Saturday, 24 December 2011

Merry Christmas to all

Merry Christmas to all of my friends and followers here on my blog.Ive thoroughly enjoyed reading all your comments this year as my artistic journey reached another significant turning point.2011 has been one of my best years as a professional artist and no-one is more surprised and delighted than i.2012 promises to be even better with the release of some long-awaited limited edition prints including some from my latest oil paintings as well as an exciting new range of greeting cards.I do hope you will all continue to stop by and enjoy the art here in 2012,my best wishes to all.

Wednesday, 21 December 2011

Avocet painting progress

Avocet painting is coming along nicely now,ive added a further coat of oils to the bird and largely completed the reflection.A little refinement will be needed here and there but i dont think there's much more i can do if i want to keep it simple and fresh.

Tuesday, 20 December 2011

I'm not fixated honestly!

I do love Avocet's however it is purely coincidental that this image comes so soon after my last avocet painting.Sometimes when i'm playing around with images to find the best composition to suit the image i cant make my mind up between two or they both warrant a painting in my this case i had two paintings of avocets on the go at the same time a my last fox painting and some new larger works unfortunately the larger works are taking a little more preparation and mulling over and so the smaller simpler pieces are being worked on whilst my mind contemplates the final composition of my large pieces.on this particular painting i had already done the under-painting and now ive added a further coat of paint to the background and water and i shal be strengthening the colouration of the bird as well as re-painting its beak.

the London International horse show at Olympia has now ended and i'm delighted to report that my last fox painting which i rushed off to the framers in order to have it on my stand in time sold on its debut at the show.

i would like to take this oportunity to wish you all a very merry christmas and to thank all my readers and clients for they're on-going support and kind words over the last year.

Wednesday, 14 December 2011

Red Fox portrait 8.75" x 12.25"

This little study of a red fox displaying a submissive posture has already been framed and is currently on show at the London International Horse show in Olympia,London along with my last pencil drawing 'Drifter'.I thought i would post this updated scan of the painting to show the true colours in the piece as my previous attempts at photographing the painting in the studio resulted in too much glare.Ive been very pleasantly surprised by the warm welcome this piece has recieved and as a result i think i may publish it as a limited edition print in the near future.

Tuesday, 13 December 2011

Avocet oil study update

After my short break in Somerset ive returned to an inbox full of xmas orders and so havnt had a lot of time for painting.I have some ideas for larger images filling out nicely in my head and am about to start preparing mdf boards for upcoming paintings.In the meantime i had a little piece of prepared board lying around in the studio and so i decided to put it to good use on a new avocet study.This Avocet was observed yet again at my favourite birding spot Titchfield Haven nature reserve here on the south coast.I'm depicting the bird on the edge of one of the scrapes and rather liked the viewpoint of the bird from the rear and at this angle it fits my little bit of mdf perfectly.It is for the most part complete ive just got a little more work to do in the foreground with a bit of vegetation.The size of this painting is 12" x 7.5"

Sunday, 4 December 2011

short break in somerset

since my last posting ive been rather busy with getting artworks out to various xmas shows and preparing boards for new works.There will be several new limited edition prints added to my portfolio over the next couple of months which has meant a lot of to and fro-ing to publishing house of late.As i write this i have taken off for a few days in Somerset for a short break with my family and friends and am enjoying walking along the local coastline and moors armed as always with my trusty was while taking a short stroll along the esplanade at Minehead that i came across a young peregrine falcon that had just taken a pigeon and was busy plucking feathers whilst being accosted by a growing band of crows attempting to drive the bird off its kill.luckily i had my camera with me and shot over 100 photo's over a period of 15 minutes or so during which the falcon plucked and fed on the carcass whilst fending off the ever more daring crows.As the band of crows numbers slowly swelled they started to venture very close to the falcon and tugged at its tail and wing feathers much to the birds annoyance in an effort to drive it off but the plucky bird refused to be driven away for some time as it ate its fill before abandoning the pigeon carcass to its tormentors.this was my first morning in Somerset and i thought it was a great omen for the rest of my stay here.looking forward to a long walk on the beautifully desolate Exmoor today and i wonder what i may encounter.

Tuesday, 22 November 2011

Fox painting update

After many re-workings ive finally settled for this version of my 'smiley fox' painting.This really was a steep learning curve in portraying varying lighting conditions and at one point i thought i'd never get there but finally i'm happy that it looks believeable and although there is still some tinkering to go it is for the most part complete.On a different note to day i visited my publishing house to final proof my latest limited edition print 'Drifter' an african elephant piece.I was truly stunned by the quality of the printed image and part of the edition have been enlarged considerably to produce a huge eye-catching,wall dominating print which has lost nothing of the detail for being enlarged.The new image will debut at Olympia at the London horse show in december along with the framed original drawing.

