Inspiring Women are everywhere but finding them can be hard? Like all artists, I often feel the need for inspiration. For creative ideas to help me produce the next artwork. But I also need people who’ll inspire me to do something extraordinary! These people aren’t all artists. But what inspires me about them is their determination to make a difference. To change things. There are many men who are classed as influential. But the number of women seems far fewer. That is untrue, there are just many unsung heroines. The emphasis being unsung! Like most women, I relate better to the achievements of other women. I’m not being sexist but we all identify with people like ourselves. It’s natural, they seem to have more clout. As a teenager I grew up in an environment where women seemed to aspire no higher than marriage and family. Not that these are not noble and valuable goals. But I knew there was more I wanted to aspire to. I want to remember women who’ve influenced and inspired me. Women who opened my eyes to the possibility that there is more to life. Maybe they will inspire you as well. Artemisia Gentileschi In an […]
Great Art needs a name. Imagine an artwork comprised of a lifesized skull made of platinum, with real teeth and encrusted with diamonds. You probably know the one I mean. Now think of its title “For the love of God” Think of Damian Hirst’s piece, and whatever you might think the artwork itself, the name provokes thought. It conjours up thoughts of decadence and futility. Of vanity, the ultimate vanity, Not only of leaving a beautiful corpse but a pretty skeleton too! I can’t claim to be a Damian Hirst fan myself but you have to admire his promotional skills. That art courts controversy is nothing new, but it’s that very controversy which catapults such artists into the media limelight, be it rightly or wrongly. Would calling it “Diamond skull” or, my personal favourite, “Glitterball” have evoked the same response? Quite possibly, but I think the nuances would have been very different. One suggests laziness whilst the other a crass indifference to death and mortality. It’s mocking in it’s implication. This is one piece where the title takes the artwork to a whole new level, as well as voicing the thoughts of many who view it for the first time. […]
Struggle to find inspiration to paint? I’m often asked where I find my inspiration from and yes, Artists do need inspiration and there are lots of ways to be inspired. Keep your eyes open Look at the world as you go about your day. I always have my phone with me, and so can take photos whenever the opportunity arises. Photos like this one taken at the beach last week. I keep a notepad with me at all times to capture ideas as they come. Sometimes I forget and you can guarantee that those are the times when I most wish I had it. But by far and away the most important thing that helps me find inspiration was itself is a habit I hadn’t appreciated would be so helpful. Brian Clark at Copyblogger created this wonderfull tips for writers poster. After reading it, I realised that the same is true for artists or any creative. JUST DO IT! There’s a great myth that you can only paint when you’re inspired. The trouble with inspiration is it’s elusive. If you wait to be inspired, you rarely or never will be. And when you are inspire your efforts will never be […]
Understanding Modern Art is challenging It can leave you wondering what on earth is going on? I have a confession. I’ve always found understanding modern art confusing! There, I’ve said it! First of all, Modern and Contemporary Art are not the same thing. The terms are often confused, but not the same. Modern art is work created from around 1860’s to 1970’s. Contemporary Art is work created after that time. Technically any artist alive and creating today is a Contemporary artist. Their work might be considered more traditional in style,but they are still contemporary artists. There is more to Modern Art than what you see. I always zoned out during art history. I was disinterested. All those names, dates, formal artwork. Maybe it was the teacher or just me? But before mid 19th century, art seemed fusty, I liked the Pre-Raphaelites. Mainly through spending hours at Manchester Art Gallery. Van Gogh was interesting but then the 20th Century stuff was just playing, wasn’t it? All that dripping paint and squares and splodges of colour. But there are rules and theories behind what you see. Cubism is the presentation of more than one side at a time, good abstracts have rules […]
Ever get an earworm? I’m convinced most come from some subconscious association. Like this week’s painting, when I was looking at 2 of my favourite London buildings. I often play with angles when I’m taking my reference photographs, and, in this one, the buildings seem to lean on each other. When I noticed the Cheesegrater supporting the Gherkin. I was reminded of this Bill Withers song. “Lean on Me, when you’re not strong and I’ll be your friend, I’ll help you carry on.” It’s a beautiful lyric, and one that often comes to my mind in tough situations. In fact the whole song is an anthem to the concept of mutual support. Since then I haven’t been able to think of a title I like more. Some details during the paintings stages. Here, the painting is complete and it’s ready to have all the masking fluid removed. . And the Inspiring Architecture Painting that resulted from that earworm looks like this… Next week I have some video for you. And, if you enjoy this post, then please share it? Save
Can a gift change your life? Some gifts have a value far more than money, but we don’t always know it at the time. Now that Christmas has passed and the gifts we’ve received are being used, consumed, played with etc. We may treasure them or use them routinely even thoughtlessly or forget about them completely. I wonder how many of them will change our lives in any way/ Christmas 1976 I was given a present that I treasured and used at the time. I didn’t realise quite how much it was going to shape my life when it kickstarted my career as an artist in 2009. What was it? A maths set, this Math’s set. It was, and still is a treasured possession.