Are you drawn to landscape paintings of Mountain Views? Have you ever climbed a mountain? If you have then you’ll realise that climbing up mountains is a challenge but the view from the top and sense of achievement makes it all worthwhile. Knowing that the only way to see a view is by pure discipline and determination makes the ascent to the summit a physical achievement. The same is true of all mountains but some, like Snowdon have a alternative that can taunt you as you climb. There’s a railway line from the bottom to near the top. Not the very tip, but close enough to make the final stretch a hop, skip and a jump to success. For the exchange of cash you can ascend to the summit without breaking a sweat. Handy for those unable to climb, or too lazy to put in the effort. Historically artists carted equipment on the climb to enable landscape paintings to be captured. Sketch pads and pencils are the simplest and lightest method, the works being finished in the studio but there are many who carted canvases, easel and oils. Photographs are a great addition to the artists arsenal, and far more […]
Ever buy something and then get home and realise it doesn’t go anywhere? You know how it is, you find something you adore and perhaps spend more than you ought, only to find it doesn’t quite fit in with what you’ve already got. Don’t Panic, all may not be lost! Let the art inspire a room makeover. Let art inspire a room and you create something new and exciting. Let me tell you about a gentleman I encountered at an Art Fair a few years ago. We were discussing how people often buy art so that it fits in a room. He agreed then recalled an impulse buy he’d made a few years earlier. A purple vase, a particularly beautiful purple vase he couldn’t resist. He bought it and took it home and as soon as he started to unwrap it he began to regret his impulsiveness. It clashed with the room. It was modern, the rest of the decor was more classic. The colours jarred. He was almost resigned to hiding it away in a cupboard but he looked at it again and was seduced by its beauty. It was an expensive piece. Maybe he could make this work? […]
Do you enjoy visiting a Gallery? And if you do, what inspires you most, the art… Or the building? “Look at lots of art” is the most common Art advice I’m given. Well, besides “keep practicing”! And it’s true, Artists gain inspiration from visiting Art Galleries. Most frequently this comes from the art they see. But galleries can be exhibits in their own right. Take Victorian galleries: Giant edifices, celebrating the skills of their time.Grand and imposing with a mindboggling degree of decoration. Contemporary galleries may favour simplicity. Aiming for a Neutral space, a white box in which the art is allowed to speak for itself. The epitomy of the minimalist ethos. While others shout “look at me!” to the visitor. Like The Lowry, in my painting below. Their contemporary architecture attracts a different type of attention. You either love it or hate it. Designed to be noticed and elicit a reaction. It’s bold in its design and internal use of colour, certainly attracted my attention. Whether it’s to your taste or not is a different matter? Distinctive in it’s canalside location. It’s a landmark and location that the locals should take pride in. The Fountain of Inspiration can […]
Olympians and Artists have more in common than you might think. I’m not a sports fan but with the Olympics fever gripping the UK. I’m forced to notice sport. Buoyed along by the fervour and sense of National pride, I’ve even watched parts. The opening ceremony and parts of events. The enthusiasm is infectious. But more than that you are witnessing people at the pinnacle of their careers. But you don’t just wake up one morning as a Gold medalist! You might wake up with the vision or dream but it’s only the first step of many. Long hours and punishing training regimes are necessary to become an elite athlete. Working to achievable goals. Steps along the path that bring them closer to their ultimate goal. There will be many, many failures along the way. But each goal achieved is a step in the right direction. And the same is true of an artist. You may wake up with a dream of what you want to be. But it takes time and training to get there. you need to make steady steps in the right direction. Learning techniques, developing your style. Gaining experience exhibiting and talking about your work. Developing […]
Dreams are important… Vital even. Nothing was ever achieve that wasn’t someone’s dream! It’s a sobering thought. The screen you’re reading this on, the building you’re in, even the chair you’re sitting on. All were once an idea in somebody’s head. Today I watched the Olympic flame pass through Buckingham. The Olympic games don’t interest me much but the flame is a potent symbol of hope and optimism. Like a Dream, it’s ephemeral and intangible. It’s fragile… Easily extinguished Yet Powerful! With the potential to travel rapidly and ignite a fire in others. (If you’ll excuse the old metaphor) And any athlete will tell you you need to focus to achieve a dream. To evaluate what you’re doing and need to do to achieve the dream. Which is what I’m doing. With a spate of exhibitions over, I’m reviewing the situation. No, the dream hasn’t changed, but I’m aware I need to focus my energies on specific goals It’s one thing to have a dream, we all have dreams. But aim to live that dream as well. So how about you, does the Olympic flame ignite you goals?
Life’s hectic and sometimes we just need inspiring. Did I mention I’m organising a group Art exhibition in Oxford? Well, there have been problems. Nothing major but sometimes a volume of little issues can be overwhelming. And, as a friend, once advised me… Getting artists to work together can be like herding cats! They are a lovely bunch of people and it’s an honour to be working with them. However, the creative personality lends itself to ideas and flights of fancy. And while that’s good… It needs to be tempered with a healthy dose of practical application and discipline. Otherwise the dreams will remain just that… Dreams! It’s also inevitable that with 11 people working together there will be differences of opinion. Levels of self belief are another variable. I could write a whole post on this, but in summary. You must believe what you produce is good. Otherwise, how can you expect to convince anyone else? Personally, my self belief waxes and wanes. When everything’s going well I can conquer the earth! But on a bad day… Well, everyone’s like that aren’t they? So when the problems seem overwhelming, I like to look elsewhere for inspiration. This week a […]