Search This Blog

Friday, 30 October 2009

Mini progress on Hurrican portrait

Zoomed in and cropped: due to the size of the piece this is all my scanner could cope with (sadly all I could get done this week)
I did however finish another Christmas commission, sort out paperwork and miscellaneous data before the school break next week, so all in all it has been a successful and busy week.

Hurricane is coming along smoothly (if still a little bit bland and without much muscle shape.) This is has all been rendered in light layers of 2B on Mellotex paper.

Must admit to wondering if I have not bitten off (size-wise) more than I can chew draw...
One thing for sure: there's nothing like a new challenge and pushed boundaries to keep an artist on hers toes...
Thanks for popping by. Have a great week-end.

Monday, 26 October 2009

A horse, a horse yet another horse...

Have you all started thinking of Christmas and tackling it's yearly challenges?
Affirmative at this end.
Christmas commissions: the challenge facing Black on Grey on White.
Keeping the surprise intact implies keeping the image and drawing hidden and therefore depriving my blog of a substantial amount of material.

To counter this, I have started a large new piece (26x61cm = 10"x24").
A "full frontal" view.
My targeted subject Hurrican.
In August I was granted a private photo session with this gem of an equine(big thank you to the Warendorf National Stud) .
150 frames to work from . Really can't help thinking this is the first in many Hurrican portraits.
Work will be done in-between commissions.
Slow progress a certainty.
Updates a promise.
Until then, feel free to get know this big chap: he has his own website.
It's in German but a horse is a horse...right?

Wednesday, 21 October 2009

Mathieu Kessels: le Deluge.

One of my vivid summer memories comes in form of a neoclassical sculpture.
Discreetly posed ( in Brussels' Royal Art Museum) between Jacques Louis David's Death of Marat and the grandiose works of Rubens, "Le Deluge", by Matthieu Kessels, stopped me in my tracks.
Hypnotised, I circled this work of art.
Encompassing every detailed fold, hair and muscle.
Desperately trying not to intrude on the intimate pain so present.
Unable to look away.
A sculpture so powerful and beautiful its image burned my memory .
The strong balanced composition, the fluidity of the lines, the interwoven movement, the raw pain, the simple drama all quite simply... set in stone.

Mathieu Kessels was born in Maastricht on the 20 May 1784, he died in Rome in on the 3rd of March 1836. A sculptor with a low profile but incredibly hypnotic works.

(b Maastricht, 20 May 1784; d Rome, 3 March 1836). Flemish sculptor. He gave up his apprenticeship as a goldsmith in Venlo to attend the Ecole des Beaux-Arts in Paris. He then went to Hamburg and subsequently stayed in St Petersburg between 1806 and 1814, where he probably trained with the Antwerp sculptor Joseph Camberlain (1756-1821). In 1814 he returned to the Low Countries and spent several months at Anne-Louis Girodet's studio in Paris, where he exhibited at the Salon of 1819. In the same year he went to Rome, where his terracotta St Sebastian Martyr (sketch in Brussels, Mus. A. Mod.) won the first prize in a competition organized by Antonio Canova. During this period he began working in the studio of Bertel Thorvaldsen, whose pupil and assistant he became. From the beginning of the 1820s in his numerous variations on the theme of the Diskobolos (plaster; examples in Brussels, Mus. A. Mod.), Kessels demonstrated his devotion to Classical and Hellenistic sculpture as interpreted by Thorvaldsen according to the doctrines of Johann Joachim Winckelmann. Among his numerous classically minded patrons was William Spencer Cavendish, 6th Duke of Devonshire, who commissioned two marble bas-reliefs, Day and Night (1819), and Diskobolos Preparing to Throw (1828; all Chatsworth, Derbys). In the late 1820s Kessels renounced the pure classicism of Thorvaldsen in favour of the more seductive style of Canova and the pathos of the Italian Baroque, as in his monument to the Comtesse de Celles (marble, 1828; Rome, S Giuliano dei Belgi). The romantic emphasis of his Flood Scene (plaster, c. 1833; Brussels, Mus. A. Mod.) differentiates it from the works of his last period, which are imbued with religious sentimentality. In Rome Kessels taught the Liege sculptors Louis Jehotte (c. 1803-84) and Eugene Simonis, who exerted an influence through their teaching at the Academie Royale des Beaux-Arts in Brussels. On Kessels's death his studio, having been inventoried by Thorvaldsen, was acquired by the Belgian government and transferred to the Musee d'Art Moderne, Brussels.
Photos by Brett

Thursday, 15 October 2009

New cold weather look.

An early morning -3 Celsius saw hats and scarves flying and a grumpy mum clearing frosted car windows.
Autumn has packed its bags and opened the door to winter...a whole month too early.
I so disagree and am thinking up ways of coaxing it back for a few more weeks ...
Should I come up with no plans: at least Jess is ready and waiting!

p.s: Jess was dressed with the scarf by our youngest. She was worried the wee "fluff ball" might catch cold... All I could do was catch my camera and try to avoid giggle shakes while shooting...

Friday, 9 October 2009

Trying to define art...

Every now and then I take the time to "flick" through the posts of my blog.
I enjoy remembering, pondering and through it find inspiration.

This one the posts that got me rethinking and for once agreeing with myself.

My small attempt at answering the massive question:

What is Art?

What is art?

This must be one of the most controversial and complex questions to answer.
Controversial in its subjectivity and complex if only by the number of art forms there are.
This actually means answers (usually long and longer) can be given at so many different levels and in no definite way.
Having said this, answers have been given and in quite a large way.
So why ask I hear you think.
Well, I believe it is an important question for every artist to think about at least once and to attempt to give a coherent answer.

So I will put my thinking cap on and probably bore you all to tears.

OK here goes.
If you don't want to read any further you could always check out the wikipedia, free encyclopedia for their definition and answer to Art.

A spontaneous answer would be the classic: "it's a fantastic means of expression". How shallow is that?

Start again.
Art, is something comes straight from the heart.
It is something which comes alive without boundaries. making it unlimited.
Art is something that takes your mind places, your heart places.
In my case it has been a steady discovery of myself, a wonderful way of facing fear and dealing with life. A reason for stepping up to reality.
Art is the reward for patience, deep emotion and gritty determination.
Art causes the viewer to react, to feel, to think.
It connects with the viewer and becomes something that you (the viewer) cannot take your eyes off. Something that stays anchored in ones memory.
Great art stirs thought and something very deep within.
There is something intangible that makes it special and at the end of the day it really boils down to what we like.

Have I come any closer to answering the question of what makes art art? Maybe not but one thing for sure is that I have been pondering about the answer for days now. Focusing on making some kind of sense of the ramifications the question has lead to.
The nice thing is that there is no wrong answer and I feel as though have dotted my I' and crossed my T's.

Back to the drawing board to let loose some of that gritty determination...
Have a great week-end.

Tuesday, 6 October 2009

"Legacy" featured in Alyson Stanfield's Artbizblog.

Boasting yet another great big proud smile: Legacy is featured on Alyson Stanfield's Artbiz blog and in her Art Marketing Action newsletter.
Thank you very much for the honour and the real-time fab feeling.

Alyson is an artist advocate, an approachable art-marketing consultant and the author of the successful ( in my case well-read and earmarked) "I'd rather be in the studio".
(If you don't have a copy. Easy fix: available directly through or Amazon. I doubt any artist in possession of this "must" will willingly sell their copy !)

When you have a moment (and if you haven't done so already) check out Alyson's blog here
Highly recommendable.