Cartooning at West Dean College

Just spent a great weekend at West Dean on a cartooning and caricaturing course with the talented John Freeman as tutor.  This was a hugely challenging course, both mentally (who would have thought cartooning was such a cerebral activity!) and physically with John pushing the pace over the three days.  While I was definitely feeling out of my depth at times, this cartoon was not a reflection of John’s teaching style!

"cartoon of one man bullying another man"



I have been criticised by a close friend of mine for only using one of my much loved dogs in my art work.  So, to show there is no favouritism, here’s Nelly.  Again, the magic of “painting” in cross stitch means that the image becomes clearer if you step back from it.

"Jack Russell in cross stitch"

cross stitch in various natural blend yarns on gouache and paper background




Claire in cross stitch

After the drawing workshop at the weekend I came away with some sketches that were begging to be developed in another media.  Loving the subtle tones produced by graphite on paper I was “drawn” to the huge colour palette offered by the embroidery thread department in my local Hobbycraft.  Cross stitch it had to be!  As with some paintings this looks much more exciting if you step back from the screen.

"cross stitch painting"

drawing with cross stitch, embroidery thread on Aida

Out of my comfort zone

Some time back I decided that 2013 was the year that I was going to take the plunge into painting.  Whilst I have always been relatively comfortable with drawing, I have been reluctant to get the paints out knowing how completely out of my comfort zone I was going to be.  However, when I discovered an artist offering weekend classes a mere 30 mins walk from my house I knew it was meant to be!  Today was my second session and the mission was to paint a coffee cup using acrylics on canvas.  While it is not quite finished here is the work in progress.

"painting of a coffee cup"

acrylics on canvas

Life Drawing Session

Life has been hectic recently, preparing for two textile exhibitions (watch this space!) so I especially welcomed time out today for a figure drawing workshop at the Southampton City Art Gallery.  Being a little out of practice, it took some time to get my eye in, but the lovely tutor, Brian Reynolds, managed to coach me back into it and I left with a body of work I am looking forward to developing further in stitch, collage and print.

"graphite sketch of female head and shoulders"

graphite sketch"sketch of hands"