Art Holiday Accommodation in SW France Details

Thursday, 2 November 2017

MEET EVE



This is Eve

Eve is on her way to join Adam (for his details please see the previous post).
They’re both lifesize—each is painted on two panels measuring 1 metre x 1 metre and set one above the other.
The pair will be the centrepiece for an exhibition I’m planning for summer 2018.
The working title is “ADAM & EVE AND OTHER PAINTINGS IN FRANCE”.
The rough plan is to have about 10 male and female nudes (Adam & Eve) juxtaposed with about the same numbers of French landscapes.
Let’s hope it works out something along these lines.

This is Eve after a change in direction

Friday, 22 September 2017

HOW TO PAINT A LIFE-SIZE FIGURE

A TWO METRE TALL ADAM
My plan here is to paint a life-size male nude: Adam. 
And when it’s finished, I’ll do a life-size female nude, Eve. These two works will become part of my Adam & Eve series of paintings. 
Here’s a bit of maths to start off with: According to Wikipedia the average height of a male in France (where I live) is 175 centimetres tall. 
For compositional reasons I’ll need some space at the top and bottom of the painting, so I’ve decided that the overall canvas size should be two metres tall by one metre wide. 
STEP ONE
Get a mount (a canvas or board) with the right dimensions. For practical reasons I’ve chosen two canvases measuring 1 metre by 1 metre. Then I fixed them together.
I’ve used an acrylic sizing medium as an undercoat.
A stepladder is needed to get to the higher bits.
STEP TWO 
Block in your image. 
I’ve used a grid system to transfer the basic drawing I did on paper onto the two canvasses.
STEP THREE
Start filling in the colour—it's just like painting by numbers.
STEP FOUR
Keep going until the whole canvas is covered in colour. 
I’ll add a photo of the finished painting as soon as it’s ready.

WHAT’S NEXT
Watch this space for further developmrnts—and then for how Eve progresses.


Wednesday, 20 September 2017

A POLITICAL PICNIC IN THE FOREST

Every year , local farmer and politician Jacques Rapetti invites us to a grand picnic in a clearing in the forest on his farm.
It's a great outing, starting with apéros and snacks just get everyone into the right mood. This year a couscous entree was followed by lamb and feves.
All washed down with copies amounts of white, red and rosé wine. Dessert was a choice of north African pastries - followed by a large armagnac digestif! Naturally.
Not bad for a forest picnic hey?
Three tame Anglo Saxons waiting for service.
Jacques Rapetti, Ray and Jean Jaurès, founder of the newspaper l’humanity.
Thanks Bernadette for the pics. 

Monday, 28 August 2017

Thijs, Jose and Catherine

Our Dutch friends have been back to La Petite Galerie again.
Thijs and Jose were here for three weeks over the hottest part of the summer, and their English friend,  Catherine,  joined them for a week.
We went to Larressingle to paint one morning before it got too hot.


But the highlights (for us anyway) of their stay were two memorable meals they cooked for us.
A few nights before they left, the food Jose and Thijs prepared was nothing less than OUTSTANDING.
Plus he spoiled us with lots of wonderful wine that Thijs had collected - and a vintage bottle of Champagne they had brought with them.
This probably helped when a storm erupted later in the evening. But we were all enjoying ourselves so much that we ignored the rain and went on eating - and drinking.
Here’s what we ate (in my words which might not be accurate): 3 carrot based 'amuse bouches’, celery and parsley soup, avocado and Ricard puree with crab, white fish with coquille St Jacques and prawns in a reduced bouillabaisse sauce, Guinea fowl in a special jus with cauliflower puree & beetroot. A dessert that I can only describe as chocolate mousse - but it was much, much better than the mundane name I’ve given it.
Not bad hey?


I told Thijs that whenever he got tired of his practice and psychoanalyst role, he’d have no difficulty establishing a five star restaurant anywhere in France - and beyond.

Thursday, 27 July 2017

EGLISE ST-JEAN DE VILLENEUVE-DE- MEZIN

This is my watercolour painting of the church in the nearby hamlet of Villeneuve de Mézin.
It’s a birthday gift for Peter and Bernadette. 
Hope they don’t see this photo before they open the present. 


Tuesday, 20 June 2017

JIM’S PAINTING TRIP TO FRANCE JUNE, 2017


THIS IS A 13TH CENTURY MILL IN GASCONY.

At the moment it’s full of Americans. There are eleven of them. From Texas. Painters and holidaymakers.  Enjoying the sights and sounds of southwest France, and of course the amazing French food. Strawberries, cherries and melons are in season at the moment.
So here are some of them just after they arrived.
Team shot outside the Mill with the medieval bridge in the background.


On the first night it was Eddie and Judy’s anniversary. Here they are with a "50 years is a long time" cake.


50 years deserves a souvenir 
Eddie and Eric solving the world’s problems.


Tracy and Eric Junior hard at work.


Guess who dropped his napkin.


Our meal at the duck farm, Contes d’Albret.


Jim and EJ - some tips about composition.


Jim and Mo planning a painting.


Lunch at the Chateau le Frechou


Maya and a pigeonnier.


