Tuesday, 20 December 2016

Merry Christmas

Watch out for that tree, Santa!
Polar Bear Santa would like to wish you all a very Merry Christmas (and so would I)!! If you decide to leave out some biscuits and milk for the big bear, please remember Mrs Claus has put him on a strict diet, so the vittles will have to be digestives (without chocolate) and skimmed milk only. Do not, under any circumstances, serve mince pies or sherry - you have permission to save those for yourself.

Here's the linework on watercolour paper just before I started to paint. See if you can spot any changes I made later on as I painted (there is extra holly).

Thursday, 1 December 2016

'Paisley Rabbit and the Treehouse Contest' Continued

My last post on 'Paisley' gave you a sneaky peak at the huge treehouse cross-section I was working on - click here. Thankfully I eventually finished it and I'm going to show you the whole full colour version, including lots of details hitherto unseen on the web!
The Treehouse Cross-Section, watercolour and gouache 53 x 102cm
This took me roughly 30 days to complete and really pushed my studio's capabilities. For example the painting, when stretched on board, didn't fit my easel so I had to work with it propped against the wall. Also most of the time I was stood with my back against the opposite wall trying to take in the whole image as it progressed. You will see in the shots below, it was very easy to get lost in the details of this illustration and forget about how the whole painting should be knitted together with a consistency in colour, tone and level of detail.
A ball pool with individually painted plastic balls. Why, Chris, why!?
A well stocked cellar ready for Christmas festivities.
No treehouse is complete without a cinema
An American diner, because it's the 1950s (and America).
I think we'd all love an entrance hall like this.
Paisley's on personal library, with a secret staircase running through a hollow branch.

Tuesday, 1 November 2016

Christmas Card Packs

This is the card design I will be using this year.
Lovefromtheartist.com are now doing special Christmas card packs of 6 cards for £10 (£1.67 per card) and UK postage included. Click here to see the pack. You also have a choice of seasonal messages to pick from, for the inside of the cards. Please take a look.

Monday, 31 October 2016

More illustrations than you can shake a stick at...

'Hey, Toad, look over here.'
Recently I have been updating my new website www.chris-dunn.co.uk . Please take some time to browse the site, as it provides links back into archive of this blog and highlight blog posts in relation to individual illustrations.

The most recent of updates is the full collection of 'The Wind In The Willows' illustrations I have painted for Guomai, a Chinese publisher. There is quite a number and I will be adding more in the next year, as I illustrate more scenes from the book. To see the collection, click here.

Tuesday, 20 September 2016

Flying Monk Arts & Crafts Trail 2016

It's time to make plans.
I'm excited to be taking part in the Flying Monk Art Trail, this year in Malmesbury, Sat 24th and Sun 25th September.

I will be exhibiting with Claire Baker Ceramic Art and the painter Mary Ray Smith, in the Burgess's Room, next to the Tourist Information Centre in Malmesbury town centre. Like all the other exhibitors during the trail, we are open 10am - 5.30pm. However unlike all the other venues, myself, Claire and Mary will continue to exhibit until Friday 30th, so if you miss the weekend, you have the rest of the week to drop in and say hello.

There is so much to see this weekend, just take a look at the programme / map below and start making plans:

Saturday, 10 September 2016

More Paisley Rabbit And The Tree House Contest

Here's a short follow up to my even shorter post last month. Below you can see the completed single page illustration of Mr Otter sat in a muddy puddle after failing in his first tree house building attempt.
"All under control - nothing to see here."
The next illustration I have been working on (and expect to be still working on it for weeks ahead) is the cross section of Paisley's magnificent tree house. The rough design for the tree house was a challenge, so goodness knows what state my brain will be in when I complete the final illustration. I can see myself sitting in the corner of the studio floor, staring, slack-jawed and unresponsive. Some people would probably not notice any difference in me!
One tree house to rule them all...

Propped up against my studio wall, and measuring over a metre in height. This watercolour is a challenge on all levels.

