Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Do you price your art on your website / blog? (Poll Results)

More than half of you price your art when it is displayed on your website or blog.

The Making A Mark Poll for May looked at where you priced your art - specifically whether you priced your art on your website or blog.

Having just surfaced from an enormous art materials order, I'm not tangling with Excel to try and produce a chart as I know how long that takes!

However I have copied the results across - see below

Do you price your art on your website / blog? (Poll Results) 


Yes - website and blog
  14 (18%)
Yes - website only
  24 (32%)
Yes - blog only
  4 (5%)
No - online auction site only
  1 (1%)
No - other online sites only
  6 (8%)
No - B&M galleries only
  5 (6%)
No - studio only
  8 (10%)
No - I do not price my art
  12 (16%)

I only realised after the poll had started that I hadn't provided for an option which is "various places" since all the other options artists only price their art in one place.

Analysis

From the 74 people who responded to the poll, we can see that:

  • 55% priced on website or blog
    • the majority - 32% - prefer to price on their website only, in what is a more gallery-like environment.  Traditionally, this is where we have been more used to seeing prices.  
    • 18% price on both website and blog
    • while only 5% price on their blog alone
  • 16% never price their art at all - online or attached to the real thing.
  • 10% of you only price your art when selling from your own studio
  • 9% price on other online sites only.  
  • 6% have prices on their art in bricks and mortar galleries only
Pricing on your website or blog:  I think we can safely say that's not a result that would have applied ten years ago - or even five years ago.  As artists have got more used to using websites and blogs to showcase their art, people have become more relaxed about attaching price information.

Notwithstanding this, there's a decided preference for only pricing your art on your own website or blog.  

I was actually quite surprised that the percentage of people who are not pricing their art at all was as low as 16%.  I think I expected there to be more people who were painting for the fun of it without making any attempt to sell.  That suggests to me that more and more artists have grown used to seeing artists marketing their art and more and more are joining in.  However that's pure speculation on my part - even if it fits the poll results!

The studio is obviously a place where people also feel more comfortable about pricing their art.

It's very apparent that other online sites and galleries have not played a major part in capturing artists as clients.  However I do wonder, since people were only allowed one answer, whether those people using some of the daily painting sites maybe said they priced on their website or blog only.  

Monday, May 30, 2011

Which are the best books about oil painting?

I wonder how many would-be oil painters start, like me, by buying books and trying to get to grips with the basics before actually starting to grapple with the paint?

I've been a long time coming to oil painting.  It's not for the want of buying books about it!  I do like to read around a topic before jumping in!

Today over on Four Go Painting in Provence, I will be lisitng the oil painting books I've bought and why - some of which will travel to France.  

Take a look below if you want to see some of the books I've bought.

Books about oil painting and oil painters
Working out which are the best books about oil painting

I'm a huge believer in the wisdom of crowds - when they are speaking from their own personal experience - and I'm very interested in your personal views about which are the best books about oil painting.   

I did a similar exercise on this blog in relation to water colour painting last year - see Which are the best art books about watercolour painting?  It was absolutely fascinating what that threw up as books people raved about (eg Making Colour Sing by Jeanne Dobie - which has just been republished) and ones which people recommended very highly - and yet were ones which could not be found in the shops.

I'd also emphasise that this is about the best books which are available and is NOT about which books are in print.  Many excellent books are available online as used books and are well worth purchasing for their content.

With your help I'm aiming to develop a "resources for artists" listing of:
  • 'The Best Books' of instruction in oil painting - for all types of abilities
  • 'The Best Books' about artists painting in oils - past and present 
If your recommendation is used, you and your website and/or blog will be accredited with a link which should generate repeat traffic to your site.


Which oil painting books do you recommend?
 
I know I've bought books on the basis of recommendations by other artists when doing similar exercises on this blog.  I'd like you too to be able to share those recommendations - both in terms of giving and receiving
Identifying the best oil painting instruction books

If you would like to share your views, please TELL ME and the readers of this blog the answers to the following questions about books which have taught you about painting in oils and/or helped you to improve your knowledge and skills in painting in oils.

