Many of my works posted here are Digital Finger Paintings. For this reason the images have been watermarked. Please, no unauthorized reproductions: If you would like to use any of the images of my works that you see here (or elsewhere) please contact me, I am always happy to help if I can.
I hope that you enjoy this blog. If you would like to receive an email link to the new posts as they come on-line, just scroll to the bottom of the page and click onFollow the Blog. (And don't forget to check the Archive, also at the bottom of the page, to see older posts with more pictures.)
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Finally, if you would like to read this blog in another language, please use the "translate / traduisez" tool in the left-hand column (under "contact me"), although I cannot guarantee the quality of the translation (I've already seen that the French translation "n'est pas terrible") it may help.
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Thursday, 14 July 2011
(Above) Le Chat
14.5cm x 18cm
Mixed media on paper
From time to time my cat wanders into my studio and makes himself at home. From time to time he appears in my drawings and paintings.
Since returning to art work in 2010, I've been able to sell quite a few of my paintings. Click on the top tab "Sold" (under the cover picture of the eyes) to see a visual record of the pictures that have sold.
I did this portrait of Les (my partner, chief patron and muse) using the doodle app on my Sony eReader. Les uses it as his profile picture on his Facebook page.
Translate / Traduisez
The Enid Lawson Gallery Has Closed
Over the last couple of years I have sold quite a few of my paintings through the Enid Lawson Gallery in London. The gallery has now closed. Thank you Enid for all your help.
The images of my work posted on the blog are now watermarked. If you would like to use any of the images of my art in your publications, please let me know, I am always happy to help if I can.
Click on the image to go the Art4Site (giclée printing on archive grade paper).
Click on the image to go to the Maeght Foundation website, which is available in French and English.
The images of my work on this blog are now watermarked. Some of the images are watermarked using the Winwatermark app. This is an easy-to-use and inexpensive tool and the support from the company's technical support team is excellent. To find out more about this tool, go to the Winwatermark website: http://www.winwatermark.com/
Aphrodite (wore a red dress)
The French Sculptor's Russian Muse
Unless otherwise stated, the images (photographs, drawings, paintings) on this blog show my own work. Where images of works by other artists have been reproduced it is in the spirit of "Fair Use" for commentary and personal research only.
Lithography on Facebook
Simon Burder has a lithography page on Facebook, where he has just posted one of my prints. Click on the image to go directly to the Facebook page.
At a Glance
Why not try viewing the blog posts in Mosaic or Flipcard format? It's a quick way of seeing all the posts all at once.To do this, add the word "view" to the blog URL address. Alternatively, just click on the Flipcard image immediately above. Once you are in the View page, click on the drop down list marked by the turquoise button with the word "Sidebar" in the top right hand corner and select a format. Scroll over the images with the cursor. Pause on an image to see that post's title and click on the image to open the post.
I came across Trevor's work for the first time at this year's Affordable Art Fair in Battersea. Click on the painting to have a look at his website.
Older Posts in the Archive
The post about this painting (The Girl in the Blue T Shirt) is now in the archive. To view this and other older posts, just follow the links through the archive at the bottom of the page.
Un beau chat (Nobby)
Older Posts in the Archive
Don't forget to browse the Archive (at the bottom of the page) where there are older posts with more images of my work, including this painting: "Picasso's Girl".
The Singer (in red)
The Blog Archive
"A Girl Called Wakeema": The image of this painting is now in the Blog Archive. Please feel free to explore the old posts that have now been archived. To do this, just keep scrolling down to the bottom of the page and click on any of the dates to open that section of the Archive.
"Jacqueline" : a colour lithograph on Somerset paper. I did this print whilst on a short lithography course run by printmaker Simon Burder at his studio in the Oaks Park near Croydon. Click on the image to go directly to Simon's website to find out more about his work and his lithography courses.
To be is to be perceived
I hope that you enjoy this blog. If you are new to the site, don't forget to check the older posts that are now in the archive (see either "Blog Archive" or "Older Posts" at the bottom of the page). And please pass the link onto any of your friends or contacts who may be interested; better still, why not sign up to follow my blog with regular email up-dates? (See "Follow the Blog", again at the bottom of the page - just keep scrolling down).
