Today Mathew I’ll be called….


If it’s Monday then it is time for my painting class.   This was my version of Portrait of Juan from Pareja by Diego Velázquez.   As a painting exercise I’m quite pleased with the result but as a copy of the original?   I’m really not at all sure whether there is much validity in that question as this was an exercise exploring a limited tonal range – in this case between black and white rather than making an absolute copy – for one thing this sketch was made in just under two and half hours using acrylic paints – neither restrictions I am sure were placed on Velázquez!   Equally the large photocopy I was using was deliberately degraded to make the exploration of the tonal range easier.   And of course there is the simple fact that Velázquez was a genius painter and I’m not.  Given all these caveats I’m pleased with what I produced.

It is not the first time I have attempted to copy Velázquez.   These are from a few years ago but nonetheless I’m pleased with the results.  These of course were created using Brushes on the iPad rather than paints.   This has lead me to ask the very simple question:  Why do I create these images?   Well the simple answer is because they give me great pleasure and satisfaction.   I have no real desire to do anything with my art than to improve and satisfy myself and given those narrow goals I think all of these paintings work in their own right.

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Or not to be.

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To Be?


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I would like a place I could call my own….

It is January so that means I get my watercolors out…not sure why that is but there does seem some strange correlation.


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Ley Lines….

A new year – a new course.   Oh the joys of adult education – worn out equipment and cheap materials.   Actually things aren’t as bad as that but it did mean that I was stuck with a drawing board with lines of paint or masking tape stuck to it which can be seen in the final drawing.   I could have taken steps to overcome this but for reason I won’t bore anyone with I didn’t.  Instead I decided to embrace to the defects – which most of us have to do most of our lives so I guess it could be argued that they add a certain allegorical truth to the drawing….Perhaps.


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Formidable cool…


New year new challanges

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No One Knows….

I think I must becoming more bar humbug as a I get older or is it just  that I don’t care anymore who knows what I feel about something or another (My family will probably rightly point out that they have had to suffer this for years but that is another story!)  Last night I went to bed at the usual time only to be woken by the midnight fireworks.  ‘Happy New Year’ they cried out.  ‘Rejoice’ they said.  But I have been on this earth too long and seen too many things to know that for many of our fellow citizens the new year is something not to rejoice but rather to fear as it is a continuation of the hell they have been living through.

So if you get something out of celebrating the New Year then I’m happy for you.  I don’t and if you want to say bar humbug to me then please do.

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