Thursday, 17 November 2011

New Avocet painting

Ive put my little fox painting to one side for a while as i was struggling a little with portraying the backlit nature of the animal.While i'm awaiting inspiration as to how to complete the painting to my satisfaction ive started a new avocet oil painting.This is the more or less completed underpainting which has now been set aside to dry in preparation for the detail coat of oil.The image is once again based on observations at Titchfield Haven NNR made last autumn.

Thursday, 10 November 2011

Red fox study update

The underpainting for this little painting is now complete and ive begun to add the detail coat of oils.I'm attempting to portray the fox as if backlit and so there are some lovely contrasts starting to appear.Its a bit of a challenge but so far i'm happy with progress.

Monday, 7 November 2011

Little fox study

A combination of lack of studio time and chronic procrastination this week means that i havnt a lot to show for the weeks work.I have several smaller oils on the go right now,none of which have progressed particularly quickly and this little underpainting for a small fox study is the most recognisable thus far.I hope to be able to make something of this little study over the next few days.i photographed this particular animal on a very sunny day with the light behind the subject making an interesting backlit photo,which i hope to do justice to in this painting.Portraying the darker,shadowed areas will be my toughest challenge here i think where i'll have to introduce some blues and violet to contrast with the brighter bleached out white highlights.Oh well,fingers crossed and i'll update soon.

Friday, 28 October 2011

Caracal 17" x 11" oil on board

Caracal has reached the point where i'm happy to call it finished all bar a little tinkering once dry.This one has proved to be interesting for me in practising my fur depiction techniques and i feel that ive learned a little more about how to portray fur a bit more realistically.Hope you all like the results.

Thursday, 27 October 2011

Caracal oil painting progress

Had a great day in the studio yesterday with very few interruptions which is very rare these days.Ive been working up the fur details on the cats head and at one point thought to myself that this was a fairly slow and tedious process and then i remembered and was grateful that this piece is not being rendered in graphite!.

Tuesday, 25 October 2011

Back to oils(for now)

after my recent excursion back to graphite ive dusted off an old oil painting that was frustrating me so much that i abandoned it for a while.As an oil painting 'newbie' i sometimes find myself resorting to just daubing colours onto the board with a larger brush in an effort to try and find the colour i want and get the creative juices flowing.This is the second 'underpainting' of this little image and i'm now happier with the colours i'm using and hopefully over the next few days will be able to add detail.In all honesty i havn't a clue whether this will work or not and find myself spending far too long scratching my head with oils to be able to produce many paintings as yet,but i think its important to show my possible failures as well as the successes.

Tuesday, 18 October 2011

Elephant drawing completed 17.5" x 12"

Ok,so here it is,the as yet untitled Elephant drawing as it stands right now on my drawing board.I feel as though ive been looking at this image for an age now and i'll have to leave it on the board for a couple of days and look at it afresh later as well as hopefully come up with a decent title for it.Hope you like it,i'm off for a little lie down!

Thursday, 13 October 2011

Elephant complete

The elephant is at last completed.i've been away from graphite for a while before taking on this image and so had forgotten just how long it takes to get all those details in.Next on the agenda is to make some sense of the foreground grasses,no easy task,which i think is going to take an age as well and then finally the icing on the cake in the shape of the little cattle egret in the immediate foreground.i have an upcoming graphite workshop to prepare for over the next couple of weeks and so progress may be a little patchy with this image,however if i can get it right it is likely to make it into print as my publisher's are keen to have a new elephant image from me.If anyone would be interested in recieving details of the print,do email me your contact details and i'll forward information once it's all finalised.

Saturday, 8 October 2011

Elephant drawing progression

The elephant is almost complete now,the trunk and tusks will add the final dimension to the piece and show the lovely light catching the folds and wrinkles in the elephants trunk.Very soon i'm going to have to tackle the foreground grasses and these are likely to take some time for me to complete as its my least favourite subject to draw and one that i'm seldom happy with the outcome of.

Wednesday, 5 October 2011

Elephant drawing update

Had several days off this week and so progress on the elephant drawing has been a little slow.Ive left the trunk and tusks until nearer the end of the image to complete as the front legs will be quite dark with the trunk and tusks catching the sun making for quite an interesting contrast and its easier to set the dark tones first.

