|Date Palms by Shevaun Docherty|
an assignment for the the SBA's Distance Learning Diploma Course in botanical painting
It all started from my own personal interests. However as time passed I started to get feedback from people. It seemed my interests were shared by many others. That I knew from the numbers of people subscribing. However, it also appeared that my readers were people who also acted on what they read.
- A young artist entered the BP Portrait Award and won the Young Artist of the Year Award. I found out at the Awards ceremony he'd read about the competition on my blog and decided to have a go when I went to interview him!
- Others have entered art society exhibitions once they've seen the type of work which gets selected for display - and have come away with major prizes.
Now Shevaun is trying to work out how to get an Irish Society of Botanical Artists started. If you're interested and would like your name passed on to Shevaun do let me know (see side column for contact details)
And so it passes forward.......
Both the images are by Shevaun and they're both of trees with fruit. At the top is an image of Date Palms bearing fruit and below is a sketchbook image of an old olive tree plus the leaves and fruit. I gather that the latter has been selected for a new book about botanical art about which I can't say much at the moment!
|Sketchbook Study of an Olive Tree by Shevaun Docherty|
work for an assignment for the the SBA's Distance Learning Diploma Course in botanical painting
Artists and Art Blogs
- Congratulations to Jessica Shepherd (Inky Leaves) who has three of her botanical artworks included in a botanical art book - this time Exotic Botanical Illustration: With the Eden Project by Rosie Martin and Meriel Thurstan which is due to be published in July.
- Art Plantae Today has an interview and interactive blog conversation with botanist Lizabeth Leech - see Botanist Dedicated to Botany Education for Botanical Artists. A new technique has been used to facilitate the interaction which seems to work very well. Lizabeth is a botanist, botanical artist and experienced tutor and teacher of botany, ecology and biology and a Fellow of the Hampton Court Palace Florilegium Society. She's also the author of the new book on Botany for Artists which was published at the beginning of the month and is currently on my bedsite table! I must say I'm finding it very accessible. The English Gardening School has also made it a recommended text.
Instead of publishing a complete interview like I normally do on the first day of the month, Liz and I will work together to lead this month’s conversation. We are slowing down our dialogue so that you can comment and ask questions as the conversation develops.
- Roz Stendahl (Rozworks)
- recommends Bill Sharp's Sketchbook Meditations
- produces some great sketches of birds in Sketching at the Bell Museum (I Even Use a New Red Pen)
- Wonderful sketches of Istanbul by Rene Fijten on Rene Fijten Sketches
- Here are some blogs set up by Dutch artists for Sketchcrawls in the Netherlands
- Stapleton Kearns (Stapleton Kearns) continued with his series of ideas about painting plein air. They really are an excellent set of posts - and need to be in a book!
- Plein air, idea 8 discusses the concept of "keying" a painting right from the start
- Plein air ideas 9 identifies the faults in plein air painting which he's come across again and again in 25 years of teaching plein air painting. It's a brilliant list and is recommended reading for all plein air artists!
The painting is in all middle values with the contrasts so suppressed that the painting has no punch.
- Plein air idea 10 discusses the "footlights" of a painting
- Plein air ideas 11 provides some bullet points regarding colour in the landscape
- Plein air idea 12 discusses a Gruppe Palette, a traditional palette and a full old master palette.
- He then continues to discuss palettes for plein air painting in Plein air palettes. and more palette talk
- After much badgering (as in years!) from me, my good friend Louise Sackett (who has retired and now lives in New Mexico) has finally started a blog - called Plein Speaking. She writes well about her approaches to plein air painting and the way in which artists she admires approach their work. Some of you may have met her at the First Plein Air Convention (Facebook page) in Nevada in April. Here's a couple of her posts.
- James Gurney (Gurney Journey) wrote about Nose Room last week - the space needed to allow the face in the portrait to "breathe".
Portrait painters sometimes use the term "nose room" for the extra compositional space allotted for the direction that a face is looking.Art Business & Marketing
- Alyson Stanfield (artbizblog) has
- 28 Questions for When Your Art Isn’t Selling
- updated her post about When to Show Prices of Your Art [Updated]
- I think the Thomas Kinkade story might run a bit longer - although I find it kind of sad that nobody has bothered to rewrite his CV to reflect his death on his website.
- Did you know that Media Arts Group - in which was the main artist and second largest shareholder earned $12.3 million on sales of $82.7 million for the fiscal year ending March 31, 1997, according to company records and was apparently generating $130 million (£81 million) in sales in 2001? Is any artist ever going to generate these sort of numbers in this sort of way ever again?
