12-year window

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate (IPCC – http://ipcc.ch/organization/organization.shtml ) change have published a key report which calls for urgent action to limit global temperature rise to 1.5C in order to prevent environmental catastrophe. The IPCC assessments draws on the work of hundreds of scientists from all over the world who volunteer their time and expertise. The report illustrates mounting impacts and fast-approaching, irreversible tipping points. Nicolas Stern: Accelerate the transition to clean and sustainable growth or suffer the mounting damage from sea-level rise, floods and droughts that will severely hinder efforts to tackle poverty, raise living standards and improve prosperity…… Governments, companies and communities should embrace this transition to a clean and sustainable… Read More

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acrylic paints

I’ve been experimenting with acrylic paint as an alternative to oil paints. Firstly because I wanted to work more quickly, and acrylics dry in a few hours, or overnight. But also I’m attracted to the wide range of colours, and how easy these are to use thinly, as a fluid, or thicker with medium, and to add textures. For reference I’ve looked at artists who work in acrylic paint, or changed from oils to acrylics. Here are a few I’ve admired:  Helen Frankenthaler (1928–2011) changed from oils to acrylics. Best known for her works in thinned oil paints poured onto unprimed canvas so that the colour would seep into the canvas, working… Read More

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Yawning at the apocalypse

A pig ate his fill of acorns under an oak tree and then started to root around the tree. A crow remarked,’ You should not do this. If you lay bare the roots, the tree will wither and die.’ ‘Let it die,’ said the pig. ‘Who cares so long as there are acorns?’   [adapted from a fable by Andrew Krylov in the article quoted below]   Yawning at the apocalypse is the title of an article I’ve just read in ‘the psychologist’ magazine , written by Cameron Brick and Sander van der Linden, on how psychologists can help solve the largest social dilemma in history – climate change. Here’s a couple of… Read More

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wildlife in my garden

Three young hedgehogs are snuffling round my vegetable garden and one knowingly finds a way into the fruit-cage. I leave bowls of water around the garden, the days are very hot and dry.  Hedgehog populations are declining drastically. see https://www.britishhedgehogs.org.uk/state-britains-hedgehogs-2018/   And there are very few butterflies around. One or two Tortoiseshell, a few green-veined white, a Red Admiral, a Peacock. Occasionally I see a Comma, and a Painted Lady. Inn the woodland there are Speckled Wood, a few Ringlets and the small browns – the gatekeeper and meadow brown. There are more whites now, my kale plants are well netted! For many years I counted wildlife in my garden and… Read More

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Bearah Tor trees

A walk to Bearah Tor on Bodmin Moor, not far from my studio. Very hot, each low hawthorn tree was providing shelter to a sheep with her lamb.  Stopped to make a few quick sketches on my phone pad (new to me – I like it, though it’s very small and maybe use a pointed tool rather than my finger)     Then in water colours.                                Back in the studio I made a series of small oil paintings:                     see the tree series      … Read More

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Patrick Heron at Tate St Ives

Seeing this wonderful collection of paintings by Patrick Heron, with works at this large scale and alongside each other and from different periods, with one painting relating to another: intense colour, the pleasure of following a line across the canvas, the detail of a pattern, abstraction, looking from one shape/pattern to another around the canvas – this was an intense, exciting and joyful experience.     Here are the main ideas he persued:   Unity Heron strived for a balance across the canvas, the forms and colours interconnected by their position and their visual affect together, so that each area of colour/shape ” is as important within the painting as any… Read More

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Per Kirkeby

Image: “Untitled”, 1999 Oil on canvas 78 3/4 x 118 1/8 inches 200 x 300 cm  © Per Kirkeby, Courtesy Galerie Michael Werner Märkisch Wilmersdorf, Cologne & New York Danish artists inspired by geology, whose oil paintings are notable for their organic palette. Having read his obituary this week I’ve looked at his work online – https://www.royalacademy.org.uk/art-artists/name/per-kirkeby-hon-ra and http://michaelwerner.com/artist/per-kirkeby/works I love the colours, the use of lines and scratches, sometimes abstract and other works are landscape, or possibly both within a single composition. He was a member of the New York based, international Fluxus group (Latin word Fluxus means flowing) which shared attitude rather than a movement, with experimental musicians and artists, somewhat revolutionary and anti-art.… Read More

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Open Studios Cornwall 2018

As I’m not taking part this year I am instead visiting a number of artists in north and east Cornwall. Particularly interesting for me today was seeing work by Sean Hewitt (Academician with the South West Academy of Fine and Applied Arts and member of the group of Abstract7) an abstract painter, working mainly in acrylics. www.seanhewitt.co.uk He works in vibrant colours which exudes ‘zest and vivacity’ – his words with which I agree. Seeing his use of colours, how they mesh and merge, has helped me think about becoming more positive and adventurous in my own paintings. I will take from this the excitement and use of strong forms and contrasts within… Read More

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Notter Tor on Bodmin Moor

A morning walk on Bodmin Moor through woodlands to Notter Tor, the colours were beautiful – these will be on my palette for new paintings in the coming weeks: greys of granite and lichen, yellow-green of moss and crimson-pinks stonecrop, and of course the brilliant bluebells creating a carpet across the side of the tor and springing up amongst the boulders:             Related Images:

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