If it helps you, try giving them marks out of 10 to indicate how good they are and how you rank them in terms of value.
  1. Personal preference: Which are your personal top three (or five or ten!) books about oil painting.  Ranking is good and reasons for your choice are most helpful
  2. Beginners:  Which is the best book for somebody starting to learn to paint in oils - and why?
  3. Improvers:  Which is the best book for somebody looking to improve their painting in oils - and why?
  4. Advanced:  Which is the best book for a more experienced artist looking to refine their work - and why?
Identifying the best books about oil painters

Please share the book or books about oil painters which you have found most stimulating and helpful

Sunday, May 29, 2011

29th May 2011 - Who's made a mark this week?

"Self-Portrait - taking in the sun"
by Ohla Pryymak

selected for BP Portrait 2011
© Olha Pryymak
Many congratulations to Olha Pryymak (Olha Pryymak) who has had her self-portrait selected for the 2011 Exhibition of the BP Portrait Award - see BP Portrait award competition 2011 – shortlisted! on her blog.

That means that Olha is among the 55
selected artists to show out of 2,732 record applicants this year.  That's 0.02% of the entry.

This painting has also been chosen as one of the ones used to advertise the exhibition - and is currently being displayed on the Visit page of the NPG website.  It's also the feature portrait on the front cover of the NPG booklet about exhibitions and events at the National Portrait Gallery over the summer.

I was particularly pleased to hear this news as I've been encouraging Olha in her endeavours for some time.

Last Autumn we translated that into a formal mentoring relationship.  I took a look at her marketing activities and provided her with a report providing specific advice and action points relating to what I thought she needed to do next. Looks like it's working! :)

Maybe I need to think about doing a bit more of this?

That'll be something to mull over while I'm away - and you need to read the message at the end to find out why this is the last "who's made a mark this week" for a few weeks

In the meantime I'm still waiting to hear about the rest of the selected artists and I'm hoping to post the list before I leave for France next week.

Art Blogs

Coloured Pencils and Pastels
  • Happy 30th Birthday to The Pencil Museum in Keswick which has been celebrating its 30th birthday this weekend.  Tweets indicate everybody has had a great time!  You can follow the Pencil Museum on Twitter 
  • Casey Klahn (Pastel) writes about My Palette.  Some really good suggestions for different ways to collect pastel.  (It's a requirement - if you want to be a pastel artist - you have to have this deep-seated urge to collect colour aka pastels!)
  • Contemporary Abstract Pastels
  • I am so jealous of Vivien Blackburn.  She opened her door to the postman this week to find she had won a complete set of Lyra Rembrandt coloured Pencils! Read Second Prize - Lyra Polycolor set to find out why.
  • Which is the most popular brand of Color Pencils?  This is your chance to have your say.  I created the site on Wizzley which is a new information webware site.  
    Landscape
    After George Lambert - A View of Box Hill, Surrey (1733) by George Lambert (1700 – 30 Nov. 1765)
    pencil and coloured pencils in large Folio Sketchbook
     Painting
    • Ruo Li is a Chinese artist whose painting “California Autumn” won the Gold Medal Award for Master Signature Members at the 19th National Juried Exhibition of Oil Painters of America.  Charley Parker (Lines and Colors) has reviewed his work - in Ruo Li.  I took at his website and it seems to me he's a master of perspective and tone.  Some paintings very much reminded me of Singer Sargent.
    • Nancy Reyner (Nancy Reyner) author of Acrylic Innovation Styles & Techniques Featuring 64 Visionary Artists wrote a post last year about Transparent Layers - Glazing vs. Washes
    • Keith Bond (Keith Bond Fine Art) - also writing last year - comments on the process he adopts for Creating a Studio Work From a Plein Air Study 
    Plein Air Painting

