Wednesday, 30 December 2015

I hope that you had a very nice Christmas, as we did here. As I wish everyone a peaceful and healthy new year, here is a little touch of topically watery humour. Don't worry though, it's only happening in my Photoshop programme, at the moment! See you in the new year. David.


Thursday, 24 December 2015


So, did you spot all those esoteric  art references? Well, as you have nothing better to do over Christmas, I will list them all; the ones I know at least. Here goes...
Top left to right: first we have a photo of Herr Kirchner hanging in Manet's bar at the Folies Bergère. Then a photo of Gabriele Munter. Under the neon sign is Da Vinci’s ‘John the Baptist’ next to the Venus of Milos, both feeling festive. At top right is a young JMW Turner self portrait.
Next row: It’s Mr Lennon, next to a worldly La Gioconda in shades, then a floozy in pink undies (the club model!). Then it’s yours truly, and then Franky Bacon doing his party cowboy thing. Go Francis! And that’s Andreas Warhola with the camera. He’s so cooool...   
Sat at the table: That’s Jane Morris, looking glum, living through the Pre-Raphaelite nightmare! Ha Ha. Then we have the divine Egon Schiele. ‘Lighten up Egon!’ And that’s V.Gog, hiding that messy diy ear piercing. Across from Gog we have Pablo Picasso. (We all take the micky out of his fourteen names). Then we have the lovely Tracey Emin; just out of bed again. And last but not least, we have the missus, Jane, keeping Rupert Bear safe. Jane is so proud of me, you know!
On the Table: Assorted art detritus. Alberto Giacometti made the figure. Behind Is Marcel Duchamp’s ‘Fountain’ next to Damien’s diamond skull, ‘For the love of God’. In front is the club lay figure that someone has shot with small arrows, creating a tiny Saint Sebastiani. Probably Tracey’s handiwork! Andy brought the tin of soup to the party. I brought the bluebells! Lovely! Pablo made the ‘cubist’ Christmas Tree. He’s a master of table decoration. Then we have the ‘Lobster Telephone’ by Sal Dali, who couldn’t be here tonight. Unfortunately it aint edible!  Those are Patrick Caulfield’s glasses of wine. Cheers Pat! Pablo is hugging a prehistoric carved figurine. He takes it with him everywhere...Then another little tree, and, finally, I think, Jane has her elbow resting on the iconic ‘Le Chat Noir’ poster.
Well, that’s about it.
If you actually read all of this, then, well done and, thank you.
PS. There is not a club 'no smoking' policy.



Wednesday, 16 December 2015

I want to wish all of my brilliant class members an enjoyable Christmas and a safe and sound New Year! Thank you for all your support and loyalty through 2015, and I do appreciate all of that effort to be creative. I know how tough it is to tackle new media, strange subjects (while I chatter ) and to keep smiling.
Here is a silly thing of beauty to please your eye.

Monday, 7 December 2015

Vincent video.
Another video for your enjoyment. This features Mr Gogh (pronounced Gog!) and the music of Don McLean. John, the man who made it dedicated it to his Jane, but he has shared it with us all. So, enjoy the art and enjoy the music.

Friday, 27 November 2015

Hello Art Class People.
Lots of capital letters there...take a look at this very clever little movie by Mr Philip Scott Johnson. Sit comfortably and just gaze into the eyes of all these beautiful paintings. A 'moving' experience. Don't even try to identify the artists - just enjoy.

