Sunday, 30 March 2008


I've not been able to blog for a while - I'll explain why on the next post, but just to let you know and maybe keep you intrigued until then (cos I'd hate you to get bored!) I'll then tell you the connections between what I've recently learnt about being unnoticed and noticed at the same time, what happens when you watch the watcher, what's sexual to some and not to others, and how as an erotic artist I found egg cups to be of very great interest! And how a bath created a different slant on erotic art.......

Oh......... and also about a how I was fascinated by a conversation over dinner with an architect and a psychologist............

Sunday, 16 March 2008

Moon struck

I went to an art workshop yesterday. I go to them regularly and always get something from the experience. The tutors are different in their approach and subject matter but they're invariably happy to pass on tips about their painting techniques. This workshop was no different. The guy who did it though, was worried that if we didn't all follow his demonstration painting, step by step, and didn't go home with a clone of his painting, that he wasn't doing his job properly. It took quite a bit of persuasion on my part to get the point over, that whilst I could understand that the way to learn his methods was to copy them BUT for ME to ENJOY the experience, I had to put my own artistic input into it, or else I would feel TOTALLY frustrated and uncreative. I know for me to feel happy within myself I have to create, it's what I do. So, with what seemed to be against his better judgment, he let me do it......

The painting he wanted us all to copy was of a white waterfall, with a deep blue pool below it, tall brown rocks all around, bright green trees and bushes, all done on a nice sunny day with a pale blue sky. If we'd chosen a turquoisey blue sky the waterfall would have looked like it was on some tropical island, if we'd chosen a duller blue it would have looked like it was in a North American or European forest. When the guy started painting his picture, I was instantly interested in the technique, as it was done in oils, and a wet in wet approach (the wet paint is applied to a wet surface and creates a different effect because of it - particularly ideal for water effects in painting). He painted the sky, then the waterfall and pool below it, then the rocks, then added trees and bushes. But as I watched him, the thought came to me as to how I wanted to paint it, and what I wanted to add to the painting.......

So, here's my version of it, with my creative input. I painted the sky at night, and added a large moon. I painted the waterfall, and kept the colours of the pool dark, the reflected moonlight showing in the ripples of the water. This meant most of the rocks would be kept dark as the pale moonlight wouldn't highlight them, and the trees were kept dark too. But then, I needed a focal point to add interest to the painting....... and the obvious thing to me would be a unicorn, standing there pale and mysterious in the moonlight. And that was when the title of the painting came to me - "Moonstruck"! Yay, I like that, it summed the whole thing up for me. And the lovely thing about it, was that there were a lot of other people there on the workshop and everyone who stood and looked at my painting smiled broadly and said "Oh, how lovely, a unicorn!" and one person even asked me if unicorns had ever actually existed, which I thought was a lovely idea......

And then the tutor saw it, and said "Oh, Pegasus" and I explained, that no, it wasn't! Pegasus is a horse with wings, this is a unicorn, different thing altogether!

But after the workshop I had a chat with the tutor, and by then I'd seen more of his work, and realised that he was actually a very accomplished artist, who might be turning out cloned paintings for the demonstration, but was very talented in his own right with what else he could paint. I was impressed! I told him that I'm an erotic artist, and he was immediately interested in that (why am I not surprised!!!) and said he'd look at my website. I told him that normally I would be adding a naked woman or erotic couple to the type of paintings he produced, and infact want to do that at some point, there's something very erotic about waterfalls somehow. I don't know why, they just are!

And, then he showed me some more of his art and it turned out that he liked erotic art too! But was concerned that on the level he works at, that he might get complaints if he showed paintings like that.

So, I came home a very happy bunny, I'd produced a dramatic and mystical painting I was really happy with.

I'd got friends coming for dinner three hours after I got back from the workshop. And it struck me, as I chopped onions, added them to the frying pan, chose my herbs and spices, peeled mushrooms, added tomato puree, and all the delicious aromas fused together, that cooking is all part of the creative process for me too. It's a very pleasurable, sensual experience for me. My friends obviously thought so too - since they commented on how nice it all was, and wanted seconds!

So, I just need to find someone who wants to buy a unicorn painting now....................

Monday, 10 March 2008

The story so far

It seems that if I'm not being creative painting a picture, I'm being creative putting words together to describe how I'm creative with producing my artwork. So, since I've finished the erotic landscape now, I've been busy over the weekend thinking about what I'm going to write about myself for a new book I'm going to be featured in, along with other artists. What to put in, what to leave out. What's going to be interesting for people to read. How to keep it succinct and informative. How to describe my creativity, which paintings to feature that show my versatility and subject matter. I have to consider how my feature will compare with the other featured artists and try and get my personality across within the words. Mmmm...... So, how do I identify myself, and describe my journey so far, what inspires me, what I paint and why I paint it, the way I paint it, any funny stories I have connected with it and what I think may be interesting for others to read. I'm not sure exactly how much of being a professional artist is down to painting, and hopefully selling my art, and how much is actually down to promoting myself, so that I can sell my art. Each needs the other and works in conjunction with the other. I need to think which avenues to choose that promote me in the best way I want to be promoted. But I think this particular book will be very helpful in doing just that. But I just need to get the words right.

