I'm sure many people would disagree with me on this statement. They might see themselves as not owning a single artistic bone in their body. But I truly believe that anyone can learn to draw, and to paint. However, just as some athletic sorts will always have a head-start on us lesser mortals, I do … Continue reading Anyone can learn Art
"What on earth is that?" I hear you ask. Well, it's something I've only ever tried once, but I'm going to start using again. It's all about laying a base coat on a canvas, often over the original drawing marks. Many artists use brown, others use orange. I suppose it's about using a colour which … Continue reading Imprimatura
I'm always learning as an artist. One thing I'm learning at the moment which I thought I'd share with you is about where to start laying your colours down on a canvas. You see, when I first started painting on canvas with acrylics a few years ago, I treated them very much like watercolours, where … Continue reading Hints and Tips on Painting Trees
When I was a young artist, I greatly admired the work of the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood. They were a group of young idealistic Victorians who painted art to educate and improve their peers. They looked back to a time in Art History when, it seemed to them, art had been about improving the morality of its … Continue reading Hidden in Plain Sight
I've been teaching some year 5 classes about melody recently, helping them to realise that good melodies don't just happen by accident. It's not that composers slavishly follow rules to compose memorable tunes, because most of the time, a good melody does present itself as if my magic. But there are certain truths I suspect … Continue reading What makes a good melody?
I was asked this morning what I consider to be the gifts to myself of the pandemic and resultant lockdowns this year. A strange question, to be sure. But not a ridiculous one. Many of us have found something important this year - maybe something we'd forgotten, or lost, has been rediscovered - like a … Continue reading The Gifts of the Pandemic
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BePfzCOMRZQ&list=OLAK5uy_knTCF7Agg3xAnZ4xzhdDsgq2OvaMzYBrI It has to be done. Whilst I am a great fan of the other score of 1975 which Williams wrote for "The Eiger Sanction", I couldn't not devote this blog entry to the stroke of absolute mastery which is Jaws. As a teacher, I often use the theme from Jaws to illustrate how composers … Continue reading A John Williams Score for Every Year of My Life – 1975 Jaws
So very true.
The cover for my musical based on Dracula Well if you want to live, hear the warning I give,And don’t you go to Castle DraculaYoung man, lend me an ear, don’t go anywhere nearAnd please don’t go, sir please don’t go I write musicals. Musicals for performance by Primary aged children. But I happen to … Continue reading What’s in a lyric?
I remember when I was a young aspirational primary school teacher, fresh out of university, being told this by an old gentleman. I was outraged to say the least. So after 25 years in the profession, what are my thoughts nowadays? Is there any truth to this old saying? Well, in one sense, there is. … Continue reading Those Who Can, Do. Those Who Can’t, Teach