Monday, 22 June 2009

Diego Rivera, 1944

This is a large copy of a Diego Rivera painting from 1944. I was commissioned to paint this for a client. It is larger than the original and is painted in acrylics.
I am often asked to do this sort of work and this particular job pleased me because I am a mural artist and Diego Rivera is one of my heroes, along with Orozco and Siquieros and, of course, Diego's main squeeze, Frida Kahlo.

Wednesday, 17 June 2009

The Weekly Portrait: our model's dog

Last night at life drawing class Georgia suggested I draw her dog.
In terms of keeping still the wee dog was a terrible model but a real little sweetheart that fitted right in the casual and friendly atmosphere of the class.

Saturday, 13 June 2009

Katherine Mansfield

Katherine Mansfield is one of my heroes, a very famous New Zealander and a master of the short story.
While I was finishing my portrait of Katherine a visitor called at my studio. The studio was upstairs at the Moth house in Sandspit and had recently been opened to the public with a sign at the top of the drive and a new visitors book at the top of the stairs.
My visitor was the first to sign the visitors book; Elizabeth Beauchamp Leatherbarrow.
Katherine Mansfield's maiden name was Beauchamp, my visitor was Katherine's grand niece.

Thursday, 11 June 2009

A thirty minute painting

I took paints and canvas to the life drawing class last night and ducked out of my teaching obligations to please myself with a couple of fast paintings of the model.

Sunday, 7 June 2009

Mateo comes to visit his Grandad

A happy cat is a furry cat. We're not furry or even cats but we are happy!

Community Education - Community Education Budget Cuts

Last week's life drawing class I got to do some drawing instead of teaching.
Gotta make hay while the sun shines as this is a Community Education class I run and it will likely have it's funding cut by the new right wing National Government of New Zealand which apparently doesn't value community or education.
They seem to value usury, selling public assetts, gambling public money on the stock market and finding jobs for their millionaire mates.
These people think only of money money money and don't realize that money is a completely abstract idea and that life is a spiritual journey.
They are not only blind but also assume a moral and intellectual superiority because of their skill in manipulating and amassing money. They are only workers in money management and their occupational hazard seems to be a predilection to psychopathic greed, egotistical arrogance and ignorance.....
Don't get me started...

For decades, all over New Zealand, community education classes have been running on a tiny fraction of public money and these classes provide not only continuing education in a huge range of subjects but also mental and community health and they help make people happy and friendly.
Well us happy and friendly people all pay taxes and we all vote.....

Tuesday, 2 June 2009

Community Education - A Community Education Class Exhibition - The Art and Music Exhibition

This exhibition was a great success. It almost broke even, the organizers, Janice Giles and myself, carried a modest loss, the musicians all got paid a share of the door to cover expenses and about a dozen works were sold.
But the real success was that a community education life drawing class comprizing about 20 people aged from 14 to 72 and a bunch of musician friends should put on a great exhibition to entertain people and celebrate local talent.
And the Saturday night was fabulous, original art, drawings paintings and sculptures, all drawn from life or imagination and original music played live. Bliss.

And this great exhibition came from one small community education class in one small town and is testament to the value of community education in New Zealand and the short sighted lunacy of the present bunch of right wing, money worshipping, shallow, arrogant, elitist, toadying bean counters in power in this country. Ah.. nothing like a wee self righteous tirade to make me feel better... roll on election day..

Eli Mulvay wows the crowd with his original music and is in his turn impressed as other musos just slip in behind him and start playing lead and slide and percussion along with him.
Awesome talent. I am not a musician but get inspiration from live music, it's the one art form that is completly in the here and now, has immediate emotional impact and flows on like life itself...

Children's art from Waihi Central Primary school. Gorgeous..
We also framed and exhibited 16 year old's art from Waihi College