The Dong with a Luminous Nose

This glove puppet is one of my proto-type experiments for my Artshealth MA to use puppetry for social and personal connectivity, in proposed workshops with adult survivors of sexual abuse. Here is my interpretation of The Dong. I made the body out of some canvas found at dad’s house when clearing. I decided to write the words of the first verses of Edward Lear’s famous poem on the body before making it. I used one of my favourite crow feathers to write with after priming the canvas. I didn’t mind that the primer flaked off when I turned the body the right way round after stitching it. It seemed to add to the distressed quality of the Dong. I have been stitching the tails and flaps as well and adding pieces of dyed paper. I will share my latest additions in the next post. Dad read me the poem in one of our last conversations together. He was great at reading poetry and brought the whole thing to life in a very unique way. The puppet comes to life it its own way when animated by the hand inside the glove of the body. I really need to film it!

Connie’s cushion, gutta and silk painting

I made this for a christening cushion which I gave to Connie our great niece last weekend when we went to the christening in London. I was inspired by an Honore Daumier piece made in 1865 entitled ‘Mother and Child’. I like to use the masters as they can still teach us so much. The freedom and confidence of his marks are so liberating. He was primarily a cartoonist and draughtsman. Click as usual to enlarge folks. I include the original image so you can see that too. Lately I have been working on a large response for the ‘Self and Other’ show I am co-curating for summer 2018 at Neoartists in Bolton and will share when it is complete. Don’t know when that will be so watch this space folks!

Puppetry experiments

These are two of the fired puppet heads I made last year painted and developed into glove puppets as experiments for my Artshealth MA. I just let them develop as they wanted to. The canvas I used is from the roll I found at my father’s house when clearing. I have been studying my book on Francis Bacon for colours and remembering the show from Tate Liverpool which I went to last year. The baby face of one of the puppet heads reminded me of Bacon. I enjoyed sewing the canvas flaps on and painting them. Am stopping sooner than I normally would as with my 2D work. Also, I think it reflects Bacon’s way of drawing. It’s been difficult tuning in to him because his work is so challenging and works on so many levels. He certainly wasn’t afraid to go towards the darker aspects of human experience. Click images to enlarge as usual.

Sprouting Tree, Burtrees

Here are some shots and a sketch of the apple tree at my dad’s house. I am mightily chuffed that it is coming back to life as you can see! I don’t know if it will make big branches but the sprout are hopeful don’t you think. I had extra fun sitting in the drive to draw it and here is the result. Click to enlarge for marks and colour.

The Dolls

Made this little sketch yesterday so thought I’d share it. Have been told by some not to bother and that no-ones interested, but I just decided to go ahead anyway! This is more like a kind of visual diary. Am gently trying to get back into practical work and major piece I am planning so see drawing as kind of limbering up. These are my dolls from my childhood found recently in a tea-chest at my dad’s when clearing. It felt like meeting old friends again. So many hugs and kisses wasted on these! But that’s a kind of rehersal for something real too. I have had my research proposal signed off finally for my Artshealth MA so can hunker down now and make stuff in-between family commitments. Click to enlarge as usual folks!

Shoreham Rooves: Ascension Road

Here is a little oil I’ve been working on recently. It’s based on a sketch I made looking towards a hill near Shoreham. Samuel Palmer must have looked at this view. He saw it as Paradise. Click to enlarge to see marks and colour folks:-)

No Spikes

Here is a little sketch I made of a cactus I bought in Fontainebleau market on a recent visit to France for my son. I missed the one I originally intended for him as a lady picked it up and bought it whilst I dithered. This was the nearest one to it on the stall. I love these little cacti that are so individual just like us really. I decided to draw it before I gave it to him and this is the result. Still a bit blocked with my art as have been writing for my artshealth MA, this part nearly done so looking forward to getting back into some major painting. Watch this space folks 🙂

Wedding Flowers

A little study of a flower arrangement that was on our table at a friends wedding from the other week in the sweltering heat. Lovely idea to give them to guests as they leave. I decided to make this little study back at home before they wilted too much. Loved the lace round the jars. The groom’s sister did a fashion degree at Nottingham Trent so lovely connection to that, the home of some beautiful lace.

Photographs from short break to France Veneux-les-Sablons

Thought I’d share some shots of our holiday in France which was much needed and very enjoyable. We camped near the small town of Veneux-les-Sablons and were able to get the train easily from there into Paris to see the Monet’s at the Orangerie so we had the best of all possible worlds! We stayed near to a spot where we camped in 1978 when we did a tour of Europe hitch-hiking starting with 2 weeks in Oslo Norway studying Munch-bliss!

Squashed rose

I made this little study the other day of a rose I found on the ground on my way back from the park. I have been struggling to find the wherewithal to draw let alone paint recently but am trying not to be too hard on myself and am doing little bits to get back into it. My memory card on my camera is also broken but I now have a new one and have found a different way in any case of uploading photos onto my computer. Flexibility is the name of the game as in so many things! I am busy trying to write my research proposal for my Artshealth MA which is also taking a lot of thinking time. I will get there though! I just keep chipping away and try to be critical. I hope to get back into painting once that is handed in. So will keep you all posted. Don’t forget to click image to enlarge folks to see marks and colour. I used pencil and watercolour for this.