Series of programmes to support Primary Art and Design. Clips from the BBC archive show different styles of paintings.
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Hello, down there!
-What are you doing up there?
-I'm looking at the studio
from a different angle - getting a different perspective.
Come on, then, explain yourself.
Ah, well, the reason I was up there is cos I found this.
It's an aerial shot of my home town.
That looks great. But don't tell me we're doing aerial art...
Yes, but abstract ones. We'd be there all night if we did that!
All you need are stampers, first of all.
So it's a bit of kitchen cloth,
and then you need to choose what each thing on your picture
is going to represent. So this is, believe it or not, a car.
That will be a car. Cut that out, make sure you cut inside the lines,
so that you don't end up printing with the black lines.
And then, once you've cut it out, stick it onto thick card
like I've done there. That's a properly cut out one.
Now, I think I'm going to have that section of my picture
to do. What do you fancy?
-I reckon I'll do this corner here.
-OK. What you need to do
is now sketch it out, all the main details.
I've already done that, I'm ahead of the game.
And there's your stampers I've made for you.
-So we're simplifying this.
-Yes, just do a sketch.
And then decide what they all mean. So I've got railway track,
I've got house, I've got different types of trees,
roundabout, feet for footpaths or pedestrians, little traffic lights
and that's going to be a little lake area.
I'm going to start with...
a roundabout, cos that's the main focal point.
I've got tiny little white feet.
OK. So basically, you're just stylising it, aren't you?
You're not bothered about the colours matching too much.
Houses! That's what I'm missing!
-Houses, houses, houses.
Tell you what, I've got one I finished earlier.
-And it's dried, look at that.
-Hang on, I'm not finished!
Well, the beautiful thing is, I've got a lovely burnt orange frame
-to put on it.
Lowry lived in the city of Salford in Greater Manchester
until he was into his fifties.
And it's streets like this one that inspired him to paint.
I'm going to do a version of Coming From The Mill,
the first of his paintings to get critical acclaim.
Well, I'm ready to go. I've got my canvas all prepared.
Lowry used to cover his canvas with flake white
cos he wanted to destroy the feeling of the weave of the material.
He loved the feeling of solid brush strokes.
'Lowry would build up his thick base coats in layers,
'giving his paintings the distinctive crusty look he wanted.'
And he used to love doing sort of criss-cross strokes,
like that. And you can see as I lift the brush off
you get that texture - look at that.
OK, now, what Lowry would have done
now...he would have got hold of a bit of card
and he would line up the horizontal and vertical bits,
and over this side. And across the top.
Maybe I could start putting those in with a bit of colour.
He chose to use just five. Five colours
he used vermilion - lovely.
And he used ivory black... Yellow ochre...
and he used flake white.
Now, I've got some in a tin here.
You've got to be very careful with this, because it's a toxic paint -
if you get any on your fingers and put your fingers in your mouth,
you could be in trouble. So you have to be careful with that paint.
And last but certainly not least, Prussian blue.
I'm just blocking in rough areas of colour at the moment.
A bit of that right over there.
That's the wrong colour!
Lowry always used to say that a street without people
was as dead as mutton.
He used to put people in at any stage during the painting,
probably to give him the scale of the thing.
So I think I should start putting some people in.
His figures always seem to be very thin,
and bowed down with the weight and the worries of the world
on their shoulders.
A couple of little legs there.
And he would put a little flesh colour in there, maybe on his face.
I've actually got him looking a bit too well fed, I think!
I'll thin him down with this knife - Lowry used to do that all the time.
Oh, yes! Ha-ha!
Actually, Lowry, in his paintings, used so many different techniques.
Used his hands all the time, nails, a penknife...
Let me show you one of the things he did with the chimney up here.
To get that smoke-like effect, he would do a big splodge there.
Let's imagine smoke coming out of this one again.
Then he would just get his thumb and go, "whoosh" and take it across.
Wow! Isn't that lovely?
And off behind there like that.
So simple, and yet working amazingly well.
