Saturday, 31 July 2010

Three Luckey Strikes

Yesterday was good day. I received a booking for Ted Coney's Family Portraits tomorrow from two ladies in Hertfordshire who came last year and want to bring a friend. They must have enjoyed it! I experimented with my new metal trough I had sent for, to pour the encaustic wax over a practise canvas and it worked well. Or at least it would have done if I hadn't tried to do it twice. This is for my current painting TEA FOR TWO and I was able to do some transperent painting over the top to see how the two images (one under the wax and one on top) would work together. I finally got hold of the Weekly News to find I was in two press stories! There was a photo of me with the Morris Minor at the Littleport Show and I got a mention in the article about the London 2012 Open Weekend. They didn't print any of the photos of my Quiz/Trail but you can't have everything. Anyway, everyone did look a bit serious and I looked positively frightening.

Thursday, 29 July 2010

The School Visit

Rob E-mailed me the other day with a view to bringing some of his GCSE students on a visit to
Ted Coney's Family Portraits in September. A new departure for me, to be on the receiving end of students, but one which could be quite interesting. Lucrative too, as he wants to bring about 60! He would split them up of course, probably over two days, with half going to the Babylon Gallery on each day. After my experience with the Quiz/Trail I think it would be fun to get them, in groups, to try and find out what some of the paintings are about. Who knows, I might even sell a few postcards and tour guides!

Monday, 26 July 2010

A Quiz/ Trail - Or a Test?

I managed to make some money for Teenage Cancer Trust yesterday, with my devilously clever Quiz/Trail around Ted Coney's Family Portraits. I had visitors for four hours non- stop. The highest score was 15 out of 26, so it wasn't too easy, as I'd feared. Infact, some people complained it was like a test or an exam!! I think they enjoyed it really, but you know how people like to complain. Anyway, they were all very generous with their donations, and it gave me ideas how I might tackle my delivery of the tours in the future, particularly if I get any school groups (more on that later in the week). It was interesting to hear how each group tried to work out what the pictures were about, rather then me telling them right from the start.

Sunday, 25 July 2010

7 Hours In The Sun

Yesterday, I took the Morris Minor to Littleport Fair to promote Ted Coneys Family Portraits and my special Family Quiz/Trail today (wish me luck!) for London 2012 Open Weekend with all profits going to Teenage Cancer Trust. It was a gruelling seven hours standing in the hot sun but there were some useful moments. I talked to quite a few people about the car and managed to ambush a few with tales of the gallery, family portraits, quizs and trails etc. etc. I met a nice lady from the WI in Prickwillow who said she had been meaning to contact me about a visit to the house by her members. I also bumped into one of the press guys from the Cambridge News, who with very little persuasion, came and photographed me with the car. It may not be in the paper but was a welcome diversion. I drove home and promptly fell asleep.

Saturday, 24 July 2010

Taking a Back Seat

Yesterday, I decided to start preparing for my next painting, which will hopefully be finished by my Morris Minor's 80th birthday, next year. This time, I see the Morris as being a Time Machine, (rather like the Tardis in Dr. Who) so I needed to make a study sitting inside the car looking out. Later, I will work on what will be seen through the windows as the car whizzes through space and time (!) but for now I wanted to concentrate on getting some good, solid drawings of the interior. I sat in the back seat and worked on watercolour paper in sepia ink with brush and pen. In the end I made two studies, one from a very central position so I got both side windows in, as well as the front. The other drawing got more of the driver's side window in
By the way, Hazel found the Hollywoodland material, without me having to go through every box in the loft (it was in a cupboard downstairs, anyway) This will form images for the earlier 'time' when cousin Tom Cundall went off to Hollywood to find his fame and fortune as a film director in the 1930s. (about the same era as the Morris) But more of that later

Thursday, 22 July 2010

On the Trail of the Trail

I've been organising my event for the London 2012 Open Weekend this week. Delivering more posters, persuading people to come, finishing off the questions for the Quiz etc. Only, I have added the word 'Trail' as I think it sounds a bit more exciting. Someone said, was it like a pub quiz and promptly gave me a 50p donation, so he didn't have to come! Well, it won't be like a pub quiz as there is no refreshments but also, hopefully it will make people enjoy the paintings more as they move around the house. Anyway, we shall see. I also managed to finish my application for the Business Awards and entered Ted Coney's Family Portraits under the Inovation catagory! All good publicity if I get a mention.

Sunday, 18 July 2010

A Postcard from Cornwall

It's been nice to forget all about Ted Coney's Family Portraits and my current painting for a while. We have been on holiday to Crackington Haven in Cornwall recently. As well as reading, walking, eating chips (well, trying not to!) and drinking wine, I 've been doing some drawing of the local sites. The rock formations are amazing and I've been trying to draw the patterns and textures. I also made a study of the Sesile oak tree which is prevalent around north Cornwall. It supports ferns, lichens and mosses on its bare branches, so maybe the symbolism of something strong helping other forms of life, made me decide that I wanted to record it. Perhaps I havn't quite forgotten about family portraits after all! Will write again soon Ted

Monday, 5 July 2010

All in a Good Cause

I am getting involved with the London 2012 Open Weekend events again this year, which are all part of the Cultural Olympiad. I will be opening Ted Coney's Family Portraits on Sunday 25th July as usual but instead of the usual tours I will be offering a family quiz based on the paintings, objects and photos found in the house. Tickets will be 50p per family member and all proceeds will go to Teenage Cancer Trust (which is the same charity I helped £3,000 for with our cycle ride to Scotland a few years ago) Each family will be given 25 minutes to complete the quiz and although there is no prize, I am hoping visitors will enjoy looking for clues and maybe come back again for a proper tour (you never know!)
Sample Question to wet your appetite: In the painting 'Golden Jubilee Ride', what famous artist influenced Ted's choice of landscape?

Saturday, 3 July 2010

Soothing Grey Lines

These last two Sundays, I have been working on the final two canvases for 'Tea for 222', putting in the grey background paintings of the telephones and code machines. However, to make this underlay more abstract and formal (as opposed to the afternoon tea shapes which will be much freer and go over the top) I have been interspercing them with thin , flat shapes, painted in different shades of grey. I have found this restful and, with a brand new OO brush, oddly conforting and soothing. I guess with all the traumas (and funerals) in the last few weeks, this is just what I needed. I shall be ready to tackle the trickier, more paintily areas soon. Best Wishes Ted