Thursday, 6 March 2008

Happy blog birthday!

Today is my first blog birthday! Yay!!! A whole year of blogging - Wow! I never realised when I first started how much I would enjoy it and what friends I would make through it.

And what a lovely way to celebrate it by finishing dj kirkby's erotic painting! And she's as delighted with it as much as I am, so that's two of us happy! Its been an interesting way of painting a picture, since all of the planning has been done by email. Its certainly been a very interesting painting to do because I had to first find out exactly what dj kirkby was thinking of when she suggested it, and that took quite a bit of time of emails back and forth as we both asked questions of each other and explored possibilities. Then I drew a few sketches and sent them to her to make sure I understood what she had described to me. She told me her thoughts. More adjustments were made, and I sent her some more detailed drawings. Again, she wanted changes and adjustments, and I found it quite a challenge to do what she had asked, but I worked though it and had a moment of pure creative brilliance (even I was impressed with it!!) and came up with the final design, and even the title for it, all within the space of one evening. Wow! And I know when that happens I'm on the right track, because the creative ideas flow and that means the painting will too. And dj kirkby was delighted with the result too - great stuff! From then, I just had to work out the colours and send her a working painting so she could see the final colours before I actually started the painting itself. And all this took a couple of months, on and off. But then, and only then, I could start the painting. But when I finally started it, I knew exactly how it was going to be laid out, the exact colours, the tones and where they would be, the interest, the artistic tricks that make the painting look interesting and as I painted it, it flowed and I could concentrate on getting the paint down and hopefully making it all pull together as a whole painting. I finished it and send a copy of it to dj kirkby and she requested a couple of final touches, which I did after checking with myself that it would add to the painting and not deter from the overall feel of it. And now its done. Finished. Another WOW! I've sat and looked at it since I've completed it, and would be very happy to have it hanging on my wall. I've put many long hours into it, both in physical design and in mental thought. Does it illustrate that? Yes it does. It's a clever painting. It both looks like an erotic couple AND it looks like a landscape. That's a huge challenge to do, but I've done it! And today's the day it's finished, born on the blog, and finished on my blog birthday! A good sign!

And cos I'm in a good mood, and I'm sure dj kirkby won't mind, I'll show you a few bits of it. You'll have to wait a while til I'll show you the whole thing, cos it was to be a secret until then. But, as a taster, here are a few poignant bits.........

Tuesday, 4 March 2008

White light

Whilst painting dj kirkbys erotic landscape I've been thinking about the use of light and dark in a painting. For me, a painting is far more interesting if it has deep darks and bright lights. But sometimes that can detract from the subject matter, and the painting just becomes a study in sunshine and shadows, and whilst that is exciting, it probably wasn't the best way of painting this particular erotic landscape. So, I needed to work out where the light source is coming from (the sun in this instance) and brighten the parts where the weak sunshine is hiding the geography of the landscape, and darken the weak shadows to create the form of the land. The sky has scudding clouds in it which makes it look more interesting than a flat blueness, and that in itself shows why the sunshine is weak in the painting. So, on to the choice of tonal value, and by definition the bulk of it has to be mid-tones, with just a few bright lights and deep darks to add interest. And that got me on to thinking about the best way to show bright lights in the painting. Because you can't get brighter than the white of the canvas (although I was covering it in paint) so then, you can't get brighter than the white paint you have, but what you can do, to make the light seem lighter than it is, is to darken the colour around it, and by definition the white will seem brighter, will shine and glow more.

And this got me to thinking, along with another conversation with my spiritual healer friend, that life is mostly mid tones, alot of it can be grey and dull coloured, but occasionally we get bursts of colour in our greyness, some bright bold, vibrant and exciting colour that makes us feel good, and whatever those bursts of vibrant colour are depends on the type of person we are, and the way we measure excitement, it could be the joy of seeing a good friend, a special day out, a long awaited holiday, or just a favourite film on the telly. And amongst the mid-tones we also get bursts of bright white light that fills our existence and brings great joy and deep personal fulfilment. But to experience it, we have to have the darks. We might not like the darks. We may not want the darks. We may fear the darks. But... they have to exist. They must. Because without them, the vibrant colours won't be vibrant. And the bright whites can't exist.

So, to follow on with my thoughts on the erotic landscape, have I put enough bright lights in it? Should I put some more in it? And are the darks dark enough? And, as it's mostly a green landscape, should I put a dash of bright red in it? Because red is the exact opposite of green on the colour-wheel, (as green is made of the other primary colours, blue and yellow) and that dash of red will add a huge piquancy to the picture, it will make the overall picture far more vibrant. And that's what we're searching for in life, isn't it?