"The artist...is also a born adventurer. His explorations, unlike those of a tourist, are rewarded by the discovery of beauty spots unmentioned in the guide books, and with tireless curiosity and an exceptional proneness to wonderment, he will come upon objects of remarkable interest overlooked or even shunned by more disciplined observers."

Augustus John, R.A.

Thursday, 30 September 2010

Next three colours

Work has progressed faster than anticipated so I have the next three colours printed. A first pale chestnut colour.
and then a darker one for the shaded areas on the birds underparts.

before the second green colour is printed to establish the main areas of the foliage.

Sunday, 26 September 2010

Kingfisher First Colours

Printed the first colour and for once got the colour and tone exactly as I wanted it. The only problem being that the drawing on the block has transferred through to the print. So much for indelible markers!
Second colour down and the marker pen is starting to disappear.

Third colour and progress will start to slow down now as the cutting gets a bit complicated.

Sunday, 19 September 2010

Working Drawings

For my next project I have gone back to some field sketches I did around 8 years ago of a Kingfisher beside the River Calder.

Kingfisher. River Calder at Brookfoot. 17th July 2002. Pen and Ink.

Kingfisher. River Calder at Brookfoot. 17th July 2002. Pen and Ink.

Kingfisher. River Calder at Brookfoot. 17th July 2010. Pen and Ink.

Then started to work around some compositions and colour separations. This is intended to be a bird report cover, so I want to balance accuracy with a prominent design.

From the thumbnail sketches I draw a full size cartoon before transferring it to the linoblock. Although at this stage I still haven't settled on the exact colour values for the vegetation around the bird.

Sunday, 12 September 2010

Conisborough Castle

The Keep - Conisborough Castle.
9 colour reduction linocut.
270mm x 180mm.

Finally finished the latest linocut of one of Yorkshires most impressive castles. On the whole I'm quite pleased with how this eventually turned out. Even if it isn't quite how it was originally intended. But thats what drives the creative process - always chasing that elusive perfect masterpiece.

Saturday, 11 September 2010

Colour 8

Printed anothe area of dark green, and having resisted the temptation to add another colour there is just the final dark to print now.

Wednesday, 8 September 2010

Back on track

Printed the next green, a darker shade and I'm happier now about how the print is going. Not sure what to do next though. I should finish it in two more colours but the temptation to add a third is lurking just around the corner.

Sunday, 5 September 2010

A bit more progress

Colour 6 and I'm still not happy about that green!

Friday, 3 September 2010

Losing the plot

Back to printing. Its been over a week since I last worked on this, a much longer interuption than I would like. It can be hard to pick up the thread again without losing the direction of the work.

Anyway onto colour 4 - the first green.

.... and then a warm brown colour, which has made the green look a bit lurid. Hopefully the next colours will calm this down a bit!

Thursday, 2 September 2010

A Break in Dumfries and Galloway

Just got back from a short break visiting my brother in Scotland. Had five days of really good weather.

27th August.
The view across the rooftops towards Frenchlands Tower. Moffat, Annandale.

28th August. Another view across the Moffat rooftops, looking towards Hunterheck Hill.

....and below a real surprise.

An Otter hunting in the River Nith below the weir in central Dumfries. After walking round the town we were going back to the car and stopped beside the river to see if any Salmon were jumping. This otter appeared below the weir and gradually moved closer to us. As usual in such a situation- no camera, paper or pencils. We watched it for about ten minutes then I decided to go to the car for a sketchbook. It took me another ten minutes to get back to find it still there although it gradually made its way up the fish ladder and onto the weir before swimming upstream in the deeper water above the weir. These drawings were made on the spot, the watercolour was added later, more to 'fix' the drawing than anything else.

28th August.
Looking west across the Annan Valley from Moffat towards Queensbury.

29th August
The same hill from Roberts garden. 1900hrs.

31st Auugust
Jackdaws mutual preening.

30th August
St Marys Loch.

31st August
Loch of the Lowes