For the past seven years I’ve spent most of my summers indoors, a necessity of the extra work I have to pick up to compensate for the short fall created by seasonal fluctuations in life class numbers. As a counter balance to years spent indoors in shops, galleries, kitchens and studios I resolved to spend the summer of 2014 seeking adventures outside of New England House. Since the end of May I’ve been away engaging in drawing based escapades more than I’ve been in Brighton; here are some of the highlights.
Cliff climbing near Mevagissey, Cornwall (June)
In a bid to escape the melee of Brighton’s May festivals I ran off to Cornwall with Mary, Frankie, Laura, Colin and Diana for at painting holiday at The Studio, a converted stable-block-come-holiday-art-studio on Bodrugan farm. The week was balanced between drawing, swimming walking and eating with the highlight being a scramble along the coastline that led to me loosing my underwear and shirt in a cliff top gorse bush (long story; just ask me about it).
Teaching drawing at a clergy conference in Swanwick, Debsyshire (June)
For me, teaching drawing isn’t just about imparting mark making skills, it is about developing a philosophy of looking that can help us make sense of the world that we see around us and I am always keen to bring drawing to new audiences, particularly outside of conventional artists spheres. I was fortunate enough to be invited to teach two workshops for the Salisbury Diocese clergy conference, teaching vicars to draw from a portrait model as a part of a very varied program of talks and creative events. I’ll write this up properly in future but highlights include talking art with Bishop Nick (Bishop Nicholas of Salisbury Diocese) and discovering just how twitter-savy the Church of England are!
Drawing Eliza Carthy at Pinewood Studios (July)
With around a days notice I was asked to be an extra in a film, set in 17th Century Amsterdam during the time of the tulip investment bubble. Without giving too much away my part is very minor, if indeed I make the final cut and during one scene I sketched the characters in a tavern interior, including a violin-toting gypsy with whom I shared lunch. At the end of the three days filming I found out my unwitting model was no other than Eliza Carthy, one of my favorite folk musicians and a regular on our life drawing class playlists! It was a rare and unexpected treat; it is a shame the drawing didn’t survive filming.
Art and Anatomy with Eleanor Crook and Sarah Simblet in Oxford (July)
I’ve already waxed lyrical about my time drawing in Oxford earlier in my previous eight posts. The art and anatomy course I took in Oxford as a joyous education, the highlight being that I met the lovely Eleanor Crook and Sarah Simblet.
Posing as Orpheus near Barmouth, North Wales (August)
To top off an excellent summer I ran a five-day painting holiday in Mwaddach Crescent, Wales; possibly one of the most idyllic places I have ever visited. Although my time was mostly occupied seeing to the creative and culinary needs of the merry band of artists on the trip I spent one afternoon posing as the disembodied head of Orpheus in a waterfall with Frankie and Emma, the resident water nymphs.
All told it has been a gorgeous three months and Im looking forward to settling back into the comforts of Brighton life, my wanderlust satisfied.
Teaching, drawing, writing and painting.