Tuesday, 9 August 2016

Bear Mountain Books

Maria Schneider at Bear Mountain Books, has very kindly posted about my artwork. I also gave her a little bit of extra information regards inspiration for my characters. Please take a look - link 

In other news, here's the line work for the next 'Paisley Rabbit And The Treehouse Contest' illustration I am working on.

Tuesday, 26 July 2016

The Wind In The Willows

Over the past 3 months, and in-between other jobs, I have been working on a collection of 30 watercolour illustrations for 'The Wind In The Willows', to be published by Guomai in China.
Mole's house is getting a bit of TLC
It's a dream job for me, Kenneth Grahame's book has been a rich source of inspiration over the years. I just wish I had more time available to me to produce large illustrations instead of mainly spots. I think I will keep adding to this image bank in the hope I can get another book published in the future containing even more artwork.
Ratty sets out in the winter air to find his friend
You can see many more of these illustrations on my new website - click here

Monday, 25 July 2016

20% Discount In New Online Shop

It's very exciting to finally make all my signed limited edition prints available online. Please take a look. The offer ends 30th September. Just enter welcome123 when you 'view cart'.

Wednesday, 29 June 2016

Galerie Daniel Maghen Show, 29 June - 23 July

I'm very pleased to announce I am exhibiting for the next 3 1/2 weeks with the extraordinary Joe Weatherly at Galerie Daniel Maghen. I spent two years working towards this show, and finally it has arrived!

If you happen to be in Paris, please drop into the gallery and take a look - Galerie Daniel Maghen, 47 quai des Grands Augustins, 75006 Paris.

Saturday, 11 June 2016

New Website www.chris-dunn.co.uk

Things are on the move. Please check out my new website. I will be adding more and more artwork and information over the next few weeks, and I'll eventually have a nice little shop for you to take advantage of (if you so wish).  

Friday, 6 May 2016

Circus Parade

A fortnight ago I finally finished 'Circus Parade'. Apologies for not posting the finished painting until now. Anyway, better late than never...
Circus Parade
90 x 50cm
Watercolour & Gouache
I hope it meets your approval. The painting was certainly an intense experience, especially when it came to painting the audience. Sometimes I wonder why I put myself through it!!

At the moment I am undecided as to whether I think this final painting was a success, which is my typical response upon completing a large painting that took longer than a week to paint. However once I have a good break from seeing it (about 2 months), I will be able to assess it properly.

Friday, 29 April 2016

Cushy Cushions!

You can now buy cushions featuring my illustrations through 'Signature At Home'. The cushion backs are a nice purple, but eventually the red backs (as seen in the photos) will be available as well.
Just search for 'Chris Dunn'.

Here's the link - http://www.signatureathome.com/search?q=chris+dunn&submit 
Photos by http://www.photo-sensitive.co.uk/

Thursday, 28 April 2016

Greetings Cards From 'Love From The Artist'

I'm very pleased to announce I now have a selection of greetings cards available to purchase through www.lovefromtheartist.com 

'Love From The Artist' say: "We are a small community interest organisation (just a handful of art lovers really) and with your help we're hoping to make a big difference to British artists, photographers, designers and illustrators - amateurs and professionals alike - so they can earn fairly from their creativity."

Here's a link to my current stock library of cards - https://www.lovefromtheartist.com/Artists/calne/chris-dunn-illustration. I will be adding another 30+ images in August, so if you don't see the particular illustration you want, don't worry, everything will be available in a few months time.

Sunday, 17 April 2016

'Circus Parade' Work In Progress

For the last six days I have been working intensely on this large 90 x 50cm watercolour painting. It might not be a mural but it's large enough for me!

Fuzzy photo time! Still using the drafting I was given when I was a school boy.
You can see I returned to the usual sepia tonal under-painting to maintain a warm hue throughout the image. I decided if all the action is inside a tent lit by gas lamps, without natural light, then all the shadows are going to be warm.

