The Lace Market from Canal Street - by Oliver Lovley
This is a watercolour painting I produced last year working from photographs, notes and sketches I’d done to develop the design. It was drawn initially using a pencil and ruler with colour being added in pieces like a jigsaw, allowing each one to dry before continuing.
I’ve developed ways to achieve different watercolour marks using a brush and dip-pen. I find it important to give a natural quality to the marks on the paper, but for buildings it’s better to make the drawing using a ruler because the building work was designed using a straight edge. I can then take advantage of the contrast between the straight lines and blobs of watery paint. I also use coffee, tea, homemade vegetable ink or a blob of house paint to get an interesting contrast of textures. I always think of the city pictures as relaxed technical drawings.
The most interesting and gratifying reaction to my work was in response to a picture of a standing figure; apparently it was too frightening and so had to be taken down. I use exactly the same approach to a picture whether the subject is a person or a tree. It’s possible that a human figure treated in this way may be more disturbing because of the lifelessness that the face has. I make no distinction between trees, people or buildings as they are all part of nature.
Oliver Lovley at work
I’m influenced mainly by books like Les Tres Riches Heures from the fourteenth century. These pictures show medieval society throughout the months of the year. I also like to visit Nottingham Castle museum, I always enjoy seeing Andrew MacCallum’s large painting of The Major Oak.
I sell my own range of products including prints, books and cards at art and craft venues and events around Nottingham. I exhibit in galleries and shops including Debbie Bryan Studio & Shop in The Lace Market and Mish Mash Gallery in Chilwell. I also frame my own work wherever possible, for commissioned paintings it is nice to plan the framing in tandem with the picture.
I’d like to make animated films of my paintings, but I know how much work that would involve - I would have to do 24 paintings per second of film. For a thirtysecond animation I once produced 720 small images on paper and I was still seeing them when I closed my eyes at night.
Oliver’s work will be at Lady Bay Arts Festival on 18-19 May, Patchings Art and Craft Festival, Calverton on 6-9 June 2013 and Southwell Minster Spring Craft Fair 25 May 2013.
Oliver Lovley website