Selling high quality prints at the Wigmore Show was encouraging

I was asked to support our local show in Wigmore a few months ago and, having had a stall last year, I agreed. This year the show was based around the Wigmore Village Hall so I had space to have two tables to sell cards and show examples of my work, as last year.

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However this year my wife Cathy suggested we consider selling prints. We had not had success in the past with prints ordered from professional printers ( colours were wrong and they were too expensive ). But after some trial and error Cath has been able to find affordable high quality A3 fine art velvet paper and this allows us to experiment more to get the colours perfect, at a lower cost, on our Canon PRO-100s A3 printer.

Sample-prints

Once Cath had found the perfect setting for the printer and corresponding software, we were able to print off two copies of 10 different artworks in two different sizes. We have decided to keep the numbers we print to 25 per artwork so we can sell them a limited editions. I also framed three to demonstrate how the prints look when mounted.

Certificate

 

I was very pleased with how the stall looked and was encouraged by the response from the people attending the show. I was also happy that I sold one of the larger prints of a running hare as well as a number of greetings cards. I will now invest in a print stand, pre-cut mounts as well as carrier bags for the prints in preparation for my open house exhibition during H-art week in less than two weeks……

 

 

This delightful duckling and it’s reflection is ready for sale

As I prepare for our open house art exhibition as part of Herefordshire art week September 8th to 16th I am always looking for subject matter to create appealing, and saleable, artworks.

During H-art in 2017 I sold a duckling “Wait For Me” and when this image of a duckling and it’s reflection crossed my radar I knew it fit the equally “appealing” category.

Duckling 2018 after and before

My technique as always is to create an outline to work from then select the range of colours of pastel pencils I need. I flipped this image to give variety and then printed off a photograph of the subject ( in this case the duckling ) and study the lights and shades of the feathers, eyes, water, reflections and so on. This allows me to chose the correct colours to work with.

I then work basically from left to right to avoid smudging. Where I make the first stroke of the pencil will depend on the subject matter. You can see some photos here of me at work and more of my working methods on my Facebook page 

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I have also posted a video of my working techniques on YouTube…..you may find it only works properly on phone and tablet for some reason……

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Each time I start I don’t know how it will work out but as the colours and layers build I feel more confident in the outcome. It is slow and patient work but I enjoy the creativity and the outcome is usually worth the effort. Come and see it in September!

 

 

 

 

Delighted to see my artwork on Woodmansterne Christmas cards

Early in 2017 I was contacted by the card company Woodmansterne . They had seen my “Donkeys in Snow” painting on my Instagram feed and wanted to use the image  for Christmas cards.

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I was quite flattered as you might imagine and, after contacting Flora Lee who had bought the original painting, I gave them permission to use the image. I was paid a small sum and promised some cards for my own use once they had been printed.

Late last week I was surprised to open a box that arrived by courier contained quite a few packs of my Christmas cards from Woodmansterne. They had cropped the original image and called the donkeys “Christmas Morning”

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I was also very pleased to see that the cards were for the NSPCC childline charity which makes them all the more special. They will be available shortly from local stockists…..Enjoy your day!

 

My latest pastel artwork has a positive response….

This is my latest pastel artwork which will be for sale at my open house exhibition during H-art (Herefordshire art) week between September 8th and 16th. The reference photo was taken by Javier De Lucar who has a page on Flickr. Permission given.

I have posted this painting on some facebook group pages as well as instagram and people seem to like the power and detail in the image. This piece took about 30 hours.

Champing at the bit wm WIP

Here are some WIP’s included above for your interest. They show me using a polystyrene as a pencil to blend in details before adding more layers of colour to increase depth. Also finger blending, adding details with various shades of pastel pencil, sharpening a pencil and so on.

As usual my medium of choice is ArtSpectrum Colourfix paper using Derwent, Faber-castell, Conte a Paris and Cretacolour pastel pencils for details. The background is applied using Rembrandt and Art Spectrum soft pastels. Enjoy your day!

Very Happy After A Successful “Out Of The Hills” Art Exhibition

When I was invited by mixed media artist Maggie Davis to exhibit in a new art exhibition called “Out of the Hills” I was very pleased to be considered.  As the annual ” Palace Art-Fest” in Hereford ( usually held in June ) had  been cancelled I was able to say yes.

Maggie had met me through Facebook and Twitter and felt I was a good fit with the  eleven other invited artisans for this exhibition to be held at Aardvark Books in Brampton Bryan, Shropshire.

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This well organised and beautifully laid exhibition was a success and I was delighted to sell three of my detailed pastel artworks. In this age where art is considered a luxury item it was a surprise to be honest.

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Many thanks must be given to Maggie and her husband Kim for all their hard work to get this exhibition off the ground. I hope I will be invited back next year…..

 

Very pleased with my latest portrait commission

I was surprised and pleased to be contacted by Cheryl King from Perth Australia last month through my website. She had been searching using Google for a portrait artist and found me – the power of the internet!

