Friday, 31 March 2017

Rhossili


This painting of Rhossili Bay found a good home this week. Over the years I have done a few paintings of the Gower and will probably do a few more. Meanwhile I finished the painting I had been reworking adding family members for the owner. I have also delivered my paintings for the exhibition in Brecon.


Thursday, 30 March 2017

Royal Welsh Regimental Museum - Exhibition




I am currently drying out having waited for a cloud burst before taking Jac for his walk. Today I am taking a number of paintings to Theatre Brycheiniog in Brecon for an exhibition in aid of the Royal Welsh Regimental Museum. This of course is the regiment who were at Rorks Drift. 

I was pleased to be asked to exhibit along with other contemporary artists including a number of KwaZulu -Natal Painters. Shown above are two of the six paintings I am taking. The exhibition is only on for two days only 1st and 2nd April 2107. (Details)






Wednesday, 29 March 2017

Painting of Woodland Path


This is a painting I did a few years ago of a woodland path. I was trying to capture the light through the trees and the flickering of the light on the leaves. Anyway it sold.

I seem to have a financial interest in woodland. Mrs Cox is officially a "tree hugger". Let me explain. I let her go shopping by herself one day and she came back part owner of the Woodland Trust (well at any rate we must be now).
She had succumbed to a smooth talking salesman near Tescos and we now contribute a monthly fee to said Trust. It could be worse and to be honest it is a charity I am happy to support. However I now guide Alex well away from any young person with a reflective waistcoat and clipboard !

Tuesday, 28 March 2017

Painting of Y Priordy


I did this painting of Y Priordy a Chapel in Carmarthen a few years ago. I was interested in the architecture and it was a bit of a challenge. It is on the site of the old Priory of which only the old gatehouse remains. I am not really of a religious persuasion but I do like looking at and painting old churches and other interesting buildings for that matter.

I am getting on a painting I did a few years ago and I have been asked to add to the family group in the painting as there are new additions . It is a bit more work than I anticipated as there is a deep scratch right across the painting.


Monday, 27 March 2017

Painting of Carmarthen Reservoir


Jac and I went around the Carmarthen Reservoirs this morning. He is having a bit of trouble with his one paw so I have been giving him a rest from the climb up through the woods. The painting above is of the bottom reservoir and is sold.

As we walked around I bumped into someone I knew and they told me they were off to London today for a conference which reminded me of a story I know I have told before but is worth repeating.

When I was in the police I was often sent to conferences. On one occasion I was a little delayed due to heavy traffic and arrived at this large hotel just as the conference was starting. I quietly went in and found a seat as the first speaker was commencing. I sat there for an hour or so until there was a short break. I then started chatting to the person next to me.

"I can't stand these conferences, just a waste of time and money."I said.
"Yes I totally agree with you." He replied.
"So where are you from?" I asked.
"South Western Region."

Slightly puzzled I looked at his badge. It was at this point I realised I was in the wrong place and had sat through over an hour of a conference being run by British Gas. It turned out the Police Conference was on the floor above. Speaks volumes doesn't it.

Today I am starting to add to an old painting. I did a family group a few years back and this group has a few additional members and I have been asked to add them to the painting.




Sunday, 26 March 2017

Watercolour of Bridge at Carmarthen


I don't often do a full watercolour painting now. This may change. If someone is desperate for a painting and there is no time for an oil to dry I will occasionally do one. The watercolour above is of Carmarthen Bridge and is sold.

This is the view from the path near Currys. I have painted from here a couple of times and the smell from the take away van can be a bit overpowering. Still you can park your car and its not far to carry the easel.


Saturday, 25 March 2017

Walking the dog on Llansteffan Beach


I finished this painting yesterday, walking the dog on Llansteffan Beach. I had intended originally to do it in winter with rain and dark skies but I relented and went for sunshine.

I went to watch the Scarlets last night a good game, a game of two halves!! Anyway thoroughly enjoyed watching good attacking rugby. The second half was full of errors but good defence.

Today shopping and the garden, oh well.

Friday, 24 March 2017

Snowdonia


At this time of year we used to go in our camper to North Wales for a couple of weeks. We stayed in Harlech. The beach there is fantastic, 7 miles of sand with a view of Snowdonia. Generally if it was busy you shared this beach with half a dozen people. If quiet you had it to yourselves. The painting above shows the scene.

Last night we went to see a T Rex tribute act. It was very good. I saw Tyrannosaurus Rex in 1969 so a good few years ago! Anyway a good evening.

I was playing the piano the other day and Alex called me:

"If that's, "Catch a falling Star" its in the wrong key!"

I replied, "Its in the right key and its, "Get Back!"

Oh well, keep practising!!

