big blank canvas

i have been wanting to paint a BIG picture for a few years now and today was the day i got to it!

I have been taking 3 art classes a week this term with deb withey and the most important has been the drawing class.  during the first class, i found i had done 3 drawings with my (non dominant) left hand without realising – and i really liked the result!

last summer i had done quite a few exercises from betty edward’s classic book, drawing from the right side of the brain. one of the exercises that i really enjoyed, and was surprised at the results, was drawing a subject with my left hand while not looking at the paper.

during the following weeks, to loosen up at the start of each class i have continued to do several drawings in the same way – with my left hand and not looking at the paper. i then move on to doing left hand drawings looking at the page and maybe finally drawing with my right hand. the pictures i most enjoy are those done with my left hand and drawn while  not looking at the paper – it seems there is a freedom in that for me and the resulting pictures have a strength, character and energy in them.

so to get back to painting big. I taped together 3 long pieces of lining paper and pinned them to the wall

i had been given a beautiful stem of artichokes that would be my subject

i warmed up by drawing a couple of a3 sketches – using a chunky graphite pencil and a thick marker pen












then to the big blank canvas! i decided to use the black marker pen and did the whole drawing without looking at the paper and was really pleased with the result!

i decided to add colour with acrylics and a fabulous BIG brush my friend lisa had given me and i have been wanting to christen for some time!

i added the paint with the brush in my left hand while looking at the paper and am thrilled with the result!

drawing and painting big, with my left hand, gives me the space to really express myself – and standing while drawing adds to the sense of freedom and movement. i want to a do a series of paintings like this and am going to treat myself to some big size cartridge paper.

and now i get to eat the artichoke!



mermaids purse

I found my first mermaids purse on a beach on the Llyn penisula a couple of years ago. I was enthralled by the shape and wanted to create something in response to it.







The ‘purse’ is the casing that surrounds the fertilised eggs of sharks and skate and I have since found a few floating in the sea where I live in Pembrokeshire.



During a printing course this summer I took inspiration from the shape and made a stencil for screen printing which I was really pleased with. The stencil is on the left.

The resulting print makes me think of women dancing!

During this terms class I have taken my interpretation of the shape further and created a picture on cardboard from glue

and the first print I took from this was on lining paper. The cardboard was amazon packaging and the shaping of it creates a frame around the print which I really like. I really wasn’t sure about using glue to make a picture and I now I am a convert!

I then did a series of prints on folded out brown paper bags and wimdow envelopes (thanks to Inland Revenue!). I’m a real brown paper fan, something so pleasing about it and the bag even has a grease stain on it which I like!

Thanks to my friend Lisa who was keen to images of this work which motivated me to write this post!