Thursday, 28 May 2015

'Valley of Ancient Dreams'

This is my latest small painting/drawing of a 'shamanic' nature. These pictures show the way I like to work, which I describe as 'intuitive'. Despite the high degree of detail, it would be wrong to conclude that the drawing is planned or arranged in my mind beforehand. I prefer to allow images to arise spontaneously and for the picture to 'evolve' by itself, and find that the best way to achieve this effect is by working in great detail quite slowly.
Completed Drawing
  I began the drawing with a watercolour wash, with some drops of ink added while the paper was still wet.
fourth stage
Next, I spent time 'tuning in' to the markings on the paper, to see what images came to mind. The brown ink markings suggested Standing Stones to me, with a river running through, so I added the river colouring with watercolour paint. Then began work on the foreground using my pen and ink technique. It gradually became apparent that I was viewing the scene from an elevated the at this point I became aware of the Buzzards- three enjoying a circling dance in the clear dawn of a far off day in ancient times. Having become aware that it was dawn, I added yellow and pink colours to the sky area. The sky dots suggest thermals..and pathways in the sky as a reflection of the leys and pathways of the land..
third stage
  I used my Rotring technical pen for the black outlines and dots, and watercolour paint and gouache for the coloured areas.
second stage

First stage

Wednesday, 27 May 2015

Sycamore Wood Pyro -Art Piece 'The Sorcerer'

'Ladder' design

Ever fascinated by Paleolithic art, cave drawings and standing stone markings, I have been inspired to recreate some designs on this small piece of Sycamore wood. On one side is the shamanic figure sometimes referred to as 'The Sorcerer' from a cavern in France, and on the reverse, a 'ladder' design similar to markings on the 'Panorama Stone' in W. Yorks, England.
'The Sorcerer'

Wednesday, 13 May 2015

Applewood Slice Pyro Art Piece 'Moonshadow'

My latest piece on Applewood features some of my favourite images - an old gnarled tree, standing stones and an owl..all lit by the light of a full moon. On the reverse are a few well chosen words taken from one of my favourite books -'The Lord of the Rings'. The words 'Elen sila lumenn omentielvo' are a greeting in the elven tongue, meaning 

'A star shines on the hour of our meeting'.

Friday, 8 May 2015

'skyfields' pen and ink with gouache

I've just completed this little pen and ink drawing which I named 'Skyfields'. I began with a watercolour wash, adding a drop of yellow ink while the paper was still wet, then built up my pen and ink design. Blues and whites filled in with gouache. This is the third in my series of similar designs.

Detail from 'Skyfields'

'Diadem', 'Autumnia' and 'Syfields'

Grandfathers Legacy

Grandad Bertie Cannon

Metal badges
Grandad ( bottom right) at work at the royal mews
Ever since I began working with wood a few years ago, I've found myself musing over the little snippets of information I have about my maternal grandfather..and a handful of trinkets I own which were his. I wonder whether or not it is mere coincidence that we share a love for wood. My grandfather Bertie Cannon was a cabinet maker and coachbuilder, and worked at the royal mews in London. I have a photograph of him with one of the royal coaches - I think it is the Lord Mayors coach, and I remember my mother often telling me how he worked long hours at the Royal Mews, travelling from Hertfordshire down to London every day. Unfortunately he died when I was quite young..I think around 1964 when I would have been five years old, and my memories of him are very slight, although I do have a vague memory of being with him in his workshop. My mother used to tell me that he was very skillful with wood, and could make anything - she believed that my ability to draw must have come from him, but I didn't discover my own love for handling and working with wood until I was into my fifties, and my mother was no longer alive to see any of my pyrography work. Apart from the black and white photograph of grandad and the coach, I have some metal 'badges' which I believe came from him, and which I assume were connected with his work, and two old spoke shaves. These have his name inscribed..very faint now, but just about visible and probably would have been with him from his apprentice days. I love to handle these spoke shaves, knowing that he must have used them a great deal for many many years - it almost feels sometimes that he has handed them to me across time, as though handing on a baton..
Grandads spoke shaves 

Saturday, 2 May 2015

Tiny Drawing ' Treasure Within'

This tiny drawing measures just 5 cm square. Painted on watercolour paper in a mixture of watercolour, gouche and ink, it is double sided, with Hare design one side, and a verse of my own on the other..
  The verse reads: 'magic and mystery lie within the heart of all to know this treasure'.