Thursday, 29 January 2015

6 Reasons to Take Part in Your Local Artists Open Studios 2015

It's that time of year again. I'm making plans for the summer, and amongst the talk of holidays and days out there's there's the decision whether to take part in Open Studios or not? 

As an old hand I usually say "Never again!" and then quietly relent. But I'm thinking more deeply about it this year and here are some questions I've been asking myself.

Monday, 26 January 2015

It's Never Finished 'Til It's Finished.

Like all artists, I agonise over each and every piece. But the longer I leave a painting on the easel the more I tinker with it, and sometimes it goes beyond it's best point and rapidly goes downhill with each and every brush stroke.

Thursday, 22 January 2015

Moving the Artwork About. 8 Things You Need To Do First.

Yesterday I spent the day moving artwork around, getting it to two of my favourite galleries.
Art in The Heart in Peterborough and Haddenham Galleries, Cambridgeshire.
Border Collie Grace Surrounded by Foxgloves.
On the way to Haddenham Gallery

The day dawned cold and dull, snow promised but only a bit of sleet and ice on the puddles. Just the sort of day for doing something definite and planned. It wasn't a self starter sort of day, rather a stay in the warm sort of day, so I was very glad that this mini road trip was already arranged.
 And after visiting the galleries we had a visit to the supermarket to look forward to!

While I was sitting in the car on the way to our first destination, being driven by my heroic husband, super roadie and ace picture framer I got to thinking about all the things I needed to do before I even get to this point, and of course being me worrying about what I hadn't done.

So here's a little list that you might find useful :

8 things you need to do before you move the artwork about.

Monday, 19 January 2015

Summer on the Beach. Remember That?


In these cold drab days I want to remember the summer, especially summer on the beach.
Days when you could go out in t shirt and jeans and not wear socks.
Days when you could sit in the fresh air and feel the sun on your arms.

Summer on the Beach. Mary Kemp.
Shop for this on Artfinder
I painted this picture after a day out with the family at

Wednesday, 14 January 2015

Why I Love "Sketching 365" by Katherine Tyrrell

This was my Christmas present to myself !
Sketching 365 by Katherine Tyrrell
I know I should draw more.
I know how important it is. But sometimes the will to pick up a pencil fades and other things clamour for your attention.

What is needed is a post Christmas kick up the backside.

I've long been a fan of Katherine Tyrrell through her great Making A Mark blog. The gold standard of blogs, so when she started talking about her forthcoming book on sketching I knew I had to get a copy.

And last week, courtesy of good old Amazon my copy of Sketching 365 arrived.

Oh my gooodness!

It is packed choc a bloc with so much information, from how to draw to what to use, how to sharpen a pencil even, and drawings on every page. A feast of sketches you wish you'd done yourself, and not all by Katherine but loads of guest artists, different styles, different materials.

I wish I'd had this book at the start of my arty journey. It would have saved a lot of time.

But what it has done is energise my sketch book. The first thing I did after a quick whip  through it was sketch the contestants on Mastermind. Two minutes a subject. I like sketching from the telly. They can't see what you're doing.
Mary Kemp.
 Contestants on Mastermind 09.01.15
And so people I hope you'll excuse me. I'm off to read a bit more of this lovely book, and then I'm going to draw the cat.




Thursday, 8 January 2015

Three Cats and One Dog. Amongst Other Things!

Last year, along with the seaside, the boats and a few fields full of poppies, Grace the Border Collie and our three cats Zebra, Ginger and Bertie all served as subjects for my paintings.



In a way the cats are an easy target because they're always there,wanting to be with you, a living creature to breath life into a domestic scene or a full stop in the garden.

Of course I've had plenty of practice drawing them,although

Thursday, 1 January 2015

Welcome 2015 ! Eight Arty New Year Resolutions.

Happy New Year folks! Welcome to 2015.
 Oh wow, it's been a busy 2014 !  And now it's all done and dusted and wound up in a maelstrom of festive food and friends and family. What more could you ask for !

I 'm looking forward to 2015, with a head so full of ideas for paintings I think it might explode!!!