Mixed- Media and Acrylic on Canvas, 91 x 72.5 cm, 2019
This Mixed-Media piece is part of personally exciting new series of works that I have started. It was made using Acrylic Paint applied over a collage of travelling paraphernalia glued on Canvas. The collaged maps, leaflets, tickets, receipts and other things are all items that my wife and I used whilst visiting Australia in December 2018. This is an idea I have had for a while as whenever my wife and I travel I always draw and paint wherever we go, but the time constraints don’t always allow for me to do everything that I would like to. I also take many photos and collect a lot of local maps and information that we use to help us decide what to do whilst in a new place and I have been thinking for a while that I would like to use these items to create some collage pieces. I feel that these items are very personally related to my wife and I and the places we travel to as we have used then many times during each day we are there. I like this close level of relationship with my materials as I feel it adds another level both visually and emotionally to my artwork. My plan with this series is to first collage different materials onto a stretched canvas and then draw and paint images that I found interesting from the places we visited over the top of them. I feel this adds another level to the visual outcome of the piece and has also opened up new avenues and possibilities of future works for me to explore.
I chose to paint a kangaroo on this piece as, during our visit, my wife and I visited a Koala and Kangaroo sanctuary giving us the chance to get an up close experience with these fascinating animals that I find very interesting. They truly are a marvel of evolution.
Acrylic and Ink on 300gsm Paper, 27 x 37.5 cm, 2018-19
This Mixed-Media Ink and Acrylic Paint on High Quality 300 gsm Paper painting was done “ en plein air” from the balcony of my apartment in Taipei City, Taiwan. It is a view into one of the small alleys that surround my apartment building. I have painted this scene once before at night in a piece called “Evening Shadows, Taipei City” and really like the different colours and types of shadows that the buildings and light create. This piece was drawn and painted over a few early mornings (when the weather was right) from between 7 am-11 am as I wanted to capture the soft and hazy light at this time. The soft blurred effect was created by delicately overlaying and adding thin layers of transparent Acrylic paint on top of each other, and I purposely refrained from adding an extra layer of Ink over the top or defining the edges of the shapes too heavily to maintain this effect.
Acrylic and Ink on 300 gsm Paper, 27 x 37.5 cm, 2019
This is a dragon from the same Temple in San Chong, New Taipei City,that I have drawn in Ink before. All of the Temples in Taiwan have such beautifully coloured intricate tile and mosaic sculptures that I always want to add colour to these pictures. This piece was originally drawn from life in Ink and then I added colour in my Studio using thin layers of Acrylic Paint. After this I returned to the scene to add the final layers of Ink to the piece. As with any drawing “en plein air” the changing weather and light are always added challenges to accurately catching a likeness to a scene, and this one was no exception as the beautiful colours of this Temple glow and shine differently all throughout the day! This is another aspect of working from life that I find challenging and as I draw I will try to take photos and capture these different effects of light so that I can reference them when adding colour.
Acrylic and Ink on 300 gsm Paper, 37.5 x 27 cm, 2018-19
This picture was originally intended to be a Mixed-Media Acrylic and Ink picture of this beautiful Temple in San Chong, New Taipei City, Taiwan. I found this Temple whilst on a break from Substitute Teaching English in the area, when I would walk around the alleys trying to find interesting drawing locations. I had already drawn it numerous times using Ink on Brown Paper, but also wanted to do a mixed-media picture of it. When I had the chance to return to the area in December 2018 they had erected the lantern filled tent in front of it. As I only return to the area when needed as a Substitute teacher I decided to begin the drawing but left the tent frame area blank, as I assumed when I returned the following month it would be gone. When I returned the frame was still there so I decided to include it in the picture. Fortunately, this Temple is opposite a Hi-Life convenience store, so I could sit in a chair inside the store whilst drawing (if there is an available seat!). On the second day I was drawing this scene, a blue truck parked opposite me in front of the Temple. These blue trucks are used for a multitude of things in Taiwan from the traditional to food and drink trucks, but this was the first time I’d ever seen one used as a mobile Sandal Shop. When drawing from life I sometimes omit details or change positions of things if I want to focus on something particular, but since I’ve been trying to loosen up my drawing style using this particular type of Ink pen I have started to try to include as many elements of the real actual scene as possible. This thinking made me include the blue truck as I think it is a very real portrayal of everyday life in Taiwan and the ingenuity of some local people as they try to make a living. So, after two days of drawing the scene in Ink I added thin layers of Acrylic colour at home in my studio. After this I returned to the scene to finish the piece with more Ink over the top to define it. It is quite a slow time consuming process but I like the effect of the two mediums together and I can gradually build up the layers of the picture.
This Oil Pastel on Black Paper drawing was done during a trip to the beautiful Hakodate area of Hokkaido, Japan. My wife and I hiked up to this viewpoint and stayed from afternoon to the evening to see the sunset. I drew this piece “en plein air” and it is a view of the special landscape that is surrounded on both sides by ocean. It is very beautiful at any time of the day! I tried to use Oil Pastels to capture the view more expressively without so much concern for realistic details, just suggestions of forms. As I drew the sun was setting and I added the warm colours that were illuminating the city from behind our viewpoint.
This Oil Pastel on Black Paper drawing was done during a family trip to the beautiful Green Bay area of Taiwan. As I drew this piece “en plein air” my nephew, great niece and great nephew were also drawing together with me. It was a very special experience to have them along side me as I drew.
This Oil Pastel on Brown Paper drawing is the last of a series of pictures done whilst visiting Queensland, Australia during December 2018. This series was completed at the very beautiful Surfer’s Paradise on the Gold Coast during December 2018. As an Englishman, the Australian Christmas weather has always amazed me because it is Summer and the hottest season, which is very different to an English Christmas! These pictures were done from our room in the 21stFloor of the Mantra on View Hotel, where we were very lucky to have a beautiful elevated view of the coastline and city. I prefer to work outside if I can, but the sun and heat were too strong to allow this, so I worked from indoors. (Finally, after to many cases of heatstroke I am learning!) I like to draw and paint all subjects, but the Ocean is a challenge of its own as it is constantly moving in different ways and the colours are affected by the weather. It is always a fun challenge! In this picture I wanted to emphasize the shadows cast by the large hot sun.