Your gaze is very important and it's good to know that my paintings are being seen. After all, "esse est percipi" as the eminent Mr Berkeley maintained: "to be is to be perceived".
Steel Magnolias at The Place, Bedford
One of my paintings was featured in the publicity for The Swan Theatre Company's production of Steel Magnolias at The Place in Bedford.
The Affordable Art Fair: a report in "My Mail" on-line
Above: "The American Widow (Wears a Big Black Hat)" (SOLD). This painting was used to illustrate an article published in "My Mail" on-line about the Affordable Art Fair in Battersea Park, London, March 2010. To read the article, click on the painting.
Click here for more information about The Affordable Art Fair
I used this painting to produce greeting cards for Christmas 2010. The painting has now been sold and the buyer is apparently delighted. It's always nice to know that my work is being enjoyed.
"Rachel" : my first attempt at lithography. I did this print with careful guidance from Simon Burder who runs lithography courses at his studio in Oaks Park near Croydon. Click on the image to go directly to Simon's website, to see his work and find out more about lithography.
I Saw An African Queen (Sold)
This was one of my first paintings after my return to art work in 2010 following a few years' break from art practice. The painting was on show for a while at the Enid Lawson Gallery in London (now closed) where it was sold.
The Beautiful Painted African Woman
This is one of my partner's favourite paintings, so it's hanging here at home.
"Out of Africa" at the National Open Art Competition Exhibition
This is one of two paintings that were accepted for the National Open Art Competition Exhibition 2010, Chichester. To find out more about this annual competition, click on the image.
The Painted African
This is the other painting that was on display in the National Open Art Competition Exhibition 2010 at the Minerva Theatre in Chichester. Click on the image to go directly to the Competition's website.
'Selene, because her face is moon-shaped." SOLD
This painting was included in the Society of Women Artists' annual exhibition, which took place at The Mall Galleries, The Mall, London, 1st - 10th July 2010. The painting has now been sold via the Enid Lawson Gallery, New Cavendish Street, London (the gallery has now closed).
Les in his check jacket
A portrait of my partner, Les (artist's muse and dedicated patron), produced using the Sony Reader. For more information about these types of drawings see further below.
"Mr van Dongen's Lovely Red Hat - a tribute" (SOLD)
My cover of Kees van Dongen's lovely "Red Hat" (see futher below under "Some of my favourite art" and the post dated 21st March 2010). This painting has now been sold.
She had orange hair and blue eyes
Galatea looks at Pygmalion
Dorothea Smartt is a British born poet of Barbadian heritage. To find out more about her work, click on the picture to go to her website. Also, check my post dated Tuesday 22nd June, entitled "For Dorothea: the black poet and the Dutch painter".
Sidonie, la mère de Claudine, as I (erroneously) imagined her (SOLD)
Every picture has its own story to tell and whilst they are by no means obligatory, titles can provide a useful point of access to a painting or other art work. They allow the artist to offer meanings and even to tell a story. If there is a narrative behind the titles that I create for my paintings it is usually one that tells of the painting's creation: how the painting came into being, evolved and took on its final personality. Certainly, as I am painting my "portraits", (which sometimes reference a "real", living or historical, person but not always) I find myself entering into a dialogue with them, getting to know this person that is taking shape and form on the paper. This painting of Sidonie actually started as a study after looking at the highly stylised treatment of the female face in medieval stained glass windows. (When I was at art college I won an award that allowed me to travel around France to study stained glass. My study was quite preliminary but it is an interest that has stayed with me.) I'd also recently visited the church in Tudeley, Kent, to see the wonderful stained glass by Chagall. Most of the windows in Tudeley use a predominantly blue palette, but a couple of the windows are an irridescent yellow. Surprisingly, yellow is not an easy to colour to use in large areas even if it is one that cannot fail to evoke warmth and optomism. So, as this gentle woman's face took hold on my page I found myself thinking of "Sidonie" the mother of Claudine, the little girl in Colette's autobiographical stories La maison de Claudine in which Sidonie is a discreet but constant, loving and protective presence and force. Sidonie is evoked in these short stories from a child's perspective; this painting too has a certain child-like vision. So, the gentle woman on the paper became, in my mind, "Sidonie, la mère de Claudine." Unfortunately, after re-reading La Maison de Claudine, I realised that the real or original Sidonie was actually blond and rather short and round. So, I had to revise my title: "Sidonie, la mère de Claudine, as I (erroneously) imagined her."
