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.

Thursday, 10 August 2017

The Jaunty Tail of Grace the Border Collie.

Just when I think I've come to the end of a series of paintings another idea hops into my mind!
Grace the border collie is as varied as Cleopatra and quite as beautiful so it was no wonder that after a jolly day out at the seaside earlier on in the year another painting or two hit the canvas.
"Jaunty Tail"
© Mary Kemp
Oil on canvas panel.

We'd gone over to the Norfolk coast, us and the rest of the population of East Anglia, and Grace had been so good and patient stuck in the traffic.
We managed to get parked, and all hot and sweaty decamped onto the beach.
Whoosh! Grace was off, being sociable with whoever she could find, then haring off to an empty part of the beach, and then back again. Is there no end to her energy? It seems not.

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Thursday, 3 August 2017

How an Idea Became a Painting.

I've never got used to the buzz I get whenever a person likes my paintings.
And it gives me an even bigger thrill when I get instructions to paint a picture specially for someone, knowing they trust me to do a good job.

I'm quite a practical person, so enjoy the challenge of working to a brief.
"Two People on the Sea Edge,with Birds"
Oil on canvas
© Mary Kemp
This particular commission arrived through summer's open studio event, from a couple who came to visit. In truth I think they had studied the Peterborough Open Studio website carefully and targeted a few artists they liked the look of.

They had a new, plain grey wall to fill.......

They looked at the paintings I had, at work in progress and particularly liked my latest seaside collection.
But nothing was big enough, so this is where the commission part came in.
We looked at images of some sold artwork and they settled on something similar, "not too much pink". We agreed size and price, and a timescale for the project. I asked for a non-returnable deposit of a third and it was all systems go!
 It's so much easier to make changes at this stage
 than when the painting is almost finished

As part of the commissioning process I like to show a preliminary sketch. And this is the one I sent.

The next part of the plan went very smoothly. Over about a month I painted the picture, building it up in layers, standing back, thinking about it, adding more, taking away some but always staying faithful to the vision we had.
Then it was finished. I left it for a few days allowing it to dry, and silently worried.

On the third day I looked at the painting again with new eyes, and decided I quite liked it. I asked my husband. "It's alright" he said. A man of few words.
There was nothing for it but to contact the lovely couple who had commissioned it.
I'm pleased to say they were full of praise, and came round the very next day, whisked it off home and sent me a photo of it looking resplendent on their grey wall.
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