I must say, I've enjoyed experimenting with trying to learn
his style. I've been absolutely bowled over by it.
I really love it.
And it's inspired me to maybe go down to my local high street
and do some sketching of people on a Saturday morning
milling around, maybe trying to do a picture of today's crowds.
If I wanted to paint this bowl of fruit, you'd probably expect me
to start by selecting all the colours that you can see in there.
But let's just look at it again in black and white.
You can still tell that it's a bowl of fruit,
so it's not just the colour that's telling us what's in the bowl.
One of the other factors at play, which I'll demonstrate now,
by painting a single apple... If I put it there,
the first thing to look at is where the light is shining.
You can see on this apple that round the front,
all around here, is very light, and at the back, down in this area,
is in the shade. So I have drawn that onto a piece of paper -
a very basic, graphic shape,
and you can see the apple I have divided into sections -
the light area starting with this circle here,
and then the segments, getting further and further away,
and it's going to end in darkness.
And to show you how simple it is, I'm not going to do my apple in green.
I'm going to do it blue. So I'm going to start with the lightest colour.
So let's just do the light area, which was this disc here.
And then I'm going to do the next section just a slightly darker blue.
When you're doing this, it's easier to add dark colour to light
than the other way on. You can see that's just a tiny change in colour.
Let's get that going around there like that.
And the beauty of this is that you don't have to keep
washing your brush - just use the same brush and add to it.
Let's get the next section - a kind of mid blue now.
There we go.
And the other thing to remember is I've got the stalk,
so I'd better add some colour to the stalk in sections as well.
Let's get that blue around there as well, around the side.
Let's just add a bit of blue... I think I'll do that that.
Just working it out.
I'm just going to do that one a little bit lighter.
There we go. Now,
next blue is starting to get quite dark now.
And you'll notice,
the other thing I'm doing is not particularly staying in the lines.
It's not massively important - I'll show you why in a bit.
But let's go round this section now.
Lots of lovely shades of blue.
Around the edge.
Bit of the stalk. So the final segment has to be the darkest,
a very dark blue here at the end that is in the shade.
So royal blue...
..for that section.
There we go. The final bit of the stalk.
Now, as I mentioned, you don't have to stay in the lines because
if you get another paintbrush that's just slightly wet, what you can do
is just go around those sections
and blend in the colour like that - just gently blend it all together.
So you can see that even though I haven't painted the apple in green,
because I've established where the light is,
and put it onto my painting,
it still looks like a 3D apple.
That's worked really well.
And once you've mastered an individual piece of fruit,
why not go the whole hog, and try the entire bowl?!
Come on, move it!
And that's exactly what I'm going to do - show you guys
how to capture movement in your art work.
First of all, I've got to just do some very rough sketches
of...the bodies that are twisting and turning
on these...monkey bars.
OK, so...just some very rough sketches.
Just so that I know where I'm going before I start adding any paint.
Right. Now, for a hands-on approach, I'm not using any brushes,
I'm just going to use my digits.
Starting with a flesh colour,
directly from the tube, straight onto the board.
And then just blend it in with your fingers like that.
A bit for the head, a little bit for the hands.
Now, for the camouflage colours, all those lovely greens...
So I start with a bit of green there.
A little bit of brown.
And now I just mix them all in.
What I'm trying to do here as well is create a raised
texture to the paint, so I'm not actually rubbing it in flat.
So you get this nice sort of raised effect.
And now to create the feeling of movement, I'm going to smudge
the paint away with my fingers, like that.
Right the way down to the legs. And a bit on the boots as well.
now for soldier number two, we do the same again.
And again, drag the paint away from the direction
that your chap is travelling in, like that.
So you get that really nice blurred effect.
And finally, our third little chappie here.
Just to finish it off,
I'll just put on those monkey bars.
And that is squeezed directly out of the tube like that. Excellent.
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Series of programmes to support Primary Art and Design. Clips from the BBC archive show different styles of paintings - abstract aerial art, still life, and movement in paintings. Plus Rolf Harris demonstrates how to paint in the style of Lowry.