An Iconic Portrait
Following on from my post of 16/06/10 ("The Girl in the Picture"), here's an "iconic portrait" (ref. Johnathan Jones, The Guardian, June 2000). Whilst I often work from photographs and other images (paintings, sculptures) in the pubic domain, I tend to use more "anonymous" subjects. That being said, I occasionally do a more readily recognisable face, like this one.
Steve, a portrait
Detail of a portrait. (To see the full painting, see post of same title dated 26th February 2010). Oil on board. The original painting is now in a private collection in France.
I have two degrees: one in Fine Art (painting), which I did at Gloucestershire college of Art and Technology (now Gloucestershire University) and another, from King's College London, in French. After a few ambulatory years, including some time living in France, I now live in London where I spend all my time working on my art, almost. When I'm not drawing and painting I do a bit of translation and I enjoy gardening (click on the photo of the rose, below, to go to "Urban Eden", my garden blog), running and cycling... sometimes (when the sun is shining) even pedalling in the same direction as my partner, sometimes-artist's muse and dedicated artist's patron, Les. If you like my work and would like to contact me (it would be good to hear from you) please send me an e-mail: email@example.com
Mixed media on paper, March 2010 (full image in post dated 04/03/10, now in the archive; see below).
Artist's Statement I
Figurative and very colourful, my paintings feature mostly women: heads and faces, nudes and full-length, dressed portraits. Some of my work is produced from direct observation but more often it is informed by the photography and other imagery that animate the media (publicity, magazines, television, film, the Internet). Always "reality" is tempered by the process of drawing and painting (I enjoy making and leaving the marks of the crayon and paintbrush) but also, inevitably by perception, memory and imagination. I try to create images that are full of colour and life and, no doubt for this reason, sensual. Sometimes, my paintings are also a little "quirky": the sitters often strike a sideways regard that engages the viewer's gaze. My paintings are an invitation to gaze at the gazed. Gazing in this way mirrors what the artist does. The artist looks and through their work they give another significance to what they have seen. The act of looking, the gaze, is very important, or as the Anglo-Irish 18th century philosopher George "Bishop" Berkeley reminds us: "to be is to be perceived". Of course, the gaze is particularly important for women, who throughout life are accompanied by images that define feminity. The gaze is equally very important for the artist, whose work is born from looking and surely created for the purpose of being seen.
Many of my recent paintings have been developed from Sony Reader drawings. These are drawings that I have produced using the tactile pad and pen and the manuscript function of the Sony Reader PRS 600. In addition to the primary text-reading function, Sony has equipped its e-reader with an application that can be used for doodling. I enjoy using this device to draw even though, or perhaps because, it is rather unrefined as a drawing instrument. For example, the line produced by the Reader pen is invariable and compared to the small area provided by the screen for drawing, rather thick. The resulting mark is comparable to that produced by a large felt-tip pen, but it can be erased. I have found a way ofimporting these documents from my Reader to the computer and from there to other graphic applications from where I can work them further, sometimes whilst they are still in an electronic format using Paint or PhotoStudio, or more often simply by printing them and then reworking the image in mixed media on paper or light weight card. In this way, the digital drawings are a kind of palimpsest: the original electronic document provides a basis for reworking and development into a new work, which tends to keep its original small format; a size that contributes to the end painting's sense of intimacy.
