Behind the Artwork: Conversations with Ursa Major

arts, drawings

Conversations with Ursa Major‘ is my latest finished piece from my current work. The series itself focuses on the subconscious, dreams, fantasy, emotion and reality. Each piece has an element of the ‘real’ in it but it is quite hard to translate as the viewer. 

What is the work about?

To be honest, none of my work is wholly about one thing. It often starts as one thing and transforms into another. This piece in fact began as an underwater theme, but it turns out that I am not quite done with my planetary/space exploration. I’ve always been fascinated by space. Looking at the stars has always had an effect on me – they make me feel so small, they make me feel quite insignificant which is quite calming actually.

Story time: When I was 4 I wore glasses for the first time therefore I saw the stars for the first time! – it’s a moment that I’ve remembered ever since. (a little cheesy I know, but so true.)

Why Ursa Major?

Well, Ursa Major is also known as the Great Bear and as you can see, this piece features a bear – I wanted to give a earthly form to the stars (I seem to like a challenge). Personally, when I’m feeling trapped, stagnant or stressed out I like to either escape to the sea or take a little bit of time to myself out in the open air. I guess you could call it a form of meditation – hence the pose of the female character.

What medium did you use?

Again, like most of my work this is a pastel and graphite drawing – A1 in size! 

How long did it take to make?

This one took a while, probably about 3 full days in total – it just kept transforming. 

Do you plan to continue your ‘spacey’ series?
 
Honestly, I don’t think I have a choice, it seems to be subject that won’t leave my head, spherical imagery seems to appear even when I don’t mean it too. We’ll see. I’ve never been so creatively excited by my work as I am now though. It’s a great feeling to have! Plus the vastness of space mixed with subconscious and fantasy is certainly a challenging subject matter.

What’s next?

Well, I actually have a drawing in mind (almost a plan) but to tell you what it was before it happens would make it much less exciting…you’ll just have to wait and see – it’ll probably change anyway! Who doesn’t love a little bit of unpredictable chaos anyway? Haha.

Thanks for the questions and the interest in my work – you make me smile. Until next time.

Behind the Artwork: ‘You Can Have my Body But You Can’t Have Me.’

drawings

More answers about more artworks…

What is the artwork about?

On first glance this seems like a romantic piece, whereas, in my head it’s quite the opposite. The two ‘lovers’ dance on the beach under the eclipsed sun. The male holds the female with a firm grip; he’s so afraid to let her go that he’s holding her too tight and metaphorically suffocating her.

He’s desperate to control her, but she cannot be controlled and will not. She bends submissively but her outstretched arms demonstrate her desire to be free. She knows that he has her physical body but he will never contain her spirit – hence the title ‘You can have my body, but you can’t have me.’.

Is it based on real life?

Not one specific moment, but it is however inspired by past relationship experiences. Often in a relationship (not just romantic) you will find that one half of a pair is often trying to dominate the other either by clinging on too tight or being elusive! I’m not a cynic, just observant…haha.

Your work often illustrates writing, is there written work with this one?

Yes there is, but it has not graced the internet with its presence yet.

What medium have you used?

Graphite, pastels, chalk, eraser and ink.

What was on the playlist for this one?

Honestly, I can’t remember but the Pretty Reckless’ song ‘Prisoner’ definitely inspired the title.

If you have anymore questions, either get in contact or comment below.

 

Behind the Artwork: ‘Under the Influence, Losing Control’

drawings

To continue my series about my current work here are a few questions about my newest work; ‘Under the Influence, Losing Control’ and about my art practice itself…

What is the artwork about?

Well, as the title suggests it’s about losing control, and letting something (or someone) take the reigns even if you don’t really want them or it to…

You can be influenced by anything and anyone. Some people are master manipulators whereas others are just easily manipulated. Some are both. Most of us are both.

What medium have you used?

This one is mainly pastels and graphite.

What do you do when you have ‘creative block’?

Spiral and self-destruct (just kidding…ish). Nothing irritates me more than not being able to create anything. Usually when this happens, I am getting in my head too much and not allowing things to happen…’organically’…(I hate that word). The best thing to do is to get out into the world and you’ll find your inspiration. Personally the sea for me is one of my favourite places to go when I’m feeling particularly not creative. 

Is the ‘girl’ you?

Maybe, maybe not. Partly yes, partly no. Probably mostly yes.

What was on the playlist for this one?

Cosmic Jokers! For reasons that I don’t think need to be explained. If you want feel like you’re floating whilst creating some spacey art, well, I’d seriously recommend ‘Cosmic Joy (A)’ and (B). Do it.

I also listened to a lot of Sexwitch again whilst creating this one (because I love Natasha Khan & Bat for Lashes). In my head the piece has a kind of occult feel to it and what is more appropriate than a band called Sexwitch? Listen to ‘Kassidat El Hakka‘ and you’ll get it. Hopefully. 

How big is the work?

Again it is an A1 drawing. The vibrancy of the colours and the contrast between deep blue and the bright red is something I really like about this one. It has a real energy about it.

There you go, more questions (mostly the same) about a different artwork. Until next time. Goodbye.

 

Sketch-a-thon Drawings!

animals, arts

So it’s Thursday day 4 of my sketch-a-thon so it’s time to share a few of my drawings with you! I was going to do one a day but then I ran out of time and my internet decided to die, but i didn’t think that you would mind that I posted a few together, next week though I am determined to do ONE A DAY. Then I am going to use the sketches to create some new completed artwork…although admittedly some of  my drawings aren’t really ‘sketches’ they are a little too detailed – I can’t help myself, that’s the best part of drawing for me. So let me introduce you to my new drawings…the photo’s aren’t of the best quality I haven’t set up the scannner and I’ve recently moved house! (excuses…excuses)

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

As you can see I’ve used a variety of different styles and mediums; pen, pencil, detailed drawing, more graphic techniques and, of course, character illustration (the dragon who I think is very cute). I think I could create really excellent wildlife art from some of these drawings; I could transform them into a fully detailed digital painting or I could just simply complete them!

Drawing everyday is a great way to spend your time; it’s very therapeutic after a hard day at the office, so even if you think you can’t draw I encourage you to pick up your pencil and have a go! You’ve nothing to lose…only your troubles. Drawing really is a fantastic stress relief, no matter what ends up on the paper the process is wholly engrossing. If you would like to view anymore of my artwork then head over to my website www.graceowenart.com.

Mr Fox Gets Colour!

animals, arts, illustration

Mr Fox Gets Colour!

It has been a while since I’ve posted anything new and technically this is just a colour of an older drawing…it’s not finished either but as you all know (unless you’ve never visited before) I like to show the creation of my work in stages..so y’all should come back 😉

In other news I’m getting a new computer so you can expect more work to appear over the next few weeks and months. I shall be updating my site – it’s all very exciting isn’t it?

Angry Owl – Illustration in Progress

arts

Hello all,

Following on from yesterday’s post, Angry Owl Sketch, I have started to digitally paint it. 

So here are a few images to illustrate what I have done so far;

incomplete painting

Step 1: Background fill

Image

Step 2: Basic background details

Image

Step 3: More detail 

There is quite far to go yet. It will be more of an illustration than my more realistic wildlife pieces. I can’t wait to start work on the owl character, that’s my favourite part of creating an artwork 🙂

I will update will more pictures as soon as I can…better get on with it then..