    I've had a major focus on plein air painting this week.  Naturally that has resulted in a few link being dropped into this post.
    Next time you are participating in a plein air event, include one of the other plein air artists in your painting and send a photograph of the completed work to PleinAir™ Magazine.
    • Charley Parker highlighted the blog, titled Judsons Plein Air Journal, inclides short profiles of the featured artists, along with sample images and links to their websites.
      Printmaking
      Art Business & Marketing
      • Stapleton Kearns (Stapleton Kearns The demand surge and buy switch phenomenon - this is a Highly RECOMMENDED post.  As I commented, it just goes to show there's more to being an artist than painting and there's more to getting people to buy than painting a good painting. 
      Art Competitions
      Art Education

      Tips & Techniques
      Workshops
      Art Exhibitions

      Major galleries
      Art Societies
      Art Bloggers
      Pizza Chef by Johnny Morant - Tryon Gallery ( 7-17th of June)

      Art History
      Art Supplies
      Art Books
      • I'm going to be doing a post about oil painting books tomorrow.  Get your recommendations lined up please!
      Art Videos

      I posted a couple of videos from 2008 to The Art of the Landscape blog this morning - see Wolf Kahn - on painting and being a landscape painter

      Webware, websites and blogging
      and finally......

      This will be my last "who's made a mark this week?" until July. 

      I'm off to France on the 9th June and not returning until the 4th July.  Next weekend involves taking my cats to their holiday destination (my mother's house and garden) so I have half a chance of actually being able to get packed up and ready to go.

      However - for those of you interested in such things - you can follow what our painters' house party gets up to in France in Four Go Painting in Provence as we will be blogging while we're there.
      You can already check out my deliberations about what to take with me as we all start to get seriously geared up (as in lots of art materials) for some very focused creativity!  Sarah tells me she's planning five paintings a day!

      I certainly know from past painting holidays that there is nothing quite like a concentrated period without domestic interruptions to make some progress both in terms of creating art and developing skill and style.

      Saturday, May 28, 2011

      Are Alkyd paints like real oil paints?

      The challenge I've set myself is to learn how to paint in oils while in Provence in June.  The results will be documented on Four Go Painting in Provence (see Learning how to paint with oils in Provence).

      I've spent today finding out more about Alkyd Paint.  The reason for this is I'd prefer to be using a medium which dries more quickly. This is a summary of what I've found out - and some links to some useful sites.

      Are Alkyds like real oil paints?  The answer is Yes - they just dry faster.

      Manufacturers of Alkyd Paint
      Read on to find out more about how these paints behave.


      Thursday, May 26, 2011

      ING Discerning Eye 2011 - Call for Entries

      The Call for Entries for submissions to the ING Discerning Eye Exhibition 2011 has been published. The deadline for entries is 2/3 September in London - and dates in August for regional pick-up points around the UK


      The exhibition is in London on 2 and 3 September 2011.  It enables lesser known artists to be hung alongside the work of artists who have an international status.
      The ING Discerning Eye Exhibition is a show of small works independently selected by six prominent figures from different areas of the art world: two artists, two collectors and two critics. Work is selected from open submission and also from artists invited by the individual selectors. Each section is hung separately to emphasise its own distinctive identity. The impression emerges of six small exhibitions within the whole.
      How to enter

      You are eligible to enter if you are an artist born in or resident in the UK

      There are two ways to have your work exhibited
      • either through submitting work via the open submission (see below for a summary).
      • or by being invited by show work by one of the selectors - an opportunity which has been used in very different ways by different selectors in the past.
      Read on to find out what you have to do

        Wednesday, May 25, 2011

        Drawings Of Georgia in 1736

        Every so often I marvel at the way in which the Internet can allow us to see things we would never normally have seen.  Or how we can come across very specialised documents - such as the travel diary of Philip Georg Friedrich von Reck in the Department of Manuscripts & Rare Books of the Danish Royal Library.

        The reason it's interesting is that it documents and records drawings of the state of Georgia in 1736 and what he encountered including plants, animals, people and their habitat.

