Category Archives: Cricket

Catch it! – original cricket drawing

My latest cricket drawing has a focus on the moment when the batsman knows he has clipped the ball, glancing behind in the hope that it goes to ground and not to hand.

a charcoal cricket drawing of a slip catch fielder about to catch the ball

The drawing started off with a preliminary sketch in my sketchbook.  Here I’m just making a loose sketch in watercolour to see how it works and to see if it will make a good finished piece…

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It had all the potential for the drama of the moment that I like to capture in my drawings so I went ahead and started a full drawing.  For my cricket drawings I work on Canson Mi Teintes pearl grey paper (the smooth side).  I take sheets of A3 and cut them down if I need to.  Here are progress shots of the piece…..

If you notice the original finished drawing actually had a bowler on it too.  I decided that the bowler brought nothing to the drama and I found his pose a distraction so erased him from the finished piece, working him into the background instead.  The finished piece can be purchased along with prints from my website shop here

Or by clicking on the image below…

a charcoal cricket drawing of a slip catch fielder about to catch the ball

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Just in! – original pastel drawing of womens cricket

 

womens cricket drawing by cricket artist in pastel and oil

Just in!

My first colour painting of my favourite subject – cricket and my first women’s cricket drawing for quite a while.

This piece has been spinning around in my head for a while so its so good to see it in reality in front of me.  The inspiration for the piece came from watching video footage of England women’s Katherine Brunt diving to  make it safely behind the line.  Making figure sketches from the video and scrolling through reference photos of diving saves I finally came up with a shape that I wanted.  I have wanted for a while to do an abstract piece of cricket art.  This piece isn’t fully abstract but it’s getting there.  The reasoning behind it is that working on commissions for both cricket figure drawings and portraits the predominant motive is always to get a good likeness.  It’s something that I constantly battle with.  When someone sits for a portrait then often they are still and expressionless so a likeness is easier to measure and work on.  When they are in full movement and full of expression then they don’t always look like the person they are.  In these cases the likeness comes from the body and the body language.  Too often the clients struggle with that concept, expecting the face to look just like a portrait.  It’s a continuous frustration with me as the artist.  By working in abstract we move away from the ‘likeness battle’ and onto a much more personal interpretation.

The desire to produce a piece of abstract cricket art has been there for a few months but not a clue how to go about it.  Flicking through an artist magazine I came across an American artist called Michele Poirier Mozzone who went on a similar abstract journey as myself.  Wanting to work in abstract she spent 6 months trying to produce unfulfilling pieces that weren’t quite what she wanted.  One day she took pictures of her daughter swimming from underwater up to the sunlight.  The resulting photograph produced  beautiful abstract colours slicing through the water with the safe realism of an actual figure to work with.  It was perfect for her and set her on a new journey.

Reading her discoveries a clog clicked in my brain and I knew exactly what I wanted.  I contacted Michele to check out some technical points and the drawing ‘Just in!’ became a reality.

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Following Michele’s advice I produced a light oil paint wash which would show through subtlety the following pastel layers.  It took a little longer to dry than I planned, the figure was painted a bit heavier and would not accept the first layers of pastel until a bit more drying time was taken.

My pastels and working area.  For this drawing I was keen to use my new box of Unison pastels. Unfortunately I had purchased the pet portrait box so there was quite a few colours I wanted that weren’t there – looks like I’ll need to get another box 🙂 I also use Conte soft pastels, hard pastels and pastel pencils.  All pastels are great but the reason that I use Conte is that the soft, hard and pencil all match so you can use exactly the same colour in all forms.

Some progress drawings.

I hope you like this drawing and its journey, prints are available click here to go to my shop and  feel free to leave a comment….or check out more of my cricket art on my website

Wicket keeper original charcoal commission

Wicket keeper original charcoal drawing

This week I am working on a commission, it is a surprise wedding anniversary present for the subjects husband (he doesn’t really use social media so we are ok for updates.)

