Finally, I think it's finished - although I may come back to it later for a little bit of tweaking! Not sure why it has taken me such a long time to complete this painting, to be honest. There must have been a lot of distractions. And quite a few learning processes along the way too, as this was a new painting surface for me, and I had never used gold leaf before - no doubt it would be quicker the next time. 50x50cm, acrylic and gold leaf on birch ply.
A combination of poor light and lots else to do has meant that this painting has been on the go for a quite a few days. Working in acrylics on a birch ply panel - a new surface for me - well sanded between coats of gesso as a primer. I've never really taken to canvas as a surface to work on as it is so 'bouncy', but I'm really enjoying working on this panel. Still looking up but moving on from chimney pots, this dome doesn't actually exist - it is a combination of several and some imagination!
or, working to a deadline. Not something I experience too often these days, other than when I have a commission, but having said I would produce a pen & ink drawing of the Kirk that is what I am now doing!
The Exhibition at St Mary's Parish Church in Haddington takes place from Friday 12th May through until Sunday 14th. I was delighted to be invited to exhibit at this show along with some very well known names. It will feature glass, ceramics, jewellery and prints as well as paintings and is a good chance to see the beautiful church itself. it was looking particularly fine yesterday when I went to take a few photos with lots of blossom on show. Proceeds from the sale of works will go to the St Mary's lighting project.
Pet Portraits? No - Pot Portraits! This one is entitled 'Pot Luck' and will be featured in one of the shows I have coming up, either at the St Andrew Blackadder Easter Art Show, or the St Mary's Kirk art show in May.
'Yet it was not consumed' - the burning bush. This stone carving and window is on a wall of the Baptist Church at the end of Forth Street, a fine building now in need of some repair. The burning bush has long been used as an emblem of the Church of Scotland (only officially since 1958). After a bit of research, I found this information on the St Andrew Blackadder Church website - "... 1843, when the Free Church of Scotland seceded from the Church of Scotland over the issue of the appointment of parish ministers by the system of Patronage. Shortly after that, a subscription was raised and a new building constructed at the junction of Forth Street and Shore Street (now Victoria Road). The new church was named Blackadder Church after John Blackadder and is now used by the North Berwick Baptist Church."
Having recently drawn quite a few little houses in various traditional Scottish styles as single small pictures, I thought it might be rather fun to make a long thin street. It bears no relation to any real place - but looks like quite a nice place to live (no cars, for a start!)
...and I cannot lie. Perhaps it is my architectural training but I do look up at roofs quite a lot, and I am always struck by the variety in colour, size and shape of chimney pots. These ones are based partly on my neighbour's chimney, and partly made up. Colouring pencil, and they will have an acrylic background of sky. And a seagull!
This is one of a series of black and white line drawings of prominent landmarks and buildings of the town, and is what I have been mainly working on over the last four weeks. I intend to produce a colouring book - the sample is currently being printed.
when you have a pencil in your hand. Here are just some of the sketches I have been doing whilst working out a 'building caricature' - a commission and the largest of this type of pen & ink drawing I have tackled so far. Scariest thing in the world? A big empty white sheet of paper!
On Wednesday we were treated to a really quite spectacular thunderstorm lasting a couple of hours following a very hot day on Tuesday. The lightning was flashing and flickering within the clouds, rarely striking the ground, and the rain was torrential. Prior to the start of the storm I happened to be looking out of the window, wondering when the weather would arrive, when I noticed a group of starlings sitting on the neighbours chimney. By the time I came back with the camera, some of the stuckies had flown so the pots were no longer fully occupied! The sky was an interesting colour too.
This work is a mix of coloured pencil, acrylic paint and pens. A bit more shadowing to go on the chimney pots I think, but otherwise now finished.