This blog is moving!
At last I have discovered a way to have my website and blog all in one place.
So from now on all new blog posts will be on my new website.
I'm still writing about the same sort of things, and you can still find the old posts on this page.

Friday, 29 April 2016

Painting in Comfort.

Over the years I've had so many different set ups for painting, most dictated by space and available equipment, and now I'm beginning to think I must prioritise comfort over almost anything else.

Friday, 22 April 2016

Painting the Modern Garden at the Royal Academy. A Personal View.

Last week my friend Jean and I got the train to London to see Painting the Modern Garden, Monet to Matisse, at the Royal Academy.
It was a bit of a jolly really, nice journey, and out and about in London on a fine spring day.
I've been to many exhibitions at the Royal Academy, and when I come to think of it a lot of them have involved the Impressionists.
This was a big hitting exhibition and it was PACKED. Even at 5 o'clock in the afternoon.

These are my thoughts.

  • It was too crowded. I am being selfish here, but it was difficult to get around.
  • I never take the audio guide of an exhibition because after all it's a visual experience and I think someone talking about it detracts. I found the signage and explanations on the wall very useful though.
  • What a lot of painters I don't know about! I've only just discovered Joaquin Sorolla through his seaside paintings and there he is painting beautifully lit gardens. And I'd never heard of Santiago Rusinol. Why not?
  • The images I came away with in my head were of large paintings of flowers and foliage set against walls painted a hot rust colour. Artworks of passion and inaccuracy and colour that just leapt out at you. 
  • The obsession that some of these painters had for their gardens was all consuming. Did you know at one time Monet employed 10 full time gardeners at Giverny? 
  • I'm glad I bought the book. One visit isn't long enough to see everything. You need two or three visits, but failing that the book will do.
We came home after a nice bite of supper in an eatery at St. Pancreas, tired but happy! Great day out.

Friday, 15 April 2016

What a Great Time to be Alive!

What a great time it is to be alive as an artist!

Don't you think so?

In the UK we live in a stable society where you can make your living at anything without fear or hindrance providing you have the skills or are willing to learn them. Women are no longer tied to the kitchen sink, barefoot and pregnant. We have a lot to be grateful for!

We live in a time of technological advances which translates itself into a wide range of art materials being available that are easy to use and relatively cheap. It's no longer charcoal from the fire and pigments you grind yourself, but tubes and pots of glorious colour that react to soaring inspiration. What would Rembrandt have made of acrylic paints? or a Sharpie pen for that matter?

The great thing about the internet age is that knowledge is freely available, from drawing classes in the old fashioned way to how to cast in bronze. Of course nothing beats an art school education with constant practice and production of work, but for those who don't go down that route YouTube is wonderful. I cannot count the  hours I have  spent in research! Of course there are many other sites. Just type in "how to draw" in a search bar and there it all blossoms. 505,000,000 results!, and that's in 0.9 of a second.

I am old enough to remember the days before the internet. Everything had to be done through the post, packets of photographs or slides and when you took a photo you didn't know how it would turn out until you'd paid good money for the printed image. Now it's quicker, cheaper and you have control, and can share your art with many people via the internet, from individuals to institutions.

And it's this ability to share that is the most magnificent thing. As an artist you can reach collectors or people just plain interested in art. From facebook to Artfinder, contacting galleries , getting funding can all be done from the comfort of your kitchen table. It is the gateway to proper interaction and sometimes a substitute. You have a ready made personal gallery in your website.  And yes, you can see every one else's work too!
Mary Kemp.
Hunstanton Beach.

Oh yes. It's a great time to be alive! Don't you think so?

Friday, 8 April 2016

Colour Shapers for Oil Paints.

You know me. Always searching for the ultimate in materials, the ideal way to translate my vision onto the canvas, quickly, easily, no fuss.