Life drawing sketchbook, mid-October


Things have been rather quiet here lately, simply because life has been rather full-on. I’ve not been able to start the next series of figure paintings, but a few sketches when time and energy has allowed. Here’s the latest couple of pages, working from some of the most recent videos at Croquis Cafe.


Zoo sketchbook, 20th September

More lunchtime fun at the Budongo Trail after a couple of weeks off. Think I’m starting to get the sense of the chimpanzees in some of these pencil drawings. I’ve also shot some video footage of them to study, with an aim to some ‘action’ pose drawings down the line. Hopefully in the next month or two I’ll have a go at a portrait drawing of one of the chimpanzees, they’re truly fascinating subjects to draw.

Stretch in Ochre (4), 2018

Here we go, the fourth one in four weeks. Really glad I’ve stuck with them – the concept is simple enough to fit into a number of evenings, and it’s resulted in more oil painting over a month than I’ve done in the last 2 years combined. I’m going to take a week or two off before carrying on, give some thought as to whether continue working with this series based around a limited ochre colour palette, or try something else for a bit.


Stretch in Ochre (4), 2018 – oils on canvas board, £60

Back in Black & White, 2018

Here’s a figure drawing from a few weeks ago of a female model, drawn using white pastel pencils on some lovely black paper. Always enjoy working like that, but it can be hard to find a pose that’s lit in such a way to make the most of white-on-black. I think this one, courtesy of this NMA video, fits the bill. It’s now up for sale at the usual place for 50 of your earth pounds.

Back in Black and White, 2018 – pastel pencil on black paper, £50

I think I’ll return to that pose another time in the future in a different medium, since the bright whiteness of the model’s skin against the black background really is striking – white oil paint, perhaps?

Stretch in Ochre (1), 2018

First in a new series of oil paintings I’m going to produce (hopefully on a weekly basis, if reality will let me) based around poses showing various kinds of stretching, working with a limited palette. Such poses are a real pleasure (and challenge) to capture, especially in a painting. It’s one thing to do a sharp, exaggerated gesture drawing in 30 seconds, quite another to maintain a similar vitality in a painting that took a couple of hours to produce. I’m looking forward to seeing how these paintings progress as the weeks go by, but here’s the first – now up for sale.


Stretch in Ochre (1), 2018 – Oils on canvas board, £60.