        "Top: A young water snake
        Middle: (a,b,c,d) A small chestnut
        Bottom: Alligator, a sort of crocodile
        "

        This is an extract from the Introduction of VON RECK'S VOYAGE. Drawings and Journal of Philip Georg Friedrich von Reck. Edited by Kristian Hvidt. With the Assistance of Joseph Ewan, George F. Jones and William C. Sturtevant. The Beehive Press, Savannah 1980.
        "In 1736, Philip Georg Friedrich von Reck, then only twentyfive years old, sailed with other colonists from Germany to Georgia. One of his intentions, expressed in a letter before he left Europe, was to bring back from America "ocular proof" of what he called "this strange new world." Idealistic and enthusiastic, well educated and blessed with an amazing artistic gift, von Reck kept a travel diary, wrote separate descriptions of the plants, animals and Indians he discovered in Georgia and drew some fifty watercolor and pencil sketches of what he saw. [...]


        These drawings, accompanied by von Reck's writings, are important as history, science and art. As history, they give us a new and absolutely unique glimpse of Georgia as it looked when the first Europeans settled there. [...] As science, von Reck's natural history drawings represent the earliest records of several plants and animals. [...]
        The Danish site reproduces all the aquarelles and drawings in von Reck's sketch book (36,5 x 28,8 cm) and all other drawings in the collection.

        I think they're amazing.

        Mind you it makes you think about what people are going to make of our sketchbooks  some 300 years from now!

        Below is more information about natural history and botanical artists who travelled to make observations from first hand experience.

        Links:

        Tuesday, May 24, 2011

        Four Go Painting in Provence

        You are invited to visit a new blog - Four Go Painting in Provence.  

        This is the natural extension to group blogging about art.  Four female group bloggers go on holiday to sketch and paint together - and then blog about it!

        In June this blog is going to be very quiet.  That's because, in the main, I'm going to be blogging on Travels with my Sketchbook and Four Go Painting in Provence

        As some of you will recall (see My Postcard from Provence) that's because I'm going to be spending three weeks drawing, sketching and painting in Provence - plus another six days getting there and back. So that's very nearly four weeks in France.

        I'm in Provence for the whole three weeks - but I'm not alone.  
        The aim of the blog is primarily for us to have a record of our holiday - and to have a place where we can post our daily paintings together - to see how four artists can see the same place through different eyes.

        However it also struck us that a few people might like to come along for a virtual journey and enjoy the sights and the weather and maybe have a virtual smell of the cooking!  So if that's you - keep reading!

        We're getting very excited about the prospect - and today Sarah kicked off our new blog with its first post - about getting down to the packing - see First Things First.

        Where we will be based

        We're not in coastal Provence.  We're further up in the Vaucluse in "proper" Provence - away from the tourists.

        For those of you who don't know already, we've rented "a ramshackle farmhouse in the wilds of Provence" aka the home of popular Postcard from Provence painter Julian Merrow Smith while his wife Ruth Phillips (Meanwhile) plays cello at the Garsington Festival.   
        The house is silent apart from the sound of skops owl, woodpecker, golden orioles nesting in the plane tree and the odd wild boar scuffle. 
        We're based near Crillon le Brave and Bedoin two small Provençal hill villages at the foot of Mont Ventoux.

        From there we'll be travelling around to various places.  You can find some of the places we might get to in Places we Painted - which at present only contains links to and notes about the places we might well visit

        The Big Question

        At the moment we're trying to come up with "a big question" for each of us which we can then use as individual themes for the artwork we produce while in Provence.  I'm not sure whether it will work - but it's a good place to start.

        Mine is probably going to be about learning to paint in oils!  It seems appropriate.  The first time I visited Provence - some 20+ years ago was the first time I got back to my art after something like a 15 year break.  So Provence for me is a place of new starts.

        A Postcard from Our Walks

        Julian's Cabanon (print available)
        Fellow members of our Postcard from my Walk group stand a very good chance of being a recipient of postcards from Provence after our visit.

        We'll be out and about walking near the house in the magical light of early morning and early evening  - and seeing how many Postcard from Provence motifs we can spot - such as the Cabanon (see right)!

