Artists have fun with a palette knife at Seaton

Michael Parker at Seation with his protrait ot Humprhey Lyttelton. Picture SUBMITTED

Michael Parker at Seation with his protrait ot Humprhey Lyttelton. Picture SUBMITTED - Credit: Archant

Nervous strokes can make unsuccessful paintings, warns demonstrator Michael Parker

A flyfishing picture by Mike Michael Parker. Picture SUBMITTED

A flyfishing picture by Mike Michael Parker. Picture SUBMITTED - Credit: Archant

There were gasps of astonishment during Michael Parker’s recent lively demonstration of oil painting for Seaton Art Society. Taking a 12” palette knife, he unexpectedly swept the figure of a flamenco dancer from the canvas he had just been completing. It was to make a serious point.

Explaining, he said: “With oils, if you lose successful elements of a painting they are easy to restore, and mistakes are easy to put right.

“Nervous strokes,” he warned, “generally make unsuccessful paintings.”

Later, the audience was encouraged to have fun trying their hands at palette knife painting using equipment and paints generously made available by the artist.


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Michael Parker is an artist skilled with the palette knife and well known across the South of England. Rarely using brushes, he specialises in figurative art and sporting paintings.

Movement and force are expressed with deft and confident strokes, creating energy in the subject matter.

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He also paints tranquil scenes of fly fishing, where the excitement of catching a fish or the pull on the line can be felt as the splash of the fish breaks the calm surface of the water. He does sometimes use photographs for accurate reference purposes, but never to create photo-realistic copies.

The lively and inspirational demonstration took place at the Gateway, Seaton on November 6, and was attended by around fifty members of The Seaton and District Art Society. These two-hour events are held regularly on the first Monday of each month and are also open to members of the public.

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