Wednesday, 22 March 2017

After the Rain


I was reminded of this painting this morning. We have had quite a downpour overnight. This morning's walk was like an assault course,wading through mud across the fields and up the wood. In fact last night there was a big thunder storm over our son's house in Llanddowror and they were struck by lightning. Well to be correct the actual strike was on the trampoline in the garden. The pictures on their walls were knocked off, the lights went out and they now don't have TV although the electric supply is back on.

Back to the painting it may be a bit grey for most people but I really liked it. It never found a home and eventually we re-used the frame and it was binned.

Yesterday a satisfied customer collected their commission. I have had a pretty well none stop but pleasant amount of work for the last 6 months and now it seems I am up to date.

Tuesday, 21 March 2017

Stradey Park


I am looking forward to Friday night. Scarlets are at home playing Edinburgh. Hopefully some good attacking rugby. The picture above is one I did of the Town Gate of Stradey Park, the old Llanelli and Scarlets ground.

I must have passed through this gate countless times. I was sad to see the place go and it is now a housing estate but I suppose we have to move with modern times and the facilities were a bit primitive.

I am not sure if I still have the painting. It was never put in a frame. So it probably ended up in much the same way as the subject. (No it didn't turn into a housing estate!)

I do have a mobile phone although I probably only use it once a week on average. I often forget to carry it with me and one of Alex's oft heard complaints is," I don't know why you have a mobile phone."

The other day she borrowed it when we were out and said." You haven't got the Internet on this."
I said, "Yes I get it at home."
She said. "You should get 3G or 4G when you are out."
I said ,"Well I never have."
She looked at me sadly went into settings and said," Perhaps if you turn it on!"
Ah well. To be honest why do I need to look at the Internet when I am out anyway?

Monday, 20 March 2017

Brambles


The field opposite is now pretty grown over with new trees and brambles reclaming the once grassed plot. Old Mr Davies used to cut the brambles by hand and spend several days clearing the field. I have often seen foxes with their cubs running through the grass or playing on a sunny bank.

I am not sure who owns the field now but I think I like the overgrown nature of it now, although I am not sure what Mr Davies would think. I did the sketchof him above a few years ago when he was still with us.

Yesterday I helped out rehanging Origin Gallery, in King St. Carmarthen. Worth popping in if your passing.


Sunday, 19 March 2017

Top Reservoir.


The cormorant was back this morning on the top reservoir after a long absence.  It was good to have a walk in the fresh air and clear my head after a hectic day of rugby watching and socialising yesterday.
I am still trying to work out what happened in the Wales game. Jonathan Davies lost his voice, so a good start. Then it all went downhill really with the strangest ending I have ever seen. I enjoyed the last game though.

I am in the gallery today helping out rehanging work. Alex is framing.

Saturday, 18 March 2017

Stationary Engine



We have our eldest grandson stopping with us a the  moment due to another inset day at his school.
Yesterday we took him to see Kong Skull Island which to be honest I thoroughly enjoyed.

I also looked out an old hot air engine in the workshop that I had made from scrap some 20 plus years ago. It was only a small one made from aluminium cast iron and brass. I thought I would show him  how it worked and the principles behind it. It was covered in "muck" and sawdust and really needed stripping down, cleaning and re-assembling. Anyway I gave it a go. It wanted to go but couldn't quite get into the rhythm.

Ah well learning "things don't always go to plan" is a lesson too.

The painting above reflects my interest in all types of machinery and is of two gents discussing the merits of a stationary engine.

Friday, 17 March 2017

Turning the Hay


I notice on my walks that the farm has been busy lately and the aroma of slurry spread on the fields is a reminder of the arrival of Spring.

We are also getting into the garden now albeit the ground is still wet.

Yesterday our perfectly good petrol mower split in two where the metal base had rotted through. A real waste as the rest is in perfect order. It was very heavy although being self propelled. Anyway I am nothing if not a considerate husband and have bought a lighter version for Alex to push. I don't like to see her struggling.

The painting above is of a tractor turning the hay.

Thursday, 16 March 2017

Painting of Rhossili Bay


In between other things I have been working on this painting of  Rhossili Bay this week.
I have done a few paintings of this stretch of beach with differing views of  people, surfers and Burry Holms as well. This one I did to fit a smaller frame size which ends up about 15 ins x 13 ins (no I still haven't converted to metric).

Wednesday, 15 March 2017

Painting workboats


The above watercolour is of an old harbour tug. We used to go to boat shows and exhibit paintings of work boats at one time. I have  always been interested in shipping and still have a number of these paintings on the wall in my own collection.  At that time we did a lot of sailing and sitting on the boat at anchor sketching was a good way to pass the time. We sold quite a few but it was however a very limited market.  Nowadays I still like to sit at a harbour and watch the boats but I rarely do a full painting of working boats.

I was very proud to see a video of one of our granddaughters singing for the Eistedffod. She clearly has musical talent taking after her mother.