Wednesday, 28 September 2011

Elephant drawing: progress

It's been a while since i picked up the pencils to produce a big piece but i have to admit that it feels like 'coming home'.Whilst it's always a long slog with graphite and i need the patience of a saint to get through it,i nonetheless feel strangely content and in control using the medium.The oil's have been very pleasant to use and when they've worked ive been thrilled with the results but they still feel a little hit and miss compared to that feeling of certainty i get with graphite.Anyway to get back to this piece,ive more or less completed the head with only a little more detail to add.once ive done this i'm going to work on the body and legs of the elephant before tackling it's trunk as ive got some lovely darker tones to work in behind the trunk and tusks and i want to establish those darker tones first to ensure the trunk and tusks will stand out.

Friday, 23 September 2011

UK Coloured pencil society 10th anniversary exhibitionhttp://

If you love coloured pencil art then there is only one exhibition to see this weekend.The UKCPS is holding a 10th anniversary celebration exhibition at The Methodist central hall,Westminster,London until the 1st october.The exhibition features the very best exponents of the medium from the Uk and guest artists from the USA and the genre's on display include wildlife art,botanicals,animals,portraiture,still life and landscapes as well as experimental modern pieces.During the exhibition there are some of the finest coloured pencil workshops ever seen in the uk from some of the leading coloured pencil artists.If your'e in or around London then this show is a must see,for more details of the show and the UKCPS click on the link

Thursday, 22 September 2011

Switch to graphite

After a break from graphite for a while,ive re-started work on my Elephant drawing thats been languishing on the board for several weeks.I had a tough time working on my latest oil painting and was starting to feel a little jaded and so rather than destroy all my work up to that point i decided to switch back to my comfort zone for a while.The background has been laid in roughly to appear out of focus and the first part of the elephant completed is the ear and here ive layered the graphite using grades H thru to 2B to get the lovely shadow areas.there will be some lovely sharp contrasts in tone in this piece hopefully bringing this lovely bull elephant to life.

Tuesday, 13 September 2011

Start of a new oil

This is the Alkyd underpainting for my latest piece.In this painting i'm going to attempt to increase the scale of my work as all my previous paintings are pretty tiny in oil painting terms.This one will measure 17" x 11" ,a step up in scale for me but still a fairly small painting.The subject is a Caracal,a cat that i havn't seen too many paintings of and therefore a good opportunity to try something different.

Tuesday, 6 September 2011

Brown Hare study 13.25"x9" oil on board

Finished this little painting this afternoon.I'm happy that my oil painting adventure is progressing and indeed getting a little faster.ive tinkered a little with some added fur details,added the whiskers and of course the eye.i like to leave eyes till last as a little treat as i like to see the whole piece come to life at the last moment.i shall leave it on the easel for a day or two in case the urge to tinker comes upon me but i'm pretty happy with the result.

Sunday, 4 September 2011

Brown Hare update

The first detail coat of oils is now complete and this painting will be put aside for a day or two to dry.The next step will be to add a final detail coat of oils to refine the fur details,add whiskers and little touch's here and there and of course to complete the eye.

Friday, 2 September 2011

Brown Hare oil progress

Progress has been slow on this little Hare painting due to out of studio committments but ive nearly completed the detail coat of oil on the head of the animal

Thursday, 1 September 2011

Two new works underway

Bull African elephant pencil drawing

Brown Hare study oil painting
Ive finally managed to get a little studio time to make a start on two new images.The first is going to be a largish pencil drawing of a bull african elephant and will no doubt take me forever to complete.I have started to lay in the background in a loose manner and have made it look slightly out of focus with the use of a paper blender,the intention being to tighten up in the foreground only,although i still havnt quite worked out how to make grass look anything other than sketch-like as yet.Lots of practice on spare scraps of paper should see me come up with the solution when the times right.My second image is of a Brown Hare and is in oils.i havnt painted for a while and so i decided to try and ease myself back into the swing of things with a simple study piece.the underpainting has been completed in Alkyd oils and for the first time in 15 years i'm using pure oil paints to render the detail coats.i had forgotten what a joy real oil paints are to work in,quite apart from the fantastic smell!

i still have a few exhibitions on-going and so progress is likely to be a little slow at first but i'll post an update as soon as there's something more significant to see

