Friday, 24 February 2012

Papa's Steak Supper

Papa's Steak Supper
Oil on Board (6x8in)

I enjoy supper with my father every Wednesday evening and I have to say, he is quite 'the chef'.  This week  fillet steak was on the menu.  The steaks sat proudly on the work surface just begging to be painted and entered into the DPW 'raw meat challenge'.  We enjoyed this feast on a day that should be one of 'fasting and abstinence' (ash wednesday) which was rather forgotten as we washed it down with a very good shiraz.  As Papa said, ' it would have been a sin to waste it!'

Wednesday, 22 February 2012

Hotting up

Hotting Up
Oil on board (8x6in)

This little still-life was originally set up for my tuesday group who had asked to paint some flowers so that they could feel that spring was just around the corner.  I chose to add the mustard tin not only because the colour was perfect but also because I am living in Norwich the home of Colman's...... so what could be more apt?  I couldn't resist the title!

Saturday, 18 February 2012

Portrait of Alan

Portrait of Alan
Oil on Canvas (9x12 in)

This was my portrait sketch from the scout hut session this week.  My position in the room gave me almost no shadow, which is not helpful when trying to describe form.  Alan's complexion had fairly high colour which allowed me to apply some passages of thick paint. (you will notice I had a few problems with them catching the light in the photograph.) The models we get to sit for us are old collegues or aquaintances of members of our group.  The chaps in the group have a swift pint together after the session, at the Unthank Arms here in Norwich.  Many of our sitters have been sourched from that hostelry and I think it might be time they started chatting up the barmaids once again as we seem to have had a run of chaps of a similar age wearing specs!

Friday, 17 February 2012

Seville Orange Marmalade

Seville Orange Marmalade
Oil on Board (6x8in)

I painted this small still-life a few days ago.  Seville oranges are available in the supermarkets for such a short season.  These bitter oranges make wonderful marmalade which is one of the essential ingredients on any breakfast table here in the Uk.  I thought I would add this to the daily paintworks challenge: 'paint it and then eat it', in this case, make it, paint it and then eat it........ preferably on thickly buttered toast!

Wednesday, 15 February 2012

Portrait Workshop at URC

I have just finished a two day portrait workshop here in Norwich which was a really enjoyable experience for me and hopefully the same for those who attended.  Here they are hard at work producing some really excellent portraits.  I have also posted my initial demo which was aimed at giving some pointers for judging proportion and placing features without getting into unnecessary detail too quickly.  The model is a young musician Tom Conway who kept us in good cheer with his guitar playing.

Sunday, 12 February 2012

Jarred Off

Jarred Off
Oil on Board (6x8 in)

This jar of Olives with piri-piri was a christmas present just asking to be painted.  The small chillies threaded through the olives reminded me of Gargoyles sticking out their tongues and looking rather 'jarred off' at the size and the freedom of the chillies outside the jar.  Now that they have been painted their fate is sealed.....!

Thursday, 9 February 2012

Oil Sketch of Brenda

Oil Sketch of Brenda
Oil on Canvas (9x12in)

This is the oil sketch I did as a demo for Thorpe art group yesterday.  You can see by the pose that Brenda's chin is somewhat lifted..........I only hope she has not had to pay a visit to her oesteopath today.

Wednesday, 8 February 2012

Thorpe Art Group Demo

Today I did a portrait demo for Thorpe Art Group.  This photo shows Brenda the organiser of the group and myself wearing my trusty marigold's to clean down my palette (no, I don't paint in them).   By the time I got back to my studio the light was not good enough to take a picture of the portrait, so I will post it tomorrow.  As you can see Brenda was the sitter; I asked her to take an eye line and hastly suggested the exit sign over a door, I am hoping she doesn't wake up with 'painter's neck' tomorrow or I shall not be asked back!

Saturday, 4 February 2012

Fresh as a daisy

Fresh as a daisy
Oil on board (8x8in)

I set this up for myself this afternoon to take my mind off the weather turning in outside.  Winter has finally hit but this little painting reminds me that spring is just around the corner.  My usual practice is to put a small amount of medium into my background, this allows it to recede due to the transparency of the pigment and also the lack of obvious brushwork.  The medium I use is stand oil but the draw back is that takes an age to dry.  I decided to substitute stand oil  for liquin which handled the same but will hopefully allow it to dry very much quicker.  For the white pigment (which is also very slow drying) I could have substituted Alkyd but instead I have used a white which is made up of 1 part titanium white: 1 part liquin impasto into which 1 part stand oil : 3 parts linseed or poppy oil is added and mixed so that it is a good working consistency.  (This recipe was given to me by friend and fellow painter Gareth Hawker. ) I usually pre-mix this in bulk and put into empty tubes so that it is easily at hand when needed.  It handles like a dream but will also dry fairly quickly. 

Thursday, 2 February 2012

Fellow Painters

Oil Sketch of Terry
Oil on Canvas (12 x 10in)

This was painted today at the scout hut and I thought it would be fun to introduce you to some of my fellow painters.  I decided to sit to paint this which is something I rarely do; I much prefer to stand and paint as I feel I am more in control (as if I'm ready for action).  Also, we all know that we should be stepping back constantly to view paintings from a distance.....!  I wanted to have Terry at my eye level rather than look down at him, (as it would give me too much top of head).  The challenge of this small sketch was painting a moving figure,  although he was fairly static with his trunk, his arm was constantly on the go and his head was moving around as he appraised his own efforts.

Oil Sketch of Phil

Phil runs the group at the scout hut.  I did this sketch of him a couple of years ago.  On the very rare occasion that a model doesn't turn up, Phil usually comes to rescue.  He has a great face to paint and even more characterful when lit from below.