Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Tea time - 14

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Tea time - 13

The face and hair is starting to take shape nicely.I seem to have inadvertently created a version of Doctor Petrenko, a character from a BBC TV medical drama 'Holby City'...this is totally unintentional but I count myself as an admirer anyway..! I've also added a head band of small sunflowers which in Flower Symbolics stand for Infatuation and foolish Passion. This should make more sense in relation to the wider meaning of the picture as a whole.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Tea time - 12

Today I spent an inordinate length of time finalising the features of next figure.Long time readers of this blog will know that I agonise over the faces that I draw. I do not copy photographs form my ladies, but try to incorporate the kind of facial features I am fascinated with.To that end, here are two big eyes...the rest will follow!

Thursday, May 26, 2011


First of all..apologies for the no show here of any work today. I haven't done any! the truth is I'm tired ...I've been dieting and exercising each day for three weeks now...I've also taken up 'Power Walking'..I'm increasing the distance and time steadily and now Power Walk 3 miles in each session...the aerobic effect of this is as good as jogging and is less injurious to joints. My weight loss is coming along nicely too....I feel fitter and more able to move.

This morning I had to take Annie for another appointment at the hospital eye department. All good and she was discharged...I took her back to school then set about preparing for my walk which had to wait awhile whilst the rain stopped. I did my walk just before lunch time....and since then I've just run out of energy. So I'm being kind to myself, and will get back to work tomorrow.

Incidentally, if you'd like to know more about 'Power Walking'..here's a fun little instructional video.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Tea time - 11

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Tea time - 10

I've completed the hand, but I've had to leave a pencil outline because the boundaries of the hand will be highlighted by the back ground.The same applies to the tea spilling out of the cup. To see what the flow of liquid looks like, I videoed myself spilling tea, then chose a point in the film to use as reference. I'm not sure it looks very realistic, but once again it will be enhanced by the background eventually. I've completed work on the jeans too...the next step is to begin introducing the next phase of the composition.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Tea time - 9

You probably won't believe me when I tell you I've completed nearly 4 hours work on this today...I decided I wanted to show my left hand (I'm left handed by the way!) and I wanted to depict something symbolic. I've drawn in a few versions of what I wanted ( you can see the indentations of pencil lines erased in the process!)..I've applied a base cover of dots to the sleeve...tomorrow I'll work on refining it, then the hand and hopefully the tea spilling from the cup!

Friday, May 20, 2011

Tea time - 8 Will i am proud !

Having thought about it for a while...I've decided to make the tea cup more three dimensional as opposed to being seen in profile. This should make it more interesting when I work on the tea spilling out of it. I next thought about different leg wear...I usually wear denim so that's what I settled on. You can see the nearly completed jeans...the creases in the material looks complicated but is really just a series of patterns. Once you have understood the way highlights on creases relate to shadowed areas, it's just a matter of 'feeling' what looks right.

Today, my second son had his leavers day. Way back when I left school, there was absolutely no fuss made. I remember I walked the 2 miles to school...did an exam...then walked home again having said goodbye. Today it's increasingly becoming the fashion for pupils to arrive at school in progressively more interesting forms of transport. The stretch limousine has been popular for some time, but in my opinion is a little passe now. Will and his girl friend Claire were driven to school in a specially hired Mercedes driven by Claire's Mum. I was very proud of will, he'd spend hours redressing his dreadlocks. I helped to pin the front sections back off his face.I think he looked great.  

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Tea time - 7

I originally thought when I photographed my hand this afternoon that it would look quite graceful...but after working on it for a while, I realise that although I'm  delicate and dexterous with my hands, they actually resemble a bunch of sausages ! It was then important to prepare to render the tea cup I'm going to hold in this picture. As you can see by my pencil work, it needed some basic geometry to make sure it looked right. Eventually, tea will be spilling from the cup....

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Tea time - 6

Had a bit of a stutter on this today after someone said that I looked like 'Rumpole of the Bailey'. Whilst Leo McKern is or rather was a great and well respected actor..I felt saddened to be compared with him. Especially as I've embarked on a diet and exercise regime in the last couple of weeks...I do realise I'm over weight. This is wholly due to the fact that my work happens behind a desk in my own house. I used to work in Residential Childcare and spend most of my days playing sport and being active...this all ended six years ago when I was made redundant.  So I'm now working hard to get back in shape before my age and sedentary lifestyle catch up with me in a bad way! So far weight is coming off, and I power walk around 3 miles every morning! So look out for a leaner Mr Young in the near future!

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Tea time - 5

Monday, May 16, 2011

Tea time - 4

I've worked today on my top which is fairly easy to do but the effect is in my opinion  pleasing.You can see the pencil work towards the bottom showing where I shall be working next.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Tea time - 3

Not much time for work today, but I've been able to start on the old 1990's top I'm seen wearing here. I love the moons and stars...it's also got a hood...but I can assure you, I'm not turning into the Star Man!

Friday, May 13, 2011

Tea time - 2

Blimey...not a very flattering view of me that I've chosen to use here is it? Still..it should prove humorous when taken in context with the rest of the picture. The hair is proving difficult...thank goodness lots of it has fallen out and I only have half a head to deal with! I've also decided to depict me wearing a favourite top of mine I bought back in the early 90's...you'll see more of it next time I post!

Incidentally, you might be wondering what happened to  'Tea time 1' ...well, I have no idea! I wrote it...I posted it...and it's gone! I'll post below the image it contained.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Tea...oh...and kittens!

