Last night I delivered a presentation at Macarthur Photographic Society, where I was a member from 1986 – 2014.
As I have for the past few years focused my attention on Painting and Sketching, I was asked if I could deliver a presentation on the similarities and differences between Photography and Painting.
As a foundation for the discussion take was to take place in the second half of the presentation – (after intermission) on the similarities and differences, I spoke about my journey in Photography, and showed some images across Slides, (Film) Monochrome and D
I then explained, ‘why I changed from Photography to Painting’ a few years back, which involved several reasons. (I will post about this at a later date). Following the reasons, I showed examples of my Paintings, two Oil and one Watercolour Line & Wash.
After intermission, I moved onto the similarities, and then the differences between Photography & Painting which brought interesting discussion. Again, I will post about these in a separate post.
I finished the presentation talking about future projects in both Painting and Photography.
As I was compiling the presentation I learnt a lot! It is a fascinating subject and I’m sure I will modify it as time goes on.
Last Sunday, I was one of 30 ‘Creative’s’ that assembled down at the Camden Civic Centre to display our creativity. All manner of arts and crafts were on display.
Japanese Martial Arts
Ho Yee Wong (Jo), the President of the Macarthur Art Group (of which I am a member), asked me if I would promote my ‘Everyday Art Practice’ aka my ‘Watercolour Sketch a Day’? I said I would be glad to.
We were there for 8 hours (and open to the public for 6), and I completed a couple of Watercolour Sketches whilst chatting to interested onlookers.
I asked them whether they practised any form of art and/or craft and often, they would say that ‘they didn’t have time’, or ‘they were not talented enoough.’
Wanting to help them, I advised them that I wasn’t very good drawing as a child, or even up until into my 50’s( all true), however, it is a skill that can be learnt. As far as ‘time’ goes, most people have a certain amount of time that is wasted during our days.
We stand in queue’s or sit at the Mall eating lunch or having a cuppa. There are miniature sketchbooks available and you only need one pen. Instead of pulling out your mobile phone, use your sketchbook. You don’t even have to show it to anybody, it can just be your personal hobby.
The simple of act of sketching takes your mind off other things. It can be the ‘mental break’ that you need when you are trying to solve a problem, when you are stressed out or when you are bored.
Last year, a good friend, business associate and mentor, left for a business trip over to Europe. On her return, She presented me with a gift, a pack of “Amalfi Hand Made Watercolour Paper.” Alison said she saw this paper and thought of me. Thanks, Alison!
I was indeed very grateful as for one, I wasn’t expecting a gift at all and certainly not a pack of fine Italian Watercolour Paper!
Last year was an extremely busy and life-changing year and I struggled (particularly in the latter half of the year) to find, not only quality time but the state I wanted to be in to try the paper.
Today, for my Day 1,431 of a Watercolour Sketch a Day, I thought I would do it. Today, is New Year’s Day Holiday in Australia (as NYD fell on a Sunday), so it seemed like the perfect time to try the paper.
When trying any new paper, I’ve read that it is a great idea to try some small samples so I cut one of the 30cm x 30cm sheets into 6 pieces and I shall use them for my next 6 Watercolour Sketches a Day. This way, I can see how the paper performs, how it takes water and colour etc.
I also thought I would sketch a subject I had done before. It will take time for me to get used to the paper as it is many steps up from what I have been using up till now.
Last weekend on our anniversary celebration, I picked a book at a store in Berrima, N.S.W. called, ‘Six Impossible Things. Last year, I purchased a double-glass inkwell at the store and was delighted to see that they had moved to bigger premises.
Erica owns the store and is very helpful. I picked up a Postal dip pen nib and the book below.
The book seemed way too interesting to leave on the shelf. A few weeks back I was talking to a gallery director in Camden and he gave me a reed and showed me how to cut it so it could be used as a dip pen. Looking at my attempt I think I have more practice ahead of me. Oh well, something is worth doing badly until one becomes better at it.
In my limited look at the book since it appears to go a lot deeper into the technical details of creating such tools. I’m looking forward to exploring it more and having some more Arty fun!
Mostly when I do my Watercolour Sketch a day, I will use Watercolour paper (in a sketchbook), mixed media paper anywhere from 200 gsm to 300 gsm.
