Tag Archives: Landscape Artist of the Year

Landscape Artist of the Year – 2- What did the judges think?

Yesterday I left you with my “finished” Landscape Artist of the Year Painting

©2016-Cathy-Read-Landscape-Artist-of-the-Year-Scotney-Castle-Painting-Watercolour-and-Acrylic
©2016-Cathy-Read-Landscape-Artist-of-the-Year-Scotney-Castle-Painting-Watercolour-and-Acrylic
©2016-cathy-read-landscape-artist-of-the-year-scotney-castle-painting-my-choice-of-view
©2016-cathy-read-landscape-artist-of-the-year-scotney-castle-painting-my-choice-of-view

I felt I’d done well in the circumstances, although I would have preferred to do more on it.

©2016-cathy-read-landscape-artist-of-the-year-scotney-castle-painting-my-choice-of-view
©2016-cathy-read-landscape-artist-of-the-year-scotney-castle-painting-my-choice-of-view 2

I’d achieved my goal of finishing in the time. By now, I’d seen where the Wildcards were placed and their location is more suited to my style. We were allocated slots so given no choice in our location. Personally, I’d have chosen one of these two.

Having finished the paintings we were encouraged to look at the work of our fellow competitors.

I managed to see the people either side of me before we were whisked away to the Island. This was to allow the judges to make their decision and to film the comments. We were not permitted to hear what they were saying.

To keep us busy they did more filming.

Throughout the day we’d been doing “Vox pops” – interviews where you talk to the camera.

A production assistant asks you a question which you then answer, including the question but not looking at the camera, Sometimes it was hard to keep a straight face as various sound engineers and lighting men tried to hold their equipment close enough to work but not in shot. It was a bit like watching attempts to break the “How many can you cram into a telephone box” record. or maybe a scene from a cartoon.

We all did them. In the morning it had been “How we felt about getting through?”, “What we were worried about?”

Now it was “How did we think we had done?” What would we spend the money on if we won? What did we think of the other Artists’ pieces?

There was a lot of hanging around to take pics.

 ©2016-Cathy-Read-Landscape-Artist-of-the-Year-Scotney-Castle-Painting-Richard-Knight-being-interviewed

©2016-Cathy-Read-Landscape-Artist-of-the-Year-Scotney-Castle-Painting-Richard-Knight-being-interviewed

Then the dreaded moment arrived, the first round of judging.

We stood, motionless in a line for what seemed an eternity while the camera did a panning shot. Eventually the judges decision were announced, and the three shortlisted artists stepped forward. Those of us not selected shook hands with Joan Bakewell and Frank Skinner before being led away from the judging area.

The Also rans weren’t allowed to leave so there was a lot more hanging around.

In the beautiful grounds of Scotney Castle in baking sun. It’s a hard life!

Finally we were called back and the Heat Winner was announced. Howard Weaver.

What did I think of the winning piece?

It was a very well executed, traditional painting. Of the final 3, not the one I was expecting to win. I understood the judges favoured more contemporary work in the past. So it will be interesting to see the results of the remaining heats, and, of course, the overall winner.

If you haven’t seen the programme yet it’s

Sky Arts – Landscape Artist of the Year.

It will be repeated several times over the next week so Check out the times here.

Would I do it again?

Yes! If I get the chance.

Would I do it differently?

Yes! I would

  • bring binoculars so I could see more detail of the buildings.
  • have focused more or a part of the architecture.
  • have modified my technique more. Included more mixed media.
  • taken more risks
  • bring a hairdryer!

Would I paint in a different style?

No. I was keen not to abandon my established working method completely. I freely admit my finished picture is not my best work. I struggled with drying times, a problem I was expecting and why my paintings normally take days to create. It meant I wasn’t able to develop my piece as much as was necessary. Watercolour tends to go flat if you put too much on at once. It also takes time for the effects I use to develop. I had to let it dry. In fact the judges were worried I wasn’t going to finish in time. This does not come across in the final edit as most of it was cut out.

