Monday, February 28, 2011

Rush Hour VII and VIII, 60 x 45cm, Oil on canvas, 2011

The Rush Hour Series continues. These two are more of the build up to the Rush Hour, they are not all that congested but this is how it starts. One, two three, ten, twenty and then the whole place is a congested mess!!



Special Quote
"It's my Birthday today and I was born to inspire, motivate and encourage! What were you born to do?" Know it and do it and the world would blessed"-Adebanji Alade, the sketcher at 39

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Rush Hour VI, Oil on Canvas, 45 x 60cm, 2011

These are some real life quotes from real people on the tube in the RUSH HOUR in London! It's no joke, if you have been in the heat of it you will understand what it's all about.
I have been in the Rush Hour and it is a real hard time breathing-it's a typical rat race situation, one we have to live with as long as we use the public transport and want to get to work early.

Rush Hour VI, oil on canvas, 45x 60cm, 2011

This is what makes me paint these scenes-they are not just records of situations in busy cities but they are who we are in this fast generation!

Enjoy some quotes below taken from a public site of different peoples experiences.

"Why do people stare so much in London! And it's not as if they you see them looking at you just as they look around, they actually stare!!!"-A L Johnson

"I work for London Underground and when I make platform announcements at rush hour this is usually the structure:

Ladies and Gentlemen your next eastbound train will be in x mins.

The train may be quite full so please move down the platform and use all available space.

The train is approaching the station, please stand behind the yellow line.

Please let passengers off the train first before boarding.

This train is ready to depart, stand clear of the doors please, mind the doors.

Our objective is to get our customers on the train quickly and safely. The need to get the train out of the platform quickly is essential. We hate the last second boarder who jumps in the train whilst the doors are closing and jams them - causing delays. At rush hour, the Central line can run a train every minute. So please do not block the doors and listen to us when we say move down the platform."-R Rashid

"One time on the district line there was the usual 'stand clear of the doors' announcement when the doors shut the driver goes 'See now that wasnt so hard was it?' and what is it about people barging u wiv their hefty arse backpacks 2 get 2 a seat and then gettin off at the next xxxx stop?!"-D Hollands

Rush Hour VI on the easel with Palette

Special quote
We are here to learn lessons, and the world is our teacher
When we fail to learn a lesson, we get to take it again... and again!
Then once wev'e learnt the lesson, we move on to the next one. (and we never run out of lessons!).-Andrew Matthews

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Learning by Sketching from Paintings in Galleries/Museums II

This is my 2nd post on the usefulness of sketching in galleries and museums, the first one can be seen HERE. It really helps one to tap into the way the artist works and that also helps increase the ability to see and learn from seeing. Seeing does sound a bit common but for the artist it isn't, it means so much more and I keep learning that everyday.

Learning from Andrew Festing PPRP.

I love The Portraits of Andrew Festing and I always lookout for his work during the Royal Society of Portrait Painters Exhibitions at The Mall Galleries annually. The sketches I made in this post were of detailed parts of complete portraits he had on show at the RP Exhibition in 2007. I'll just share below, all the notes I jotted down while getting absorbed into the paintings.

1. Portrait of the 55th Grand Prior of the English Knights of Malta, Oil, 80" x 46" (detail)

I have sketched this face because I love it, it communicates! Simple! It's fascinating to paint from life and Andrew Festing makes it look like a delight. His BRUSH condition is his strength and the marks in specific places delineating the structure is very interesting. The cool parts of the skin around the chin are just great, it makes the skin flow with life and it definitely depicts the form.
A few lights (2) midtones (2) greys (2) and there is no mark in dark but colour.
He must definitely use black because it has a "carbony content" appeal. But it's great! I love it! It's a delight to watch and observe this guys strokes- Adebanji Alade(thoughts going through my head)

The real painting (detail)

2. The Master and Past Masters of The Worshipful Company of Information Technologists, Oil, 50" x 70" (detail)

2.1 Every mark is a sketch, stroke paint-placed mainly broad
2.2 Draughtsmanship, even though executed fast is precise!
2.3 Kolinsky Round Sable brush sketch, stoke paint, "It's Sick!"

The sketch and draughtsmanship is everything
There's no feat, no hesitation
It shows he enjoys this
The Background is a pinkish warm colour
The strokes mould and model the figure in clothes
Enough colour has been mixed
The light must have come straight on
-Adebanji Alade(thoughts running through my head put on the page)

The real painting (detail)

While researching for the images for this post I discovered a wonderful blogpost on his working methods by Joseph Galvin Winner of the Bulldog Bursary Award in 2007, which can be seen HERE

Links and information on Andrew Festing can be seen below
Royal Society of Portrait Painters
Commission a Portrait
How to paint a portrait-Very Useful on Youtube
Painting a portrait-Very Useful on Youtube

Special Quote
"One of the most frequently asked questions from students is "How do you know what to paint" It's a question that comes from painters working at all levels: beginners who really haven't done much subject searching and more experienced painters who are trying to discover their unique style. Here's what I recommend: Buy a small notebook-one that you can easily carry around. In the book, write down the five senses: sight, smell, hearing, taste and touch. Carry the notebook for three weeks and as you come across them, jot down things that really wow you under the appropriate sense category. These should be the things that take your breath away. For example, under sound, one of my horse students wrote, "The sound of my horse running in the meadow at night." By the end of three weeks, try to have 10 to 20 things listed under each category. These are the things you should be painting. Once you've focused in on what you should be painting, there aren't enough hours in the day to paint that subject."
-Mary Whyte on Why Workshops work-in Watercolour Magic Handbook

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Sketches on the bus, train and tube in February III

These are some of my recent sketches on public transport. The guy above slept all the way from Toy's R Us on Old Kent Road(SE15) in a Bus 453 to Parliament Square(W1). Now that's a sketchers delight! It's because of opportunities like this, that the sketch hunter MUST have a sketchbook handy, just a pocket size one and a sketching tool (pen, biro, pencil) ready to "fire" at short notice when a great model appears!

