Monday, July 26, 2010

Sugar Cafe


Just a quick image of a lovely cafe nearby. I've gone to Sugar cafe quite frequently. Not because of the coffee (grinders) but the service is just really relaxed and friendly and don't chase you out the minute you're done or 15 mins before closing time. Also the decor and the shape of the cafe is just so enjoyable to be in and to draw. They have quite a few customers and due to my eavesdropping I hear their lunch menu is pretty good though everyone else's opinion on their coffee has been mum.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

John Fries Memorial Prize

Brilliant news of the month:

I am one of the finalists for the John Fries Memorial Prize!

The prize was formed by the family members of John Fries to commemorate his work as former director and honorary treasurer at Viscopy, a not-for-profit rights management organisation for the visual arts.

The John Fries Memorial Prize is an annual award of $10 000 and solo exhibition at Viscopy's contemporary art space, Blackfriars off Broadway. Entries open each April and I, on a whim, entered one of my charcoal portraits. I am now one of the lucky 17 selected out of 300 entrants to exhibit at Blackfriars off Broadway and possibly win the award.

Please come and support me on:

The 10th of August (tuesday)
from 6-9pm
Blackfriars on Broadway

1 Blackfriars Street
NSW 2008

The winner will be announced on opening night
and the exhibition runs from the 11th of August to 30th of September

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Evolution of an image

Long time no post, but I have a lot of news and images so this week will be chock full of entries! I wanted to break pace a little bit with my sketches so here are some process shots of the charcoal portrait I had in the show at Monstrosity Gallery! (It also made its way into a magazine! but I will write more about that later)

Hopefully you can still pick out details and follow the evolution of this image despite the bad quality of the photos. Dodgy as they may be they still show crucial moments in the rendering of the face as well as some of the drastic changes I made between stages.

I had been working on this image for a while and had some interesting marks happening, but it wasn't moving anywhere and at the end of the day it was just a slushy indistinct collection of facial features. So I clarified where I wanted the head and the shoulders to be with some strong lines. After solidifying my guideline I was able to push the image because I was confident on the placement of the face.

Most of the fun happens in the beginning when I am just throwing water and smearing charcoal around trying to find patterns I like from the resulting mess. I draw a face and then water it, let it dissolve for a while and then re draw and then let it partially melt again. Then I slowly piece the image together from these leftovers like a fortune teller with tea leaves.

Towards the end I make smaller and smaller adjustments, slowly becoming more afraid of my image and a little too precious with it. Some images die this way. I get too hesitant to change certain areas and I get into a stalemate, where I can't move the picture forward without somehow damaging my favourite part.

Thankfully this one went quietly, though before when I had been pushing it to be a young female with four eyes it had rightly argued. You can still see traces of this in the earliest image's luscious lips and the thinness in the face.

This work is titled The Swimmer and as I said before was on display at Monstrosity Gallery's Portrait exhibition. During the show there was an artist talk and small get together over some munchies. A video was made of some of the artists (me included). Hopefully this video will eventually see the light of day and you'll be able to hear me describe some of the thoughts that go into my drawings.