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A little catch-up blog

2016 saw a huge change in my painting career and my tuition. My painting became more diverse in as much that I became even looser in my style. I pushed further forward with oils and reduced my involvement with acrylics. I haven't lost interest in acrylics but the focus of my style and the desire to discover what more I could do with oils, became more valuable to my journey. Acrylics have a place always in my tool kit but I now use them for particular projects and workshops.

Watercolour is still a favourite as it is my choice for fast sketches and instant colour for painting out. I continue to give it the least respect of all mediums as I will not have it dictating how I can paint, nor will I pay service to it's fickle nonsense of running away with itself. So there!...

It's wonderful light reflective and simple washes give the most beguiling feeling to a painting above all. It is also my first love and you never forget your first love do you?

In 2016 I tried several new paints, e.g. QOR from Golden (USA) which have a special flow additive to give a more malleable paint and super bright colours. These are beautiful to work with but not so easy to afford.

My usual choice is now, Daniel Smith, Shin Han or Jackson's own brand artist watercolours in full pans. Both are excellent and I intermix them depending on whether I'm painting out (pans) or inside (tubes)

Revisiting acrylics I tested, with the help of Royal Talens, their Amsterdam basic. They are good paints but you need to get to grips with them. They are not a heavy body medium but they have good coverage and are becoming much more easily available. They are a great combatant to Daler Rowney System 3 and will give them a good run for their money.

I'll talk about pastels in another blog but save to say that pastel is growing back into my armoury more than I can say along with dry mediums of all sorts. I love pastel pencil for pure drawing especially Conte, my all-time favourite.

Portrait workshop at Pegasus Art, Stroud

As for tuition it has gone totally off the wall with partnerships in studios, new venues and art shops. Not to mention my own personal courses.

I am stretching myself across a few counties now and making good friends and networks along the way. As I mentioned at the start of this blog, last year the concept was born to work with partners for my tutoring, workshops particularly, plus demonstrations and other areas of my artistic teaching.

My events calendar shows all my current workshops with my partners and my own

My DVD for Cobra water-mixable oils shot last February with Town House Films has turned out to be a success and I hope it has helped artists to be less scared of oils and try water-mixables which on the whole can simplify the enigma of oil painting. If you'd like to have a look at the trailer for this instructional DVD click here and if you like it you can order from my website.

I plan to push out a blog now once a month so do subscribe if you'd like to keep up with my work and/or my tuition and activities sign up and I'll drop you an email about once a month.

Thank you - Peace - Max

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