Friday, 30 September 2016

My Top 3 Art Instruction Books - No. 1

Light - How To See It, How To Paint It. I discovered this book in the 80s and upon reading it I truly had one of those 'Aha!' moments. Up until that point I don't think I'd properly comprehended what painting was all about. Lucy Willis, a gifted and accomplished artist herself, has written a brilliantly detailed and informative book, covering every possible aspect of how to see and paint different aspects of light and shadow. The beauty of sunshine and shadow are what give paintings what I call 'soul' or in other words, they can conjure up a particular strong mood, atmosphere or feeling. This book, illustrated throughout with examples from some fabulous painters, made me see painting in a whole new way, and made me want to immediately go out and paint some light-filled canvases of my own. All this time later I don't think I've got anywhere near being able to do it as light conditions are so fugitive and difficult to pin down and I'm such a slow painter! Nevertheless I will keep trying!

Monday, 26 September 2016

Carnations and Wildflowers

Here's the set up and finished result for my recent painting 'Carnations and Wildflowers in a Tankard'. I bought these carnations from the supermarket. I do like carnations but I don't think they're really considered a 'cool' flower! So I thought I make the whole thing a bit cooler by adding some stuff from the boatyard where I live. I picked some branches from a blackberry bush and some leaves and a bit of buddleia. Then I placed the flowers and leaves in a silver plated tankard I bought from a vintage fair. I used a pretty embroidered cloth which I think I bought from the same fair. The shell is from my small collection of shells which I plan to add to! I love the different shapes of shells and this is one of my favourites so I often include it in still life set ups.