Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Curiosities Book

A small piece in the press an Journal, Scotland

I have put the "Curiosities" Catalogue (A4 book) on eBay in the "buy now" category if anyone would like to purchase one they could use pay pal. It means if I have some in the studio it could be winging its way to you ASAP, if not it takes about 3 or 4 days for photobox to produce it and send to me. Either way its probably a more convenient way to purchase the catalogue.

Here is the URL for the eBay page:


Sunday, October 05, 2008

Drawing near

...............the show in the Open Eye Gallery that is. I am still trying to finish the last and probably largest piece for the exhibition. I have less than a week, but I think it will be enough. Although I always seem to need a day or so more than I think, to complete a painting, so It could still be touch and go. Oh the excitement, or is that fear? I am not sure, perhaps both.

Fear that this credit crunch thingy will have drained the enthusiasm as well as the pockets of those who may have been interested in purchasing some of my latest work. On the plus side I have a lot of small paintings for sale. But, that has been niggling away at me as well. Will I have enough to fill the gallery without it looking avant garde. Will my nerve hold? mmmmm!

I have also produced a "catalogue" for the show. It is, perhaps, more of a little book (A4) than a traditional catalogue. I decided to go for the really nice looking but expensive option this time. The books are produced on line through photobox and cost roughly £20 each. I am going to sell them at cost to anyone who wants one. I just need the name and address of each person that is interested and I can produce them as and when I need to. It therefore gets rid of the, where do I stash my 500 catalogue, syndrome? It also looks pretty nice.

Friday, September 05, 2008


"All roads lead to Rome", watercolour on paper, 2008

A few of you may have noticed the RSW after my name. It refers to the Royal Scottish Society of Painters in Watercolours. I was elected in 1995 and have been an active participant in the life of the society, elected twice to council (now on my second stint) and have helped to hang numerous annual exhibitions. I have also had the honour of being Exhibition convener twice (basically in charge of the hang in the gallery) and thoroughly recommend viewing our annual exhibition, (if you can), it is a lot less traditional than most watercolour societies.

The reason for the inclusion on the blog is that the RSW website has been updated and I thought you may be interested in having a look at it:

"Box of Curiosities", watercolour on paper, 2008

The theme behind my next one man show in the Open Eye centres around my collection of objects, which collectively, are what I would like to call "curiosities" . Here is the small blurb which is going to be used in conjunction with the work:

Angus McEwan RSW

Open Eye Gallery

Over 300 years ago the foundation of Natural History as a science relied heavily on its partnership with art. Voyages of discovery were undertaken by scientists and artists in a symbiotic relationship to discover and collect “curiosities” of the natural world. This urge to travel and to discover has been a particular theme explored by many artists from many generations. The birth of photography and the development of scientific progress have changed the artist’s role from observer and recorder of the Natural world to that of opinionated commentator. Watching on the sidelines passively to proactively participating in and shaping society.

The role of the artist has been liberated from the bonds of representation and yet many like me find the greatest satisfaction in recording accurately and having an opinion. Perhaps, the best of both worlds.

I travel because I enjoy the “buzz” of discovering something new for myself. I don’t go to any place with a preconceived idea of what I will see or more importantly use. I try to let my natural curiosity guide me to whatever I find interesting at that particular point in time. I collect anything that appeals to me on my journeys and through time have amassed quite a number of curiosities of my own. These in conjunction with drawings, paintings and photography, have very often ended up as images which contain numerous elements of my journeys. Many of my paintings reflect my natural desire to record and observe, others reflect my opinions and points of view sometimes they contain both.

The paintings themselves through the creative process become curiosities in their own right.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

New Door pics for Edinburgh

Ancient Venetian door, watercolour on paper, 2008

As promissed the drip process of allowing you to see a few images from the October Edinburgh show continues.

Some of these pieces are so new they havent been framed yet, therefore the reason why there are no sizes next to the picture. The subject matter in a few of the pieces are still along the same theme of doors, windows, tromp l'oiel, but there may also be a few surprises thrown in (if I can finish them in time).