Dinner at the Mill


Rebecca admiring Rick’s work.


Sandy and Judy in the Orangerie at the Chateau of Le Frechou.


Later: a quick walk around Nerac.
PS For more information on painting holidays in France - for families or small groups of friends - please click here.  

JIM’S PAINTING WEEK IN FRANCE

MORE PICTURES IN THE PHOTO ALBUM

Team shot with the Three Musketeers in Condom

Picnic lunch after painting at Blaziert

Breakfast at the Mill

Team shot at funny road sign

Lunch at the Duck Farm

Still enjoying that cake

The entrance to Fources - a 12 century watch tower

Painting in the cloisters at La Romieu

The Music Festival in Mézin and eating with the locals

JIM’S PAINTING WEEK IN FRANCE - LA FIN

Jim's demo at Le Bastard Hotel in the hilltop town of Lectoure (yes - that really is the hotel's name - promise it is). 
Becky (taking a photo) and Judy and Sandy hard at work (in their respective ways) on the terrace at Le Bastard.

Team pic taken by reporter from La Depeche, the local newspaper.


The evening of the last Friday at the Mill, and the traditional crit of all the work produced during the week.
Finally, bon voyage y’all. Have a safe trip. Hope to see you again sometime. 
Adichatz et au revoir. 



PS For more information on painting holidays in France - for families or small groups of friends - please click here.









Friday, 9 June 2017

BOB’S 70th



For Bob’s 70th birthday, his wife Debbie took him on a boat on the Clyde (the sentimental reason is that he’s from Glasgow). They loved it.
Here’s a painting of them on what is called a ‘Clyde puffer’ for obvious reasons.
Please get in touch with me if you want details of how you can get me to do a painting from a photograph you’ve taken.
Please contact me at:
ray@johnstonesinfrance.com

BOB’S DOG



This is a watercolour of Bob’s dog Luna. It was a commission done from a photograph, and given to him on his 70th birthday.
You can see another painting of a dog here:
https://www.saatchiart.com/art/Painting-PAINTING-OF-YOUR-PET-DOG/183452/3316839/view

If you’d like to have a watercolour done of your pet from a photo you take, please email me for full details on how it works.
ray@johnstonesinfrance.com


Sunday, 28 May 2017

ADAM & EVE WITH LILIES


Here's my latest painting. The photo is taken in my studio.
I've called it "ADAM AND EVE WITH LILIES"
"AND EVE?" 
Why not "OR EVE?," you might well ask.
Or even better, "ANDROGYNOUS FIGURE WITH LILIES?"
Who knows? Who cares? And does it really matter?

If you'd like to see this painting in detail please go to 
Saatchi here.

Monday, 22 May 2017

GUSTAVE KLIMT


This is my painting of part of a painting called Judith with the Head of Holofernes. I’ve left out the head she’s holding but you can see it in the original which was done by Gustave Klimt in 1901. This was a very popular subject in the Renaissance and Baroque periods. Judith was a biblical character who tricked her lover and adversary into getting drunk so she could behead him.  Klimt used a lot of actual gold foil - I’ve used gold acrylic pigment.
This work is sold, but if you’d like a quote on a similar copy, please send me some brief details in an  email: ray@johnstonesinfrance.com. (A price guide is 300 Euros for acrylic on canvas size 50 x 60 cms.)
If you’d like to see some more of my works, please have a look at my portfolio at Saatchi Online.

Sunday, 21 May 2017

ADAM & EVE



This is Adam & Eve in my studio.
I’ve been painting nudes all my life, and I’ve now gone back to this traditional subject with some enthusiasm.
You can see various of my nude works at Saatchi Online here.
But please don’t go there if the subject offends you.

Sunday, 14 May 2017

THIS IS ÈVE




This is Ève. She’s in my studio.
But why the accent?
Because she was painted in France.
So I’m back to painting nudes, and, as Adam and Ève have been a popular subject for artists since the middle ages, here’s my version.
But where’s Adam?
He’s still in my head. He’ll join Ève later, as soon as he’s finished.
Watch this space.
You can see Ève in detail in a close up version at Saatchi Online by clicking here.
If you don’t like nudes, don’t go there.

Friday, 5 May 2017

SEBASTIEN OR SEBASTIAN?

SAINT SEBASTIEN IN FRENCH—ST SEBASTIAN IN ENGLISH



I chose the French title because, as some of you may remember, I live in France.
Saint Sebastien’s martyrdom has been a popular subject in art and literature since the middle ages. Before that, in Greek and Roman times, he was usually painted as Eros or Cupid. The subject was especially popular in the Renaissance when the rise of humanism, and a ‘rediscovery’ of classicism, saw the human body become increasingly central in paintings and sculpture.
So, why did I paint him? 
Well, I’ve always painted the nude (many, many years ago I came close to getting into lots of trouble for a nude female I exhibited in Pretoria—it was based on Courbet’s L'Origine du monde.)
Anyway, I’ve gone back to the nude, and intend to paint several contemporary interpretations of traditional subjects over the next few months.
The above pic shows a work in progress. If you’d like to see the finished painting, and, as long as you are not offended by nudity, you can see it here: