Saturday, January 29, 2011

The Four Seasons Winter Exhibition at the Hornbeam.

I have started putting up the second part of my Four seasons exhibitions at the Hornbeam this week. The Season being Winter this time.
There are two paintings downstairs," Snow Falls into Silence" and" Winters Morning Dawns Clear and Calm". These are acrylics of winter landscapes, the colouring has a touch of an imaginary world, snow flakes fall down and glitter highlights one piece.

Upstairs there is part of a series of photographs Into The Storm, from one part of my journey from London to Shropshire during the extreme winter weather we had, the weekend of the 17th December.
The photographs show the approach of an impending storm, where the clouds turn bruised and black. As the train goes into the storm, snow starts to fall and the landscape closes down eventually to white. As we pass on in the train we gradually emerge into sunshine, snow and blue skies.

It was something quite spectacular and riding in the train made me conscious of the power of the elements around me. The storm seems to have been some sort of premonition too, the great little railway I was travelling with, Wrexham and Shropshire, has just closed unfortunately.
It seems it is very difficult to compete with the likes of Virgin.

I will be putting up some larger photographs from the journey shortly to complete the exhibition which is on till the end of March.
The Hornbeam is open Wednesday to Saturday and serves drinks and great vegetarian food.
458 Hoe street E17 9AH Tel 0208 558 6880 Hornbeam's website here

Pelicans and people at St James's Park

I was walking in St James's Park last week and was pleased to see the pelicans near the path. I hadn't been that near to them before and was surprised as I came near to see that one of the pelican's was allowing people to stroke its head.

I took photos of the swans and pelicans and also tentatively stroked the head and neck of the nearest pelican. The feathers were soft and cool, longer feathers on it's crown and I gently stoked down to its wing and then scratched around it's neck.
It was a privilege to be this close and stroking the bird and other visitors who were brave enough, were also enjoying stroking the one pelican who seemed happy for us to do it.
The sun was shining even though it was cold and there were quite a few people in the park.
As I walked on further one man was taking his ferrets out for a walk and also showing them to others who were interested. Two men were boxing, training near the cafe and joggers were running past.
I was pleased to think there were all these different people, birds and animals,( squirrels were also out in force, taking nuts and food from visitors,) sharing the park happily, I was left with an optimistic feeling for the day.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Light Bite Fridge magnets

Alban has been organising another exhibition of miniature magnetic art works,( fridge magnets) as part of Nottingham's Light Night Event. There looks like a lot of good events on if you are near the Nottingham area. info about Light Night Events here
I really like his idea of leaving the fridge magnets around on the street for passers by to pick up and have joined in when I can. Alban's blogspot with info about the exhibition and previous fridge magnet events is here

I'm one of the featured artists this time, 5 photos on the light theme, taken around London during the Festive season.
My images/magnets here.

All the artists work here

Saturday, January 15, 2011

London Ice Sculpting Festival

I visited the London Ice Sculpting Festival info here, today at Canary Wharf, where there were a number of international teams carving their sculptures from blocks of ice.

They were having problems this year as the weather has turned much milder and with all the recent rain, sculptures that had been made yesterday had already melted. Today they were dripping and shiny with slick ice as fast as they were being carved.

There is something quite magical about ice, the way the light shines through it and the contrast of smooth and sharp edges. Though the ice sculptures always seem strange to me surrounded by all the office tower blocks of Canary Wharf.

I liked the London landmarks the Dutch team were sculpting, including Big Ben and Tower Bridge and the lion the African team were carving. Chainsaws were being wielded and sprays of ice shooting out everywhere.

People were queuing to take part in a masterclass and have a go at ice carving themselves, and plenty of children were around enjoying the sights and having a go at the carving.

Tuesday, January 04, 2011

Drawing in the British Museum.

I've just been going through my sketch books looking at the drawings I made at my class in the British Museum last term.
It was good to spend a bit more time in the different galleries again and to be with a group of great people. I had to get used to the dozens of people looking over my shoulder again, making comments to each other about the work and being photographed!. It didn't take me too long though.
the class was caught by the tube strikes, for me anyway, I didn't try to get in on those days knowing how chaotic it would be on all the transport systems.

I enjoyed the European galleries, the Asian galleries and back to the Elgin Marbles where I had been in previous classes some years ago. We are planning to meet up again as a class regularly which I am very pleased about as good intentions to go back to draw are helped along by having a focus or opportunity.