Monday, October 28, 2013

Liau Sin Fah - from teacher to painter

Former teacher Liau Sin Fah, 59, his first solo exhibition entitled Rhythm of Colour that is being held at WAF Gallery, Straits Quay,in April 2012. The Kuala Kangsar-born, but now living in Taiping, paints in both watercolour and acrylic. He also dabbles in other mediums. Liau has his own art studio in Taiping where he teaches art. His works have been exhibited locally and abroad, including China and South Korea

KuanYin Temple Singapore 3
Petaling Street 2

Peace Coffee shop

Monday, October 21, 2013

Ismail Kadir paints on site

Ismail is seen doing a workshop demonstration for Universiti Malaysia Kelantan's undergrads
 at the  Lata Tembakah, Terengganu.
Born in 1952 in Kelantan, Ismail Kadir, is well known among the art circle, especially those who love plein aire watercolours. This gentleman paints almost exclusively in watercolours, preferring to do his pieces on site. His subjects are extensive but his love for rustic villages and rural scenery can be seen in the number of paintings he has produced on them.

With a wealth of experience tucked under his belt, Ismail has been taking part in art shows, almost annually, over the past decade, from Malaysia to the United Kingdom and China. His works are also collected in various galleries local and abroad, such as the National Visual Arts Gallery, Tokyo Art Gallery, Daiichi Modern Art Gallery  etc., as well as by dignitaries.

He is the only Malaysian artist who has been featured in the 2009 issue of the Watercolor Artist magazine.
Lata Tembakah, (56x76cm, 2009)
(Collection of National Visual Arts Gallery)
Padang Bual Village, Bachok, Kelantan,  (56x76cm 2013)
Paloh Village (56x76cm 2012)

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Sketching to improve

I was told that if you want to improve your art, you have to learn to sketch and draw and do these outdoor. This advice came many years ago when I was learning under Master Tang Tuck Kan. I have still not forgotten it and have, as much as I can, try to sketch.

I am not saying that this is the right way, but if you want to improve your understanding of your subject, the atmosphere it is in, and especially mastering the values that will make your art more alive, you need to do outdoor sketches. Lots of it.

Of course, some beginning artists may disagree and I am not saying that this is the only way. For me, it is the best. This is because sometimes you may not have the time to do a full painting and sketching do help a lot in keeping you in touch with your drawing and painting skills. Sketching allow you to exercise and hone your drawing skills. With good drawing skills, you paint better too.

What do you use to sketch?

Well, you can use pens or graphite pencils, or even watercolours. I prefer graphite pencils because they are easier to handle. I use watersoluble ones such as Derwent's which work well even without using water. If I need a wash, I just brush on with clear water. It's that simple. This brand also does not smudge easily.

Pens are also good and I prefer a good fountain pen than gel ones. But if you are into gel pens, there are a few brands that are good. I have seen the Pentel gel pens that have fade-proof inks. These are most ideal and should be colour fast. (See below)
This pen costs only RM1.90.

Monday, October 14, 2013

Tan Suz Chiang

Born in 1974, this Johor Baru-based artist is a graduate of the Central Academy of Art. The artist held his solo in 2006, entitled Colours of Life. Painting semi-abstractscenes, Tan has participated in many group shows since his graduation, in and out of the country. This year, his work ‘Blue Melody’ has been accepted in 2013 ISEA/NWS Wales International Exchange Exhibition. He has also won various awards from competitions from US to Europe and China.

‘Blue Melody’ which has been accepted in 2013 ISEA/NWS Wales International Exchange Exhibition

 Colour of Life # 3 - 38cm x 56cm

Another Sky - 25cm x 25cm

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Brass Paint Boxes

If you have seen Alvaro Castagnet or Charles Reid's palette, you would have been captivated by the metallic paint boxes both used. They both use Craig Young's palette - a hardy brass-enamelled paint box with 20 compartments. The paintbox is small and fits very well in your palm. The only prohibition is the cost. At the moment of writing, Craig Young's Small Paintbox, which measures 5.5 in by 3.75in by 1in ” by 1” and weighs  12oz, is priced from US$460 (Over RM1,200). If you are interested, Craig's site is here 
Craig Young's Paintbox

There is also another maker, called the Little Brass Box Company. Similar to Craig Young's boxes, this company mails from the UK. Prices start from US$330 at writing time. If you want to check it out, visit its website here.
Little Brass Box Company's palette.

Wednesday, October 09, 2013

Khoo Cheang Jin paints the streetscenes

Khoo Cheang Jin hard at work and enjoying it. The 'cowboy' hat keeps the sun out.
Born on April 28, 1963, Khoo Cheang Jin is the current president of the Penang Water Colour Society. A familiar face in the streets on the island, Khoo, usually seen with his trademark 'cowboy' hat, can be spotted during the weekends painting the buildings or street scenes with his fellow painters and sketchers. This former Chung Ling High School boy and an architect by profession has exhibited extensively locally and abroad, particularly in Singapore, and has a wide following. He is also a member of various arts organisations locally and overseas, and his works has won many awards.
Chung Ling High, Cheang Jin's alma mater.

Cheang Jin with a completed painting of the building in the background.

Old Houses Lorong Argus (38x56cm)

Sekeping Victoria

Wednesday, October 02, 2013

Phang Chew - Painter of Nature

Phang paints life around him, mostly of scenes in Ipoh. Preferring to paint on location, the artist says he takes about three hours to finish a piece.
MALAYSIAN veteran painter Phang Chew is no stranger to watercolour lovers. Phang is noted for his almost Chinese-brush technique when it comes to watercolour.
Born in April 6, 1945, Phang stays in Ipoh. Having retired from his superbike business 12 years ago, he has been actively painting. Enjoying his retirement, Pang is today a full-time painter and often accompanied by his wife during his plein aire sessions in and round Ipoh. Phang's works have been widely collected locally and abroad and has taken part in numerous exhibitions, both as a group and solo.

House of 1903 (45x61cm)
Scene of hillside (59x84cm)