Thursday, 31 March 2011

Towards Enlightenment

Towards Enlightenment

This painting is very similar to a previous painting I did. That one was called, “The sands of time move ever onward.”  It sold on the day of painting it.

Another person who liked this painting mentioned it to me the other day. He was so sorry he had not managed to purchase it. He went on to describe the people walking away on what he saw as a desert trail. If you remember there were not really people there but the feeling was.

Hid enthusiasm caught me, and made me do some thinking. As I walked home from that discussion I thought about walking with the sun behind. I began to think that if we want enlightenment we have to walk towards the light not away from it.

As I thought, this painting the next in the series of I do not know how many there might be flashed into my mind.

While listening to some African drum music and using my fingers I painted in a frenzy of paint. I took the paint straight from the tubes onto my fingers and mixed it on the canvas.

Is it finished? I am not at all sure. Is it good? I doubt it. But it does say what I was feeling and thinking so it speaks to me.

I offer it humbly to you.

This blog is linked to my other.     Echoes

Tuesday, 29 March 2011

Do No Look Back

Do Not Look Back

Yesterday I visited the place where this painting is hanging for sale. I have to say that I like this painting very much. I like the loose interpretation that i have managed to capture. I am happy with the end result with the limited palette used.

I added a nice mount to it before framing it in a modern and very complimentary frame. All in all it looked good hanging where it was.

Before hanging in places I print a little descriptive label and indicate the price it is on sale for. When hanging I make a reduction in the price. Whoever buys it will take it with them. I will not have to package it or post it. I will not have to use paypal and pay them a commission.

So you can imagine I was bit surprised to note that somebody had stuck a little  note on the painting offering to purchase at a one third reduction.

I have always tried to make my art affordable, that has been important to me. I have on more than one occasion given away a painting.

Now I ask you my blogging friend should I have felt insulted? I am full of mixed feeling on this one. I am sure the painting is worth every bit I asked, and some people have said it is worth more.

The horns of a dilemma indeed.

This blog is linked to my other. It Is Not Just What You Know

Wednesday, 23 March 2011

Handel- Water Music

Handel Water Music.

I have been painting nothing much except abstracts for ages, with the exception of the painting I did recently for the bride and groom. That of course was easy to do because I was doing it for somebody who I knew wanted this picture.

I immediately reverted to form, back to painting abstracts. Maybe things will change after this my black day. I say more about that on my other blog. Maybe in my next phase it will be all seascapes and landscapes, who knows?

In the meantime here is my latest abstract.

I showed it to my usual group of friends, most of whom prefer me to paint, "Things that we know what they are." One friend in particular, if he sees me with another abstract, says, "Before you even show me you know what I am going to say."  Yesterday when I showed them, his words were different, he said, "Would you believe it Ralph, I rather like this one." Now that is something. The other person said he thought it was possibly one of my better works.

I can recommend, having a group of friends whom you know will be honest with you about your art. We can all post art on places where the only comments ever made are wonderful. In fact I once, recently got an email from somebody telling me they were not going to post my comment because it was not a good comment, but it was critical.

There is nothing better than some honest judgement, good and bad. Like my old friend often says to me, "Ralph, if i had painted that at school I would have been given the belt."

I give you this abstract and the tittle tells you what I was listening to while I painted so no more needs to be said. I am open to all comments, good, bad or otherwise.

Have a good day.

Since writing this blog and posting, the painting has been sold. I virtually sold on the day it was painted. I seems that now and again I get it just right. 

I say more about good about bad days on my other blog. A Bad day? Not At All

Monday, 21 March 2011

The Tempest

The Tempest.

Some time ago I painted a number of paintings in this scheme of colour. I used a variety of textures and ways of creating texture. 

I did a series of three, this large one and a small one. 

I liked all of these paintings but it seemed maybe I was alone in that. 

Then the three small ones sold. Now this the larger one has sold.

I think maybe there  are paintings that people want to live with for a while before deciding that they like them. In my case people need to see them hanging for a bit before they are convinced. 

In this case the sale came on the very day I was about to move it to another spot. 

Everything comes round in its own time. I speak of this on my other blog. Everything Comes Round

Monday, 14 March 2011

The Finished Painting

The Finished Painting

Well here it is the finished painting. I am aware it is not detailed look at the alley. I am aware that it is not a representation of reality in terms of that famous bridge. Then it was never meant to be any of those things.

This was a painting like so many of my landscape and seascape paintings, it was an attempt to capture the feel and the mood of the place.

Do I like the finished painting? Yes I do.  Does the bride and groom I told you of like it? I do not know. They are aware that it is finished and I would never want them to feel they had to like something just because it is. I have not heard from them so I will leave it.  Who knows it may be just like the first two versions, in a year from now somebody may like it.