I told her about the time I decided to join the school choir.
Joining the choir meant getting out of lessons. I went along and on my first meeting the teacher sat at the piano with us all around and stated playing something pretty dire like the "Ashgrove". Anyway I got stuck in.
A few bars into the piece the teacher stopped and said,"What is that awful noise?"
We then had to sing the piece individually.
When he got to me I had just started to sing when he said,"No you can't sing you are not going to be in the choir." At least he sugar coated it for me. So back to lessons and traumatised for life!

To be truthful I actually have no musical talent yet despite this I am still persevering with the piano much to the annoyance of the neighbours.

Tuesday, 14 March 2017

Aberglasney - Up and coming David Cowdry Exhibition


David Cowdry is having an exhibition at Aberglasney from 1st April 2017 (Private view 31st March)
Details.

I am unable to attend the Private view myself as it clashes with an exhibition I am taking part in, but I will ensure I get along to see his exhibition later in the week. I recommend a visit, the gardens and tea room by the lake are an added bonus.

Good Luck David. The painting above is a watercolour of the mansion I did a few years a back and we have sold countless cards of it.

Monday, 13 March 2017

Painting of St John The Baptist Church Cirencester.


The above is a painting of St John The Baptist Church in Cirencester. The Cotswolds are nearly a second home to us. Okay they are not as beautiful or varied as the Welsh Landscape and they are a lot busier but we do like to visit for a change. Alex also seems keen on the shops! Anyway we have been away for a week in our van in Cirencester and had a relaxing time.

Now I have a painting to do and Alex has half a dozen paintings to frame.

Monday, 6 March 2017

River Towy and Merlin's Hill


This painting shows the River Towy and Merlins Hill looking from opposite Tan yr Rhallt Farm. The painting is sold.

I generally use French Ultramarine in my palette of colours for the sky. I add Titanium White occasionally a trace of  Cadmium Yellow and sometimes Alizarin Crimson. I will use Cerulean Blue as well or instead on rare occasions. This is one time I did use it. If I use one blue in the painting I use the same blue for mixing all my palette. This painting had a ground of Burnt Sienna and turpentine rubbed all over it with a cloth to start.

Sunday, 5 March 2017

Morning Walk


There can be few things better to start the day than a walk overlooking the Towy Valley. This morning Jac and I stopped at our usual viewing point to pause, look and listen. The sun was warm on one side of my face while a cool breeze ran against the other. A woodpecker was still tapping in the wood we had walked through and a little flock (it was hardly a murmuration) of starlings flew low over the fields. Long shadows reached across the floor of the valley and I was thinking about a painting later. Then Jac got restless and started to pull on his lead, obviously breakfast was foremost in his mind now.

Life is not about things, possessions its about what you do with it. (Although I have some lovely things foremost my piano, one of the last British built pianos, a present from Mrs Cox). No what counts is the things you have done. Not just places visited or experiences. Nor just the pleasure my paintings have given to people. The important thing for me is, between us bringing up a family, watching them grow and flourish. Being considerate to others.

Now its Sunday morning and I must go and annoy the neighbours by practising my piano!

Saturday, 4 March 2017

Family Portrait


This is a portrait I did of my grandmother. This was done from a couple of photographs when she was young. My actual recollection of her is as an old bed bound lady. I chose monochrome because it suited the period.  I can't actually remember where the painting is or where it went!

I have quite a mixed ancestry. She was from one of the oldest families in Oxfordshire. ( I say oldest not poshest they were farm workers and I can trace her line back directly to 1520).

Friday, 3 March 2017

Painting of Carmarthen on the River Towy


This is the painting I have been working on this week. A view of Carmarthen with the River Towy from the West.

I painted this straight off  drawing directly other onto the board with a brush oil and turps.


This method does mean you may have to alter things at a later stage in fact I only had one alteration. I dropped the height of the County Hall which was out of proportion. The important point is to have a really clear idea of how you want it to turn out. 


I really like Paul Simon and I have recently heard a very different version of Sound of Silence by Disturbed. Worth a listen Link


Thursday, 2 March 2017

Saundersfoot Beach

Its been a busy week with children every day. I'm not complaining just worn out! Alex and I took the youngest grandson to Saundersfoot yesterday (sketch above). Jac was happy with a beach to himself, pretty well. A commission was collected yesterday and I start a new painting today.

Wednesday, 1 March 2017

St. David's Day


It's St. David's Day today. What makes Wales Great? The Land of Song, Tom Jones, Shirely Bassey, Bryn Terfel, Morriston Orpheus Choir, Stereophonics. Rugby, well you have to say at the moment thats  Scarlets and Ospreys. The Landscape a picture to paint around every corner but most of all its the people. Happy St. David's Day.

(Stradey Park painting above is sold).