The Arab Boy (I met through Kees van Dongen)
Artist's Statement II
The Female Face With the secularisation of society, the icon has evolved and now occupies a space beyond the preserve of religion; one constant remains however: the female face is still the principle messenger and continues to dominate the imagery of our culture. Omnipresent, she is almost a "cultural barometer", or more literally, a personification of cultural norms and trends. My works comment on the ubiquitous female face, They are not so much portraits as simple painted representations of this female face. They have been described not only as colourful, but also edgy and sensual. perhaps because the women that populate my paintings are aware of, indeed pre-empt the viewer's gaze. The gaze that looks out from my paintings is, I believe, as intriguing as it is impenetrable: intriguing enough, I hope, to trigger the viewer's curiosity and speculation on the paintings' significance. Further layers of meaning may be generated by the paintings' titles, which offer a possible narration to the images. However, if the titles are a narration, the artist is an unreliable narrator. The titles, like the paintings, question the polarity of fact and fiction. just as the sitter's appropriation of the gaze creates equivalence between the viewer and the viewed and my work challenges the distinction between the subject and the object.
Behind the Mask, a Woman's Portrait
This self-portrait was developed from a drawing produced using the Handwriting function of the Sony Reader, which I have re-worked in mixed media (ink, watercolour, gouache) on paper. Many of my paintings feature portraits of women, or rather representations of the female face, which have always and continue to fascinate artists and image-makers. The title offers another layer of meaning: “Behind the Mask: a Woman’s Portrait.” Throughout life, women are accompanied by images that define their femininity. The female face that we see in our culture’s imagery is like a mask that represents one aspect of a woman’s identity. (See post of same title, dated: 25.04.10)
See the Archive
In mixed media (ink, crayon, watercolour...) on paper this portrait of my partner was developed from a drawing produced using the Handwriting app of the Sony Reader, which I enjoy using to draw even though (or perhaps because) it is rather unrefined as a drawing tool: the line produced by the stylus is invariable and, in comparison to the area of the small screen (9cm x 12cm), quite thick. The resulting mark is comparable to a marker-pen line, but it can be erased. The original electronic document provides a basis for reworking and development into a new work.
See the Archive
There are more posts with more examples of my work in the archive. Go to the bottom of this page and click on "Older Posts" or follow the links to the archive.
An Object of Vision
"A woman must continually watch herself. She is almost continually accompanied by her own image of herself."
"One might simplify this by saying : men act and women appear. Men look at women. Women watch themselves being looked at. [...] The surveyor of woman in herself is male: the surveyed female. Thus she turns herself into an object - and most particularly an object of vision : a sight."
Two quotes from John Berger's book "Ways of Seeing", published by the BBC (London) and Penguin Books Ltd (Harmondsworth, Middlesex, England). First published in 1972. These quotes are found on pages 46 and 47 of the 1985 paperback edition.
A drawing (signed and dated) produced using the handwriting app of the Sony (PRS 600) Reader (2010).
Girl with Bird (Feb 2010)
(Above) Sony Reader drawing reworked on paper with crayon, poster paint and indian ink (9cm by 12cm).
Another "iconic portrait" produced using the Sony Reader (2010). Of course, David Hockney has often embraced modern technology and has recently been using the I-Pad to "draw" and "paint".
"K" - enjoying the glamour of the red dress
Mixed media on board, 19cm x 26cm (2004)
Pencil drawing on paper (1992)
Sony Reader Drawings
There is frequent reference in this blog to "Sony Reader drawings". These are drawings produced using the tactile pad and pen that comes with the Sony Reader PRS 600. In addition to the text-reading function Sony have equipped this e-reader with a bonus application for handwritten notes and doodling. I enjoy using the device to draw even though (or perhaps because) it is rather unrefined as a drawing tool: the line produced by the pen is invariable and, in comparison to the area of the small screen (9cm x 12cm), quite thick.
I don't think Sony envisaged sustained use of this application as the resulting documents, once uploaded onto a computer via the Reader Library, are not easily transferred to other software applications for further use. To keep the images and to do paper printouts I have to first import the manuscript document from the hand-held Reader device to the Reader Library software from where I do a copy of the whole computer screen showing the drawing embedded in the software. (see below). The drawing can then be cut and pasted into a clean page using Paint, Photostudio or Photoshop and then printed. The process of importing the drawings from the Reader to the computer is a little convoluted but the hassle is worth it as I often use the paper-prints of these drawings as a palimpsest. They provide a good starting point for more work.
If you like my work, want to know more or would like to discuss sales and/or exhibitions please e-mail me at : firstname.lastname@example.org