Since writing and posting this blog I have had a lovely email from the bride I spoke of telling me that she does indeed like my painting. I do so hope that in years to come they look at this work and remember that wonderful day when they set out on the journey of marriage together. 

My next painting? It is done and gone you can read about that on my other blog. 

Friday, 11 March 2011

Work In Progress 2

Work In Progress Step 2 

I am taking my time with this pastel doing it in stages and spending time at each stage just having it beside me in the same room, so that I can allow it to tell me what needs doing.

It is amazing how a painting speaks to you, is it not?

So here we are after two sessions of working on it. Hopefully today I will complete it.

Again I remind you this is not an attempt to portray realism but rather to capture the essence of the place.

This alley leads to the small harbour of South Queensferry. The harbour is the placing of setting out and coming home. For so many brides it is also a place of setting out. Many brides and grooms walk down this alley to have wedding pictures taken with the famous bridge in the background. Brides and grooms setting off on the journey of married life, it seems appropriate.

I have pictures of my own daughter on her wedding day taken at this very harbour.

I have another blog at.  Hands

Thursday, 10 March 2011

A Work In Progress

A Work In Progress

I mentioned the other day the painting that had been sold twice. What I forgot to mention was how I had come to paint the original.

Somebody had been married in South Queensferry and a friend wanted to give them a gift that would have some meaning. I painted the Vennel ( For those over the pond this is a small alley between two buildings). I did two versions of it one in pastel and one in acrylic.

As is often the case with such works the person never got back to me on it. Probably I had not met his requirements. I felt at the time that I was now left with two paintings. As things turn out so often, and you have heard the tale both sold. Another girl who also got married saw the painting on my website and wanted to purchase.

As you know I agreed to paint another similar painting but trying to ensure both have enough differences to make them all original as works of art.

It is never easy doing a painting twice. I have a help in this case because I have a beautiful picture of the bride and groom not far from the spot where I am painting. I can feel they’re joy and I can see the kind of day it was.

So I have added to my blogs today the work in progress. I think it is doing ok, but I am so hoping they will like the finished work.

This blog is linked to my other. Lets Get To The Heart Of The Matter


Tuesday, 8 March 2011

Tools For The Job

Tools For The Job

My life has been somewhat hectic these last few days hence my absence. I have been very busy with my new garden plot. I sold a few paintings, as you know, so had to gather them together and have them posted off.

I have been trying to organise the hanging of my three abstract paintings, Vivaldi – The Four Seasons. To add just a little more excitement to the melting pot, my son has suggested I move out of the little space I have where I paint. He is about to move premises  with his new and up and coming law firm, it seems there is a possibility of my renting a unit next to his as an art studio.

This would mean my taking my art much more seriously. It would mean my having to paint more often and consistently. It would mean me having to be much more organised in the selling of my art.

It would also mean that I have a better place to display my work and a wider variety of people might be able to see it.

All in all a frightening prospect. It looks like it may be going to happen though.

Am I good enough? We will soon find out once and for all.

With all this going on I have not painted for a few days.  The picture on today’s blogs is one of my new gardening tools. As you can see they are the old traditional wooden handled kind, I felt at first sight they were for me. They are a bit like an artists brushes, they become a part of you.

Back to painting. This might be my first opportunity to combine both. This might make a nice little still life. What do you think?

This blog is linked to my other.  It All Comes Round

Friday, 4 March 2011

Bridging The Gap.

Bridging The Gap.

This is the last of the three paintings I sold in the last week or so. This one it seems I have in fact sold more than once. I seems it has sold from one of my hanging places and then somebody wanted to purchase it from my website.

The couple that wanted to purchase it did so because they had walked down this lane hand in hand on the day of their marriage. The lane leads down to the harbour a popular spot for brides to have their wedding photographs taken. My own daughter did just that.

I have agreed to do another version of this painting for the couple. It will not be identical, no two paintings ever can be.

I am not in the habit of painting the same painting a second time but in this case, because of the story behind it , I am looking forward to the challenge.

This blog is linked to my other.  I Am Losing My Marbles

Wednesday, 2 March 2011


Iona Beach Looking Towards Mull

This is the second of three paintings I sold last week. I will not go into too many details about this sale because it has been purchased as a gift for a very special person.

It seems that the island of Iona is a special place for two people and one is giving the other a gift of my painting.

I feel happy about this for more than just the sale of the painting.

I also love this spot having lived there for a year and swam from this very beach.

I hope the painting brings some of the joy of the place back for them.

This blog is linked to my other.   The Secret Box