Special quote
"At most college-level art schools, instructors take the easy way by letting students do their own thing. Why? Because it'll "stifle your creativity". NONSENSE!
Figure Drawing is really not about learning how to draw the Figure! It's about learning how to make your eye see something, your mind perceive it, and your hand obey.
The human figure is the best subject to practice on, not only because it's endlessly challenging, but because anyone, even you can accurately evaluate your progress.
With a figure drawing, if it looks right, it quite likely IS right.
Clearly it is worth the effort to learn to draw.
Your investment is small, and the payoff comes EVERY TIME you pick up pencil or brush.
I don't know the first thing about a horse's hind end, but I can draw it. A cowboy, or an artist, or anyone, can look at my drawing and say, "That Harley really knows his horses!"
I don't know horses. I just know how to observe a horse. I know how to reproduce what's in front of me.
You can learn it too. Yes, YOU CAN DO IT!
But your eye has to be trained. And the way to train it, is to draw constantly, not to learn how to place muscles, not to do fabric folds, but to learn to SEE what's before you, to SIMPLIFY what you see, and PUT IT DOWN ACCURATELY with as few strokes as possible"- HARLEY BROWN on "DRAWING IS IMPORTANT"

Tuesday, February 15, 2011


It was a wonderful day, I had a shot(painting) at the Circus from Gay Street the day before. Up till that moment I had never seen the Circus,but my little experience from the day before, gave me a vivid impression that the Circus was worth exploring!

"Easel does it by Jess Loughborough "SUNFACE13"

On the 21st of September I got out of my bed while the sun was shining with a glorious morning light and I ventured to get one shot(painting) of the Circus done. I arrived at around 10.15am at an interesting spot right in the middle of the park at the Circus and decided to paint a good view of an area in which the sun had illuminated part of the grass to almost a fluorescent yellowish green, with Brock Street peeping through!
While getting ready to paint, a resident from the Circus buildings came down to meet me with a cup of tea and said, "May the sun shine for you all day long"- I gladly had the 'Cuppa' and got down to work, at about 11.38am I had completed my first panel and then I thought the composition looked a bit incomplete. So I brought up another panel and joined it to the first and at around 12.36 in the afternoon I completed my first two 6" x 8" panels of the Circus. I was happy with the result until one passer by said, "it's good you are doing a panorama of this....." then I thought, OK, a panorama....I think I'll try...? Let's see what a third panel would like, by this time I had to turn my position to capture another part of the Circus, linking the third to the second. IT WAS and MUST HAVE BEEN AT THIS MOMENT, THE MASTER PHOTOGRAPHER, Jess Loughborough CAPTURED ME in the shot above!

Adebanji's Circus Panorama- 36" x 6", Oil on Board, 2010, (SOLD)

I didn't know he captured me in a powerful shot until last week when Jose, a plein air painter from Spain and a lover of British Artists like Peter Brown, David Curtis and Trevor Chamberlain, introduced himself to me by email and told me he had discovered a picture I'll like on Flickr. I went to the link on flickr and "Lo and behold"- It was a picture of me painting the Circus!!!!

Adebanji presenting the Circus Panorama

The art of photography is similar to my quick sketches because most of the people I sketch never know I sketch them and that's the same way I never knew Jess had captured me with his Pentax K20D camera! But the Internet is a small world and Jose happens to follow my blog and has also taken part in one of my competitions. He discovered it and I love the picture so much! It brought back memories of one of the days during my Bath Marathon when I feel Inspiration and Perspiration met at their best! I went on to do 3 more panels and it ended up as a 6 panel Panorama of the Circus. Jess has given me the permission to use the image on my blog. Check out his other pictures HERE, they are great! Also check and read the comments of other photographers, one had actually seen me the day before, the picture and comments can be seen HERE

Below are some other pictures related to the Circus Panorama.

Circus in progress I

Circus in progress II

Special Quote
"Always paint your intention. One is composing with every brushstroke. Every brushstroke is furthering the composition, not just by completing the painting, but by creating it. As pearls reflect the string, so do the brushstrokes reflect the composition, the artist's intention. One is always painting one's taste. Every brushstroke is a reflection of that taste or sensitivity"- David Leffel, painting as a discipline,

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Sketches on the bus and train in February II

These are some more recent sketches. There's one of me sketching myself, I didn't have anyone to sketch on a bus, so I looked into the CCTV Mirror and did one looking up. The others are of the best models ever-The sleeping commuters.

Special Quote
"What we do on some occasion will probably depend on what we already are; and what we are will be the result of previous years of self-discipline."-Henry Parry Liddon

Thursday, February 03, 2011

Sketches on the bus and train in February I (and the materials I use to sketch)

This is one page spread of sketches I have recently. I have also decided to highlight the materials I use to sketch, I have done this before but it seems a lot of people still would like to know. I have replied many emails from readers but I have now decided to re-post. I'll do the one of my graphite sketching kit when I return to the trusty old graphite sketches. But for now it's the pen sketching kit.

This is my Biro sketching kit

1. Bic Biro (medium)

2. TOMBOW Dual Brush pen (Number 75)- Cool Grey..I think

3.Daler -Rowney sketch Book A6(150g/m acid free cartridge paper) or Winsor & Newton Heavy Weight Case Bound Sketch Book A6 (170 gsm heavy weight paper)

"Getting ahead in a difficult profession requires avid faith in yourself. That is why some people with mediocre talent, but with inner drive, go much farther than people with vastly superior talent. -Sophie Loren