Day 15: Days slip away

Days slip away with swimming in the sea, discovering a new giant pebble beach, hidden beyond a rough steep track that falls away perilously from the coastal road. Days slip away with sleeping in the afternoon, after cooking from the full flavoured local produce. Or soaking up poetry in a good chair in the shade, […]

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Day 13: Arrival in Aegina

I have a new Moleskine watercolour sketchbook, but trying out a nice clean, square-format Seawhite book for monochrome sketching. First drawings are all of the familiar things here on the island of Aegina, where I have spent summers since about 1972. Finally, after many weeks of being too busy, my watercolours come out. I begin […]

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Day 11: Travel

Last couple of days in Unique Lisbon. Found the wonderful Cathedral Sé: And realised that the plainest building outside our bedroom window might make a perfect painting: Discovered the a Portuguese for ‘viewpoint’ is probably ‘Miradouro’: Then, next day, we’re off to Sintra, the famous historical site. Kings of old came to escape the heat […]

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Day 9: Belém

We walked and took the metro, and the train, and the trams today. Had sardines and a delightful sparkling Vinho Verde today. We made sure to return for England in the World Cup semi-final, but also made time for drawing. This building can be drawn from our room’s balcony: This building is the Torre de […]

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Day 7: Lisboa

By train we leave our children and grandchildren and set off together. Though we miss our children, I’m always glad when we’re alone. It takes a lot of time to get to the important conversations. We walk for miles and mikes around Lisbon and discover the posh bits, and the Alfama district where the “Fado” […]

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Day 5: São João do Estoril

Winifred Joy sits with her grandfather, splashing toes in a blue pool. It’s a good start to a day but it’s not a day for uninterrupted drawing, listening to a podcast, or reading poetry. Instead the children keep us occupied with their entertainment. But in weeks to come we’ll miss that, so it’s really OK. […]

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Day 3: Pool and Beach

I’m repeatedly drawing the view from this place. I’m thinking about perspective, but also, trying different ways to imitate tree trunks and foliage, water, pantiles, and brickwork. here’s three versions drawn so far: I tried again with parallel lines fanned out to guide my perspective drawing: And then again. To try harder. They’re not great; […]

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Day 1: Leaving London

Down to the river for a lonely pint and a fish finger sandwich 🥪. Mulling over this unusual situation. In a few hours I’ll leave London to spend four months living simply on a Greek Island, meeting Mary in Lisbon on the way out and (I hope) stopping in Venice on the way home). It […]

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Art Show: Practical Advice

I learned a lot while setting up my first Art Show at the OSO Arts Centre in Barnes. Much of this is thanks to Lisa Ross and The Team who I cannot thank enough for their encouragement and assistance from start to finish. 1.Diary Plan ahead. When should everything be framed and packed? When will […]

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Holst House (Negative)

It’s a well known trick to draw upside down! If you take a photo and turn it upside down before drawing it, you usually get a surprising improvement in the result. It’s because we tend to draw a map of How Things Are instead of drawing How Things Look. Our left brains take over; saying […]

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Exhibition #1

My first exhibition is to be in Barnes’ OSO Art Hub from May 29 to June 9th with a evening show on 4th June. Signwriting After the exhibition I’ll be donating a painting for the OSO Arts Centre’s fundraising auction. Before the exhibition I did some signwriting. This means getting some rigour into my lettering […]

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Figure this

I saw this online as a little cartoon joke. I thought I’d copy it (!) as a watercolour piece. Here’s the one I did in Sep’17 for M’s Birthday Card: And here’s the latest, done on a larger card, and with more confidence, though the foreground fig needs doing again with the same strength as […]

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Sketching Barnes II

On my way home from the West London Refugee Welcome; teaching basic IT skills to a gentle person for DRC. So sunny; and the river is full. Had to stop, though my only book was my lined journal. So. 10m with Derwent 0.8 Inkliner and Ecoline Grey Brushpens: On site: Derwent 0.8 Inkliner: with Grey […]

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Sketching Barnes I

Glorious sunshine and no excuses. So I cycle to Barnes village and find a couple of trees with good views. First I attempt to add watercolour to an inkliner Drawing. 1. The drawing has little ‘character’ due to me being careful rather than playful. 2. The A4 sheet is too big for my portable Waterbrush […]

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OSO Arts Centre – Barnes

Ideally I wanted to do a huge amount of watercolour painting in the four months of preparation for my exhibition. In practice the months have been frittered away with experiments and quite a lot of drawing. So today I went down to the pond and found a position with a good angle on the building. […]

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Art as a Journal of the Heart

Facebook reminds me of what my sketches looked like exactly one year ago. Having such a journal is so useful, I wish I could also look back and trace any emotional / spiritual growth. But if you look deeply into your art, perhaps hand and heart are closely connected, if not telling exactly the same […]

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The Four Evangelists

Ever since we visited St. Petersburg I’ve wanted to paint the four Evangelists. I did a great sketch last year on a small scale but going big is harder. This is a metre wide. I need a bigger brush?! There’s a bit of symbolism to do and it’s all summarised in Wikipedia under “Four Evangelists”. […]

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I was framed!

If you make pictures you end up making frames! So here we are, in the ‘discovery phase’. I now own a mitre cutting frame, which looks like this: You’ll also notice a ‘band clamp’ which is perfect for the job. There’s also a packet of ‘corrugated nails’. Try buying those in B&Q, before you find […]

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