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'nest' bowl

A little nest, a gift for a friend: white porcelain bowl hand-painted with porcelain paint (Talens Decorfin – this stuff is lovely to use, the viscosity is just right for painting on awkward/curved/sloped surfaces and it’s beautifully opaque, it is fixed by simple heat-setting in an ordinary oven, and is apparently ‘dishwasher safe’ after fixing (I still have to test this claim) – it couldn’t be simpler to use).

I struggled to find pleasingly shaped ‘blank’ porcelain at a reasonable price – if it’s cheap the shapes are usually heavy, clumsy, thick rimmed, and if it’s a highly pleasing shape it’s usually highly priced (and not something I’d be inclined to paint on!). So I was very happy when I chanced upon Dille & Kamille in Haarlem where I found quite an extensive range of reasonably priced and pleasingly shaped white porcelain just waiting to be turned in to nests etc.

The fact that Dille & Kamille “strive to operate with care and respect for the environment”, and so try to stock products that support this aim, made this little assortment of blank white bowls all the more appealing.

blank porcelain... waiting to be painted

Dark January days, and their monochromatic lighting, have given this photo a pleasing Morandi-esque quality

I haven’t decided yet what I’ll paint on these. The intertwined ‘twigs ‘n fibres’ of the nest bowl were a lot of fun to paint (if a little tricky at times!) but it was a very time-consuming process. I would like to work towards creating a design that has a similar feeling of detail and density… but doesn’t take me quite such a long time to complete! Or I’d like more hours in the day please (as ‘Gang of Four’ sang on their album ‘Entertainment!’, “Please send me evenings and weekends”…).

These are ‘warm-up’ drawings for something I hope to get started on next week. Although it will likely be more stylised than these drawings it will almost certainly include flora and bones of some sort.

We have a steady stream of friends visiting for a few nights at a time at the moment and my studio doubles as a guest-bedroom so I’ve been trying to avoid making too much of a mess in there – observational drawing is a perfect low-mess activity: a piece of paper and a clutch of graphite pencils (HB, H, 2H, 4H, B, 2B to be precise) is all that’s required, and assuming the light-source can be replicated it’s pretty portable too!

 

seagull skull, dry twig 'n leaves, seed pod - observational drawings
 

seagull skull  |  dry twig ‘n leaves  |  seed pod 

I raided this collection for subject matter.
For a great skull & bones collection check out that of the very talented Mr Schaff, creator of many a great album cover and embroiderer & papercutter extraordinaire!

super-sharp!

… a really sharp (must be blade-sharpened!) graphite pencil. Simple is good.

some of my work, available on etsy
support worldwide wild cat conservation

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Elegant step-gables and spring sunshine in Amsterdam #gable #step_gable #trapgevel #canal_house #singel #grachtenpand #spring #sunshine #new_growth #green #pattern #symmetry At the Melkweg last night for some RTJ music and mayhem... #melkweg #runthejewels #RTJ #ElP #KillerMike #livemusic #neon #typography #stars #milkyway I ❤ tree skeletons… soon to be bursting into new leaf, so I’m enjoying these graphic lines while I still can #dawn #silhouette #treeskeleton #graphic #filigree #pattern #colour #gradation This magic has just started to unfold in the ‘garden’ on our little roof terrace. Methinks spring has most definitely sprung! #spring #lente #blossoms #plum (?) #pink #petals #stamens #delicate #growth #seasons #cycle_of_life #roof_garden #haarlem Dawn colours #dawn #silhouette #dome #cathedral #kathedralebasilieksintbavo #studio_view #rooftops #haarlem Dressing W-A-Y out of my comfort zone for the “glitter and glamour” themed wedding party of friends tonight. Gulp… they say it’s good to step outside one’s comfort zone now and then, right?! #shimmery #sequins #glitter #festive #ottodame #not_black #colour #pattern #texture

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