- The Guardian had an article about Thomas Kinkade following the announcement of how he died - Thomas Kinkade: the secret life and strange death of art's king of twee. The article is mainly about the business end of things - hence its inclusion in this section. It never struck me before that he and Andy Warhol had anything in common - the tag "business artist".
The works of the Painter of Light have been reproduced on furniture and inspired the building of a whole village, but the verdict into his death reveals a bleaker pictureMarketing
- Art of the Real is a collaborative endeavour by four leading watercolour artists - with seven exhibitions around the world including China. Inside the Studio of artist Anna Wilson-Patterson is a video promoting the art of Anna Wilson-Patterson (Anna Wilson-Patterson) - I thought her dogs were charming life models!
- These are the posts associated with the 121st Annual Exhibition of the Royal Society of Portrait Painters:
- Review: Royal Society of Portrait Painters - 121st Annual Exhibition provides a commentary on the exhibition - following my post the previous week on the prizewinners
- I took a look at the number of entries to the RSPP Annual Exhibition and which got selected and produced this Analysis of open entry to RSPP Annual Exhibition
- Painting the Queen is about new exhibitions in London - at both the NPG and the Mall Galleries
- Thomas Plunkett PRWS is the new President of the RoyalWatercolour Society. He was elected last month. Presidents of the RWS normally serve for three years. An archive post on this blog tells me that he was elected as an Associate member in 2008 so I now understand a remark made to me about the next President of the RWS possibly being a bit of a surprise to some people! He previously served as Treasurer of the RWS between 2009 and 2011. You can see his works on paper on his website and on his member page on the RWS website
- I'm pleased to hear that the President Elect of The Pastel Society is a woman! Cheryl Culver PS RBA will take over as President from John Ivor Stewart on 2nd July 2012.
Varnishing Day at the Royal Academy
first published in Punch 19 June 1877, p. 226
Tips and techniques
- I was amazed the first time I found out that pastel artists used under-paintings! Then I began to see how effective they could be in terms of impact and reducing the amount of pastel on the paper. Richard McKinley (Pastel Pointers) has written a post about | Getting Started With an Underpainting, Part 1, In it he looks at the scope to use pastel or watercolour for an under painting. He doesn't mention using solvent with pastel - so I'm wondering whether this is in Part 2.
- Matthew D. Innis (Underpaintings) has some recommendations for oil painters re varnishing which you can read in Hiler's Rules for Varnishing. It contains images of some wonderful engravings of Varnishing Day at the Royal Academy.
- The Victorian Web also contains a fine description of Varnishing Day at the Royal Academy and some observations about the women artists in the engraving by du Maurier
- These are the Urban Sketchers Workshops - instructors and descriptions - for the Urban sketchers get together in San Domingo
- Karin Jurick (A Painting Today) has opened up registration for her workshop at the Arts Center of Coastal Carolina between October 29 - November 2, 2012. See Fall Workshop at Hilton Head Island for further details
- Alyson Stanfield (artbizblog) has been:
Art Galleries and Museums - London
- I'm going to the Press View for The Queen - Art and Image at the National Portrait Gallery on Wednesday morning. This has finally arrived in London after time spent in exhibitions in each of the capital cities of Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland
- Edouard Vuillard: A Painter and His Muses, 1890-1940 (May 04, 2012 - September 23, 2012) opened at The Jewish Museum in New York. This Artdaily article comments on it - First major one-person, New York exhibition of Edouard Vuillard's work in over twenty years opens
Internet and Techies
We have three bookcases assembled and today we're moving them all into place. On Wednesday my friend who does fiddly fixings secures them to the wall - while I got to an exhibition - and then I fill them (again) with books. My jaw keeps dropping as sort out the books and try to develop the Tyrrell Art Library categorisation.
- Q. Did I know I had a complete shelf of books about Monet? A. No! I knew I had a lot but didn't realise it was a complete shelf. Hockney and Freud take up another shelf.....
- Q. Did I realise I had a complete shelf of books about botanical art? A. Yes - in the sense they'd never been all together - but they were a very big stack when located on the carpet! However I have a niggling feeling that some of them have gone AWOL and I might actually need more than one shelf
|My shelf of Botanical Art Books|
history to the left and instruction to the right
- Q. Had I ever counted all the art books I had? A. Once - a very long time ago and I'm still working on getting them all assembled for a count.
- Q. Have I ever estimated the value of my art books? A. No - but did so after my other half gazed on all the hardbacks and asked me what they had cost. I got a complete shock when I started with just one shelf and realised I must have spent about £800. (I am a bookaholic and this is why my visits to art book shops are rationed). I will be reviewing my insurance cover when I've finished!