April is always a month with great contrasts. These are often reflected in changes in the light within the landscape, as spring develops and the days get longer. When this contrast in nature reaches a kind of peak – with rain and sun, bright light and dark skies – something magical emerges in the form of the multi-coloured rainbow. I never cease to be excited when they appear, wondering at their luminosity and beauty, in the sky and through a prism onto the wall.
April has seen a hive of contrasting activities inside Studio Hundy as well. The Chinese ink picture came back from the framers, completing the series of artworks for the exhibition.
So I have turned to those final preparations – the labels for the 17 artworks, listing, pricing, sorting out insurance and making a comments book. Oh yes, and with a bit of wishful thinking in mind, getting hold of some red dots!!
There has also been time to be “the Artist outside Studio Hundy” enjoying the unfolding of nature in the garden. Watching fritillary nodding their heads in the breeze, celebrating the pulsatilla that has not flowered for 2 years coming into blossom and listening to the song of the wren that has taken up residence in one of last year’s swallow nest.
Willow-leaved Pear in blossom
Primula’s by the pond
Pulmonaria and Anemone in flower
Only a few days now before we pack the car and head up to Aberdeen to hang the pictures in the Foyer gallery in Newton Dee – Exhibition in 2017
Just 3 weeks to go before setting up the exhibition in Aberdeen (Exhibition in 2017). So today I thought it would be good to check how I am going to approach the “picture transport challenge”. Yes, after the recent “paper roll challenge” this proved to be a lot trickier!!
I decided it would be best not to stack 17 layers of glass on glass, however well padded, but rather to see if my portfolio and picture stand from Studio Hundy would fit into the back of the car.
The measurements indicated it would be a very tight fit, but I wanted to avoid dismantling the frame and reassembling it in situ inside the car. After various attempts, the stand decided to loosen itself and ……… hey presto ……. the solution; once it had concertinaed it fitted and could be brought back to a snug fit floor to ceiling.
One final picture to complete for the Exhibition. This is a large elongated landscape using Chinese brushes and ink. So today I have had the “paper roll challenge“! Yes some paper can be very difficult to handle and a large roll (1m wide and 10m long) is such a case in point.
However the paper challenge is small in comparison with the painting itself!! I have 6 or 7 versions of this painting already and each one just does not quite make the mark.
I am attempting to capture the simplest of “motifs” of the local Borders landscape using a range of different size Chinese brushes. I now know why it takes years to become a master of this technique. It is like a meditation. You have to prepare yourself before you commit the brush to paper; a kind of inner calm with resolve. There is no re-working possible. It is all in the spontaneous moment the brush glides across the paper and makes its mark.
Perhaps I should take note of the message above the roof light ……………. or our cat Horace’s approach to life in the summer in the hammock!
I’m in the final stages of preparation for a Solo exhibition of my artwork during the month of May. The show will be in the Foyer Gallery at the Phoenix Community Centre in Newton Dee Camphill Community, Bieldside, ABERDEEN AB15 9DX.
The theme of this exhibition is the transformation of landscape through the artistic process. Changes from the naturalistic to the expressionistic Exhibition in 2017.
For many years I dreamt about having my own studio in the garden. In 2011 I was gifted some money and I did a lot of searching to find the best space for me and the location. Finally I started the build with help from my friend John, a local wood sculptor.
Studio build 2012
Studio Hundy was completed in 2012, so called because of its proximity to Hundy Mundy Folly here in the Scottish Borders.
It is north facing with lovely large front windows. I included a skylight during the build – a double glazed panel recycled from our house renovations – to give light from above. The studio space has given me the opportunity to explore and develop my artwork, or sometimes just sit and watch nature in the garden unfold as the seasons change.