Saturday, 12 November 2011



Scotland - Highland pass

The Pike, Shelf Moor

Blackden Edge, Edale Moor 

Over Hollingworth Clough-Composition

Over Hollingworth Clough

View to Burnt Hill
The first image, Langdale, came about by my having seen a beautiful Georges Roualt etching at the Hepworth Gallery in Wakefield. Seeing the deep, rich black of the aquatints made me long to have access to etching facilities and make monochrome images with dark, dramatic blacks, as I sometimes managed to do in my Leeds Poly & Chelsea Art school days... experimentation resulted in my using PVA and black powder paint, and has inspired further monochrome pieces. I think that I am beginning to be able to be more expressive in my markmaking.  In the Over Hollingworth Clough Composition, a collage and paint piece, unfinished, based on a painting in situ, I am beginning to move away from a purely representational approach, wanting to emphasise the amazing sculptural, undulating form of this landscape, between Matley Moor & Kinder, which continues to fascinate me - this time of year more than ever as the late afternoon light reveals the form and the gorgeous autumn colours and makes the clefts dark & mysterious.

Sunday, 30 October 2011

Last Sunday at the Barbara Hepworth Gallery in Wakefield with Joy, Paula & Martin - that's them in the huge velvety 'charred' wood Cloud sculpture outside. What a great gallery. I got very excited seeing the sculptures and the work by Hepworth's contemporaries e.g. Terry Frost, Peter Lanyon, Paul Nash etc.,seeing how she made her maquettes & the bronze casting. All v inspiring. Have been doing quite a lot of work this week, leading to stuff I will post soon, my many followers.
Joy (Herman) has just been listed as one of 4 finalists in the New Design Britain Awards (fabrics section)!

Wednesday, 10 August 2011

The first picture is of the peat bogs high above Old Glossop - I think the area is called Harrop Moss. Very eery place. I took the photo I did this from last winter really, but the image is inspiring me at the moment. Its a mixture of paint, tissue collage & torn pieces from monoprinted textures. I often get too bogged down in trying to represent what I am seeing when I'm working from life & my work can be much more creative when I am in my studio, but I would never want to just work from photos - I need to be experiencing the real place - form, light, atmosphere, weather - as often as possible. I've started oil painting from life & think this will free me up (I've been using oil pastels or ink until now). The last two images are from the last few days.
The second image above is another Snowdon one - seeing as some people liked the first one! I'm doing a larger painting on canvas from this series of sketches, so it is kind of current.

Saturday, 25 June 2011

more recent stuff

1. Quarry Coombes Edge - ink & pastel A4
2. Quarry Coombes Edge -  pen & ink wash
3. Lantern Pike - ink
4. Ridge up to Mt Famine - oil paint & collage A2
Recent sketchbook work from early this year and from around April/May. Coombes Edge is very exposed to the wind from the Irish Sea being the first high ridge to the East above the Mcr conurbation, so I wear a very attractive balaclava to keep the hair out of the way. It's  extremely dramatic, with great blocks of stone sometimes looking almost like the Monument Valley formations (my favourite scenery in any Western). In the evening sunlight it's at it's best, when the shadows are stark.
And a paint/collage piece I started last Autumn, the foreground of which I am now re-working. This undulating ridge opposite the Kinder plateau was one of the things that inspired me to use landscape as my subject. I first saw it in the Autumn of 2008 when it was all a velvety rust red & with the broken drystone walls following its curves against the sky, looking like the spine of an African ruminant (a grass/ vegetation eating mammal, Martin) of some kind- a strange landscape- very sculptural.

Friday, 17 June 2011

First post.. what I'm up to at the moment.

The first pic is a stick-on-peel-off stained-glass effect image - a little experiment, based on some sketches of Snowdon (e.g.image 3). The technique was inspired by some of my old prints from my MMU residency days(e.g. image 2, 'Insect Wing'), which were also to be viewed against the light, which were collagraphs printed onto translucent paper. I'm a bit excited about this new technique & have started 2 more. Can't wait to get out into the Wild again though - here's a couple of recent ink sketches from the moors near Kinder, as well.