OK..I've at long last settled on the full arrangement for my new picture. But being the old spoil sport I am, I'll keep it under wraps and you'll see it as I do it! Hopefully if all goes well, I'll start dotting tomorrow.

But in the mean time...here's the litter of kittens our cat Wilba has on Sunday. This is the very last litter she is being allowed to have . A trip to the Veterinary surgeon is going to see to that at last! For now...we're going to really enjoy these three in the next few weeks. Mum being half Manx has produced two long tails, and the almost black kitten here in the middle has a stumpy tail which is hooked just like her mum's !

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Tea tease - 2

I've taken a large amount of photographs of myself ...one hopefully be used for reference to be  included in the new picture.Here's one of the many that may or might not be used....

Development today has gone well...I'm hoping tomorrow to settle on a good composition...I like to produce sketches on separate pieces of paper and assemble them rather like a jigsaw....I have the separate elements and have several ways they can be put together. Lets meet up here again tomorrow evening to see what I've decided upon!

Monday, May 09, 2011

Tea tease.

Have had a very productive day with the sketchbook...and have now moved onto my bigger format sketchbook to begin roughing out the basic composition forms. The main sketching work which includes a mock up of the way I'm hoping the finished picture will look will remain unseen for the time being. But as a teaser, here is an early development drawing of three ladies ...I realised that it actually echoes aspects of both 'Three Graces' and 'White Ladies' and was originally due to be included in 'Tables'...but I like to think that this concept is a more complex development and will include two major figures (not seen here!) a bridge..a train..flowers...probably skulls..birds etc....you get the idea. But it's what I'm about, and it's the natural progression of ideas generated over the last few years. If you're fed up with the current trend in my work...then you're going to be stuck with this one for a while yet.

But just remember...you were there at the beginning!

Sunday, May 08, 2011

Miss O'Murphy by Francoise boucher 1752.

Painted in 1752 by Francois Boucher, this portrait of  Mary-Louise O'Murphy de Boisfaily was 
thought to be a direct invitation to Louis XV showing that she was available to be his mistress.Without resorting to the many and varied 'historical' references to this painting (I'm not an art historian!) I have always considered this painting to be erotic and gloriously executed  by an artist who is familiar with sexuality and sensuality. Seeing it for the first time in a book as a black and white illustration, it has remained part of the bedrock of my artistic refverence  between classical anatomy and the etherial beauty of the erotic whereby an image engages with the desires and dreams of the observer.

Saturday, May 07, 2011

Tennis Fashion - Bethanie Mattek - Sands

I was just watching coverage of the Madrid Open tennis tournament from Spain. Part of the women's WTA tour, the Quater final featured American Bethany Mattek - Sands who comes from Miami in Florida. I felt the need to comment because as you know I have an interest in ladies tennis fashion.Whilst I don't have any pictures of her playing in the match, I have these pics from the net of recent appearances. A detirmined and powerful player, Mattek -Sands displays an individual style which is extrovert and distinctive. Wearing today, black shoes..black calf length socks, a black skirt, black and white striped vest top, black head band and those moustache shaped under eye markings, she looked very similar to the view in the photograph below . I think Mattek is good for women's tennis and the sport as a whole. I applaud her individual style and look forward to seeing her in upcoming tournaments.

Friday, May 06, 2011


Hello..I have no idea what to write about.I'm sitting in my front room..it's dark outside and I've spent most of the day with my sketch book....oh yes, I've got lots of ideas as you know. Long term readers here will know that I find the period between pictures quite difficult at times. Apart from the concept and development, the really good thing for me is the process...the actual action of spending hours , days, weeks and months working on something that was once an idea or a series of ideas, and seeing an image emerge from the blank page. I miss the action of  dotting and concentration...the order of my day is formed around it.

I suppose it would be whimsical to compare this period to being in an accelerated pregnancy where my idea has been conceived and is approaching the birth day.

 I'm concentrating on two concepts at the moment..( I guess this means I'm expecting twins if I use the pregnancy analogy ! )one of which has progressed through around 15 - 20 versions becoming more refined as I go on. The other idea which is fairly simple is at the stage where (If the first idea doesn't work very well) I can initiate it without too much development.

Funny...I wasn't going to write about that. I was going to write a short piece about another favourite painting of mine. I'll probably do that tomorrow.

Wednesday, May 04, 2011

Tables - finished.

48 x 26 cm.
Total time: 142 hours 35 minutes.

Tuesday, May 03, 2011

Tables - 40 Final stages.

I've actually finished this picture now, but I'd like to photograph the work in daylight...so i'm afraid you'll have to wait until tomorrow. work today was a matter of finishing the stones on the ground and refining the boy's and the Mad Vicar's faces. I'm happy with the way things look now and so it's time to put the pen down and prepare for the next project!

Monday, May 02, 2011

Tables - 39

Working on the stones is tedious but actually easy. I firstly create an outline for a stone, and then another until a series of abstract similar sized panels are ready for filling in.

A basic layer of dots is applied to the panels I have created , I then consider from where I imagine the lightsource is and begin to lay in some basic shading which represents where the shadows will go.

Once I've established the shadow areas, I darken the spaces between the rocks and deepen the shadowed area presuming that the upper line of the stone will be caught by the moonlight.The difficult part of this process is to vary the angles at which the stones lie to each other, hence the depth of shadow varies too. I also have to allow for shadows falling from the figures...this is something that can be addressed after the stones are defined.

Sunday, May 01, 2011

Tables - 38