I had considered trying a more conventional approach prior to the competition

But felt that was selling out. I was selected based on my unique style. I’ve worked hard to create it. I just need to figure out a way to make it work in the time frame, if I get through. All I can say is…

Watch this space!

 

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Landscape Artist of the Year – 1 How did I get on?

Last night I made my TV debut on Sky Arts Landscape Artist of the year.

Filming it was a surreal experience, so I thought I’d share what happened. After all the preparation was done and I was finally in Kent.

The day began early.

We had to be at Scotney castle by 7am. It was grey and drizzly, we were all prepared for a cold soggy day. I was met by a production assistant and we were taken down down the hill to the pods so we could see where we’d be painting.I was relieved to find architecture dominated but the view was dull.

After racing back uphill, we were then told to grab some breakfast while we were being briefed.

Miking up was next, and that stayed on ALL day.

I quickly found the “off” switch so I could have some privacy. We were chaperoned everywhere. I initially thought it weird but quickly realised it was so they could find us and not hold up production.

Filming then began.

Walking past the paintings, Here’s the piece that I submitted and features in the first part.

©2016 - Cathy Read - Lean on Me - Watercolour and Acrylic - 50 x 40 cm
©2016 – Cathy Read – Lean on Me – Watercolour and Acrylic – 50 x 40 cm

Then more filming

Walking to the pods with our equipment, Setting up, looking at our views “thoughtfully”

Lots of filming and repeating what we’d done, over and over.

So many cameras and an equal number of static shots.

Painting began 3 hours later.

This is what I had to work with. Not enough architecture for my liking plus very twee and green, as Richard Knight, one of the other contestants, was keen to point out.

©2016-cathy-read-landscape-artist-of-the-year-scotney-castle-painting-view-from-pod-7-what-were-they-talking-about
©2016-cathy-read-landscape-artist-of-the-year-scotney-castle-painting-view-from-pod-7-what-were-they-talking-about

Once I started the nerves seemed to disappear and I was able to concentrate on the task in hand.

Cathy Read painting during Landscape Artist of the Year Competition - Courtesy Storyvault Films
Landscape Artist Of The Year – Heat 1 © Chris Lobina / Sky Arts

All I could do was crack on and not be distracted by all the cameras and general hustle and bustle of production.

©2016-cathy-read-landscape-artist-of-the-year-scotney-castle-painting-view-from-pod-7-pre-starting
©2016-cathy-read-landscape-artist-of-the-year-scotney-castle-painting-view-from-pod-7-pre-starting

The hardest part was the interruptions…

Talking to Frank Skinner and Joan Bakewell was fun. The judges were also lovely, although it felt more intimidating when they spoke with you. There were also breaks to take a photos, check lighting, move a camera or ask me to do something again – not possible with watercolour which they quickly realised. You’re constantly aware of the time and that you can’t carry on and you just want to get stuck in.

©2016-cathy-read-landscape-artist-of-the-year-scotney-castle-painting-cameraman-taking-a-close-up-pod-7
©2016-cathy-read-landscape-artist-of-the-year-scotney-castle-painting-cameraman-taking-a-close-up-pod-7

There were lots of visitors

Most seemed willing just to watch whilst discussing what I was doing. This visitor was unexpected.

I wonder what it thought of the paint?

©2016-cathy-read-landscape-artist-of-the-year-scotney-castle-painting-pod-7-visitor-exploring-the-paint
©2016-cathy-read-landscape-artist-of-the-year-scotney-castle-painting-pod-7-visitor-exploring-the-paint

My technique usually takes days so I knew the 4 hour limit was going to be a challenge.

I had the judges worried that I wouldn’t finish. there were lots of relieved comments when I was finally able to start painting.There’s a lovely bit of time lapse of the painting when I finally got started. I really wanted to do much more but I had to stop before I was done.

Here’s the finished painting.