Sunday, 22 November 2015

Wednesday, 30 September 2015

Drawing Children's faces revisited

A link to a post I put up in 2013
Drawing Childrens Faces

Drawing a child’s face
For a portrait artist, drawing a child's face is particularly challenging, but also rewarding. Children's faces, with their bright, large eyes and innocent smiles can warm the hardest heart, and it is immensely satisfying to produce a good portrait of such a beautiful subject. When drawing a person's face, it is important to look at the individual, and not try to fit the face into some ideal set of proportions. Carefully observing the main forms and placing the features really needs to be done according to the size and shape of each person's head, as despite our basic anatomical similarity, small variations in bone structure characterize the individual. The canon of ideal proportions is useful when trying to become familiar with the head structure, but is otherwise of limited use. This is particularly true when drawing children, as their soft bones and rapid growth dramatically changes their head structure.
When drawing a child's features, remember than often 'less is more'. Don't be tempted to outline every detail. Often leaving the middle of the lower lid white, like a highlight, will help to brighten the eyes. The bottom edge of the lower lip often blends into the skin tone.
•Reserve whites carefully - especially in the eyes.
•Try to avoid overworking. Keep your drawing fresh and light.
•Avoid harsh outlines. Sketch softly.
•Use a full range of value and shade skin tones carefully.
Study pictures of children. Notice how their faces differ from adult faces. Eyes are the only organs in the human body that never grow. Eyes are the same size from birth through adulthood. The larger eyes make the task of learning how to draw a child's face challenging for many artists. This is because the proportions are different. It is always surprising how large a child’s skull is, and, surprisingly, the eyes will appear lower than halfway down the total length of the head. Having established some general proportions I change my approach, sharpen my pencil and home in tightly on the eye area. The eye area is the focus of the portrait and warrants the closest treatment. Locate the eyebrows precisely by relating them to the eye line and the hair shape. Look at the shape of the eyebrows and ask:  ‘where, exactly, is the high-point of the curve?’ This is always a good question to ask when drawing any curved line.  Some eyebrows are dark and individual tiny hairs can be seen. With a sharp pencil concentrate of the direction and the flow of these tiny hairs. Be precise and quick. Do not labour over it. Many children have very fair eyebrows, often so feint that only the merest indication is needed. Be true to what you see and consider how the two eyebrows relate to each other.
Each persons’ eyes have their own distinct shape, so it is crucial to see and draw these shapes precisely. Drawing the eyes is all about seeing the character of the shape. Use a good, sharp pencil for precision, and also to describe the fine creases that flow round the eyes and define the shape of the lids.
When shading the iris use marks appropriate to the eye as it appears. Sometimes radiating lines are appropriate; sometimes the merest smudge is enough for particularly pale eyes; or heavy shading for liquid brown eyes, but I would never shade in solidly, because some light and life needs to come from the eye. I rarely shade anything in flatly.
There is a muscle under the eye that tightens when the child smiles, so I will always ask the child for a brief smile. To indicate this muscle I place a brief curve, a mere mark, just below the eye. Be careful, because if drawn too clumsily it can simply make the child look tired. Locate it carefully and make sure it is always the product of observation, because, of course, every child is different even in the seemingly insignificant details.
Working downwards, the chin forms part of the face shape.  At the same I would run my eyes around the general face shape and establish it as narrow, broad, round, triangular, square, or permutations of these. The face shape is such an important part of the portrait and perhaps the hardest and most satisfying aspect to get right.

Wednesday, 12 August 2015

William Morris Wallpaper Restoration

Some friends of ours found some old William Morris wallpaper under a wallpaper they were removing.David repainted in some of the missing design.

Sunday, 28 June 2015

Davos Switzerland Visit - In search of Kirchner

We are back from a wonderful holiday in Davos Switzerland. 

A few images of Davos

Outside the Kirchner Museum Davos

Stafelalp Haus

Stafelalp Haus - Kirshner lived here
The front porch

inside the haus

the balcony

carving inside the haus
Wildboden another haus Kirchner lived in

Kirchner and Erna's graves

Monday, 25 May 2015

Showbourgh House Sculpture Garden

Showborough House

Affordable Garden Art Exhibition 

 We visited the Sculpture Garden at Twyning. A very inspiring visit to a beautiful garden. David even fell in love with some bluebells! 

  Showbourough House is near Twyning Gloucestershire. A bit tricky to find but well worth it. The Showbourgh House website has some good directions.

  The exhibition ends on the 14th June.

The 2015 Affordable Garden Art Exhibition will be open as follows:

Thursday 30th April until Sunday 14th June,

on Thursdays, Fridays, Saturdays, Sundays and Bank Holiday Mondays,

Opening hours 10:30 a.m. - 4:00 p.m..

Group visits can be arranged at other times.

There is no entry charge but we do welcome donations.

Thursday, 23 April 2015

Jacksons Art Colour Mixer

Back by popular demand!

Colour Mixer 

I posted this on the blog in 2012 still useful  

Colour mixing online tool. Have a go. it's fun.

click on:

Jacksons Art


Free Online Colour Mixing Tool

Monday, 30 March 2015

Tracey Emin's Bed

Love it or hate it its back!
From March 2015 - June 2016  at Tate Modern

One of Tracey Emin’s best known and most controversial works, My Bed, is returning to Tate Britain. To accompany its display in the gallery (it was first shown in the Turner Prize display), Emin has selected six of her recent figure drawings and two of her favourite paintings by Francis Bacon. 
A painful self-portrait that brings the domestic into the public sphere, My Bed remains forcefully emotive and compelling.
"What we need to see with the bed is that someone lonely walked away from it."
Tracey Emin

alt text for image

Monday, 16 February 2015

L S Lowry and his palette

About LS Lowry
Born in 1887, Lawrence Stephen Lowry lived and worked in Manchester all of his life. In 1905 he secured a place at the Manchester School of Art and was inspired and influenced by the work of his teacher, the French Impressionist artist Pierre Adolphe Valette. Said Lowry of his mentor, “I cannot over estimate [his] effect on me.” Later, Lowry’s job as a rent collector meant he walked the streets of Salford finding endless subject matter for his paintings.

Lowry's Palette was: Ivory Black, Vermilion, Prussian Blue, Yellow Ochre, Flake White  
An Old Street 1937