        I keep getting carried away thinking about the colours
        • there's the lavender for those of who are there late in June.
        • the creamy white of the limestone 
        • the green leaves and brown/black trunks of the vineyards
        • the orange red of the ochre hills and lots of the roof tiles
        • not forgetting the blue of the sky and lots of the paintwork!
        Plus there's opportunities to sketch and paint water in a number of different contexts for the Watermarks bloggers.  My favourites are the old fountains in every medieval town and village - my favourite is in Gordes.  However there's river running through L'Isle la Sorgues which always makes me think it's a bit like a mini Venice.  Then there's the highly recommended river in the Vallée du Toulourenc.

        So - if you'd like to join us can I suggest you start packing your virtual bags too and then inspect the top of the right hand column of Four Go Painting in Provence so you can "get your ticket" for a virtual painting holiday by:
        We'll be very happy to take you in our virtual suitcases - but don't forget your sketchbooks!

        PS  I had "an Enid Blyton moment" coming up with the title (women of a certain age will know what I'm talking about!) - I guess that means there might be "jolly japes" as well.......
          Links:

          Monday, May 23, 2011

          2011 International Print Awards - Entries Deadline 6th June

          Tethered (2008) by Rachel Gross
          The deadline for entries for The 2011 International Print Awards is 6th June 2011.  The awards are a pivotal part of the 2nd International Print Biennale being held in Newcastle and Gateshead in September 2011.


          All about the International Print Biennale

           There are absolutely oodles of "International Biennales", including a number of International Print Biennales around the world.

          "Biennale" - for those for those who don't like to ask - means is Italian for "every other year" and is frequently used for events which happen every two years.  If they happen in the UK they're usually referred to as a Biennial - because we speak english not Italian - but, hey, it sounds good in Italian!

          I'm not quite sure why but none of the International Print Biennales ever seem to see any need to distinguish which is which in the name of their exhibition or competition.  Maybe it's because of where they're held.  I guess if it's in Venice you want to make it part of the title - but not if it's somewhere like Tokyo or Varna?  Odd.

          This one can't quite make its mind up.  In 2009 it was known as the Northern Print Biennale which seemed pretty much like an OK name to me.
          Northern Print Biennale was the first major event for international printmaking in the UK since Bradford British International Print Biennale almost 20 years ago. 
          Now, in 2011, it seems to want to drop the "Northern" bit and go with plain old "International" instead - which to my mind actually makes it a bit less distinctive.  I think I prefer the tone set by the Bradford one (see quote) but the its got the advantage of a bit of alliteration! 

          However use of the word International does reinforce the nature of the submissions they received last time
          When devising the 2009 Print Awards, we purposefully didn’t define ‘print’. The call for entries invited ‘all artists whose work encounters print’ to submit. We received a tremendous response from over 800 artists in 32 countries.
          Anyway here are the key facts about the International Print Biennale
          • sponsored by the Arts Council and Northern Print which is a not for profit enterprise supported by the Arts Council with a gallery and printmaking studio situated in  Newcastle's Ouseburn Valley.  See Facebook,  Twitter, and  Flickr
          • In 2009, they had  
            • over 200 artists from 32 countries submitted work
          • In 2011:
            • the first prize in 2011 is £5,000 
            • definition of print left open 
            • Works in any medium will be considered and is not restricted to 2 or 3 dimensional works.
          • the overal aims of the competition and exhibition are laudable
          The aim is to reward and promote excellence through showcasing the very best in new British and international printmaking through an extensive programme in Newcastle Gateshead of exhibitions, events, activities and an international symposium.  With over 95,000 visitors this inaugural Biennale was a huge success and we are delighted to announce the 2nd International Print Biennale.
          International Print Biennale 2011
          Read on to find out how to enter

          Sunday, May 22, 2011

          22nd May 2011 - Who's made a mark this week?

          More This week I've been watching one of my favourite sketchers Enrique Flores (4ojos) posting reportage sketches about the amazing peaceful  protests by young people in Madrid within the context of today's elections.  This, in a way, is the Spanish version of the revolutions which have been sweeping through the Arab world since the beginning of the year.

          It's always worth recording the fact that those who sketch and blog can also contribute to a much wider understanding of how life is lived in some parts of the world.   It's the drawing version of the cameraphone!

