I am really pleased to be able to share that I have been awarded a talent development grant from a space’ arts, the funds will enable me to work with a mentor and photographer to help me to record the experience. I will be creating new work as an Artist in Residence at the wonderful Furzey Gardens in the New Forest. I will be starting my time there at the end of September and creating work through the winter months.
I will be keeping a record of the experience and sharing this, details to follow.
As with all creations it can sometimes be difficult to complete a artwork especially when challenging yourself this happens to us all, for me creating my urban paint and pen creations can be the most difficult of challenges. It is often easy to start but harder to finish and is very much the case when I am pushing myself in a new direction as in the case of using a new colour scheme. Back in December 2014 I started a new colour-full work, my stumbling block came when I was half way through the piece, so I put it away, sometimes its about a emotional space as much as a physical one and this is reflected in my art work. I am sure that this must say something about my psyche as I have now completed Fred and am now happily creating in colour again.
Developing on a initial inspiration and developing a theme
I am often asked about how I create my work so I thought that I would share some of my creative processes. The inspiration for this series started life with a photograph of the undergrowth in my garden.
For the initial image I drew inspiration from the shapes and colors wishing to develop and enhance these to create a work that inspired a imaginary magical world revealing hidden characters within.
For this second piece I was inspired to create a work inspiration. I started the process by placing a transparent paper on the top of the painting I then drew around the shapes that appealed to me, I then replicated the section as a mirror image joining the sections together to create a new starting point for my next design.
For the final piece I was then inspired to use color to place further emphasis on different sections thus creating my leaves design.
Over the last few years I have explored with and very much enjoyed working with willow and i always find mylef being drawn back to using it , it is such a great sculptural material and being organic has its own memory , time and patience are needed and must be given to understand its intrinsic properties . Over the last few months much have my time has been taken up teaching others how to use it to create willow lanterns the one pleasure as well as frustration is that creating willow lanterns is temporary medium to work in .
I have recently been thinking about creating structures that have a much longer life span and have been considering using other mediums to strengthen the paper, or to replace it with canvas or another material, as I will have some free time I have decided that the time will be well spent experimenting.
For this approach I have found that it is better to work on several pieces at a time with the theory that at least one will work out and that you can always creative new work from the ones that you are not so pleased with when you finish.
I decided to try out a similar method of working, using a different pallet of colors for each piece and keeping a very loose theme in mind .
I decided to use acrylic paints I was prepared to use up quite a lot of paint You could equally use this method with a much cheaper paint on board,or use colored sand and chalks and take a photograph, it really doesn’t matter
I also wanted to get away from being finicky and so chose to large brushes,and spoons, droppers and scrapers and a flat service – on this occasion I used the kitchen tops surface as it was near to running water but a covered floor would do just as well.
Over the last six weeks I have been working on a community mural project in Eastleigh Hampshire with the theme of the four seasons.
Working on a commission is always an interesting process the difference being that , in the case of a community project you have both the commissioner and the local community to work with which as you can imagine is a much more complicated task.
As with all such projects when you are creating a piece of work for a group of people the artist is challenged to create a design that is acceptable and also that can be created by other participants with the artist directing and facilitating the creative process. The balance is to keep the design simple but also convey the desired theme.
I have to say that some parts are more my preference than others mainly because of the colors uses, I particularly enjoyed creating the line work for the trees and the summer meadow scene some of which has already inspired me to create further work of my own.The temptation to add more detail was great however I feel that the simplicity of the design works well and the clients were very happy with the final works.
Each panel is made up of four sections with each whole panel measuring 2.44 meters in width by 1.5 meters in depth sections measuring
For further details including the panels being created visit www. jaxsarts.co.uk
As with all creative processes it is very easy to become fixed in a particular style of working, what with deadlines and limited time around other creatives this is always a potential problem.It is interesting how by spending lots of time helping others to be creative can effect your own ability to let loose and explore your own creativity.
I wanted to explore this topic by taking part in activity’s that would allow me the time to free up my own creative nature and fortunately have been able to enroll on a free 3 week online course ,recently designed and created by a lovely fellow creative Jani Frank who has been through the same thought process herself and wanted to share this with others.http://janijellybean.blogspot.co.uk/
One of the questions that Jani posed on her blog is how you go about getting around creative blocks and creating anyway… one of the ways I find is to set myself a limited time period, I usually set aside a minimum time of 2- 3 hours, then try not to think about what I am going to do and just get on with it, the starting is often the hardest bit , don’t always expect to get going straight away just doing helps and before you know it will happen.
I have often started with a inspiration , a photograph that I have taken etc which has always been a good place for me and in the past I was often able to draw inspiration from my imagination.
With time constraints I have found that the my ability to create ideas from my imagination has been overtaken by this method of working and although useful I find myself considering how to free up the more exploratory side of my nature, hence my reason for joining Jani s course.
I have decided to share this journey with you and will be setting up a page to share my explorations
If you are reading this post because you have attended this exhibition I just wanted to say thank you for all of your support and kind comments.
Now into our 4th day I am glad to say that I have have had much interest and have sold my sunset seascape mentioned recently, to a lovely gentleman who had actually been to the place in Montenegro that the painting was based on.
We have all been having a great time and received some great feedback , it is always great speaking to other people especially when as in my case my work can often be interpreted in different ways.
Well we are nearly there, Ive created several new pieces ready to show (Ive added them to the gallery if your curious). Ive never shown as many pictures in one go I usually show one or two pieces and a gallery or a exhibition. This time around I am showing 9 paintings , so I am both apprehensive and a little bit nervous as to what reaction I am going to get.
It will be very different being there to hear visitors reactions , also Ive been asked if I can create a painting while I am there which will again be a new experience. Ill let you know how it goes.
If your curious to attend I am exhibiting with Noel Barker, Peter Jarvis, Graeme Hodgson, and Kevin Longstaff as part of the Hampshire Open Arts studios. so wish me luck.
I decided to start a new painting of a fish under water, recently water related paintings seem to be of interest to me. This is the first version once again I need to decide on which new colors to include as I want to make the image more fluid with more balance I will let you know how this goes
Several years ago ago I created a seascape painting of a sunset I experienced in Montenegro, I was never completely happy with it and so decided to put it away and re visit it when I felt ready to do so
The original painting
Seascape v 1
I have recently returned to the piece , deciding that I needed to make it more vibrant in color, contrast, tone and depth .
Using the original as a under painting has allowed me to create a greater depth of color and a much more vibrant piece. I still have a little more to do before it is completed however I am now much more happier with it now.
My Final version of the painting now hanging in the clients surgery
Bantham beach version 1
My second commission was an interesting challenge for me as I had never created this kind of work before and I rarely work in a limited range of colors and usually would include colorful sky which he didn’t want. The client wanted me to capture the flavor of the place linked to specific memories of his childhood.
This painting started life as a compilation of different images of an area called Bantham in Devon. An interesting challenge for me as I had never created this kind of work before and I rarely work in a limited range of colors and usually would include colorful sky which he didn’t want.