Wednesday, 31 August 2011

Update on marwell exhibition and art market

Invariably i forget to take a photo at exhibitions etc and so i made a conscious effort to get a shot of my little stand in the art market marquee at this years MIWAS exhibition to share with you all.The marquee was packed with fellow wildlife artists for 3 days over the Bank holiday weekend and saw record numbers of visitors attending many of whom were enthralled to watch some of the many demonstrations of artists at work in a host of different mediums.I decided to concentrate on my limited edition prints as i thought it easier for buyers to carry around a busy zoological park than hefty framed works and i'm glad i did as there was steady trade all weekend.It was particularly nice to catch up with so many artist friends and meet new ones in the marquee as well as the many that popped by to say hello on a rare day out from there studio's.In the main exhibition hall i had 3 original works on display and i'm delighted to report that 2 of the 3 sold including my award winning cape buffalo which ive already delivered to its delighted purchasers.i have a couple of shows to go before the season winds down and then i can return full time to my studio and try to realise the many new images swimming around in my head.

Thursday, 25 August 2011

Marwell international wildlife art society annual exhibition

Recieving my runners up award for 'best non british wildlife art' from tv zoologist and conservationist Mark Cawardine

'Cape buffalo' award winning pencil drawing

'Bengal tiger cub' SOLD on preview night

Last night was the preview evening for the Marwell International wildlife art society's annual exhibition held at Marwell zoological park,nr winchester,hampshire.In a packed venue i was delighted to recieve the runners up award in the 'best of non british wildlife art' category and was presented with my award by Pip Mcgarry and Mark Cawardine.Marwell Hall was packed with invited guests and artists for the 13th annual exhibition and it was a real pleasure to bump into many artist friends on a rare trip out from there studio's.As the evening progressed many 'red dots' appeared on an array of different artworks and i was delighted when i learned that my oil sketch of a bengal tiger cub was one of those sold.The exhibition runs untill monday 29th august and alongside the show an art marquee hosting a multitude of artists demonstrating there skills and selling art including myself will be open for the Bank holiday weekend running from saturday 27th through to monday 29th august.if your at a loose end over the weekend or interested in viewing magnificent wildlife art then why not pop along to Marwell Zoological park for a great day out.

Sunday, 31 July 2011

Small graphite WIP

'Cockling on Hill Head beach' 6" x 10" Time in the studio is at a premium at the moment with my exhibition season in full swing,however ive managed to get this far with a small graphite work.The image is of an older couple out foraging for shellfish on the beach at Hill Head in hampshire.The best of hampshire artists organisation is holding an exhibition entitled Solent scene in september and i thought i would enter something a little different for me.i was out on my mountain bike hunting suitable references for the show with my camera and not finding much inspiration when during a break perched on a seafront bench i spotted these two characters trudging through the shallows whilst the tide was out looking for a shellfish dinner.I'm not really a figurative artist but i thought the scene might amply reflect the exhibitions title so ive been giving it a you can see it's almost complete and only requires the second figure to be completed and the sea in the background.i left the sea until last because frankly i think its the toughest part of the drawing and i'm still working out the best way to approach it in graphite,but i like a challenge!

Friday, 22 July 2011

A departure

Some of my readers will be aware that i have in the past drawn portraits mainly for friends and family but ive never tackled a nude subject.I have been asked on many an occasion about whether i felt that my graphite techniques could be employed in this genre and without trying it ive been unable to answer the question.And so i decided to give it a go and this is the resultant drawing,my first ever nude study.i wanted to concentrate on play of light and the contrasts of light and dark much as i do when tackling wildlife subjects and i hope ive succeeded in creating a tasteful but artistic image of the human form.

Monday, 18 July 2011

Best of Hampshire Artists exhibition

Some of you may recognise the image on the official poster for this upcoming prestigious exhibition.This annual exhibition showcases the very best in art produced by artists residing in the county of Hampshire,uk.set in the absolutely fabulous surroundings of the Sir Harold Hillier gardens near Romsey this exhibition runs from 30th july through to 29 august.There will be a huge variety of artistic styles on show in the form of original works,prints and greetings cards.If your'e in the area then come and view this wonderful show in the exhibition centre at the gardens,there is no admission charged to view the exhibition or to relax in the adjoining restaurant.Two of my own originals have been selected for the show and as well as these i will be displaying a selection of limited edition prints and greetings cards.

Saturday, 16 July 2011

NEWA exhibition award

just been informed that my image 'Dusk-lapwing' has won a drawing award at the Newa exhibition that is ongoing until the end of this month.visit to view all artworks and read about the exhibition.

