Painting

I started out as an oil painter working on a big scale. Large canvases were great but difficult to store though, display and exhibit. More recently I have adopted acrylic as a preferred medium working on smaller canvases at a rapid speed. Acrylic has huge flexibility and is quick drying. However, you don't have that continuing time to blend paint as you work as is natural in oils - a much slower drying medium.

I also love the possibilities of a black pen with a very thin nib. This gives lots of scope for interesting marks, eg cross hatching, when drawing architectural subjects, including churches.  It is good if you want to bring fine detail into a composition. The time scale for this is then much longer than for sketching in colour in acrylics.

My work is usually representational or from the imagination. I do like to work in situ and can often be seen outside with equipment all ready to brave the elements if at all possible. I have been known to get very sun-burnt or freezing cold once I get very involved. You do have to be careful of weather changes! 

I do have some interest in abstraction and find this an interesting area to pursue. This to me is all about aesthetics; that is form, colour, balance, symmetry, and the imagination, all free this time from the need to represent objects that are instantly recognisable.

Design

I have designed and edited a number of newsletters over the years, Some for commercial purposes and some on a voluntary basis. Similarly, I have designed and edited websites both commercially and for my own artistic reasons.

Photography

When I started to translate ideas from art into photography you can see the influence of art throughout the final pictures I think. My approach to photography is that it can be a low cost medium with lots of creative possibilities. Until very recently the most expensive camera I had ever owned in my life cost just £149. Yes, new.

So a great deal can be achieved with little financial investment. However, of course for more specialised work, eg, sport or wildlife, you would need better lenses and more sophisticated equipment. I have not quite reached that point yet, as I am happy to continue to explore photography from the points of view, "it is all about light", and, " it is just about being in that moment". I have sold some photographs and had several hundred published in a range of publications. All achieved from this low tech perspective. I have had two significant photographic commissions.

Most of my photographs are 95% "in camera" and 5% "post production". I use a simple editing tool for the 5% or Picasa. This is a simple editing tool that can be downloaded for free use. I have used Photoshop Elements briefly, but did not find I needed this most of the time if I was to continue with my aim of "95" in camera. Once you have that idea you work within the benefits and limitations of the camera that you have and don't wish to do more than that at the time.

I quite like calendars as these give good opportunities for photographers. Certainly 13 plus images are usually needed for the whole year and the cover combined. There may also be extra images on the inside back pages.  Also if people like your picture perhaps they will forget to turn over the page and you can have longer than one month!  I do submit for these and have had photographs featured in 4 calendars. I have also judged one photograph competition which I really enjoyed. It was great to be able to write up comments and give an independent view on the work.

 

 

Picture above:

Acrylic on canvas with fibre tipped pen. This is painted entirely from the imagination. There were no objects in front of me. It is intended as an exercise in representing three dimensional space using shapes, line and colour on canvas.

Picture below:

This is one of a series of drawings in black fibre pen. This takes just one to one and a half hours and the aim is to work hard and fast and experiment with different scratching and mark techniques; as varied as possible.

 

These sunflower images were sketched from sunflowers bought from the Co-op and put in a vase in the garden. They are acrylic and black pen. The idea was to capture their intensity especially as over a few days the flowers started to droop in an interesting way.