Wednesday, 31 August 2016


I've been working alot on my current painting 'Bicycle Thieves' over the summer and it may be finished - or maybe not?
My method of working is to leave the piece for a while and then see how I feel. I glance at it occasionally and see if I get any fresh ideas to improve the image. An unexpected glance surprises me sometimes into making another mark (or rubbing one down) which hopefully improves the look of the painting.
To see my progress so far, go to the NEWS AND REVIEWS page on my website, where you will see my progress.
Underneath, in the Reviews and Articles section, there are also two press stories. 

Wednesday, 24 August 2016

Brief Encounter

Last word (for now) on my East Yorkshire trip. After our visits to the five sea-side towns, we spent the last two nights at the Royal Station Hotel in Hull. Although we had always thought of this as very upmarket  (Queen Victoria had stayed there), it had obviously seen better days. It was also incredibly cheap.
I was reminded of the last time I was there some fifty years ago when my grandmother reluctantly arranged to meet an old flame she had been engaged to, seventy years previous. My mother had accompanied her and I called in to get a lift home.
I used this story as the basis for a painting entitled 'The Rashomon Effect', where each of the people involved looked at what might happen if the old couple had got back together again.
You can see the painting on my Ted Coney's Family Portraits website, on the CONTACT US page.

Tuesday, 16 August 2016

Feeling Blue

I had a suspicion that I was not going to be successful.
When I read  that one of the grants awarded by 'Hull-  City of Culture'  had gone to an artist who  persuaded 1,000 people to strip naked and paint themselves blue to create a large sculpture, I knew it was going to be difficult.
And so it proved. 670 people had applied for grants and only a fraction of them received any money, and then only for large community projects. I can quite understand why, because Hull needs to make an impact during 2017.
What was disappointing was that I had already managed to bag a venue - Hull University, for my month long residency.
I can apply for funding elsewhere, but I expect it will be very competitive.

Wednesday, 10 August 2016

Objects Of Desire

One of my main objectives on the East Yorkshire trip (see last weeks blog) was to collect objects from each seaside town to represent my grandmother and her four sisters.
These objects were in  the following categories;
1) objects which represented the sea-side, for example - rock with the letters 'Withernsea' running through , a plastic crab, a model fishing boat etc.
2) objects which would have existed when my great aunts were around in the 1950s.
These I bought at charity shops and included a coronation bowl, a teapot and a metal 'love' spoon
3) One piece of beach material from each place. I enlisted Hazel to collect these for me as she is a great beachcomber. These included stones and shells - and a rusty bit of metal.
4) I also bought a sticky label with the name of each place on, to put on the five, small suitcases I had been gathering over the winter, to keep my collections in.
Finding the objects was fun to do until day three, when I was struck down with a tummy bug. I had to keep going as we were only booked into each resort for a day.  Walking past  fish and chip shops did make my stomach heave, however.

Saturday, 6 August 2016

Dead Aunts Society

I've just been on a research trip to East Yorkshire for a new painting I hope to start later this year.
My mission was to visit the sea-side towns of my childhood, making drawings and collecting objects (more on them, next week) as I went.
As each of the five towns (Whitby, Scarborough, Bridlington, Hornsea and Withernsea) represented my grandmother and her four sisters, I decided to post each of them one of my five, painted postcards I had made on the journey.
Although I wrote to the sisters as if still alive, being dead, I obviously sent the postcards to our address.
 I am pleased to say the cards have now all arrived and have become 'objects' for my research.