Wednesday, 29 July 2015

Shades Of Grey

We needed the house painting anyway and were keen to unite the two parts of it with one colour scheme. The 300 year old building was white painted brick, while the modern part was a natural coloured, weather board structure.
I've always thought the way the house was perceived  very important to visitors who come to Ted Coney's Family Portraits as it's the first thing they see. We agonised over the colour scheme for along time before we decided on two shades of grey. We were influenced by the little wooden houses we saw on our recent trip to New Zealand.
What do you think? (there is a photo of it on my Facebook page - just click on the left on any page of my website) 

Wednesday, 22 July 2015

Wheels Of Fortune

Last week I drew my old bicycle five times - three drawings of the front wheel and two of the back. This is in preparation for my next painting 'Bicycle Thieves' which looks at six female members of the family and asks the question
 'are they any better off, married?' The first canvas will show the three women who had to get married (around the time of the second world war) because convention demanded it. The other three on a second canvas, are from the 1960s onwards, when women had more choice in the matter.
And the bicycle wheels? I was inspired by the 1940s Italian film, 'Bicycle Thieves' where a whole generation had their lives stolen and the theft of a bicycle was a metaphor for this.
And my images of wheels? Well, they are very difficult to draw, but I am hoping  eventually, the spokes will come to  represent the restrictions on  my female relations -  in both canvases.

Thursday, 16 July 2015

For Sale - Eventually

Although I am working on  my current painting 'Against The Light', I keep returning to  small, preliminary canvases to try out ideas I am not sure about.
For instance, I have been mixing up the colours more, rather than keeping to the 'hot' and 'cold'  sections. I am using these colours to contrast the two sides of my mother's cousins personalities,  only I don't want it to be quite so obvious.
Working on the preliminary canvases allows me to be a bit bolder and not worry if things go wrong.
Last time I had a clear out of the many practise canvases I had accumulated, I sold the lot, so I guess I will try to do the same when this painting is finished.
Let me know if you are interested in acquiring one. 

Thursday, 9 July 2015

Worn Out Member

I used my 1931 Morris Minor twice last week to advertise
Ted Coney's Family Portraits.
On Friday I stood in the market square beside the car in sweltering conditions for five hours, giving out flyers about my pop-up gallery. I should have know better, because although the car appears in some of my paintings, all it did was to attract men of a certain age, reminiscing about the cars they had owned over the years.
My advertising strategy was more subtle when I took the car to Aquafest.  This time, as well as delivering the Mayor to the opening ceremony, I was also using the Morris to raise money for the Nepal Earthquake Appeal by allowing the public to be photographed with the car, in return for a donation. Another exhausting day as I was there for ten hours.
When I came to leave, the battery was flat and I couldn't get the damn thing started!
Luckily, I have been in the AA for over fifty years and a charming chap arrived and quickly sorted it out. When I asked him if he could follow me home, just in case the car stopped again, he said he would as long as he could take a photograph.
When I looked at his breakdown report later, he had written
'Battery flat and couldn't be started by handle. Member worn out'
I knew exactly what he meant.

Thursday, 2 July 2015

Ely's Kettles Yard

Ted Coney's Family Portraits is currently advertised in the Ely Festival booklet. I guess that and all the other publicity I've had recently, prompted a very nice couple to do one of my tours recently. At the end of their visit they wrote in my visitors book
 'Ely's Kettles Yard'. I take that as a great compliment because Kettles Yard in Cambridge was one of the inspirations for my pop-up gallery. I don't think they meant one could see world famous artists there (as if!) but rather, viewing art in a domestic setting, where the objects displayed are almost as important as the pictures.
By the way, you can now enjoy my latest radio interview as Daniel has put it on the NEWS AND REVIEWS page of my website. He has edited out most of the Ladies Gospel Choir. The Three Degrees never turned up anyway.