Wednesday, 25 March 2020

A Weekend in Amsterdam, 2001

A set of articles covering our long weekend trip to Amsterdam with Leger Coaches in 2001.

Each article can be accessed by clicking/tapping the six photos below. A link on each page will bring you back here.

Saturday, 14 March 2020

Colour Artworks Nov 2019 - Mar 2020

Winter in Burke Towers usually involves a degree of self-isolation even without any incentive from virus bugs. And whilst I've recently spent a lot of time trying to sort out my music collection, I have on occasion got out paints or crayons of one sort or another to have a dabble at some artwork.

I spent several days coming back to this one, which I finished on 15 November 2019. Clematis Cottage in Selworthy a few miles from Minehead, Somerset. It is a watercolour. Whenever I have paintings framed I use the same framer and he commented that he preferred my watercolours to the oil pastels as they had better detail. From my own point of view, it is much easier to mix colours in watercolour too. But because they are transparent, any mistakes usually have to be lived with as they are next to impossible to cover up!

30 November 2019, I was sitting half hypnotised by photos just flashing on and off on my screensaver one day and a photograph of Bourton-on-the-Water woke me up with the realisation that it might make a good subject for a sketch. I did this over the course of the day - around five to six hours in all. Coloured pencils in the A4 sketch book and it was done without any prior pencil sketching. A first...

This was done on Christmas Eve, again in five to six hours. This time the inspiration was a photo found on the Internet of Lake Halstatt, Austria. I used pastel pencils for this one and once more just got on with it without any pencil work beforehand.

I've had it in mind to attempt this view ever since I took a photo from this viewpoint in Portofino, Italy in September last year. Recently I found a 9x7 inch pad of watercolour paper that had remained untouched since the house move a year ago and did this at my desk, using a desktop easel that marked its own first use. A slightly different technique than my usual dabbing style and whilst it found favour with viewers on FaceBook, I might still try another version either in another medium or with my usual watercolour technique and on larger paper at some point in the future.

That brings us up to just a couple of days ago so until I splash or spread a bit more colour or pencil over a bit of paper, I hope you enjoyed looking at these and bye for now.

Sketching and Artwork Index

Monday, 20 January 2020

Sunset of Note

I think just about everywhere in the UK had a brilliant sunset last night, because FaceBook was full of photos of it.

Anyway, here's mine, taken from Poulton-le-Fylde, Lancashire!

Sunday, 19 January 2020

Performing Solo

It's January and there's never much for me to write about until the weather improves and I can get outside and hold a camera without shivering too much...

However, just to catch up on one of the few events since my last missive way back in 2019, a few photos from 16 December 2019 when I performed a solo entertainment for the members of the Over Wyre Social and Activity Club's Christmas Party event.

This was at the request of one of the club's founders, who I first met one or two years ago when we were eleven years old.

She can remember me playing and singing when hair still graced my head... I've been taking my Mum to the club which meets once a month and was asked if I would play for the Christmas party. It's a long while since I've done a show on my lonesome apart from the odd couple of songs a night with friends Tomas and Maris on cruise ships. Certainly neither Jan (the friend) nor Mum (the er… maternal parent...) had seen me do anything like this for several decades.

But it was good fun and I made sure the party-goers had a good time and chose songs that they could join in with.

And to finish with I turned to the keyboard to play a gentle version of White Christmas. Bing would have been proud! Thanks to Jan and to the members of the club for their welcome and generous applause and praise.