It turned out that she was originally from the UK and her father, who had turned 90 in March 2018, lives near Preston in Lancashire. After exchanging emails we arranged for Cheryl, her father Brian and mother Hilda to come for lunch so that my wife Cath could take some photos of him.

It took and while for him to relax but during lunch he started chatting and laughing and Cath caught him perfectly. However it took over 50 images to capture the right one….we went through the best of them with Cheryl and Brian and they were in agreement that this photo best captured Brian’s cheeky side….

It took me over 30 hours to capture the detail and character of his face using pastel pencils ( a mixture of Derwent, Conte, Cretacolour and Faber Castell ) on my favourite Art Spectrum Colourfix paper. The background was blended using layers of Art Spectrum soft pastels. I am very pleased with the result. You see a short video of me at work on my facebook and instagram pages. If you would like to follow in Cheryl’s footsteps and commission a portrait from me please get in touch!

 

 

My artwork installed and ready for “Out of the Hills” exhibition

I was delighted and chuffed to be approached by mixed media artist Maggie Davies earlier this year and be asked to participate in a new venture called ” Out of the Hills” Marches art exhibition to be held at the revamped gallery within the Aardvark Bookery complex. Exhibition space at Aardvark books

My interactions with Maggie on Twitter encouraged her to consider me as part of this eclectic mix of artisans – social media has proven a useful tool on this occasion. Time consuming but the only real way to get my work out in the open.

OOH preview collage

The exhibition runs until Sunday 17th and I will be stewarding on the afternoons of  June 4th, 6th, 9th and 16th so hope to see you there……

How I Created A Commission From Slightly Blurry Photos

When I was asked to undertake a commission for the Smith family I was a little concerned as the three dalmations, that had been part of the family’s life for over thirty years, had all passed away. The only photos they could provide me were taken by older cameras and mobile phones, with some in slide format……

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Now Rohan ( left ) and Baggins ( right ) were acceptable, though the detail was not the best when enlarged. But what was I to do with Strider ( in the middle ) where the reference photo had to be digitised from a slide 20 years old or more? In a flash of inspiration  I searched Pinterest and found a reference photo of a dalmation with the same head position as Strider…….

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Using this attractive image I then produced a rough sketch of Strider using the marking from his photograph and sent this to Sheila ( who has commissioned me ) to see if she felt it resembled her memory of their first dalmation……and she did!

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This gave me the confidence to proceed with the these portraits, knowing I could produce something that was special to the family. The next step was to decide on the layout of the three dogs. By printing the chosen images onto plain paper then cutting them out I could provide Sheila with different arrangements for her to decide the one she preferred. These ones below are a sample…..By the way, the one she chose was not the one I would have chosen, but it is important the client has full control at this stage……

Cut outs collage

Once the layout was agreed upon I was able to happily proceed with the project which took me about 70 hours to complete in soft pastel and pastel pencils on Art Spectrum colourfix paper. Each dog had it’s own challenges but I am pleased with the outcome and so were both Sheila and Kim ( the latter who had a big birthday and who was presented with the portraits in the past week…..)

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If you want to see more of my pastel art techniques have a look at my Pastelwork in Progress facebook page and my Ivan Jones Art you tube page……catch up soon!

Posting easily to Instagram from your laptop

I thought this may be of interest to those of you who want to use Instagram but do not have a tablet, ipad, iphone or android phone……

I am most comfortable on my laptop but wanted to share my artwork through one of the best social media apps around. I searched the internet and after trying one of two different window based apps I found Gramblr to post to Instagram…..

There is also the option to increase your exposure through the site. After posting you can add hashtags and tag people as you would normally. You can also get likes, after posting your image, through the app…..a good way to get more followers too…..See more on the Instacentric website ( below )

and also on the Software Informer website ( see below )

It has a few hiccups at times but it has not affected my computer and is so useful for sharing my detailed pastel artwork to the general public……and it is free! Well worth a look sometime……tell me what you think! www.ivanjonesart.co.uk

New owner is delighted with my portrait of her terrier Dave

I have talked elsewhere about my recent commissioned pet portrait of this delightful terrier Dave but now I am very pleased to be able to post the completed painting as his owner, Hayley, received him today.

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Her aunt Paula and her husband Keith had commissioned Dave’s portrait late last year, following a commission of a robin I completed for them at that time.

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Keith and Paula have been very supportive of my artwork, having first purchased “Cheeky Chappy” a robin pastel painting from the Art2Arts website then “Sepia Tide” a seascape from my website.

I was then delighted to meet both Keith and Paula at the Palace Art-fest in June 2017 which was held at the Bishops Palace in Hereford. There they kindly purchased “A moment’s reflection” to add to their “Ivan Jones Pastel Artist” collection!

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I have a number of clients who have purchased more than one of my detailed pastel paintings and commissions and, although I am thanking Keith and Paula today for their support, I would like to thank everyone  who has bought, enjoyed and appreciated my attention to detail! It makes all my hard work very worthwhile!