sketching

Prayer and Paint Workshop Afterglow

Photo slideshow from the workshop...

Below are some photos from the Prayer and Paint workshop that I held on Saturday at Summerbridge (take a look at the new website---->) church that we are a part of.  I was thrilled that so many came and in the end we had around 20 people approx.! 

The workshop's aim was to explore the idea of using the medium of paint with prayer and reflection.  This is really close to my heart and has been so for some time now.  I really care about this aspect of my personal creative/reflective time and so wanted to offer this personally as a 'way in' for people that wouldn't necessarily paint or consider themselves 'creative'.  

I began by encouraging everyone to write out in pencil, without censoring, their worries, fears, anxieties; however small and to let them just pour out (side note: I ran out of paper).  I absolutely love this process and find it cleansing and such a relief to 'get it all out'. 

We then covered over our writing with gesso (white primer) and let that dry.  The idea being that by covering over our 'junk', we can 'start again', refresh and re-boot with Jesus' help.  We continued with another layer; this time with willow charcoal sticks.  I like to sketch out imperfect faces and encouraged others to do that or, to find their own way.  Some examples of what came out of this stage were: flowers, portraits, buildings, pattern, a wall, shapes and lots of mark making.

My piece from the workshop - a bit psychedelic, I think...

My piece from the workshop - a bit psychedelic, I think...

I really enjoyed having people of all ages present.  We had a few men, younger children, teenagers, mid-life and older adults and it felt lovely to combine this experience with them all.

Next, we got out paint and began to add colour - it was akin to bringing light, warmth and 'nourishment' to our pieces.  Again, this idea of covering over the heartache/worries and lighting everything up with technicolour - so great.

Some people covered over their charcoal layer with something new, whilst others 'coloured-in' with the paint and added lots of vibrancy to the charcoal underdrawing.  All of it was just right.

I recognised that this could be challenging for people because putting the 'logical' side of the brain to one side is foreign to so many of us and can feel counterintuitive.  However, as the workshop went on, I sensed that more people were managing to do this and to appreciate the process rather than the end result.

We then finished the workshop by eating together and enjoying our shared buffet that everyone had contributed to.  A perfect way to spend a few hours on a Saturday. 

I think in a smaller setting it would have been lovely to have had a mutual time of prayer and reflection in a way that felt right for that individual.  I also think doing this at home would be fabulous with a few additions: lighting a candle, putting on some soft music, making a pot of tea and lastly, opening up your bible. 

Prayer is the key of the morning and the bolt of the evening.
— Mahatma Gandhi

Lastly, I think this would be a beautiful practice to do as a family, with your children, your church, with a special friend, prayer partner or perhaps your spouse (maybe??? lol).  

Anyway, I hope this inspires you to give this a go and please let me know how you get on... 

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Start Where You Are + Some Sketches

I'm discovering new ways of being at the moment.  

Drawing is the changing point from the invisible powers to the visible thing...
— Joseph Beuys

 

Now that I've got my studio set up, I'm slowing finding new ways of working; with all my supplies at hand (which is such a joy) and enjoying the luxury of having a dedicated space to make art. 

It's funny, I've waited so long for this to happen, that I don't know quite where to start, so I'm paying attention to what is on my heart and trying to do more of that.  Don't get me wrong, I've got many ideas, probably too many, so I'm taking my own advice (hence the title of this blog post) and starting right where I am now and that means sketching.

So, here we are - quite a mixed bunch of sketches but I'm enjoying every minute. 

The first sketch is from a photo on Pinterest of an English Edwardian actress called Lily Elsie. Apparently, she was quite famous at the time and I was just struck with her beauty and poise - something about her expression that resonates - not sure in what way but drawing her, makes it clearer somehow and sheds a light on something of myself.  

Next is a sketch of Helen Mirren, one of my favourite English actresses taken from a magazine I'd been reading.  As an aside, I saw her in a film recently called Woman In Gold.  Below is a short extract from the film:

The next two girls are inspired from photos and done in pencil.

The last 3 images are the same girl and taken from a clothes catalogue from Gudren Sjoden - (great clothes, by the way).  This girl was rendered in charcoal and you can see her progress.  I couldn't resist adding the colourful flowers in her hair.

So, there we have it.  What have you been creating lately?  Sometimes, it's necessary to start and by starting, you'll know where you are, in time...  

Keep creating.


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Inspiration for you: Roses 'play sketch' video

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Don't you just love the roses at this time of year? 

Every year I swoon over roses like I'd never seen them before!  Their beauty both astounds and astonishes me.

Two roses on one slender spray; in sweet communion grew.  Together hailed the morning ray; and drank the evening dew.

- James Montgomery

This morning I ventured into the garden and cut some roses (see photo below) to bring inside and with the idea of having fun sketching them.  I put the process on the video below too!

roses from the garden

roses cut

As you can see, I made very loose sketches with my focus being on the petals and the colour.

roses cut display

I did side view sketches, the leaves, a rose petal and (of course) a rose in full bloom!

You'll see from the video that it's quite easy to sketch roses because for the purpose of this activity, no-one else is going to know the exact colour of your rose or the positioning of each and every petal - so just have fun and know you have my wholehearted permission to use a a 'bucket load' of artistic license with the shapes, colours and whatever else!

I do hope you enjoy the video...

Roses 'play sketch' in watercolour from Jane Hinchliffe on Vimeo.

roses

Serenity in a teacup

Ah, by the way, above is a painting inspired from some roses from my garden last year.  I had displayed them in the little china teacup and saucer (that you see in the painting-my Mum's) and a couple of days later decided to paint them with this semi abstract background and oodles of texture.  The painting is called 'Serenity in a teacup'.


delight ecourse pic

Just a little update...

PS. You might have been wondering what's the latest news on my upcoming ecourse - Delight?  It was due to start on August 1st but with the Summer holidays soon upon us (tomorrow is last day of school), the commissioned painting I've been working on for the past five weeks etc, etc, I've decided to keep my sanity (lol) and postpone launching until Autumn 2014.  I do hope you understand...

In the meantime, I've also been working very hard (a lot of late nights and times where I thought I could break my computer for sheer frustration!) at building a 'virtual classroom/membership area' to my site and that too is just about completed for 'Embrace'.  This will make facilitating my ecourses so much easier and hopefully will be a lovely space to receive your ecourse materials.

I'm just so excited that things are moving on because now I feel I can put some focused attention into my blog, 'my tribe' and offerings that I wish to share with you all - plus spend some family time with my beloved hubby and boys this Summer.

Thanks for understanding and wishing me well - you're the greatest...

Jane xo

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