Friday, 5 January 2007

A Certain Something

Draining the last few drops of tea from his mug, Mr Zip stood up from the Comfy Chair and stared morosely out of the window. The painting was not going well in the absence of his original source material. He knew it must be in the house somewhere, but all attempts to locate it had failed. Progress was, therefore, proving slower than he'd hoped. He would get there, he knew, but time was running out.

In the gathering gloom, something caught his eye. A dark form ran across the path at the bottom of the garden. A blackbird perhaps? No, there it was again, running quickly to the remains of the morning's pile of seed, then just as swiftly back to the shelter of the little wall. And again.

Over and over, he watched in horror as the sleek dark torpedo of the rat collected its provisions and carried them to the safety of it's damnable burrow.


ian gordon said...

Well I'm gald someone else had a disappointing day. There does come that moment when you just NEED that bit extra resource, and if its not there the marks on the canvas just become fake and slick. Such was life today.

Rats? About 10 years ago I got them coming up in the front lawn via a broken disused pipe the property was built on. their hole was only 30cm from the pavement, but the council refused to pay for it being fixed on account of it being on "my land". Not only that, but because I'd reported it and made them aware of the problem, they threatened to sue me if I didn't sort it out post haste.

PS: I was wondering, after looking at your Tyne bridge picture (which I love), do you use black?

harry bell said...

The local council are usually pretty good on these matters - I've had them out for a rat once before - but they were closed by the time I rang today.

I normally mix my blacks from ultramarine, alizarin crimson, burnt sienna, maybe viridian if I've remembered to put it out. I rarely use black itself, except to make the occasional green, because I find it gets into my other colours. But tell that to Velasquez...

Anonymous said...

Drats (as we say) regarding the rat!

I'm sure the painting will resolve itself in time. I like the flying figure, like a dream.

harry bell said...

At times it felt more like a nightmare. I've managed to reconstruct something approximating the original from bits and pieces and Photoshop. It'll have to do, tho matters are helped by the submission date being extended to Tuesday.

ian gordon said...

I make my blacks the same way, only substituting a bit of yellow ochre for your sienna.

Lately though, having not touched black for (literally) decades, I've been thinking of delberately basing some work around it.

I seem to remember Turner only used it once, in a small water colour dedicated to the death of a friend.

Anna said...

I do so envy the assured drawing of those charcoal legs - so difficult to do in that medium. You are awfully good at getting loads of movement into your paintings, look at that sky. Oh, it isn't fair. I had a go with acrylics this week - and brought a right old daub into the world. Pure Woolworths.

harry bell said...

Ian - I think using black can be very interesting, tho I've not done it for a long time. The Scottish Colourists would have been lost without it, but then they were followers of Matisse (See my next post for more on Matisse)

I wonder if the friend of Turner who died was Tom Girtin - Turner always said he'd have eclipsed him, Turner, if he'd lived.

Anna - It's all down to practice. Don't think I haven't given birth to monsters.