Tuesday, 12 July 2011

NEWA exhibition



The NEWA (national exhibition of wildlife art) opens on the 15th july and runs until 31st july at the Gordale garden centre,chester high rd,Burton,Wirral,ch64 8tf. this prestigious exhibition showcases the very best in wildlife art available today and a visit is a must.Last year i was lucky enough to win a NEWA award for my graphite work and this year i have two drawings in the show,dusk-lapwing and beachcombers-oystercatchers

Tuesday, 28 June 2011

New website launched is my latest website and this site designed by me is the first to bring together all aspects of my art business.Here you can browse and purchase original works of art,limited edition prints and greetings cards as well as keep abreast of forthcoming exhibitions where my works can be seen.It's still a work in progress but i hope you'll check it out.

Friday, 24 June 2011

Avocet oil painting complete

Finished this one up this morning.I havn't thought of a title as yet but it measures 16" x 8".

I'm really pleased with the way it's turned out and it looks just as i remembered the avocets when i first observed them.The reflections took some time to get right and in the end it took 3 coats to get them as i wanted them.

Wednesday, 22 June 2011

Avocet oil painting progress

After an enforced break due to 'real life' getting in the way of things ive now managed to complete the top coat of oil on the avocet's.All that remains is to create the reflections on the water.

Thursday, 16 June 2011

Avocets underpainting complete

This is the next stage in my avocet painting.Ive now completed the underpainting of birds and reflections and once this coat is dry i'll start to add the detailed top coat of oil paint.

Wednesday, 15 June 2011

Kingfisher 16.5" x 8" oil on board

ive been tinkering with this small oil study for a while now and finally decided to call it a day and sign the thing!.i have to admit to not being entirely happy with it but ive had to resign myself to that fact and hope that as my oil painting journey continues my techniques will improve and as such this one has been a good learning experience.

Tuesday, 14 June 2011

new oil in progress

This is the start of my latest oil painting of a pair of you can see that once the design has been drawn out on the board ive underpainted the water areas with a grey tone in preparation for the detailed top coat of oil.In the lower picture the top coat is well underway and the top picture shows the painting at the end of the day with the water completed.The next stage will be to re-define the birds and there reflections with a thinned underpainting before proceeding with the detailed top coat.

Friday, 3 June 2011

'Reflections' framed

I was thrilled to find my original oil painting 'Reflections' hanging on the wall at Collier and Dobson's High street gallery in fordingbridge,uk.I think they've made a terrific job of the framing and as it's the first of my oils that ive so far seen framed up it was really exciting to see it taking pride of place.My remaining oils have all been framed in hand-finished frames and will be shown all together for the first time on the Collier and Dobson fine art stand at the South of England show in ardingly,west sussex from the 9th till 11th june

Wednesday, 1 June 2011

Tiger cub 9.5" x 10"

ive added some further refinements to the cat's coat and whiskers etc.i was planning to further refine the image but decided that i rather liked the slightly looser feel to it achieved by using larger brushes and so decided against over-working the piece.the image shown is a little paler than the original painting but its the best shot i could get with my camera.i think it's worked out okay but i'll let you be the judge

Tuesday, 31 May 2011

New mini-exhibition started

Following on from the success of my mini-exhibition last year at Titchfield Haven National nature reserve i was asked back again this year with an even longer show which runs from today untill 25th november.I will mostly be featuring new print releases of british wildlife in keeping with the location and a smattering of original works as and when they become available.The photo is of my latest print release 'Kingfisher' all framed up and ready to be transported to the venue.i have issued a number of my bird drawings and this kingfisher oil painting as limited editions to coincide with the shows opening.The show is housed within the visitor centre,to which there is free admission so if your'e in the area why not pop along.the images on display will be changing regularly throughout the shows duration.i have hung many of the prints unframed but mounted and wrapped to keep them as affordable as possible for the many visitors to the reserve.

Sunday, 29 May 2011

Tiger cub painting update

this is the second stage completed with the tiger completely blocked in and the eye i will add all the fur details and refine here and there

Wednesday, 25 May 2011

new tiger oil painting

this is one of two paintings currently on the easel and quite obviously is a little study piece of a tiger cub.ive progressed sufficiently to be confident that i will actually finish this one at some point although i'm still dreadfully slow with the oils and as you can see there is much to be done here but its shaping up nicely.

Wednesday, 11 May 2011

Winter Barn owl 17" x 10" oil on board

I'm calling this one complete as i'm happy with the image as it stands and dont want to tinker with it any more.learned a lot about the medium producing this which is always a good thing.