Fuzzy / wonky photo! Note the reflected warm light on the underside of the elephants.
Once the under-painting was completed, I blocked in all the local colour for every single character and object. In the process of 'blocking-in', I suddenly realised I needed to roughly outline most of the audience, using sepia, in order to create a mass of shapes that would convince the viewer they were looking at a group of seated animals. This took a  l  o  n  g  time, not surprisingly, but as I introduced local colour, when I returned to 'blocking-in', the effect was as intended and so worth the effort.

Final fuzzy photo! The current state of the painting, waiting in my studio for Monday morning.
Local colour down, I started to really render each individual character in the parade as best I could, starting from the left and moving across. I'm still in that tight rendering process now, but I'm happy with my progress. At this rate, I should be finished late next week - unless I run away to the circus.

Thursday, 10 March 2016

Solo Exhibition Pound Arts 4 March - 23 April

If you are in the area please visit, entry is free. Below is a video by the wonderful Corsham TV all about the exhibition.

Wednesday, 24 February 2016

Forthcoming Daniel Maghen Exhibition T & A Article

Emma Clayton of Bradford's Telegraph And Argus newspaper, has written a really nice piece about my artwork, highlighting my forthcoming exhibition with Galerie Daniel Maghen in Paris this Summer.

Please give it a read - 'Artist Chris to showcase his colourful population of animal characters at top Parisian gallery'.

Monday, 8 February 2016

Paisley Rabbit And The Treehouse Contest

If you follow me on Facebook, you may have seen my latest book illustration project, 'Paisley Rabbit And The Treehouse Contest' written by the wonderful Steve Richardson.


However for those without Facebook accounts, I thought you might appreciate a post or two featuring some artwork.

Paisley excitedly tells her brother all about the treehouse building contest between her and her school friends.

During Halloween, Jimmy Squirrel goads paisley as the contest heats up.
So far I have completed just two colour illustrations (above) but I have roughed out the rest of the book. Below you can see just some of the drawings ready to be transformed into watercolour paintings.
Paisley and friends meet up to discuss plans for the contest.
Paisley finds help in the big city
Treehouse building gets underway.
There is a lot of work ahead, but I'm really excited about this book so I'm sure time will fly as i work on it. Every so often I will blog my progress with the finished illustrations, and don't forget you can follow me on Facebook to see more regular posts.

For more great children's books by Steve Richardson, visit his author page on Amazon.

Wednesday, 3 February 2016

Arts In Wiltshire Guest Blog

Towards the end of last year I moved out of my studio at The Pound Arts Centre, and set up my home studio over the Christmas period.

I was then asked by Meril Morgan, one of Wiltshire Council's Arts Development Officers, to write a guest post on the 'Arts In Wiltshire' blog, reflecting on my time at the Pound. To read the post please click here.

I'd like to thank everybody at the Pound for their help and support over the last three years, I've been very fortunate to spend a good chunk of time with such lovely people. I would also like to thank Meril for inviting me to write about my experience.

Now I'm working hard at home, I can't wait to see what the future has in store for me!

Monday, 1 February 2016

Illustration Masterclass 2016 'Peter Pan And Wendy' CANCELLED


'Jolly Roger'
24 x 20.5cm
This year I will be teaching a full time book illustration workshop for 5 days at Marlborough College Summer School, 10th - 15th July.

The course will be focusing on illustrating the classic children's story 'Peter Pan & Wendy' by J.M. Barrie. The painting above is a sample illustration I have produced to guide my students during the course. To give you a bit of context, this illustration will feature the chapter 5 title 'The Island Come True', in the top half of the image. At this point all the inhabitants of the island (except Peter) are out in the night hunting each other. The pirates hunt the lost boys, the indians hunt the pirates, and the wild animals hunt the indians.

If last year is anything to go by, the course will be lots of fun and hopefully participating students will learn a huge amount - if not, there is always the free food!

Course fee: £400

Click the tickets link for more details.