Saturday, 27 August 2011

Book Review - Painting Light in Oils by Peter Wileman & Malcolm Allsop

Painting Light in Oils
Peter Wileman & Malcolm Allsop
Hardcover: 128 pages
Publisher: Batsford 

Language: English
ISBN-10: 1906388725
ISBN-13: 978-1906388720
10.1 x 9.1 x 0.7 inches

This beautifully illustrated book arrived while I was away and was a great treat to return home to.

Peter Wileman shows his way of working and how he managed to get such beautiful light in his glorious paintings.

Here is a page showing how he pre-mixes his colours and places them around his palette.

It is a delightful and informative book and I can recommend it to anyone who wants to capture light.
The book is stunning and shows a mixture of landscape, seascape, portrait and even some still-life paintings.

Edited to add (Sun 28th Aug):  The Royal Institute of Oil Painters have a much better review on their blog with lots of clear photos of some of the paintings!

Friday, 19 August 2011

Gone Painting

Actually, in truth I will be away for a few days visiting family and celebrating my birthday and although my sketchbook will be coming with me, I am quite certain, not much art will get done.  I am even not taking my DSLR nor laptop!

I will take my new-fangled mobile phone with me which will keep me entertained during the (long) train journey when I shall be reading and commenting on all of your blogs.

I had intended to finish my panoramic landscape, but after a bit more reworking of the foreground fields it is too wet to finish the sheep I had painted in,  those few touches will get finished on my return.  I had intended to show you this image of the stages at the end, but thought I would post it now instead.

When I get back, I am going to start a big landscape project I have in mind, but I shall talk more about that in a future post.

See you soon!

Wednesday, 10 August 2011

Landscape Progress

Just a quick update and an apology to everyone for my slackness in replying and commenting on blogs - it has been very busy here these past few days and I am just beginning to catch up now.

I managed a little amount of time on my landscape and here is where I am at currently:
I still have the foreground fields to work on, a bit of reworking in the sky and some other highlights to be added.

It is nearing completion!

Thank you very much for stopping by my blog and for taking the time to comment, it really means a lot to me to have your encouragement.

Monday, 8 August 2011

Pittenweem Art Festival

I haven't much progress to report on my painting, I have been spending my time looking at other art instead!  Every year, a local fishing village holds a week-long arts festival and it is an amazing event. 

It seems that every cottage has a room/garage/garden/loft given up to an artist who showcases his or her paintings.  As well as those, there are invited artists who also have art on show.  This year, Helen Delerney who makes large life-sized sculptures of animals out of scrap metal.  They were placed on and around the harbour wall.  As you can see, the weather turned very wet, but it didn't stope everyone enjoying the art on display!
Indoors, there were a wide range of paintings to be seen, using many media, from watercolour, textiles, acrylic to oils and resin as well as collage and mixed media.  In fact, I was pleasantly surprised at the increase in collage over the years.  I can remember when it was very rare and rather looked down upon!
One of my favourite exhibits was by ceramicist, Craig Mitchell, who made these fantastic large ceramic sculptures with even larger-than-life character.  The above is over 2 feet tall and shows two Frenchmen frantically rowing out to sea on a French Fancy cake.  Stunning.  This other piece, Fisherwife Presenting the Jazz Prawn is just delightful.  He also had a man in a kilt, a flying Scotsman, a hunter, a fisherman and many others, each perfectly designed and made, full of quirky detail and humorous.

It was much harder to photograph the paintings, difficulties with crowds, lighting and shadows made it nearly impossible, but here is a small sample of some others I did manage to capture:

Above, the Lomonds by Josephine Gillespie - a very prolific and versatile painter with a wonderful sense of colour.

Underneath, a collection of almost abstract landscapes by Mairi Clark that really caught my eye, they seemed to say more about what is just in front of us, but also to suggest a feeling and emotion that the landscape invokes.

There were over 100 exhibits and I only managed to see a quarter of these - I am hoping to get back again next week to see some more, even if it cuts into my limited painting time.

Tuesday, 2 August 2011

(Mostly) Fictional Novels Featuring Art or Artists - A List

Like many painters, I have many books about art techniques, art history and books about individual artists, but sometimes I like to indulge in a little fiction.  

I especially enjoy listening to audible books as I paint and if the subject matter is also about art, then that is even better!

Here is a list of novels that have an arty theme that I have enjoyed recently: 

Girl with a Pearl Earring by Tracy Chevalier
The Stone Virgin by Barry Unsworth
Notes From An Exhibition by Patrick Gale
Provenance: How a Con Man and a Forger Rewrote the History of Modern Art by Laney Salisbury & Aly Sujo 

Other fictional novels with an art theme on my list that I would like to read:

The Passion of Artemisia: A Novel bySusan Vreeland
This author has several along this theme, so she would be worth checking out.

The Raphael Affair by Iain Pears
This author also has several on an art history crime theme.

The Forger by Paul Watkins
I love a good book about art forgery!

The Painting by Nina Schuyler
The Birth of Venus by Sarah Dunant
Tulip Fever by Deborah Moggach
Another author that works in a series, I understand.
I Am Madame X by Gioia Diliberto
I have been intending to read this since it was published.
The Portland Vase: The Extraordinary Odyssey of a Mysterious Roman Treasure by Robin Brooks
I like me a bit of history too.
The Illuminator by Brenda Rickman Vantrease
The Painted Kiss: A Novel by Elizabeth Hickey
I Was Vermeer: The Forger Who Swindled the Nazis by Frank Wynne
Not strictly fiction - but another fascinating forgery story!
Loot: Inside the World of Stolen Art by
Thomas McShane & Dary Matera
This might be hard to find - or you could steal a copy!
The Painter by Will Davenport
The Serpent Garden by Judith Merkle Riley
Leonardo's Swans by Karen Essex
She also has others along a historical theme
Stealing Athena by Karen Essex
The Chrysalis by Heather Terrell

Pale as the Dead: A Genalogical Mystery (Natasha Blake, Ancestor Detective, Book 1) by Fiona Mountain
Rembrandt's Whore by Sylvie Matton
An Artist of the Floating World by Kazuo Ishiguro
The Lost Painting: The Quest for a Caravaggio Masterpiece by Jonathan Harr
The Flanders Panel by Arturo Perez-Reverte, translated by Margaret Jull Costa 
The Tragic Muse by Henry James
The Art Fair by David Lipsky
Seek My Face by John Updike
The Botticelli Secret by Marina Fiorato
Sunflowers by Sheramy Bundrick

Phew!  That lot will keep me quiet for quite some time.  I have left out a few obvious ones like Dan Brown as well as Oscar Wilde, but if you have any you would like to suggest, I would be most grateful to hear from you.

Happy reading (and painting, of course)!

Monday, 1 August 2011

More Progress and a New One

Thanks for the lovely comments on my landscape piece, it is still coming along nicely and I am really enjoying working on it.  Here it is as of last night:
There is much more I need to do on this still.  As it is quite large, I am working from top to bottom rather than all over like I usually do and I still have much of the foreground to put in.  Once it has dried enough I shall work all over it again, refining it further.  

On Saturday, I was unable to work on it once I had got some colour in, so I began my next painting, here it is just sketched in with a burnt sienna wash:
As I don't like to use solvents or any other quick drying medium, just linseed if I need the paint to spread easier, drying time is a bit longer, so something else to work on may help my productivity.  

Having said that, I feel that having a larger piece may mean that I can work on different areas while the other dries.