This week we were lucky enough to have Kit Leese come along to our club and do a demonstration in gouache. Kit started by explaining a little bit about gouache and just what you can do with the medium, either by using it on it’s own or by adding pastel over it. How it will cover over a colour already down and therefore making it a forgiving medium to work with.
Having pre-drawn a couple of boats on a piece of watercolour paper, (a few of us guessed right, yes it was Aldborough) Kit started to paint the sky just in washes adding more water towards the horizon line. Having previously explained that the paint could be re-painted, Kit decided that the sky needed to be darker to show off the boats and just repainted over the top. This could be a small miracle to some of us I feel.
He continued on with the picture painting in the blue boat and then using the dry brush method showed us how the paint could indicate stones on the beach without using masses of paint but the texture of the paper. The whole time Kit was demonstrating he was giving us tips on painting with the gouache but also general painting tips too, all very informative.
After a short tea break he continued to paint in the gravel board boat altering the shape with the paint as he went on. With another wash or two on the stones and then an exciting flick of the brush once or twice to give a pebble effect, the picture was finished as far as he could go on a demonstration. Fabulous picture in two hours, although he did say that he would do some more work on it in the studio and then we would be able to see the finished picture on his web site.
A very enjoyable evening had by all.
Report courtesy of Cathy Newton and Photos by Colin Mossman
Rayleigh Art Group will be hosting a demonstration by Kit Lees, entitled ‘Boats on the Beach’, (in Gouache) on Wednesday 23rd September 2015, commencing at 7.30 pm sharp. The venue is the Cedars Centre, Castle Road, Rayleigh, and all members and their guests are invited, so please make a note in your diary.
Kit was born in Nottingham in 1957. His parents moved to Suffolk in that year and he grew up surrounded by the East Anglian landscape, which is now a major subject of his work.
Kit began painting at Ipswich School as an extra subject to go with his exclusively
science based A levels. He went on to complete an honours degree in marine zoology at Bangor University. By then painting had become as important to him as the degree. He made full use of the mountains of North Wales to develop a feel for landscape painting, particularly in gouache.
He began a technical and management based career in the water industry in 1979. At the same time he continued to develop his painting, and added etching and aquatint to his repertoire, becoming a founder member of the printmakers group, 12PM. This led to a highly successful first one-man show at the Hadleigh Gallery in 1982. He consolidated his reputation with frequent group and one man exhibitions until the mid 1990s. This period included three successful shows at The Haylett Gallery between 1989 and 1993.
As Kit’s career developed into operational management, Kit continued to mature as a painter. He used the time to develop techniques in oil and watercolour, as well as gouache. He has branched out into mixed media and abstract work. The main body of his painting still remains rooted in landscapes, largely painted on the spot to preserve immediacy and a sense of place. In 2012 he finally realised his ambition to become a full-time painter, and is now painting with the same enthusiasm and energy which began his journey in 1979. Kit is available for demonstrations and workshops within a 70 mile radius of his home in Bradfield, Essex.
Please be advised that 2015 – 2016 Subscriptions are due at the first demonstration on 23rd September 2015.
There is a new Calendar on the ‘Calendar Page’ so please take a look and update your diaries to ensure you don’t miss an event.
The first Workshop of the year will be on Wednesday 9th September 2015, so please support your committee by coming along.