Sunday, 21 August 2016

Five Boats

Wandering around a quiet local harbour, I saw these dinghies tied up to a landing stage. The bright sunshine that day created strong shadows and the water was still and as dark as ink. Looking at the scene from an artist's point of view, the main thing I noticed was the rhythmic pattern set up by the boats. Then there was the range of colours, made up equally between cool blues on one hand and warm beiges, oranges and browns on the other.

I'll be honest - not long after I started this painting, I kind of lost my way and thought it wasn't going to work, so I stopped. It had something to do with the look of the water, which I hadn't got quite right. Three weeks later, I took a fresh look at the painting and realised it wasn't as bad as I'd feared. So I restarted it, deepened and darkened the blue water, and took it to completion. I feel satisfied with it now. It just goes to show, you shouldn't abandon a painting too soon. Give it (and yourself) a rest, come back to it later, and maybe have another go at it.

Friday, 19 August 2016

Pole Dance

For some time I've kept a blog called Ken Young Paintworks, where I post small paintings which I offer for sale on the Daily Paintworks website. I also paint larger paintings, mostly watercolours, and I've decided to start a second blog, Ken Young Art, for those. So here I go with "Pole Dance", a brand-new painting featuring pink climbing roses entwined around a metal pole. The size is 25 x 35 cms or 10 x 14 inches if you like your measurements Imperial. I spotted these roses while visiting the beautiful Alnwick Gardens in Northumbria, in Northern England, last month. It was a warm day and I'd taken refuge from the sun on a shaded bench. I looked up to see the roses swaying gently in a breeze against the summer sky, much as I've painted them here.

"Pole Dance" is the first of 20-plus paintings that I need to get ready for an exhibition at the Dundas Street Gallery in Edinburgh next February. My friends Roy McGowan and Colin Joyce will also take part. I'll post more information about the exhibition as time goes on.