Occasionally, I’ll try a different type, and recently, I purchased some plain and some textured Card Stock. I intend to use it mainly for some junk journals I want to make however, today, I decided to use the Card stock in my Watercolour Sketch a day.
I quite like the way the paint moves around the paper. Below is Day 1,368.
Last Saturday, I went on my second Meet of the Urban Sketchers Sydney group. This time, the Meet was held in the grounds between the Sydney Town Hall and St Andrews Cathedral.
The main object of the day was to attempt a sketch of a moving subject, the newly built ‘Sydney Light Rail’, a red and deep grey, modern-style tram.
There were 40 or so Urban Sketchers in attendance and most started with the Light Rail as the subject. Quite a few of us went in the other direction and chose stationary subjects i.e. buildings or parts of buildings. I chose the side entrance/steps to the Sydney Town Hall.
To be honest, I found this subject challenging enough and when it started to rain a little it was even more challenging. After I finished this sketch, I did wander over to the Light Rail and started to sketch it. It was kind of weird how the subject kept disappearing… I didn’t get to finish the sketch at the time but it certainly was an interesting challenge and experience.
We then had the ‘Throw Down’ and once again it was marvellous to see all the different interpretations and styles of those present.
I am so glad that I came across this group on Facebook. Urban Sketchers Sydney is full of friendly and inspirational people and I am looking forward to attending my third Meet in November. I wonder where it will be? 🙂
Last Saturday-week, I went on my first Urban Sketchers Sydney ‘Sketch-meet’. It was held in Surry Hills, literally 5 minutes walk from the southern reaches of the Sydney CBD.
I had joined their Facebook group late last year after it popped up courtesy of Facebook’s algorithm however, life came up in one form or another between then and this month which prevented me from attending the monthly outing.
Sydney turned on some beautiful Winter weather for the day with 19C/66F forecast and predominantly Blue skies. A warmer day than we can usually expect.
I arrived a bit earlier and met up with one of the sketchers, who had already started sketching. As time went by, more and more sketchers turned up until there were approximately 40 people in attendance.
One of the leaders of the day, Julie informed us where the important things were like local amenities, cafes and pointed out buildings and other places of interest that we might like to sketch.
We are then given 2 1/4 hours to sketch/paint and once finished, we all met as a group and enacted a ‘throw down’ as they call it. This is where everyone puts their creations in a group on the ground so that we can all see the different interpretations of the scenes being sketched/painted.
After that, a group photo is taken and posted on the Urban Sketchers Sydney Facebook page.
I chose a subject with too many windows I think and it was certainly a challenge perspective-wise. It certainly was relaxing, sitting there in the glorious sunshine. One of the attractions of sketching is that it is such a meditative experience.
It was a thoroughly enjoyable morning and I am looking forward to the next one!
Thank you Urban Sketchers Sydney for a great Sketch-meet!
A little while ago I stumbled across a ‘Watercolour Canvas’ product in Spotlight, a material and craft store in my local area. Not that I’m all that experienced in Art but I didn’t know there was such a thing called Watercolour canvas. I thought canvas was for mediums other than Watercolour.
It is made by a business called ‘Semco’ and although it is branded ‘Artist Quality’ I’m not sure you would class it as such bearing in mind where it is being sold, the minimal cost and the fact that the term, ‘Artist Quality’ seems to get put on a lot of materials regardless of whether it is or isn’t ‘Artist Quality’. It comes in a range of sizes just like normal canvas and is available in a board or in stretched form.
My first attempt on a board is below, an image using a reference photo I took on our third trip to Norfolk Island, earlier this year. I did a light sketch of the image in pencil, then sketched over the pencil with pigment liners then started painting. The paint sticks sometimes and glides across other times and I used about 3-4 layers in some areas.
I particularly liked the painting in weathered boat areas.
My second attempt on the board is below, a rather simpler, straight Watercolour image. Painting the ocean was particularly challenging as the paint hardly seem to stick to the canvas with the first attempt to apply paint. After letting it dry, I applied more paint and the original paint seemed to get disturbed so, in the end, I used less water and a bit more paint and painted very lightly.
I have a few more boards left and look forward to experimenting with them, though I might apply some Gesso first to see what that does. I also have a couple of stretched Watercolour canvas 8×10’s here, one of which I’m experimenting with.
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