Sunday, 22 February 2015

Painting #49 Buzkashi

Buzkashi (literally "goat dragging" in Persian) or kokpar is the Central Asian sport in which horse-mounted players attempt to drag a goat or calf carcass toward a goal. It is the national sport of Afghanistan, although it was banned under the Taliban regime.

This is my first attempt at animals. It might not cut it as a painting but I think it is start upon which I can build. I wanted action with lots of dust and movement and nearly got lost in the crazy 'stampede.'

 Could have done with a much larger canvas so that I didn't have to tiddle-about with small brushes

I've put two pictures to show the discrepancy with the photos.

Thursday, 19 February 2015

Spring is Approaching

Just thought I would pop in a photograph that I found on the internet of our new home, taken in the summer months. I say new, although suddenly we've been here 5 months.

We are up there in the top right hand corner(ish) ... you can see why the house is named 'Highview.'

I put the photograph in as I have no painting at the moment, but I am researching a new series which is going to involve horses and people... but not in their normal environment, a bit on the wild-side. I have never painted animals before and, as is my want, I'm making the task ridiculously difficult for myself.

Spring is coming!

Saturday, 14 February 2015

Portrait #8 "Berber Man in Morocco"

After all the build-up in the last post, I'm really disappointed with this one. It really was a struggle which I never really won... however ... onwards and upwards.

On the positive side: I had never painted hands before and this gave me the chance to experiment.

                                                    "Berber Man in Morocco"                             John Simlett
Acrylic on Stretched Canvas
31 x 12 inches
(790 x 300 mm)
With many thanks to Trey Ratcliff ( for his kind permission to use his photograph as a reference

Sunday, 8 February 2015

PORTRAIT # 8 "Berber Man in Morocco" WIP

Before I go too far allow me to introduce Trey Ratcliff and his Travel Blog, Stuck In Customs. 
    Trey was born in New Zealand but is truly cosmopolitan, and, with a following of 8 million, has the leading Travel Photography blog in the world.

Here's the link:

Trey visited Chefchaouen, a mountain town in Morocco where everything is painted blue. Whilst he was there he took a photograph of this Berber Man, who's image fascinated me.

I asked Trey if I could use the image as a reference photograph and, despite being really busy, as quick as a flash, he said yes I could, "... no problem."

Trey wrote about the man, who spoke perfect English ... here is the flavour of the conversation:

"We ended up talking about a bunch of different things. I even bought an old used knife from him, and he showed me how to stick the curved end of it into a camel's hump to get water in an emergency. There's another part of the knife you use to seal up the little puncture wound. Then we talked about meditation, the sealing of the four cardinal spiritual doors in the night before entering the tent, different cultures around the world, and well, about a dozen other things. Anyway, it was great…"