©2016-Cathy-Read-Landscape-Artist-of-the-Year-Scotney-Castle-Painting-Watercolour-and-Acrylic
©2016-Cathy-Read-Landscape-Artist-of-the-Year-Scotney-Castle-Painting-Watercolour-and-Acrylic

And I did it in the time!

I was pleased with it but felt it needed more work

There would have been more bricks and lily pads..

plus defined grasses and increase tonal variations, as well as some wet on dry painting… Heigh ho! It looks finished at least.

With hindsight I’d probably have used binoculars and focused on a detail more.

Drying time was a major issue. Maybe I should have just used the masking fluid and ditched the drawing? Hindsight is a wonderful thing.

 

Tomorrow I’ll share the judges comments, the final results and what I thought. If you can’t wait until then, it’s on again tonight at 6pm.

You can see what the judges thought by watching the program

Sky Arts – Landscape Artist of the Year.

It will be repeated several times over the next week so Check out the times here.

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Landscape Artist of the Year, 4 hours to do a painting. Eek!

Big news from an urban Landscape Artist!

Back in April I submitted an application to a company called StoryVault Films for a landscape artist competition. I saw an advert and thought,”That looks interesting!”. The deadline was close but I wasn’t sure, especially as the first part was due to be filmed during Bucks Open studios when I was already going to be very busy. After talking it through with Andrew, my other half, I decided to go for it! After all, what did I have to lose?

Well, I went and got through and now

I’m a contestant in Sky Arts

“Landscape Artist of the Year Competition”!

I’m one of the eight in the weird pod things. Which look pretty cool, if I may say so. Although they are not as weather resistant as they would have you believe.
It’s been something of a whirlwind between getting the news in May that I was taking part and the actual filming. Plus all the secrecy. I was allowed to tell family and friends but not publicise it on Social media. Hence the mystery.

This is one of my submission pieces, but not the one that’s in the show.

©2015-Cathy-Read-Pilgrims-A-Journey-of-a-Thousand-Miles-Begins-with-One-Step-Watercolour-and-Acrylic-61x46-cm
©2015-Cathy-Read-Pilgrims-A-Journey-of-a-Thousand-Miles-Begins-with-One-Step-Watercolour-and-Acrylic-61×46-cm £610

One of the biggest concerns I had beforehand was would I be able to complete a painting in the 4 hour time frame.

Especially when I rarely take less than a few days.

4hours, I mean, that’s not possible surely? Naturally, I decided to do some practice pieces to get my hand in.

This is the first one.

©2016-Cathy Read- Beaconsfield Church - finished painting
©2016-Cathy Read- Beaconsfield Church – finished painting

Beaconsfield Church. (See the picture being created here.)
It seemed to take forever, and much longer than the required 4 hours.

Did I tell you I was nervous?

No?
Well I was, very.

My second practice was during Open Studios in June. It occurred to me, more than once, that I needed to get some rural landscape practice in. Well, this is the one I did of some pylons by the Green Dragon Eco Centre. That’s rural enough, surely? (See the picture being created)

©2016-Cathy-Read-Country-Power-Watercolour-and-acrylic-ink-50x40cm-
©2016-Cathy-Read-Country-Power-Watercolour-and-acrylic-ink-50x40cm-

Painting time for this one was just within the required time,

so I went to the filming on 14th June for the first episode feeling a little more confident, but still very nervous.
And you can see how I got on when

The Landscape Artist of the Year airs on 11th October.

At 8pm GMT to be precise.

I’ll be there, in one of the pods. In Heat 1 at Scotney Castle and…

I can’t say any more than that at the moment.

To keep you going, here’s one of my photos from the day

I am allowed to share, as I could have taken it at any another time.

©2016-Cathy-Read- Scotney Castle -digital image
©2016-Cathy-Read- Scotney Castle -digital image

Obviously, after the programme airs on the 11th, I’ll fill you in on the details, and share some of my photos and behind the scenes stuff.

So, remember the date 11th October at 8pm on Sky Arts!

My TV Debut!

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