Wednesday, 30 July 2014


.....and the livin' is easy.  Well I dont know about that but thats our last Tuesday night session finished till mid September now.  The lovely Jess did us proud and I upgraded to some quality paper and kept the colours sensible this time.  Quite pleased with this one, gotta do some painting now for a new opportunity that has presented itself for September.  Exciting and a new area for me.  Watch this space.

Pan Pastel on Fabriano Tiziano 
 20 x 30"

Wednesday, 23 July 2014


Well soon it will be time for the summer break and a chance to review and plan for the autumn.  My thoughts right now are that since I have been working on large black paper with pan pastels and other blunt tools my artisty and composition has developed but sometimes at the cost of accuracy and correct values.   


Overall I think progress has been made and the fact is I usually see the flaws pretty quickly.  I've enjoyed exaggerating and playing with the proportions and colours although I am still inclined towards, and therefore conflicted about, a certain level of realism.  


For sure the Pan Pastels have helped my mark making and tendency to get too detailed too soon although sometimes I still manage to kill the life in some of the longer poses.  


Black paper is great with pastels and I am thinking of working slightly smaller to help keep a handle on the proportions and also working on better quality paper - I've orders some BFK Rives noir to try.  


I am pleased to have managed to take a few photos from the last couple of life sessions and will have a go at using them those alongside my drawings and doing some slower and more considered pieces.  Life drawing/painting is a mad race against time but there is nothing like it and it definately helps 'studio' work. 

Sunday, 6 July 2014

Channelling Zhaoming Wu

We decided to go for a two week pose at the Tuesday night session and attempt a Zhaoming Wu style pose and set up.  Having studied with him I have some insight but even so its a tall order to try and emulate such a master.  Our model didnt want us to take photos which was a possible route for me to attempt a more finished piece and of course we have the usual issue of rapidly changing light.  So at the end of day one although I had produced a more subtle and sensitive painting (pan pastels) than I have been doing recently it was a bit boring and I didnt know where I was going with it or even if I was going to bother for the second week.
I am glad I did bother though, the opportunity for a longer pose would have been wasted and its all too easy not to persevere.  Of course its hard to get the pose back, lots of things changed but I selected what I was going to change and what to leave as was and after all these years of life drawing I ought to have a bit of experience to draw on now. All in all I am happy with the 'atmosphere' - a big thing with Zhaoming, and although I could do more with the surroundings its OK I think.  Our Tuesday night sessions are such a pleasure, I love my art tribe and everyone did really stunning pieces with the extra time and we definately all feed off each other.  The consistency and conducive atmosphere has been really helpful to my progess.