Friday, June 13, 2014

Summer has arrived! 

 And with it sunshine and plenty of poppies.  Which for the Centenary year of the first world war, seems appropriate.  Find here a link to the reason why the poppy was the designated flower of remembrance.History of the Poppy

With that in mind I set to work a couple of weeks ago on my Gelli Printing not really knowing where I was going, but achieved something I had long been hoping to do and that was a series of paintings/prints of poppy field to mark the anniversary of the first world war.  The fact that it happened this year was perfect.  So here are two of my Centenary Field series, yet to be completed.

More on Gelli Plate printing further down!
Lest we Forget                                                    Ghosts of Summer

Art Holidays
Our first tutored week of the season has just been completed and what a week we had.

Stephie Butler was our tutor who specialises in human portraiture, but more recently in wild cats 
and other animals.  Everyone learnt and achieved so
by G. Grayland
 much in this week and I think came away thrilled with their results.  We too were very happy that everyone had a lovely time and that the sun finally graced us with its presence.  Although the sun was out, work still had to be done in the Studio but we found plenty of time to go out and about and do some sight seeing too!

As this area is so steeped in Medieval history we
we all went to St Loup which is just off the Road of the Plantagenet Kings.  We also went to Parthenay which is famous to be the route of St. James (or St. Jacques in Frances) who was the Pilgrim who walked the route to Compestello - click here for more information. And to finish off the week we went to Thouars for the weekly market. So how could we not go out.

But whilst we were all working in the Studio here are some of the samples of works that were achieved.  For more photos of work and from our week please visit  Here you will also  find albums from our previous holidays and more photos of Bandouille itself.  You are free to use these photos as reference if you so wish.

And here are some that I managed to do. Mainly after Stephie left as I was flitting from Studio to kitchen all the time.  But these are only the first run and works in progress as I learnt so much from just doing these the once and learning from my mistakes.  Mainly I go to heavy with the painting so will have to pull back a bit.  But in saying that its more the little techniques on the way that have been the most useful and that I can implement into my own style, rather than develop the style of the artist.  As I feel that I will always be far bolder than Stephies lovely gentle way of painting.  Ho hum!

These two lovely portraits were gifted to us by Stephie and we are thrilled to have her work here at Bandouille.

With that said...Stephie will be back next year.  Please add your name to the waiting list through our contact page on our website   Spaces are limited 

In the meantime......We still have spaces for Eugen Chisnicean and for Jane Minter.  For our schedule, view previous post or go to our website. Only a couple spaces left, so you need to be quick!

Gelli Plate Printing
When making your plate (instructions on previous post) place large piece of clingfilm into the mould...This makes it 100 times easier to remove than without. Also if you like the crinkly effect of clingfilm in your artwork, you can use the underside too.  It needs to be large as it seems to want to shrink due to the warmth of the mix.

Here I have used a  polystyrene sausage container.  Look out for interesting sized or shaped containers from Supermarkets. Also keep an eye on textured bases of containers too.  I confess that I have bought these kind of items just because I needed the mould....shhh!

WARNING!!!!!!!  Do not leave in the sun or even in a room that is too warm....the plate melts....I know!!

Since discovering this technique I do have mixed responses, which are easily divided.  The men think I have totally lost the plot and the women LOVE IT!

This includes Stephie who, as she and our other guests had an extra day, got me to demonstrate how this method works.  And guess what....they were hooked.  They had great fun! And produced loads and loads and loads.  So much in fact, my supply of paint has totally disappeared and its a good job Drew has gone back to the UK to pick up extra supplies. 
Here are a few prints from a batch that I did at the same time as the poppies above.  It shows how you can change course in your ideas as you are going along.

I am really excited by this method of "painting" and have just ordered a sencil cutting tool off Amazon to make my own stencils and masks.  I will let you all know how that is working out and post some results at a later date!!!.  

I am thinking of running an Art journalling week next year to include Gelli Plate printing.  Again, if you are interested please contact us on the link above.


First though, some sad news.....Chippy our wonderful baby duckling that grew up to be our cheeky duck has, it seems, been taken by Mr. Fox.  He has not been seen for over two weeks now and we know he was too greedy to stay away for any other reason. As our other ducks are all sitting on nest we hope before he disappeared he was able to fertilise the females.  Maybe we will have many little chippies here...Will let you know......RIP Chippy x.

As to what is happening now, life goes on as normal at Bandouille.  Gardening, when possible and making quirky things like Elder Cordial (I have just bottled 4 litres of it) and my first batch has gone really fizzy and is delish! Planting and harvesting whatever I can find.  Sneaking into the studio to do some "stuff" inbetween cleaning.

So everyone, hope you like the catch up and speak to you soon.  And yep, I know the posts dont get any shorter....but you have caught up now!  Thats my excuse and I am sticking to it!