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Naked Chaos \ Vad art kiállítás

I was lucky enough, as an artist who adores drawing nudes, to recently have six girls pose naked for me in one sitting. The space was small and alcohol had been consumed, as you can imagine the scene was a little chaotic and the chances of keeping anybody still for the amount of time to capture an accurate representation of the scene before me were slim to naught. 

However an opportunity to represent the scenario arose in the form of a bubbly and determined Irish girl who goes by the name of Dervla who happened to be hosting what she called a 'Wild Art" Exhibition. Somehow, Dervla had managed to get her hands on a fairly large apartment and permission to paint on alllllll of the walls and she was recruiting artists to fill the space with both paintings and unique, temporary art. Naturally the Painters Palace was a solid point of call and a few of us got together and took over one room of the apartment. We each took our own section of wall and started painting a few days before the exhibition. I had the idea in mind of what style I wanted to implement to show the chaos, the movement, the intertwining limbs from that night with the English girls. I did not do any preliminary sketches, other than the drawings from the 90 minute session. Working in this style is a very impulsive and intuitive process, I find that trying to build the picture before you meet the canvas can intrude on an organic and spontaneous outcome. Therefore I dwell on the idea of the scenario/memory, what I found interesting, the conversations between the subjects (which were extremely fascinating), less on the real form or identities of the girls themselves but most importantly, thinking about the actual process of the painting, down to the brush strokes, in forms of movements that translate into marks that make the picture. Little moments of memory come to me as I create, like the side of a thigh running into the curve of the calf, the expression or tilt on ones face and it seems the as the moments come to me, I have to realise and compose them on the wall. As the exhibition was only intended to be one night I held back on refining every detail of the painting and rather looked for an overall harmony in the piece which ended up being roughly 4m wide and 2.4m tall.

Big Thanks to Dervla and everybody that was involved with the event. It was a huge success with attendance around 700 over the space of 5 hours, which in my book is pretty funking incredible for a first time event! For more info on the exhibition, the artists and works involved plus upcoming events > check here.

Below you can see the finished result, followed by the piece in context of the other works in the space, and then some shots of the process. As always, Enjoy.                                    

Final Piece.

Final Piece.

In context.

In context.

The process.

work in progress: robodon \ may'17

Sometimes I think I'm a terrible person, I start a painting and sometimes the struggle to the finish is marred by unforeseen difficulties or (especially in oil painting) long breaks for drying and layering or just plain old thinking.

Here I have one of those paintings that fits both those moulds. I started this painting in May last year(2016), completed the under drawing work in the better part of an hour, worked on painting persistent small tones with a tiny palette knife on a large canvas, and then I hit a point. A point I hit with some pieces', a point where I don't know where to go next, and usually if I hit this point I have a system, I Set the work aside to rest. I take it out of my immediate working area and sit it where I can see it and leave it to my subconscious to figure out the direction and the fixes to be made for a finished piece.


I get the initial lines and composition done in roughly an hour whilst the model sat. I used charcoal and a damp brush to block in big areas. It's the first time, I believe, that I had to walk and draw a line at the same time, if you haven't tried it, I recommend. (Picture 1) if you notice I realised (too late) that I did not leave enough space at the side of the canvas for the stretching process, a silly over sight but lesson learnt.

By the last image in the above series I had built my own frame and stretched the canvas, its incredible how much of difference this makes! (Picture 4) This is how the painting stayed for a few months, before I blew of the dust and went at again with renewed vigour and alternate vision.

This is the painting as it stands. As you can see, I completely re thought the background which was influenced by a painting I did in the mean time.

painting \ mum's birthday present

Im sure that every person, at some point in their lives has, in some way, failed their parents expectations on their birthday. If you're anything like me then this feeling can become somewhat of an annual event! 

My mum has done so much for me growing up and still continues now. Being a 24 year old painting living abroad she still manages to do the simplest, nicest little things that make my life just that little bit easier. This year I was determined not to fail at the birthday giving, I was going to produce more than the three rings of a phone call and a chirp birthday song. I had an eureka moment whilst parked in a small cafe in Amsterdam. Armed, for some strange reason, with a small piece of squared paper I birthed the idea of this paternal embrace. I wanted to convey an idea that the mother figure, despite distorting herself with the aim of comforting her child, maintained an eternal state of bliss. As if some how blindly guided to a place of serenity.

Luckily at that time had had a 1x1m square canvas lying in the studio. 

I got to work!

The tragedy is that due to the heavy, thick oil painting I laid onto this thing plus the pigment laid in oil, I was unable to deliver the painting to my mother for the intended birthday and had to wait one whole year whilst it dried. Eventually I got to hand deliver the painting and surprise my mum by showing up on her doorstep at the same time! The funniest thing had to be the dominance of the painting in the modest cottage bedroom of my mum and her husband. Sorry Andy!!

Mum, if you're reading this, I hope you enjoy your painting and sorry for all the shit presents in the past. I love you so much :)