This is drawn with Nitram charcoal on Canson Mi Teintes paper. The size is 16 x 12 inches.  Here are some progress drawings…..

 I have also produced some short videos to show actual drawing at speed..

The piece is not yet complete, its on hold whilst I await some more reference photographs.


Portrait Drawing

Back to portrait drawing from life on Friday morning, although this time there was limited time so I had to take photos and draw it in my studio.  I have been dying to do this one as it is a real challenge.  Steve has glasses and a beard, a double challenge for a portrait artist..

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I have begun work on this one which should be complete in the week.


New Pastel Cat Drawing

Itching to get back into colour I have selected this drawing of a cat that I’ve kept hold of for a while.  I’ve changed the cat from its traditional tortoiseshell to a play with colours.  I wanted to contrast the emerald eyes with sapphire ears.  Here’s a clip video of the progress….

The completed piece has proved to be very popular.  It is available in my website shop as well as a limited number of fine art prints…

Click here to go to its page or on the image below..

an original pastel drawing of a tortoiseshell cat completed in conte pastels on pastelmat with green emerald eyes

Emerald

More charcoal portraits from life, drawing Moeen Ali and thoughts on County Cricket…

Whilst welcoming visitors to my studio through Cheshire Open Studios I have been continuing with my portrait from life practise.  I visited Two Doors Studio in Alsager again on Friday morning, this time the second owner, Ruthie sat for me whilst I sketched away.  We talked and talked, it was quite therapeutic but during the time I took lots of photos with my phone and began sketching.  There was a certain look when she talked, gazing into the distance that I liked, a playful little light in her eyes…..

Here are some progress drawings..

and here is the finished portrait…

original charcoal portrait of a lady woman drawn from life wearing glasses

Ruthie


At the end of the week (23 – 25th September) I will be running my first art auction online.  It is something that quite a few artists do via facebook.  I have decided to keep it to my cricket drawings and prints initially to see how it goes.  The purpose is to obviously make sales but also allow customers to possibly get some discounts and to get to see all the drawings and prints in one place.

If successful I will run another along with a selection of other artists to bring you original drawings and paintings in an auction style event.

Here is the link to my event – DON’T MISS OUT!

https://www.facebook.com/events/235281573540614/

 In line with the auction I am also working on an original cricket drawing.  My first that will be available for sale for some time. ..here is a progress slides show..

 

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 The finished piece I have called ‘Extra Special’ as he is a very special cricketer and he is executing a great extra cover drive.  Here is the finished piece, you can view it on my website in more detail here or click on the image below…

original charcoal drawing showing movement of a batsman hitting a cricket ball by uk cricket artist

Extra Special


No sales this week but lots of excitement in the world of cricket as the County Championship comes to its conclusion. It’s my first year following championship cricket, I can’t really believe I have not followed it before.  Previously I have only really followed England cricket and had began to listen to it on the radio via TMS as I worked in my studio.  It is a great companion, light hearted, addictive, funny and a real breath of fresh air from all the rubbish usually on the radio.

Missing my test match special days I started listening to the county cricket coverage on Radio 5 Live Extra.  It seems an age ago that I first listened to a cricket match at Durham where they went off for snow and you could hear the wind whistling around the commentary box through the radio broadcast.  Living in Cheshire, without a first class county I have no real team to follow so kept an open mind.  Having to get used to a whole host of local radio presenters was a challenge, some are better than others, some are very funny and sometimes it can get quite heated.  All held together marvellously by Kevin Howells and the BBC radio team.

The real positives that I have to report are the following:  I now have a better understanding of how players move up through the ranks – previously they had just turned up for England and I didn’t know their history.  Now there’s a great range of talented cricketers all vying for national selection.  The real passion and knowledge of county cricket comes across so strongly through the radio coverage – these broadcasters know so much, they’ve seen so much and they share that with us in such funny, brilliant ways.  Finally due to the wonders of the internet you can follow the matches you choose, since most of them are broadcast on the bbc website.  As a result the last few weeks of the season were so addictive and so compelling I’m surprised I got any work done.

