A secular icon. Queen of Hearts. Acrylics on Arches paper. 24cm x 34cm. Framed
I’ve been doing a lot of ‘en plein air’ painting recently. There’s no doubt about it -it’s a beneficial exercise. Painting outdoors and in public hones your drawing and painting skills -and frankly; gets you noticed. The weather has finally settled into something like a summer and it’s good to get out and about.
I also enjoy talking to passers-by. I’ve never really had anybody cause problems although I know an artist who has had one twit get all aerated because he thought he was in the painting and managed to convince a guard (a second twit) to move the painter along. What an absolute pair of berks.
I’ve just had a relatively easy week, though. I’ve been at the fantastic Cill Rialaig Artists’ Retreat and had the time and freedom to explore the gorgeous county around South Kerry.
Anyway; I teach this stuff and if you want to have a go, have a look at my teaching web site, www.McSherryStudio.com
|A Brunaille: technique of making a warm, monochrome underpainting|
If you want to try out this technique of making a warm, monochrome underpainting at next week’s class, you will need the following tubes of ACRYLIC paint:
Flesh Tint (Winsor & Newton) or Warm Bright Yellow (Sennelier)
This technique provides you with a great big safety net for you when you get to the point of adding colour by glazing -and the results can be beautifully rich and lustrous. I often use this method in my hand painted illustrations as I can get the whole work planned out in monochrome before committing to colour. In the image above, I didn’t even glaze colour and left the brunaille as it was -I thought colour would detract from this one. If you’d like me to hold a demonstration in your area, why not drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org?
Brunaille: Underpainting in warm monochrome.
Grisaille: Underpainting in cool monochrome.
|The Terenure Dirigibles. Oils on canvas 10″ x 12″|
Somebody told me recently, that before the rise of the GAA, cricket was the most popular sport in Ireland. Interesting. I was never that interested in cricket. I could never understand why people got excited by such a ponderous game. I much preferred football and as a child, always dreamt of scoring the winning goal for Manchester United or Chelsea; I can’t remember which.
Meandering about a field on the off-chance that a very lethal ball might fly your way sometime in the next week just didn’t do it for me. However, now I’ve gotten older, I can see the attraction more and I wouldn’t mind standing on a grassy surface for a few hours -and then retiring to a clubhouse for a beer. Or I could just go for a beer.
I don’t single out cricket for a mild ribbing due to any particular dislike; I see all sports the same way. I realise that this is probably why I’m shunned by society; it’s hard to be with a crowd of Jeremy Clarksons in a pub and have to ask them which sport they’re talking about, about an hour into the conversation.
“Huzzah for Terenure,
O land of beige and taupe,
Our genetic ability for dirigibility,
And hiding our money ‘neath the soap”
Sport always generates an inordinate amount of seriousness, and a serious amount of hot air. It’s worse than art. Many people seem to have an almost religious observance of the details and forms of sport. And an unlimited capacity for reeling out sporting anecdotes about events dating back to the 12th Century.
Mostly, though, the media and advertising seems to be pathetically obsessed with sport and what it thinks it’ll do for sales figures -hence, those fantastically overwrought TV introductions to sporting events that scream excitement, excitement, excitement! Then they get some elite sports star, who’s the personification of derring-do on the field of play, to endorse a product, only to have them drone through their script in a monotone, passionless manner. God knows how they think this will help them link sporting élan to car insurance or National Cement in the minds of the public. I always think of the poor creative directors of many of these ads whose dreams are broken on the wheel of sports-star dullness. It always makes me smile. Thank you sport, for making me smile.
The above painting will be showing in Terenure Sports Club’s Culture Night event on Friday 18th September. That’s this Friday, folks.
I must confess that I’ve never worked through the night; never worked late shifts. I’ve always managed to avoid them, even when it looked like shift work would come in in one of the printing jobs I had when I worked in that trade. So it was with hesitation that I accepted the task of a painting project in the Guinness Storehouse Gravity Bar which had only very limited times when the work could be done – from 7pm to the following 9am.
A few weeks ago, the Irish Times published their annual Christmas gifts supplement. They had contacted me previously about my web site, www.irishdailypaintings.com where I sell my small oils painting studies, with a suggestion to insert an article on it.
In my on-going quest to rediscover the pleasure of just painting, I blundered upon a large and growing internet-based art movement; Daily Painting. Apparently only going since 2006 as a informal, blog-based idea, it works on several levels. It’s an education to see other artists’ set-ups, thoughts and working practices -often along with step-by-step demonstrations and explanations of techniques.