."HAH!" says Dot Man.."I can write a post every day...I already do it on most days...."
Dot Man Say's "You know it makes sense...if you are a blogger, join me in the challenge and click on the link below...then you too can be a 'Super NaBloPoMo' friend!'

Monday, May 04, 2009

Last day at Willington - Return to Minipix.

I wanted to write a little about what it's like to finish an exhibition at an Arts Festival...a unique experience quite different from a solo exhibition. Some people spend all their time going to events like this..some people find the camaraderie and group atmosphere wonderful.I can see why.The practise and profession of an artist is on the whole a solitary least it is for me. everything that I produce is the result of long hours alone living within an often imaginary world filled with concepts and dreams.Not very healthy I hear you thinking...well that may be so.It might be the case I'm going crazy and managing to maintain a veneer of normality and might be the case that confronting the contents of my thoughts is actually a good thing...I don't bury them deep within a padded brain cell...I deal with them.

The truth is that the end of an exhibition is a time to be subjective...not good.Thoughts arise that tell you it was a waste of time.If it was for artistic purposes, then all I did was answer the same old questions to a continual line of people who ask "How long does a picture take?"...."Do you ever see dots before your eyes?"...."What gave you the idea to use dots?"...."Do you ever suffer from repetitive strain injury?"...My friend Michael suggested I set up an animatronic version of myself to answer these questions. However, if it was for financial reasons I exhibit...that too would be a waste of time.I managed to cover my costs..and that was all...I'm never going to rid myself of the gnawing possibility that no matter what the depth of talent I have,I'm still going to have to pay the mortgage....That's why I'm off to do role play at 7:30 in the morning...because no matter how cuttingly 'now' or relevant I make my artwork...I'm never going earn more money than when I sit in a CCTV covered room and pretend I have a bad neck.

I told you it would be subjective...(and I've not drunk any alcohol to write this!)...I just feel that life would be so much better with a safe 'nine to five' job...perhaps my relationship with my wife would be good...I'd be a better father and a more dependable friend.....perhaps perhaps perhaps.Some one was looking at my one of my pictures..her partner said "He looks like John Culshaw"...she said "I think he looks like Russel Crowe"...I looked up and said "It's a self portrait....of me"...I thought just for a split second that it was the nicest thing I'd heard all day...

Oh...I was tired of people looking at me painting in water colours and asking "Is this how you do all your paintings?" that I decided to spend the day dotting a new 'Minipix' (see above).Meanwhile...the effort I went to make 10 water colours......they all remain unsold and know, I think I'm just a curiosity...'The Dot Man'....

Sunday, May 03, 2009

Watercolour number 10...yet more trees.

This is the tenth and therefore last in this series of water colours prepared for this weekend's festival.It's another view of the trees up on Radbourne Lane...So far the reaction to my water colours has been OK..but there are so many people producing pictures like this, they are commonplace and they do it so much better than me...people generally want to see and talk about the dot pictures. I don't know what I'm going to do next, it would be natural to embark on a larger sized painting,perhaps that's how I shall pass the time tomorrow.

Below is a photo of my co-exhibitor Michael Stewart's work.The painting uppermost sold yesterday was one that he had nearly not brought along to show..but it was eagerly snapped up by an enthusiastic buyer.I think it was a good choice to exhibit....I like it.

Saturday, May 02, 2009

Willington Arts Festival 2009.

Exhibition time comes around yet again.Jan and I set up the exhibition last night.We are exhibiting in an old school building along with around 10 other artists.The venue is part of an 'arts trail' which includes private homes,churches and other buildings around the village.Doors opened at 10:00am this morning and visitors came in larger than expected numbers.
I was busy all day talking to people and answering questions...however probably one of the best aspects of these kind of events is the opportunity to get to know fellow artists, to exchange ideas and experiences. I'm in a side room along with Michael who is a talented oil painter. He's never exhibited before and was overjoyed when he sold his first painting for £350 ! I on the other hand sold a couple of prints. The water colours were well received, but on the whole, people were much more interested in my Hyperpointillism works.
I'm back there tomorrow and Monday (which here in England is a public holiday). I think I'll have plenty of time during the next few days to work on the last of my watercolour series (I'll post the progress on today's painting tomorrow)...

Friday, May 01, 2009

Oak tree on Radbourne Lane, Derbyshire.

Here is the finished painting showing the Oak Tree on Radbourne Lane I photographed yesterday. Again I'm happy with the progression of detail and and colour I've incorporated in the picture. Not a moment too soon as I'm off to hang the exhibition later this evening.
You might be interested to know that I'm this year selling enlarged prints of two of my most popular pieces (Ricky Rec and Reflections)...they look great. Also whilst picking up my most recently framed and mounted pictures, my framer has demonstrated his new printer which can print very large images onto canvas ...(we're talking 30x60 inches!)..not cheap, but he enlarged a copy of 'Bench' for me to see and it looks great..
See you tomorrow with a report of the first of my three days at The Willington Arts Festival.