Birmingham Art Circle, exhibitions and new art.

I recently became elected as a member of the Birmingham Art Circle. This is a good opportunity to meet new artists, to share ideas, support one another and to take part in more exhibitions. I’m really happy with the news and am looking forward to working with the group.

My drawing “Springfield Brewery'“ has been delivered to The Guildhall Gallery in Stafford ready for their next exhibition which starts on Friday 3rd May. This is a small but friendly gallery that also provides coffee and cake - well worth a visit if you’re in the area.

I’m currently part way through a new painting and drawing which will be part of the ‘Fragments’ exhibition that I am doing with printmaker Jemma Gunning.

'Entrance' wins the Barracks Trust Prize

Today I received the Barracks Trust Prize at the Brampton Museum and Art Gallery Open Art and Craft Exhibition 2019 for my ink drawing “Entrance’. This piece is based on an area at the edge of Cannock Chase, a forest in Staffordshire. I think it’s almost impossible to guess how your work will be received and so it is always a pleasant surprise to win an award. I also have two paintings in the same show, ‘Clearcut’ and ‘Clearcut 2’. The exhibition runs until the 12th May.

Open Exhibitions

I recently found out that I have had work accepted into two Open Exhibitions.

Firstly, my paintings ‘The Shack’ and ‘XA’ have been accepted in the annual Open All Media Exhibition at the RBSA Gallery in Birmingham. It’s been a while since I entered this show and so I’m looking forward to attending the private view to see the other work and meet the artists.

Secondly my paintings ‘Clearcut’ and ‘Clearcut II’ and my ink drawing ‘Entrance’ have all been accepted into the Open Exhibition at Brampton Museum and Art Gallery. This show has become more popular since the closure of the Shire Hall Gallery and now that the Potteries Museum and Art Gallery no longer run an open competition.

It’s always a pleasure to get into these competitions and it’s impossible to know whether you’ll be successful beforehand. I’m planning on trying the RBA one next.

New Year, New Art

After a relatively quiet December i will be back to my busy creative life working on a number of different projects. Firstly i have an ongoing sketchbook project sharing drawings and ideas with Jo Walton and Karen Wicks which aims to capture the atmosphere of quiet spaces. This may result in an exhibition or further collaborations.

I also have a number of Open Exhibitions that i intend to enter. I did well last year getting work in the New English Art Club (London), RWA Bristol and the Three Counties show in Stoke-on-Trent.

I am also building up a new collection of work based on abandonment and dereliction which will combine both urban and natural landscapes in different media. I’m currently working a lot in ink which i’m enjoying. This work will result in an exhibition with Jemma Gunning, a Bristol based artist and urban explorer.

I will also be busy with my art classes and workshops, details of which are on this website. Lots to do!

Commission and new work

2018 has been a productive year with lots of new work produced and lots of art classes and workshops delivered.

I am currently on the final stages of my latest commission for a client. It is a large acrylic painting featuring a circle of tall trees during the summer. It has been refreshing working on a larger scaled (4 foot by 3) and I feel that during the process my painting technique has become more sophisticated and varied.

After this is completed I have several ideas to pursue. I have a number of images of a collapsed Pill Box found on a beach in Northumberland during Spring this year. This concrete structure stood out starkly against the beach and provided me with a number of interesting compositions. More recently I discovered a derelict World War 2 Airbase not far from Whitchurch. I took a number of photos of the area and have several strong ideas for new work as a result.

The beach images and the airbase images will fit in nicely with the theme I have been developing over the last year which show abandoned spaces with evidence of human intervention.

I will be working on a couple of projects with other artists next year who are also interested in the theme.

RWA Open Exhibition - Success!

I have just found out that my recent painting, ‘XA II’ has made it through the final round of the RWA Open Exhibition. This is the first time I have exhibited there and in fact anywhere in Bristol so it’s nice to be branching out. I’m really pleased with the painting and am looking forward to seeing the other work and meeting the artists.

The RWA Open runs from the 7th October to the 25th November 2018.

I am currently finishing off my current commission and will then be working towards my show next year.

RWA Open Exhibition

I was pleased to find out that my painting, 'XA II' has been pre-selected for the RWA Open Exhibition in Bristol.  Fingers crossed it makes it into the show!  

I'm currently working on a large commission for a private collector which is going well.  It is more than double the size of the last painting so it's quite a change.  It's looking good so far.

Following this I will be working towards an exhibition I have planned for next year.  More news on this soon.

