Inspiration from the East (coast)

So, this blog is all about going to see art that inspires me, as part of my artistic journey, and making the effort to support your fellow artists.

Artist #1, Stephanie Rew, Thompsons Gallery, Aldeburgh, Suffolk.

I discovered Stephanie’s work a couple of months ago, and as soon as I did, I was massively impressed by it. She works in oils and pastels, and real gold leaf, with a centuries old process for building up the underpainting beneath the gold leaf, which is called pastiglia.

Pastiglia requires an underpainting of mostly primer, constructing shapes and patterns, which, when gold leaf is overlayed on top of it, maintains the form of the underpainting and gives the impression of thicker gold on the piece.

Her work has already inspired me to produce my piece “Moonlight Becomes You” where I have used a version of his process on the model’s dress.

It is a very drawn out (no pun intended) process of applying the primer and sanding it down for the background, so as to provide a smooth surface for the leaf, and then painting on the primer in shapes and such so as to provide profile for the gold leaf patterns.

Anyway, onto the exhibition.

Well Aldeburgh is a lovely Suffolk seaside town, about an hour out of Ipswich, and on the day we arrived, it was a beautiful warm and sunny late September day, which massively helped the general mood.

The gallery owner was very kind in letting me take pictures of the art for reference, I did hand him a business card just to prove that I was who I said I was, i.e. and actual living and breathing artist, with the faint hope that he would say my work was amazing and want to fill his gallery with it.

She had also included a number of gold leaf on card pieces, which were small and quite beautiful, and definitely inspired me to create work in a similar manner, and, as I have my first art show this coming December (queue trumpet fanfare) I was buzzing with the possibility of producing work in this vein for that show.

I must have spent over an hour in the gallery studying each and every piece, and the work was exceptional, the detail she gives in the hands is beautiful.

So, we came away from there and headed back to Ipswich as we weren’t able to book anywhere in Aldeburgh as there was some kind of event happening locally.

The next day we were off to Great Yarmouth, to go see artist #2, Gary Hogben, an Instagram artist “friend” of mine who has a very individual and even unique process.

He constructs pieces with postage stamps from around the world, mostly UK stamps, but he uses the specific colours of the stamps to graduate the image along with a limited amount of paint, and they are spectacular.

Each and every piece is unique, even if he creates a piece similar to a previous piece such as his Churchill works, as all of the stamps are different.

Seeing his work close up, is very impressive and the detail that goes into each piece is amazing, plus to top it all off he is a very nice bloke.

So, all in all I top artistic weekend, which has given me a whole bunch of inspiration for new pieces which I can’t wait to get into, and I even made myself a YouTube video to go with my weekly Vlogs.

A top inspirational weekend.

picture of the shale beach at Aldeburgh