"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.

Sunday, 27 March 2011

Llansteffan Castle

Llansteffan Castle from Ferryside. 13 colour reduction Linocut. 240mm x 360mm. Edition of 6. Printed the final two colours, a dark grey green and then a final dark on the old groyne in the foreground. I am pleased with this, its turned out to be quite close to my original design, which doesn't happen often with my prints. There is usually quite a lot of ad-libbing goes on before I get to printing the final colours.

Thursday, 24 March 2011

Colours 10 and 11

Although the last colour printed had brought the print to life, I felt that the colour was too dark on the left side of the hill below the castle. So I printed a paler green colour across this area and then a darker blue green on the trees below the castle and on the distant hillside. This part of the print is now more or less complete apart from some shadow areas in the trees. All that remains now is some very carefull printing on the breakwater in the foreground.

Sunday, 20 March 2011

From despair to delight

Started with the first two greens and then the final dark brown on the foreground beach.

1st Green

2nd Green

Final brown.
By this time I was starting to get a bit despondent about the print. I had printed 8 colours and was feeling that I wasn't getting any further. But then I printed the next colour....

Colour 9
..... and suddenly everything began to sing. Finally we are getting somewhere, the end is now in sight. A familiar view for anyone travelling the railway line between Llanelli and Carmarthen in West Wales. This is Llansteffan Castle seen looking across the River Tywi from the beach at Ferryside.

Tuesday, 15 March 2011

Progress on the new print

Colour 4, blue for the sky and the base colour for the foreground river.

Colour 5, a darker sand colour. The next stages will be to develop the middle distance areas beneath the castle.

Sunday, 13 March 2011

And now for something new

For the last few months I've been working on designs faster than I can get them printed. Normally I don't work on so many editions at once. My usual way of working is to finish a print and then start to think about what I am going to do next. Recently though I've had blocks ready to carve as soon as I've finished the previous print. However, this unusual burst of creativity isn't going to last, once this particular print is finished I haven't a clue as to what to do next.

This one is bigger than I usually do, and because the prints will not fit in my scanner I'm afraid you're going to have to put up with some dodgy photography for this set. So lets begin.

Colour 1. Linoblock and printed colour. A pale creamy yellow for some clouds and a bit of sand in the foreground. (Gary, if you are reading this you should begin to recognise the location).

Colour 2

A cool grey for the darker clouds and for the castle. However, once I had printed it I decided that the castle walls needed to be a warmer grey in the sunlit areas so I warmed up the same grey and printed colour 3 below.

Trust me it is a warmer grey, I know it doesn't look like it on this photo.

Monday, 7 March 2011

Brown Trout

Brown Trout
Reduction Linocut. 180mm x 120mm.
I've added the final dark and I think its time to call this finished. On the whole I'm quite pleased, although as usual there are a few things I would change next time. I don't usually revisit a print once I have finished, but with this one I'm tempted to have another go and try and make a more overtly decorative interpretation of it. We'll see.

Sunday, 6 March 2011

Art in the Pen Skipton

I received word yesterday that my application to exhibit at this years Art in the Pen event at Skipton Auction Mart in August has been accepted by the selection panel. The show will be held on 13 and 14 August from 10am-4pm each day with a preview on Friday 12 August from 7pm-9pm. The next five months are going to be really busy getting enough good work together to exhibit there.
Further details can be found at www.artinthepen.org.uk

Brown Trout next two colours

With these two colours I am trying to establish the detail of the stream bed without overpowering the fish.

Just one more colour after this should see it finished.

Wednesday, 2 March 2011

Coming together, Colour 5

The fifth colour is a light sand colour to establish the ground colour for the river bed, it also develops the final shape of the fish as it rises from the depths to the surface. From here I want to develop the pattern of pebbles on the river bed. But, I don't want to do this too much or it will overpower the fish. Rather than going overtly decorative I want to keep a naturalistic feel and correct depth; the blue ripples on the surface, the fish in mid water and the river bed below.