Wednesday, 29 April 2015

It's Here!

My virtual tour has finally arrived. You can view it from my
 Ted Coney's Family Portraits website and if you enjoy it, please write a review on my TripAdvisor or Free View page  (you'll find both to the right, on each page).
It's taken about a year to get it together, but early indications show that people are enjoying it. It's very different from my actual tours and we were very conscious that we needed to make it look as professional as possible, as people expect so much more from visual media, now.

Sunday, 26 April 2015

Hitchcock Influence

Last weekend I did a pre-tour tour of Ted Coney's Family Portraits for an old school friend I had last seen fifty six years ago. Robin and his wife were in the area to attend a family wedding and were keen to meet up. As Hazel had only returned from Australia at midnight the previous evening, I suggested that we had afternoon tea together in a cafĂ©.
However, as we had so much to talk about and they seemed keen to hear about my work I invited them back for an early evening drink at the house. Robin and Rose are both artists so I was a little apprehensive as to what they might think of my painting.
I needn't have worried and Robin was particularly interested in my piece,
 'Fools Gold' (you can see the painting on my PRINTS FOR SALE page) as it reminded him of scenes from a Hitchcock film.
The painting is about a cousin of my mother's and I wanted it to have a slightly sinister feel because of the subject matter. The other interest for Robin, was that is displayed an image of a house, not far from where he grew up, in Hull.

Friday, 17 April 2015

A Small Birthday

Just back from New Zealand, where we have been visiting Leo and Paul.
 I spent my birthday evening in Wellington, in a lovely apartment overlooking the harbour. We had earlier walked along the quayside and I do remember Hazel diving into a shop while I sipped my coffee.
Later, they gave me a miniature birthday cake, which Hazel had managed to find.
Now we are back in the UK, I have put it into the dolls house as a reminder of our stay. It is now part of the Ted Coney's Family Portraits collection for others to enjoy.

Thursday, 16 April 2015

Return Of A Hero

The Morris is back. It's been away at the garage having the brakes and steering improved. I am so glad it's been returned for the reopening of
Ted Coney's Family Portraits as it is usually one of the stars of the show. It certainly looks very smart with it's new/old Camping Club badge from the 1950s.
The gallery reopens on 26th April by the way, with bookings taken from 18th. I can only take six visitors at a time so maybe you had better get organised! You can book online, by Email or phone.
Which reminds me, I must start getting the rooms ready, as having the Morris back on site, is only the beginning of all the jobs I need to do.

Wednesday, 15 April 2015

Bicycle Thieves

I like to keep thinking about the subject of my next painting, while working on the current one.
Although I had already had thought of a title - 'War Babes', the story has now moved on, and I'm thinking of changing it.
Originally, I was going to depict three female victims of the second world war, my mother and her two cousins who were all pregnant and had to get married because of the conventions at the time.
I wanted to contrast them with three newer, female family members who aren't married and see no reason to be, but have children, to show how things have changed.
I then saw a film entitled 'Bicycle Thieves', set in Italy in 1948, which gave my idea a further twist. As well as telling the story of an actual bicycle theft and its aftermath, the film is also trying to get across how a whole nation's lives have been stolen, by the events of the war.
I feel my six relatives, by not being married but having children, may, in their different ways have had their lives stolen, too. Much more so than their male partners.
And the theft of a bicycle in my painting? Well, my 1940 bicycle has been stolen, but luckily I got it back.  

Tuesday, 14 April 2015

The Long View

I've tentatively started working on my new canvas for the current painting
 'Against The Light'. It's a long, thin painting, displayed horizontally. I started by dividing it up into different sections, so the two sides of my relative's natures can be shown.
I've stained parts of the canvas with a warm, reddish brown colour to show the jollier side of their personalities and the other, a colder blue, to represent their darker side.
Although I will be tracing some of the design onto the canvas, I also want to try and capture some of the softer, more translucent shadows by working directly from the real thing, to give it a feeling of spontaneity.
You'll be able to see the results of how I am progressing ( I'll keep photographing it at regular intervals ) in a few weeks time on the NEWS AND REVIEWS page of my website. I'll keep you posted.