Wednesday, 25 July 2012

Art in Action

A fine day but soggy underfoot, muddy in a few places and there were lots of sensible people wearing wellies or walking boots. But what a range of art work! I expected to enjoy the paintings and the glass, and was not disappointed, but the ceramics were far beyond expectation - some really great pieces.

Patrick Cullen
Art in Action really gives some idea of how many talented people can express themselves through their art or craft skills. And I guess many of the visitors also had some skills and talents. I'm always impressed by those prepared to demonstrate their talents in public and enjoyed watching artists work. The one that impressed most was Patrick Cullen, who was demonstrating portrait painting with pastels. Fascinating to see how he builds up the image. He must have to constantly make decisions about what colour and placement of his marks yet he seemed to work without hesitation. His self-portrait in the Best of the Best exhibition was superb and he also had some excellent landscapes on show in the painting tent.

The Market Place was almost too much - so much to see and enjoy- and then the big range of art materials. I was so tempted by the range of brushes, many on offer at reduced prices, and paper I can always use. Did I give in to temptation? No. I always want to buy more things to feed the art dream but what I need to do is make art with the materials I already have. I need to do rather than fantasise. So I came away with nothing but a sense of enjoyment and a lot of inspiration.

Friday, 6 July 2012

The Old Curiosity Shop

The Dickens themed painting challenge begins with The Old Curiosity Shop. Art work should be presented unframed at the meeting on Tuesday September 4th.

What a challenge this is! Do you go for scenes from the book or show a shop front or interior? As always the theme can be loosely interpreted so perhaps a visit to an antique shop might inspire. A local source of ideas might be the some of the objects in the Butcher Row Museum. The temptation will be to put too much in or try to be too detailed. Perhaps an unusual still life is called for.

Dickens used wood engravings to illustrate his novel and brought together a team to produce the illustrations. You can see images of the original illustrations at  Phiz contributed most of the designs for the plates and George Cattermole contributed fourteen drawings.  Cattermole was a great friend of Dickens and his studio was probably the inspiration for the novel. He produced many historical paintings and his studio was full of curiosities and props including a suit of armor.

I wonder where members will find their inspiration.