          Hundreds of young Spaniards camped out in the Puerta del Sol all last week as a part of a peaceful protest relating to the government's handling of the economic crisis. With nearly five million people jobless, Spain has the highest unemployment rate in Europe.  It's nothing to do with political parties per se - and a lot of those who camped out are still sitting there working out how to get some consensus on what happens next.

          Just after midnight on 21st May, around about 30,000 Spanish protesters defied a government ban (to assemble or demonstrate on the day before an election - which is today) and filled Madrid's Puerta del Sol.to protest about high unemployment and austerity measures.

          This is Enrique Flores's blog 4ojos and the posts about this week's camp in the Puerta del Sol.  As he said in the email to me the text is all in Spanish but the sketches speak for themselves.

          The problem is the system - sketch by Enrico Flores (4ojos)
          What I found interesting was how the sketches changed as the week went on - not only were they more numerous, they also began to focus less on the banners and the people and more on recording the practical aspects of being a demonstrator - like how do you put tent pegs into tarmac (love that one!) and the long queues for the "facilities"!  Now that's what I call a civilised society - "facilities" for the protestors - who I understand were also handed brushes to clean up the square after the overnight vigil!  Plus lots about what was being said by various participants - which, of course, I can't read but it looks interesting and it's an important contemporaneous record.  On Sunday it was returning to the question of how to achieve a more participatory democracy.

          It's such a  unique record that I guess a book will not be long in the making.  Here are some of the film versions of the same thing
          • A minute long video on YouTube of what it was like as midnight changed and the demonstrators commenced an unlawful act  - Spain demonstrations continue in defiance of rally ban - which almost seemed like a joyful event.  Very sensibly the police decided to do nothing.  Enrique's blog has links to a lot more videos from inside the crowds.
          • These are the BBC slideshow of what it was like
          Today Spain goes to the polls.  The current government is not expected to survive.  I wonder if Enrique will be sending the incoming government a record of his sketching?  I think he should.

          Art Blogs and Artists

          (After) Self-Portrait c1799
          by JMW Turner (1775-1851)
          Drawing and Sketching
          • This time last week I discovered that I'd lost a sketchbook.  I hoped it might turn up somewhere but the uneasy feeling remained when I woke up in the morning.  

          Botanical Art
          Painting
          Photography
          Simon is currently one of the hottest properties on the international art photography market. Her prints fetch stellar prices at auction and have been acquired by leading institutions such as the Museum of Modern Art and the Whitney in New York, the Getty Museum in Los Angeles and the Pompidou Centre in Paris, as well as the Victoria and Albert Museum and Tate Modern in London. Taryn Simon: the woman in the picture
          Sculpture and Installation
          • The whole Ai Weiwei issue begins to look a bit more complicated.  This Guardian article Ai Weiwei's company evaded taxes, claim Chinese police indicates the Chinese Police assert that the detained artist's company has evaded 'a huge amount' of taxes and destroyed accounting documents.  Now if there's one thing you don't want to do is annoy the taxman!
          More New Art Blogs
          Art Economy and Art Collectors
          Art Competitions
          Art Exhibitions

          Major Galleries
          The exhibition will be the first to present Degas’s progressive engagement with the figure in movement in the context of parallel advances in photography and early film; indeed, the artist was keenly aware of these technological developments and often directly involved with them.


