Wednesday, 18 July 2018

Football's Coming

Mindful that France had just won the World Cup two days before, I was slightly wary when my first group of french teenagers arrived for a tour carrying a football.
As I always do, I asked them to leave all their belongings in the garden, so as not to knock anything over in the house. I had, only that morning,  broken the glass on a small photograph of Barnaby, while setting up an display for their visit.
I must say, the students were very well behaved and listened intently to what I had to say. It's always a challenge moving seven rather tall young people around the cottage but they did it with good humour on an extremely hot day
Maybe the iced water I gave them on their arrival, helped.

Wednesday, 11 July 2018

French For Advent

For the third year running, I've got three groups of French students taking a tour  at
 my pop-up gallery, next week.
I need to keep the explanation of the chosen paintings fairly simple as although they all speak English, some  are quite young.
I want to show  my painting 'Limners' which I hope they will find intriguing. As the inspiration for the painting is an advent calendar I have been trying to get hold of one before they come. As I discovered, July is not the best time to try and buy one though my daughter is also looking to see if she has an old calendar in the loft.
The fact that my painting has 37 pictures may add to the confusion.
You can see the work on page two of the PRINTS FOR SALE page on my website

Saturday, 30 June 2018

Worst Seat In The House

I  already had an indication from Chloe at the Old Fire Engine House Gallery that my painting
'Forget-Me -Nots' was proving difficult to hang.
'Had I anything a bit smaller or lighter?' She asked.
When I attended the Private View a few weeks ago I knew why.
Admittedly, they had over a hundred pictures to display, but mine was certainly in the worst place. It was down a back corridor which was narrow and too difficult to stand back from. It was the one place that had an old beam and my painting was hanging from a nail.
They were full of apologises but I didn't really mind. It was lovely to take part and the picture isn't for sale, anyway.
The exhibition is on for a few more days and then my painting will come back to Waterside. To get a better view of it, look at the bottom of the DISABLED VISITORS page on my website.

Saturday, 23 June 2018

From Life

We've been to Jersey in the Channel Islands for a short break - having just given up teaching Art after 52 years.
While on holiday I did do a few little sketches of things I had seen which interested me. Sometimes its good not to have definite project but  to draw what one sees. It certainly made me look at the landscape more closely.
I worked in pencil, watercolour and ball point pen on several pieces - a good memory of a nice visit.

Tuesday, 12 June 2018

Pollacks!

One of the objects in my pop-up gallery which I show when talking about my painting
 'The Puppets Dream' is a  Pollacks Theatre I bought about fifty years ago. It is a copy of a toy I had as a child and they were originally made in Victorian times.
In my rush to move it to a place of safety when we were having the doors repainted, I dropped the thing and it smashed into many pieces.
I have just finished gluing it all back together again - I shall have to be more careful next time.

Tuesday, 5 June 2018

Not So Famous

David - a Chinese student in my tutor  group was telling me what  happened in his public examination in English.
While he had done well in Listening, Writing and Reading, he had not been so successful in Speaking.
When asked why, he recounted how he been given the topic of a famous person to talk about.
'And who did you pick?' I asked. 'You' he replied.
He told them I had been on TV and radio and had work in exhibitions and was a successful artist.
Obviously they were not impressed.

Friday, 1 June 2018

A Brushless Painting

You can now see the new film made by Bob Banks on the MEDIA page of my website.
Among other things, I talk about the preparations for my current painting ' Hinaki ' and how I work on test canvases first. I have now started the final piece and am painting the first layer, based on  the structure and patterns of a Maori meeting house.
So far, I have applied oil paint using cloth, sponge and cotton buds, but will get to painting with brushes eventually.
I am photographing the different stages as the picture progresses, so will get Daniel to post them on the NEWS AND REVIEWS page soon.