Sunday, October 30, 2011

Pochade carriers; São Paulo; February 2012: Tunisia, London and Scotland: places to paint

Pochade carriers: there are forty odd. I'm going to São Paolo this week to see if I can find a gallery to represent me. I need to make a few more of these carriers for the coming trips. People seem to find the carriers quite charming.


I shall be there for fourteen days. Following from my experience of previous trips, for painting it is better to stay in than stay somewhere for three or four days than to travel around a lot, because then you can then take your time more to see what is really worth painting. Also you lose less time with changing hotels and so forth. I think therefore to stay in Tunis and in Sousse perhaps with a trip down to the south somewhere such as Matmata.

Tunisia is not huge, so crossing it from north to south can, I guess, be done in a day.

Perhaps (not in order):

1. Carthage
2. Grande mosque
3. Dougga 
4. Sidi Bou Said 
5. Holy city of Kairouan
6. Matmata- wonderful buildings
7. El Djem amphitheatre
8. Sousse- the Medina


It is sure to be utterly freesing. The cold, however isn't what makes painting in Britain difficult, it's the fact that the weather changes rapidly, so no sooner have you started a picture than you have to restart it!

I'll go to Rosslyn Chapel, and if I can, from Edinburgh, some scenes from Carlton Hill. Also the spectacular Dean Bridge.


I'll continue to explore along the river. The reason for this is that its relatively easy to work there, there are fine views and the light is good. there aren't cars blocking the way either.

I'll also try to do something from the north of side of Notting Hill. I love the big stucco buildings. I love the rise of Ladbroke Grove, it's elegant Victorian planning and garden squares.

The difficulty is finding a good place to view it: an apartment with a good view, perhaps: can any readers help?

Saturday, October 29, 2011

White herons

White herons, oil on card, 13 x 9.3 cm

This picture represents something of a breakthrough for me, not in any particular respect other than general fluency.

Painted near the junction of SC403 and the turn-off for Santo Antonio de Lisboa.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

The end of a lane


The end of a lane, oil on card, 14 x 10.4 cm

Painted in Trindade:  very high key colours for me.

I am trying to play around more with thicknesses of paint, taking cues from Morandi and the Saint Ives artists- whose work I have always found very slight. But perhaps in the specific aspect of textures it can offer something to me.


Tuesday, October 25, 2011

The black flag

 With my hand for scale

The Black flag, oil on card, 12 x 9.3 cm

Painted down at Saco dos Limões.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Warehouses, an office and a water tower

Warehouses, an office and a water tower, oil on card, 14.5 x 12cm

Painted from the car on one of those beautiful sunny days that somehow serve to worsen my depressions. 

These are some of the buildings that line the SC-401. I think of the style of this picture as owing something to Morandi.

Friday, October 21, 2011

Praia Mole- a bright day; London, Tunisia and Scotland


Praia Mole- a bright day, oil on card, 11 x 13cm   NOT FOR SALE

I have bought my tickets for the UK and Tunisia in February. 

The weather is likely to be cold in the UK: if it snows I shall be happy as painting things in the whiteness is so delightful. I shall be in Scotland and in London.

If you are there and wish to meet, drop me a line.


Thursday, October 20, 2011

Landscape near Vargem Grande

Landscape near Vargem Grande, oil on card, 12.5 x  10.5 cm  SOLD

Another "Dutch" -or perhaps English- landscape, from off the BR-301.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Tall pines

Tall pines, oil on card, 13.7 x 10.7cm

They appear to bevlearing the land here, presumably for housing. After I painted it I thought "Hobbema!", specifically the famous Avenue at Middelharnis in London's National Gallery.

There is a fine song by The Band called Whispering Pines:

If you find me in a gloom, or catch me in a dream
Inside my lonely room, there is no in between
Whispering pines, rising of the tide
If only one star shines
That's just enough to get inside
I will wait until it all goes 'round
With you in sight, the lost are found
Foghorn through the night, calling out to sea
Protect my only light, 'cause she once belonged to me
Let the waves rush in, let the seagulls cry
For if I live again, these hopes will never die
I can feel you standing there
But I dont see you anywhere
Standing by the well, wishing for the rains
Reaching for the clouds, for nothing else remains
Drifting in a daze, when evening will be done
Try looking through a haze
At an empty house, in the cold, cold sun
I will wait until it all goes round
With you in sight, the lost are found

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Two pictures from near Santo Amaro da Imperatriz

A view of the mountains from Santo Amaro da Imperatriz, oil on card, 14.4 x 10.8 cm 

A community near Santo Amaro da Imperatriz, oil on card, 13 x 10.9 cm

You can see in Brasil, as if from a late novel by Hamsun, communities establishing themselves from almost nothing- a tiny cluster of houses: these often have a paradiscal quality.

And, as if to confirm Hamsun's pessimism about cities, you can also see how these little communities grow into huge areas of urban squalor. Santa Catarina is free of these huge cities, fortunately.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

A drive along the SC-282 to Alfredo Wagner; Union Gallery- works on display


Landscape near Alfredo Wagner, oil on card, 12.8 x 11.6 cm

Landscape near Rancho Queimado, oil on card, 11.8 x 14.5 cm

...painted along the SC-282, a lovely road.

I had originally thought of sleeping in Alfredo Wagner, but the hotel there was too awful, even for me.

Union Gallery, 45 Broughton Street, Edinburgh:

I have 6 landscapes in their current exhibition ‘Onslaught of Autumn’, which opened on Thursday evening.

Friday, October 14, 2011

Roadbridge over SC 401

Roadbridge over SC 401, oil on card, 13.8 x 11.7 cm

Painted in the car lot of Tok and Stok.

I think I will drive to the mountains tomorrow- Alfredo Wagner.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

The Exploding Boy

Nick Parker, the wonderful English writer, has most flatteringly used one of my monoprints for the cover of his collection of stories:

Hurry now while stocks last!

Sunday, October 9, 2011

The Ocean; The Middle East

The Ocean, oil on card, 14.8 x  11.5cm

Painted down on Beiramar Avenue.

It was the sort of shimmering weather that Ardizzone loved to paint- an aesthetic lineage that spins delightfully back through Whistler to Velázquez and Titian (there is that wonderful nautical Titian,  Perseus and Andromeda in the glorious Wallace Collection- I used to enjoy going there in my luch hours and feeling doomed).

What I like about the Wallace Collection is that I don't get the feeling there that the curators are trying to teach me anything: wheras if I go to, say to any of the Tates, I feel bombarded with notices, explanations, often horribly written and very partial.


I am thinking about a Middle East trip for late January or February. I'd like to go to Syria again but the state there has murdered to many people there recently that this would probably be unwise.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Headland, Beiramar

Headland, Beiramar, oil on card,12.7 x 13.6 cm  SOLD

Painted at the Agronomica end of Beiramar Avenue.

I painted here before on a much bigger scale: I overworked the peice and it lost its charm, becoming heavy.

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Roadworks on BR 403

Roadworks on BR 403, oil on card, 11.8 x 12.2 cm

Painted near the Passion Motel.