          • Martin Gayford reviews Tracey Emin's retrospective at the Hayward Gallery for Bloomberg in Tracey Emin’s Saucy, Egoistic Relics Seduce in London Show: Martin Gayford.  I realised just recently that although i think she's overrated as an artist, what she really is a poet.  Her work is very verbal - and if there's more than one way of making art there's got to be more than one way of creating poetry! “Love Is What You Want” is at the Hayward Gallery, London until 29th August Invented Modernity” remains through July 3 at the Musée d’Orsay in Paris; musee-orsay.fr/en/home.  Here's a review by the New York Times
          • After being stuck at home unable to walk very far when it opened, last week I was finally able to write up my Review: 'Watercolour' exhibition at Tate Britain.  After we'd got through the episode of the lost sketchbook!
          Art Galleries
          • Egon Schiele. Women - 19 May to 30 June 2011 An exhibition of 40 unseen works by Austrian artist Egon Schiele can now be seen at Richard Nagy's Old Bond Street gallery space.  I'm not including links because all though I love his drawing and painting style I'm really not interested in some of his subject matters and this particular exhibition is emphatically not for the prudish!
          Art Bloggers
          • Recent paintings by Duane Keiser (A Painting A Day) will be on view from June 3-July 1 at an art show at 1211 East Cary Street, Richmond, VA 23219
          Open Studios
          • The first ever Angus Open Studios event in Angus in Scotland opens next week and runs from 26th-30th May.  Over 70 artists and craftspeople will be opening their studios to the general public, and hoping for lots of visitors over the five days.  One of the artists showcasing her paintings will be coloured pencil artist and blogger Lesley Crawford (Lesley Crawford) whose studio will be open each day 10.30-5.30.  
          Art Education
          • Bristol Drawing School is a not for profit private arts venue and education facility that aims to encourage and nurture the art of drawing.  They've also had a blog since 2007 but aren't very good at posting to it.
          Art Galleries and Museums
          Art History
          • Even contemporary art becomes history.  Is there always a point at which the Young Turks begin to look like the old fogies? Next generation turns its back on Emin and Hirst is a really fascinating article which discusses how the YBA artists are now viewed by younger artists and suggests that the notion of concept art might be dead.
          Art Studios
          • Lori McNee (Lori McNee Fine Art and Tips) had a post last week about Creating Art in Small Studios;- I love the stuff hanging off the wall!  It includes a bunch of photos from other people showing what their small studios look like.  I think we might possibly have a debate about the word "small" in a cultural context - but other than that it is as always fascinating to take a peek!
          Art supplies
          Art Videos
          Books 
          Samuel Palmer, 1805-1881: Vision And Landscape
          • I bought a jolly nice book about Samuel Palmer at Tate Britain last week - Samuel Palmer, 1805-1881: Vision And Landscape.  I've been looking for a good one for some time and this one looks like it's going to get the right balanace between authoritative and accessible.  It's published by the British Museum and relates an exhibition which was held in 2005.  
          Copyright
          ....and finally

          LS Lowry's depiction of one of the streets in Salford which inspired the TV series Coronation Street will go to auction next month.  This BBC news item on Lowry's Coronation Street on sale

          Saturday, May 21, 2011

          Two videos - painting people


          Neale Worley is one of the regular exhibitors at the Royal Society of Portrait Painters.  This is a time lapse video demonstrating the creation of a portrait painting from start to finish.  The portrait in question was displayed in the Annual Exhibition of the Royal Society of Portrait Painters which finished yesterday. 


          This second video uploaded to YouTube by Artist & Illustrators Magazine shows Roger Dellar painting one of his favourite motifs - a scene of people in an interior

          Dellar has been a full-time professional painter for more than 15 years. I see lots of his work in the various exhibitions of the national art societies as he works in a variety of mediums. He is an active member of The Royal Institute of Painters in Watercolour, The Pastel Society and The Royal Institute of Oil Painters.

          Thursday, May 19, 2011

          Review: 'Watercolour' exhibition at Tate Britain

          After JMW Turner - The Blue Rigi
          coloured pencils in Moleskine sketchbook
          and finally - the review of the Watercolour exhibition!

          Oddly enough Turner really did finish my sketchbook as one of the last sketches I did on the afternoon before I lost it was one of the Blue Rigi (see above).  It's the one which was used by the Tate as the main motif for the exhibition.

          The strapline to the exhibition is
          Watercolour at Tate Britain invites you to challenge your preconceptions of what watercolour is.
          The introduction goes on
          The most ambitious exhibition about watercolour ever to be staged, with works spanning 800 years, this boundary-breaking survey celebrates the full variety of ways watercolour has been used. From manuscripts, miniatures and maps through to works showing the expressive visual splendour of foreign landscapes, watercolour has always played a part in British Art.
          I don't know whether this has ever been attempted by any other museum.  Maybe not?

