Work in Progress – Gurdan Oil Painting

Over the past couple of weeks I’ve been working on an oil painting which will be the first part of the main storyline for my Leaves of Hellebore visual novel. So far I’ve been completing and publishing drawings in order to build up the lore and backstory of the world; which  will continue to do between the paintings and drawings for the main narrative.

I’m still in the early stages of the painting in a sense, the Brunaille underpainting is now complete and the next step will be the colour layers and then finally the detail work. So far I’m really pleased with how it’s coming along so I though I’d publish a progress post on the piece and hence, here we are.

So without further ado, here is the painting in its current stage –

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Artistic Inspiration – The Muse

For this insight writing an examination of the concept of the muse has been an interesting task to undertake; I have trawled through a range of dusty old tomes and consulted the Delphi Oracle, as well as using the modern technology lying at my fingertips in order to gather enough information and research to meditate on thoroughly and to write a post about.

The main reason for my investigation of the muse is to better understand the history of the idea, in order to better understand my own personal interpretation of my muse. This undertaking will provide some scope on the subject but I don’t intend to write an entire book about it, so it may be brief in parts.

To begin this short pilgrimage through the philosophy and ideology behind the muse, it’s probably best to start at the beginning, or the beginning of the concept of muses anyway.

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Back from the Wilderness

After just over a fortnight without posting, I’m finally back from the wilderness and I thought that I should publish a brief update post for in the meantime, before I post Part IV of my Ruins Project later this week.

My blog has suffered some negligence so far this month which has mainly been circumstantial as opposed to not wanting to. I’ve not been wasting time however, my painting hasn’t suffered from my lack of attention as much as my writing has and that’s the main thing. I’ve also been cooking a lot lately, having rediscovered my passion for cooking and learning a ton of new recipes; mainly Italian dishes and desserts. With that in mind, becoming head chef in my house has been quite time consuming of late.

It helps with the inspiration and creativity side of things for me though, to occasionally take a step back, using my creativity in a different area and coming back to my real true love that is art with a fresh pair of eyes and a rejuvenated mind state; time in the wilderness to reflect and meditate on what is to come.

I’m also making some changes with my Morning Coffee posts as well, I’m going to use it as a fortnightly feature instead of weekly, and use the alternate weeks to get involved with the Weekend Coffee Share. This weekend will be my first post for Weekend Coffee Share and therefore gives me a good deal of time between Morning Coffee posts, in order to come up with and research for some interesting topics of discussion; doing the thinking and researching from six in the morning and then writing a post has proven to be a challenging feat;

after all, I’m an artist that writes, not a writer that arts.

So all in all I’ve got a lot of ground to cover in the upcoming weeks and months, and I’ve got some big plans for future art projects after the Ruins one is completed that I can’t wait to get started on.

So until later this week when I publish my next post, I bid you farewell and take care! 

JGlover

Change of Direction – New Paths

So many people in this world are scared of change, whether big or little; I see it as an opportunity to adapt, start anew and build up an empire, alas, don’t ever fear change but on the contrary, embrace it. – J Glover

I recently made a decision that was found to be shocking by the people around me, my friends and even my wife, who knows me better than anyone. That decision was that after 2 years of working hard in education in order to go to uni, I will no longer be going. This decision wasn’t an off the cuff spur of the moment change of heart about my future caused by being unsure of what I want from life; my end game is the same, my objective clear and concise, a set destination of immovable strength; it’s just the road that I’m taking to get there that is different.

This was incited by troubles in getting the funding that I needed, a lot of hassle and stress that isn’t needed at the best of times, but this minor tribulation set off a whirlwind of thoughts and deep contemplation, tropical brainstorms and meditating until my pulse stopped, weighing up and reasoning on every aspect of my decision to go to university and the course that was available to me.

I had chosen to take a Fine Art BA (Hons) Degree; now when I initially pictured Fine Art, I had a beautifully romanticized vision of a modern Verrocchio’s workshop. Tutors that would teach me to draw and paint like the masters of the Renaissance, Sculpt like Michelangelo and provide plenty of hours worth of figure studies each and every week. Research on different narratives, mythologies and a study of philosophy. Obviously my definition of Fine Art is very outdated and too far gone to even be sniffed at in a modern Fine Art degree. A Fine Art Atelier would probably be better suited to my needs, but due to lack of funding available for such a course and locality this isn’t an option either.

Instead of what I envisioned, the course has dropped figure studies from its curriculum and the rest is more Contemporary than I would like to be involved in, Conceptual art, challenging conventions and Installation work; whilst I have seen artworks from each category that I have liked, it’s not what I personally want to create or be a part of. From unmade beds to condensation cubes and glittered excrement I found myself questioning if it really was for me. The end result of my contemplation was that I don’t want to invest 3 years and so much debt into something that I’m not 100% dedicated to. I’m not suggesting that the course is worthless or that I wouldn’t have learned anything because that would be a ridiculous idea, it’s just not going to teach me what I want to learn and will involve me spending too much time away from what I do want to do and my personal studies.

My next step now is to self educate, with the power of books and the internet on top of spending every day in practical work I will learn to draw and paint in the way I want to, whether frowned upon or not to prefer the traditional methods, that is what I’m going to do, staying true to myself rather than going to university on a whim for the experience or conforming to the Contemporary art industry. It’s funny really that they spend so much time trying to find new ways to “challenge convention” that they’ve lost their way, it’s turned now to the point that I’m challenging convention more by wanting to draw and paint in the traditional manners and techniques.

Also underlying all of this is the fact that I would love to work as a concept artist, for film,TV or computer games and although a lot of this work would be done digitally through software such as Photoshop, it still offers opportunity to be traditional in the sense of creating a narrative using paint, drawing and sketching, research and practice; these are the things that appeal to me more than anything. The thing that would get me a job in the field of Conceptual Design will be my portfolio based around that area, not a degree and a portfolio full of glittered turds and “this is art because I say it is” pieces.

Time is a very important factor as well, by not attending university five days a week, I have the time to go to London regularly to visit galleries, places of interest, museums and draw inspiration from them; I’ll also be able to make more trips to my home away from home that is Italy. Trips to other places of interest and long walks through natural landscapes, sketching and painting as I go will also now be a part of my itinerary. In addition to these things, I’ll have more time to build up my blog and remain consistent with posts, not having to neglect neither this or my artwork due to having to write essays or dissertations and not running on fumes every day. My creativity will be nurtured and in full bloom due to my decision and inspiration comes from within as much as from without, if not more so.

I may have rambled a fair amount through this post but the point of me posting it is to show that change is not something to avoid, change of mind is not a sign of failure or fear to commit, it is something to embrace and use to your advantage wherever possible. We are human, adapting to new situations is part of our being and a skill that comes naturally, never having to be learned as long as you don’t fear to utilize it.

JG