My favourite moment had to be Cally (Yorkshire) explaining how the ground would empty at Scarborough in time for the B and B brigade to get back and get settled in time for the evening meal – usually about 6pm

My thought and word of wisdom is this – as a result I went to watch a county game at Warwickshire.  I am a cricket fan and I have always been one.  There isn’t a whole lot of unconverted cricket fans out there, but by making county cricket more exciting, more accessible (possibly cheaper) with more competitions and opportunity to watch it gives more of an opportunity of current fans to get along and watch.

Misbah’s sweep – original Pakistan cricket drawing

Took a break on bank holiday Monday to go to a proper cricket match.  Visiting Edgbaston for the first time we watched Warwickshire beat Somerset in the Royal London semi-final by only 10 runs so it was pretty close / tense.

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It was great to watch Jonathan Trott again, haven’t seen him play for a while.  I’ve been listening to county cricket commentary on my radio most of the summer so I know alot of names but not how they play.


My piece this week is a commission.  Misbah Ul Haq performing his excellent reverse sweep shot.  His class shot that he’s performed the world over.  Here is the progress shots of the drawing as I work in my customary manner of building up the shade.

 

 I also prepared a timelapse video of my drawing Misbah’s face.  Unfortunately it did not record so I prepared another one drawing a different section…..

 

It’s a little bit wobbly but you get the general idea…..

Here is the finished piece, the original is sold but I have made 50 limited edition prints available.  You can visit my website shop here or click on the image below to follow the link for prints.

misbah, misbah ul haq, pakistan cricket drawing, cricket art, cricket art, cricket artist,

Misbah’s Sweep


On Friday mornings I am going to be drawing portraits from life.  Something that I have wanted to try for a while.  I will be in Two Doors Studio (Alsager) in their cafe to draw willing victims.  Currently I can’t charge for this service as I am only practising, it is going to take a while to made the adaption from photographs to drawing from life.  Hopefully this is something that I can eventually offer as a service.  Here is photo of me concentrating very hard…

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Although I have being working on the Misbah commission, my portrait drawing ‘The Glance’ was sold (very quickly) and much to my delight.  I will make prints available of this drawing and let you know when they are ready….

pastel portrait drawing of a young woman glancing and looking into the distance

The Glance

Cricket Art in charcoal & Open studios

I always feel better when I start a new cricket drawing, not sure why. I think it just feels comfortable and easy going.  This week I am drawing the wonderfully quirky image of the Pakistan Captain – Misbah Ul Haq doing his famous push up warm up before going in to bat.  His partner Shafiq walks past with a grin on his face.  It’s a great image.  Here’s some progress drawings where I am making scratchy marks for the shadow areas and the proportions..

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Adding the shadow areas and checking that the proportions are correct.

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The exhibition is carrying on at Bickerton, nice to see another red dot on one of my drawings and to see that my piece Owl Babies now has a new home.



This week I’ve been working on putting my limited edition prints onto canvas.  Its been a learning curve as I have never stretched canvas before.  I am able to print out on my printer for a canvas for 15 x 10 inch sizes but for bigger I would need to out source them.

Here’s the first one of ‘That Taylor Catch’ – I am really pleased with it, the colours are just as sharp as the prints on paper.  They can be bought like this or bought in a frame (more details of the framed pieces to follow)

canvas limited edition print of james taylor taking a catch at short leg

That Taylor Catch Canvas


On the 7th August I will taking part in an Art Fayre at the Lion Salt Works in Northwich.  A full day when I will have cricket drawings, prints, mugs and cards as well as my animal drawings and prints.  I went on a little visit to check out the venue.  It’s very smart, with a cafe and if you’re interested in the history of the place there’s a great museum.

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art fair at lion salt works northwich cheshire

Sales this week are:

The original of ‘That Taylor Catch’ is on its way to somewhere special as well as a print.