These art my artworks of how it feels to swim with the fish.
This piece all started with the inspiring colours of sea foam in Llandudno Bay, North Wales. I then uses Snapseed to enhance the natural colours and then painted and smudged in the colours in Pixelmator.
I added fish that I painted with sea water in Egypt, after I saw them snorkelling. I painted onto the fish in app to add more detail and how the light as it plays on them in the moving water. I added a swimming girl and beach scene to contrast with the myriad of colours in the underwater world.
I love to snorkel inthe Red Sea.
I then had a visualisation of a further piece that I wished to create following my figurative drawing challenge of a woman swimming towards the onlooker.
I used similar techniques, again creating in Pixelmator and added my hand painted fish.
I’m missing snorkelling as usually we would be soon taking a trip but this year we cannot, so I’m satisfying my underwater love through recreating my experiences through art.
My first experience of lino printing proved enjoyable and productive.
Based on a digitally collaged image of an angel protected by a colour bubble and an outer bubble I drew the image onto tracing paper to transfer onto a piece of lino.
The lino was then placed on a warming plate until it was warmed enough to make etching the lino have a buttery feel.
I etched along the lines of the drawing and then added the word Peace.
Then wearing an apron, hair tied back and barrier cream on my hands I applied ink with a roller onto a second piece of lino to create a background. I put the background lino sheet and a piece of paper through the roller press.
I then inked my etched piece of lino and then put the roller press over this to transfer the etched design onto the background.
I tried different combinations of background colour and sometimes added neat ink and white to add tone to the background.
I created many different iterations to become accustomed to the process. I then began to pick out key elements of the design in different colours.
I quickly realised that I should have reversed the letters for the “Peace’ slogan, but the sake of effect i have reversed the photos.
I thoroughly enjoyed the process and hope to try collograph printing next.
Thanks you for reading this blog post, other related articles/ are challenges are:
I am cautious to stray into a darker psyche but have been motivated to do so a few times of late.
I aim to inspire and uplift people because I feel there is so much darkness in the world. The news media make hearing and seeing the darkness hard to avoid. I made this short video about the news media in 2013.
I was excited and delighted to move into my art studio a year ago. It was a blank canvas, just a white walled room in Victorian building with a desk (later replaced with a table) a white board and a chair. The southerly orientation of the window was ideal for me as I like sunlight.
I enjoyed planning and making the space how I wanted, it didn’t have to appeal to anyone else.
I added my comfy chair for reading, pondering and sometimes snoozing. A storage unit which I added lights to, in amongst my paints and brushes. I took my many artworks, drawings, paintings that had never been displayed and put them where I could see them. By airing and showing them I started to believe, a little more, that I was right to explore the artist within me and let art become a focus and indulgence of my life.
I was busy preparing for my first ice show and so was often between my studio and the rink for the first two months, my skate boots would be drying out on the floor. On fine days I would take a walk in the adjoining country park, exploring a little further each time.
Then on January 4th 2015 I blew my knee, an acute injury that six weeks later required acute surgery. 3 months on crutches, 4 months unable to drive and a resolve testing repetitive programme of rehabilitation exercises leads me to today.
This was not the year I expected and has seen my studio visits few and far between. But as I start to feel I am making the first steps into the light at the end of the tunnel, I have walked subconsciously for the first time, able to look around at the sky and trees. The injury has not been all bad, it meant that I had the space to practice art. I had to resign from the marketing work I had just been contracted to. Other than my exercises I didn’t have time or energy for anything else, but art I could create sat on the floor, bed or with my leg elevated on the settee.
So I hope that as I go into the second year of my studio that I can now enjoy the space as I intended, to explore, learn, try privately and on the good days create beautiful original art. Hey I might even do Open Studios events sometimes.
My injury made me fearful of pain, death and further injury. The good thing is that it makes fear of making a mark, making a wrong line on a paper, laughable. This puts me in an ideal mindset to freely, open heartedly explore art, practice, learn and create works I would never have thought possible for me. So I boldly go forwards knowing it won’t all be good but that there is a solace for me in my studio space, in the colours and invention of making new art.
Here are the highlights from the past year. I’m excited for the next.
Thanks for visiting my blog, maybe get a cup of tea and stay a while in this colourful space. Hoping you;re inspired in some way and maybe that it brightens your day. Enjoy!
Had a great afternoon as my first experience of life drawing.
We had four ten minute period to draw the female model in four different poses. We were encouraged to try a range of media, I had two thicknesses of charcoal, my pit pen and a pencil ready.
After my figurative drawing practice which formed part of the figurative drawing art challenge I decided to choose the charcoal, as I had been pleased with the former results.
I felt that the drawing for each pose improved as I practiced and learned and looked and drew. I was moved by the purity of the experience, like it was getting back to natural and the natural human form. I felt a warmth of gratitude at the opportunity and at the courage of the model to make her body available for our art experience and education.
When we took a short break I felt near exhausted from the energy I had out into to the shorter and the longer duration pieces of work. The last before the break was to use colour and oil pastels were recommended. I chose red, yellow. Orange, green and blue pastels as I didn’t know what I would need. I set to with the colours, shading with the complementary colours and the longer sitting time of the seated pose gave a lot of opportunity for detail and working into the picture.
The first half of the session I had been working at an easel on A1 paper, after so long standing my knee needed a rest so I took the seated option for the second part of the session.
As I had a very different drawing position I chose charcoal again for the next drawing and with more time worked into the detail. I don’t feel that the torso is the correct proportion but I’m pleased for a first time attempt. We were then advised to use a medium that we hadn’t previously used so I chose watercolour and large, thin and fine brushes. Again I chose the colours and darkened with complimentary colours to capture the model’s laid down pose.
I’m delighted with the progress that I made in the session, with what I learned and the fact that although it was nervous beforehand I relaxed into it. Was able to not overthink the task and knew I was enjoying it when I almost sang out loud. Will definitely be life drawing again as I really enjoyed it and contrary to my prior perception did reasonably well. I need to work on promotion and facial details but overall the results were positive.
Many thanks for taking the time to take a look at this post. If you liked this then you may enjoy these related posts. Figurative Drawing
I was excited to get stuck into the challenge of creating a lamp from found items.
The challenge was part of a larger workstream of upcycling, which followed the Marble Run creation that was Art Challenge 40.
A number of items that were merely dust collecting in our home or languishing on top of the cupboard came to mind as items that needed a new purpose and new life.
In our home we have some cherished items of furniture that we have inherited or chosen instead of buying new items, as we struggle to see the rationale in buying something that is newly made when there are older, better quality items in existence, that have a story and deserve to be cherished and lived with.
I collected the items which were a children’s globe, a wooden interlocking kangaroo puzzle and a counterbalance wine bottle holder that we never trusted enough to use. I drew the components for the lamp as a way of understanding their form better and drew sketches of different options of how the components may be put together.
I had a limited amount of time in which to create the working lamp so I began building the lamp, firstly with the upright made from the wooden puzzle which I gave a structure to using wire ring binding. I used the ring binding wire to secure and hold the flex.
I then fitted the upright into the bottle holder base, put a groove for the flex in the top of the puzzle and underneath the base wood. Once I added the brass fixing for the lamp housing I could then start to secure the globe.
I drilled holes on the globe in the places I have visited to give an extra point of interest and to vary the intensity of the light given.
It was tricky to support and affix the globe in a way that enabled the bulb to be changeable. I gave consideration to a number of possible support means, including wire, an additional strut or a plaster hand to support it. I also thought of Velcro as this would grip the globe and still be separable. I’m pleased to say that the Velcro worked and held fine.
The theme of the piece is about travel enlightening, and the wonders our world holds, so I added bends of wire like a crazy network of journeys. Finally I added three small paper aeroplanes made from an old map.
To reference to flight I added feathers left in our garden when birds had been prey to a local fox or cat. The feathers worked well to soften the design and give a more feminine touch, they could be suggestive of angels above our world.
Delighted with the final outcome it was very much as I planned and is as attractive and effective as I hoped.
I learned that I ought to have tried things together without fixing them first and have given more consideration to fixings before I began but I enjoyed the challenge and now look forward to feeling pride when I use the light.
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The challenge was to study figurative works by artists, recreate them and then take the style of one onto my own subject matter.
I’m pleased with my drawings, I threw myself into the challenge as I didn’t feel that being tentative would serve my purpose. Going forwards I would take the fugues bigger in order to be able to use the Schiele style more effectively.
This art challenge empowered me to create my next underwater figure mixed media pieces.
This was a bold step forward in terms of character and figure drawing and representation.
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Sadly we won’t be going to Egyot this winter. Which means I won’t be swimming with the myriad of underwater life in the Red Sea.
So I dove in and created this piece about how it feels to explorebeneath the surface. The artwork features my favourite fishy friends.
I created this piece using the Pixelmator app and added in layers using the photographs of the watercolour fish that were created in the previous art challenges. Those were painted with seawater. I have painted additional detail on them in Pixelmator to show the iridescence of the underwater light.
My good friend commissioned me to create a painting for her for real money! She explained what she wanted the fundamental message of the artwork to be and it started to form in my mind over a few days. I asked some questions about the brief and when she told me how she envisaged it lots of different coloured bubbles rising from left low to high high with lots of vibrancy and energy, her view was very much what I had seen in my mind’s eye.
I considered whether to take an academic approach to the artwork, studying bubbles (the key element) their structure and working on sketches and preliminary drawings and practising, or taking a new canvas board and diving in to build the artwork and making it develop on the board, seeking information and researching as I went. This approach is partly thanks to the influence of the Mixed Media Art learning from Kelly-Rae Roberts. The techniques I have used in my Mantra Artworks came into use.
My friend mentioned a dancer in the brief, I drew figures in movement in my Art of Skating and Knee Injury Drawing Art Challenges. I wanted the figure to demonstrate joy in her pose, and having studied danced the pose also had to be technically correct.
Here are some images made into a movie to show how the artwork took shape and developed.
I really enjoyed working to the brief and creating for a good friend, I worked her energy, essence and my knowledge of her into the piece and found that I also had to add my joy, in terms of the colours, energy and some glitter, for the piece to be truly joyful. It was tricky to know when to stop, I worked on the piece over a two week period, sometimes for 4 hours, some times two minutes. I liked being able to go to the piece as ideas came to mind, whenever that was.
My friend entitled the piece Rainbow Dancer. The painting is in transit to her at present in the Middle East and she’s also ordered a number of day to day items featuring my artwork so she can have it with her wherever she goes. I have put artworks on useful items on Zazzle, I like the idea of art brightening up everyday items and activities. Here’s a link to my Zazzle shop.
A scan of the final piece, it doesn’t do it true justice but gives an impression of the piece.
P.S. I scanned the sections of the picture in the hope of stitching it together, something I hadn’t done before and wasn’t sure how I would. It came to me that I could place the four scans at the extremities of a layer and then overlap and smooth the joins. That feels like a breakthrough skill for my armoury, I can create larger artworks now, knowing I can digitise and reproduce them.
Hopefully this commission will be the first of a number. I’m open to discussing briefs, if you would like a bespoke artwork please contact me.