XA

I have just completed another painting which is part of the new woodland collection.  This series differs from the previous work in that it looks at the interaction between people and nature.  The new painting, 'XA', shows a scene with a spray painted tree indicating a recent interaction. I recently visited a beach in Northumberland where a similar interaction had taken place.  

As with my other work this piece also looks at silence and stillness - there is something beyond words that is felt and not spoken and the painting is my way of expressing that.

The Shack Accepted into the New English Art Club Annual Exhibition

I am pleased to announce that my recent painting, 'The Shack', has been accepted into the New English Art Club Annual Exhibition.  London shows are always very competitive so I'm really pleased to have got in.  The show runs from the 15th to the 23rd June.  Visit the NEAC website for details.

In other news my current painting is going very well and I feel that it displays a development in my technique.  The current collection is based around the interaction between people and nature.

Renewal

I have recently started looking at the forest once again for inspiration.  I enjoyed creating the woodland series three years ago and felt that there was more i could explore.  This time around i became interested in the traces people leave behind - cut branches, litter, paint marks etc  I found areas where people had recently left their mark - no longer present but traces remain.  As well as the man made trails there was also the more natural causes of change - trees broken by wind and storms, creating unusual forms and textures.  The forest never stays the same.

Aside from this surface visual level of interest, the new work will also look at themes of stillness and presence - being in the moment without thought, absorbed in the surroundings.  The idea is that the paintings capture this feeling as well as documenting the changes of time on a visual level.

The first painting in this series, "Renewal" has just been completed and i am really pleased with how it worked out.  I feel it has captured the essence of what i want to convey.  This can be viewed in the Woodland section of my website.

Paintings and teaching

I have a painting and two drawings included in the Brampton Museum Open Art exhibition at Newcastle Staffordshire.  It's a very mixed show and the gallery is nice.  One of my students from my art class, Emily Bradshaw, also had one of her paintings accepted which is well deserved.

I am currently working on my painting of the New Navigation Inn, a derelict pub near the canals of Birmingham.  This piece is interesting because it is full of contrasting elements.  Strong colour next to dark shadows, textured areas next to flat blocks of paint, detailed areas near open space and so on.   I will be following this up with another, quite unusual painting which is based on a striking photo that i took in Birmingham near the canals.

I am currently doing slightly less teaching over the Easter period but will be back with my college courses as well as my own regular class at Gainsborough Artworks soon.  The Gainsborough class is getting quite full but there are spaces on my college courses should you wish to join.  See my art classes page for details.

I am getting excited about the forthcoming "Woodland" exhibition at Reuben Colley Fine Art gallery in Birmingham.  This show features my Cannock Chase drawings and paintings and will be one of my largest and strongest exhibitions to date.  This work has a lot of depth and meaning to me but also will resonate with anyone who appreciates nature.

Art classes and workshops

My art classes and workshops pages are regularly updated and so if you are interested in learning how to draw and paint do keep looking.

The Stafford College classes continue in Haughton Village Hall on the 12th April and the first session is free.  The Stafford College class at Penkridge starts again on the 20th April.  Contact the college to enroll or myself if you are unable to get through.

Mt regular class on Wednesday morning at Gainsborough Artworks in Stafford is ongoing and you can join when you are ready.  Send me a message to check availability.

I also often run Art workshops and you can request me to run one for you.  Just send me a message with your requirements and i will get back to you.

I believe we all have a creative side and it is just a matter of opening up and having a go.  I teach all abilities including people who have no confidence.  You'll be surprised at what you can achieve if you try and i can help you develop whatever your ability.

Exhibitions and plans

The Nicklin Revisited exhibition at Reuben Colley Fine Art gallery in Birmingham finished today.  It was an interesting show to be involved in and it drew in not just art enthusiasts but also people interested in the history of the West Midlands.  It was the first time i had exhibited my work in the new(ish) gallery location and i was very impressed with the presentation of the work, all of which was outstanding.

I will next be exhibiting at Brampton Museum as part of the Open Art exhibition which runs from the 19th March to the 5th June.  I had three pieces of work selected for the show including my painting, "By the Tracks" and my drawings "After the Fire" and "Aftermath" all of which are part of the Abandoned Spaces series.

My Cannock Chase paintings and drawings have been delivered to Reuben Colley Fine Art gallery in time for the Woodland exhibition which is due to begin next month.  I am very pleased with this work and it was an interesting change of subject for me.  I feel that i have captured the atmosphere of the forest as i see it and look forward to seeing it all framed.

I am currently working on a painting of "The New Navigation" inn which is a derelict pub i discovered in Birmingham a couple of years ago.  It's going well so far.