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Times Like These

Hi all - I hope you're keeping safe and well.

Well, I've been busy this last couple of weeks. In times like these it's adapt and survive as a sole trader, or lose out. With exhibitions and classes/workshops cancelled for the foreseeable future I've turned to creating online content.

I have done this before. I created two free online courses in watercolour texture techniques on Udemy a few years ago. They are still available and currently have over 6,000 students. But I've always preferred teaching in person, and doing in-residence style demos while manning any exhibitions, so I didn't continue to make anymore online courses. But times have changed and I've made a conscious decision to adjust my focus to get online to interact with people more. Under the slogan, 'Discover with Debs' I am creating short painting tips & techniques video tutorials plus painting demonstrations. At the moment everything I create is free on my YouTube channel, and I am continuing create and upload free content all the time. You can keep up to date by either subscribing to my channel or following me on Instagram and Facebook.

I have uploaded two demonstrations this last week. The first is a Yorkshire barn and trees from a photo I took on location near Aysgarth. The demo is about using two complementary colours (cadmium orange and ultramarine blue) plus white to create a dynamic painting.

The second demo is a still life to show how using split complementary colours (quinacridone red, yellow green and blue green made from mixing hansa yellow and ultramarine blue) plus white, can be used to give harmony to a painting.

Both paintings are in acrylic on gesso-ed mdf board measuring 30 x 30cm. I have sped up the videos to condense 60 mins of painting into 5.5 mins! They were fun to do and because of the time constraints and lovely to do so loosely. As a landscape artist, still life isn't my forte, but I still enjoyed doing them, and will be doing more.

I will be filming another tutorial this week with an associated demonstration painting, all about tonal values. Tune in to find out more!

In between working in the studio on these videos I am enjoying the summer season begin to show itself. Watching the trees come into full leaf and blossom/seed, and all the summer flowers burst into life has been so good for the soul. We see lots of bees, bumbles and honey, buzzing about, holly blue butterflies and hear lots of birdsong too. Is it me or are they louder this year? Maybe it's a lovely side effect of lockdown! I downloaded an app to my phone to help me identify a new birdsong I've heard in our back garden - every evening this week I've heard a really loud song which sounded familiar but I couldn't remember hearing here before. My app helped me identify it as a song thrush. We used to get lots of them where I grew up in the deep countryside of Suffolk, but never here where I live now - about a mile from the centre of Ipswich. We are lucky and are surrounded by big gardens with lots of trees. Mostly mature trees too. The gardens in our street back onto other big gardens too so there is a lot of wildlife. We have had resident foxes in our garden for many years. And slow worms. The fox dens are empty now as all the kits have grown up, so we are putting that area back to a lawn at last. The slow worms live under the decking! We are so lucky here.

We miss camping, but we are using the patio with a sail up as a substitute for now...

Back soon with more news.

Meanwhile, keep creative!



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