Friday, February 12, 2010

Malcolm Cudmore wins Derwent Artists Pencils competition

Yesterday Derwent announced the result of their recent national competition to find the image for the new Derwent Artist Pencil tins due to be launched this year.

Malcolm Cudmore’s drawing of Ashness Bridge - from an unusual perspective - has won the contest which Derwent opened up to all coloured artists using Artists Pencils.
Ashness Bridge
A3, Derwent Artists Pencils on Canson Bristol board

copyright Malcolm Cudmore

You can see all the entries on Flickr in the Artists Pencils Competition Pool. The runners-up were Tiffany Budd's very strong graphic image and Tucson artist Leslie Hawes's interpretation of a very sunny Lake District. Both will receive a tin of Artist Pencils. Leslie had the distinction of making the competition international as she lives in Tucson Arizona.

You can see links to the websites of all three artists at the end of this post.

I liked the explanation that Malcomn gave on his blog (Derwent Artists Pencils Competition) for the image he drew
Although Derwent posted some images of the bridge for reference, I chose to drive up to the area to see for myself and take some reference photos. Despite the mid-January cold, it was a really picturesque place and I can see why so many tourists and walkers include it in their visits to the area. Looking downstream, from above the bridge, you can see right down to Derwent Water and this is a very popular view. However, I was particularly struck by the quite dramatic view upstream from below the bridge and chose this angle for my drawing.
I also noticed that his members page on the UKCPS website indicates that...
Observational drawing has always been important to me and underpins all my work. I draw and paint from life where possible and consider accurate drawing to be fundamental.
Now I don't think any of us would have expected Malcolm to be drawing in the extraordinarily cold weather we had in January - however to my mind the very fact that he visited Ashness Bridge makes all the difference to both the range of of images he could choose from and his knowledge of what it actually looked like in real life. I'm firmly of the view that this makes a huge difference when it comes to interpreting a photograph.

Now if Derwent could announce the next competition just before the summer months we could all join an expedition to go and visit the bridge and maybe pay a visit to Cumberland Pencil Museum as well!

Other reasons which I think contributed to Malcolm's win:
  • He used the traditional illustration technique of drawing an image much larger than the size required. This can really help to make a good drawing look even better when reduced in size. Malcolm's image was A3 - which means it can still be scanned but will reduce down easily to make an excellent image for the tins.
  • Derwent were very keen for the drawing to demonstrate the use of the range of colours avilable in Artists Pencils. Not a task which was greatly helped by the images they supplied I have to say! However Malcolm has employed the technique of creating the neutral colours of his drawing using colours which work together to create greys - and the hatching technique employed means that you can see the individual colours as well as the overall effect of coloured greys and browns of the Lakeland stone.
This is the first time Derwent have run a competition like this. Derwent are pleased with the result! Leah Lister Derwent Marketing Manager said
as part of our brand development programme we are re-designing the Artists Pencil range and wanted to find a new eye-catching and dynamic drawing of Ashness Bridge to feature on the tins. For the first time we encouraged artists to post their entries on-line using Flickr, Facebook or Twitter. We are delighted with the number and quality of the entries and it certainly has got the artist community ‘talking’ about Artists Pencils and our following on Twitter has grown!’
A Confession

They say confession is good for the soul.

However I would still be in ignorance of my need to confess if a fellow UKCPS members hadn't dropped a line.

So here it is - I've committed a boo-boo. This is what the competition terms and conditions said
Entries must be in portrait format, drawn with Derwent Artists Pencils and be at least A4 in size. Closing date is January 31st 2010.
Guess who managed to miss the portrait format requirement? I read a useful post recently which laid down 20 tips for entering art competitions. The point at #4 read as follows
Only submit eligible artwork by an eligible artist. This means you MUST Read the terms and conditions of the 'call for entries' at the beginning very carefully. Then read it again. Read once more just before you submit to make sure you got it right. You'd be surprised how many people make very simple mistakes
This was my entry! My excuse is that think it was one competition/exhibiton too many right now - and I'm sticking to it! Now back to my SBA submission.............

Ashness Bridge and Derwentwater
9" x 12, Derwent Artists Pencils on Arches HP
copyright Katherine Tyrrell



  1. wow....... I commend you for going up there to see in person what Malcom saw. I love your post there are always so well put together and informative. I loved your entry too.

  2. Malcolm did a great job...such vivid colors in his painting. I think it was a great idea to have a competition. I like your entry too. Thanks for the I can go check out the other paintings too.


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