          I think different people will respond to the Watercolour exhibition in different ways.  It's obviously a huge topic and I appreciate the effort that has been employed to try and reflect both the history of watercolour painting and the diversity of artists who have used water to make paint.  It pleased me and disappointed me.


          Wednesday, May 18, 2011

          Turner finished my sketchbook

          (After) Self-Portrait c1799 by JMW Turner (1775-1851)
          Not literally you understand.  However, having got my sketchbook back I gave it "a treat" and sketched Turner's self-portrait which is on display in the Romantics Exhibition at Tate Britain.

          This was a very fast sketch in pen and ink as I can't stand for too long in one place.

          Then I discovered that was the last page in the sketchbook.  Now how odd is that?

          The caption for the self-portrait online is rather interesting
          This self-portrait appears to date from around 1799 when Turner was about twenty-four years old. It was possibly intended to mark an important moment in his career, his election as an Associate of the Royal Academy. Despite his relative youth, Turner had already made a name for himself as an original, accomplished painter with the technical abilities of someone more mature. He had been described in the newspapers as an artist who ‘seems thoroughly to understand the mode of adjusting and applying his various materials’ and ‘their effect in oil or on paper is equally sublime’
          Age 24 !!!

          Links: Lost and found - one sketchbook

          Tuesday, May 17, 2011

          Lost and found - one sketchbook

          Tate Britain
          © Tate
          I'd like to say a very big public "Thank You" to the staff at Tate Britain Tomorrow morning I'm off down to Millbank to retrieve my sketchbook which I lost there last Thursday.

          On Sunday I got to the bit in my "who's made a mark this week" about the the "Watercolour" exhibition and thought I'd just scan one of my sketches as a bit of a taster for my review of the exhibition which I had intended to do yesterday.

          This was the point at which I discovered that my black Moleskine Sketchbook was not where it should be in my backpack. 

          After I had turned all my backpacks out, searched through various piles and rooted through all the unlikely places sketchbooks can get to, I came to the reluctant conclusion that I had lost it.

          Then I had to work out where!  The obvious conclusion was I'd left it behind inadvertently at Tate Britain.

          I'd been using it all afternoon to do three sketches in the Watercolour exhibition - while at the same time making notes about the exhibition at the back.  (All my sketchbooks work on the principle of images start from the front and notes start from the back and I move on to a new one when they meet up!)  Which meant I had it in my hand when I walked out - straight into the exhibition shop area in the foyer.

          I think I must have left it at the till when I paid for my purchases.  Many is the time I have people reminding me to take all my bits and pieces away with me!

          Anyway, after the initial panic on Sunday, yesterday I sent Tate Britain an email and explained that I thought I'd lost my sketchbook and described it.  This morning I got a reply saying my email had been sent to the Lost Property People and this afternoon I got a very nice email from a chap called Peter Adams to say they'd got a sketchbook where the first page was Leadenhall Market and the last page was the Bell Tower in Venice (my sketch of the Arthur Melville painting "The Blue Night" in the exhibition) - at which point out I let out a very large whoop and nearly punched the screen of the iMac!  I'm sure all other dedicated sketchers will know the feeling.  The return of the prodigal sketchbook!

          I'm going to collect it tomorrow morning - and later tomorrow I will be posting my much delayed review of the exhibition.

          What really surprised me was just how just how devastated I felt having lost my Moleskine.  It's one I now use for "quickies" because I mainly use the A4 size Moleskine to sketch in.  Nevertheless I felt like I'd lost a bit of me.  There was a hole which needed filling.   It was the first thing I thought of when I woke up yesterday morning and this morning.

          How silly is that?

          Anyway - I'm going to be completing every last bit of the frontispiece of all my Moleskines in future.  I normally include my name and a URL for one of my blogs.

          However in future it will also have a telephone number, an email address and a notice for a reward!

          Has anybody else ever lost a sketchbook?


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