Long forgotten, watercolour on paper, 2008

Venice, Los Angeles and Rome are the inspiration for the new series. The image below (under siege) is so new I finished it last week. My work is so labour intensive that it can take quite a long time to do each piece, and I work on 5 or 6 at once to give me a variety. Even the smallest can take up to three full days (thats why I dont pay attention to how long the bigger pieces take otherwise I would check myself into a clinic to see why I do this to myself)! Anyway I hope you enjoy the work.

Under siege, watercolour on paper, 2008

Friday, August 08, 2008

self portrait photo

Just came across "Brushspace". Another website for artists to showcase their work. I think the layout is quite nice and its very easy to use. I had a couple of glitches with downloading but apart from that it was a doddle. Thought I would share the website with you:

Tuesday, August 05, 2008

Another piece!

"Illuminated window", watercolour on paper 2008

As i said a few days ago I would occasionally deliver a "sneak" view of some of the work going into the Open eye Gallery, Edinburgh in October. Well here is the next installment.

This painting is also a watercolour produced on the smooth Kahdi paper. I bought two pieces to try out. I loved the size and the irregular/deckled edge makes it look more like a scraping from a wall than a well executed modern offering. The paper, as I said on the last post was rather heavily sized for my liking, ( each layer would quite easily disturb the layer underneath making it difficult to produce smooth transitional layers) but i found a way around it.

The image itself will be of no great surprise to those who have been following my work. This piece is taken from my recent trip to Venice, Italy. I t shows a window slowly being revealed as the sun moves across the sky towards its zenith. Its the colour, texture, shapes and shadows that appeal to me in particular with this painting.

Friday, August 01, 2008

A wee sneak preview

The Fading American dream, watercolour on paper, 64 x 77cm

Well I keep trying to keep up with this blogging effort but sadly real life keeps pulling me back.

I have been working fairly hard for my show on October 18Th 2008, at the Open Eye gallery, Edinburgh. I thought I would drip feed you with some pieces from the show.

This painting is rather personal to me. The title refers to my parents experience of living in the States for the past 24 years. In May this year my father died in California, leaving my mother and brother to continue living and working in Los Angeles. He will be sadly missed as any parent would be, his "new life" living in Californian has now faded and subsequently changed for my mother.

The painting itself shows a child's windmill, with its bright garish colours. On the right hand side is a billboard with faded posters, some relating to the era of by gone days when going to the Americas was preferential for many families from Scotland during the Highland clearances.

There isn't any collage on this piece, its all painted on smooth Kadhi watercolour paper (over sized a little, which made it difficult to work with) with sennelier and old Holland watercolours.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Le Quattro Stagioni Di Vivaldi

Vivaldi's Four Seasons

While in Venice last month I attended a concert of Vivaldi's four seasons. The musicians were in period costume and although I went as a reluctant observer, I thoroughly enjoyed the experience. The setting was also very interesting, the main hall of the Scuola Grande Di San Teodoro designed by Baldassarre Longhena. I primarily went along to draw and found myself swept along by the energy and excitement generated by the Venetian vituoso's. The faster they played the faster I drew, when the music was quieter and slower I drew accordingly.I did about 9 sketches whilst they played, catching the movement of each musician as they played wasn't easy and therefore each sketch is a summation of a period in time rather than a frozen moment like a photograph. Here is a small selection from the concert.

Sunday, May 25, 2008


OK! Firstly I am still alive.

Just a little side tracked by the complexities of life. Since the last post I've been to LA again to see my folks and took 20 students to Venice on a painting trip which was excellent.

I have been trying to amass a pile of work for my solo show in September at the Open Eye Gallery in Edinburgh. In the meantime there have been more than a few group shows which have swallowed up a lot of time and work.

The annual RSW (Royal Scottish Society for Painters in Watercolours) show in the Mound, Edinburgh is something I try not to miss, and as a result put a couple of new pieces in, one of which sold (oh on!).

The Carpenter, watercolour on Paper, 95.5 x 75.5cm

Funnily enough both pieces have a religious theme, not that I am particularly religious in any shape or form, but somehow its creeping into my work.

"...and the word was lost", watercolour on paper, 39 x 38cm

The painting above, the ripped poster, is a subject I am exploring fully at the moment. The use of lettering and graphic imagery is also starting to show face. There is much more to come. I promise not to let you wait so long the next time.