Archive for the Art Category


Posted in Art, News on October 7, 2011 by Richard Savage

I’m currently busy with preparations for my forthcoming open studio exhibition later this month.  I love throwing open the studio, meeting people and chatting about art and writing is always a pleasure but these events are preceded by a fair degree of running about getting ready!  🙂  I will be exhibiting a wide variety of my artwork; paintings, pencil work, pastel life drawings and life castings along with my books, prints and art cards.

Patiently Waiting by Richard Savage

This time I am joined by photographer, Rob Morris, who will be exhibiting some of his photgraphic work.

Image by Rob Morris

And mixed media artist, Marian Savill, will be exhibiting some of her unique assemblage jewellery.

Video tape choker by Marian Savill

We kick off on Friday, 21st October with a cheese and wine preview evening from 5pm til 9pm, please come along if you can.  Rob, Marian and I will all be here to chat about our work and generally have a good time time meeting folk! 🙂  Over the weekend, we’re open from 11am til 3pm both days, I will be working on some life casts, an interesting process to see in action.  Marian will also be working on jewellery pieces in the studio over the weekend, she creates her pieces from recycled materials and found objects and it’s always interesting to see her at work.  It should be a fun weekend all round, I look forward to seeing some of you there.  🙂

To spank or not to spank…

Posted in Art, book covers, illustration, News, Writing on August 25, 2011 by Richard Savage

….that is the question! 

It is funny the conversations you can have when you are not expecting them.  A day or so ago the Black Velvet Seductions CEO, Laurie Sanders, were talking on the subject of book covers.  One of her new writers, Nadia Nautalia, is in the process of writing a series of romantic erotic short stories, on the subject of domestic discipline with a western theme.  We talked generally about the subject, apparently cowboys are hot but so are a lot of other types…policemen…business men…  the cover we discussed will be a generic cover for the whole series and I will share it with you as soon as it is drawn 

The conversation progressed and Laurie told me she is looking for high quality domestic discipline, short stories with a STRONG ROMANTIC FOCUS.  I emphasise romance as she publishes erotic romance.  The word count should be 3,500 words and above.  Think in terms of your hero being a powerful man, cowboys, policemen, business men, who spank their wives or girlfriends. Spankings should in the end benefit the relationship in some way.

I mention this as I know there are romance writers that follow me here and it would be a great opportunity for you if you are wanting to get your work out there. If you have a domestic discipline story in you, contact Laurie.

After the Feast

Posted in Art, Erotica on June 23, 2011 by Richard Savage


After the Feast, pencil on Bristol Board

My latest pencil study is “After the Feast”. I have always loved pencil drawings, regardless of subject matter.  As soon as I finish a picture I invariably ask myself the question, “Why don’t I do more pencil work?”   Though to be fair I say the same after a break from watercolour, oils, or for that matter sculpture.  A lot of my life revolves around the idea of not having enough hours in a day to do what I want to do.  At 49 I am sort of resigned to that being the case for the foreseeable future.   “After the Feast” was an idea I came across that just fired me up, I can’t really say exactly why, but it grabbed me as a subject.  When I work the title comes with the inspiration for the work.  The title “After the Feast” came to me from the rather haunting lyrics from an old Eagles track, Hotel California. “In the Master’s chamber, they gather for the feast, they stab it with their steely knives, but they just can’t kill the beast”  the image speaks to me, of people sated from a time of excess, I leave it to the viewer as to what the excess may have been.


How far does the apple fall from the tree?

Posted in Art, News on June 23, 2011 by Richard Savage

I have had this piece in mind for ages, just waiting for the right available time slot to make it happen.  This was a lightning piece for me, the sculpting process took about five days from start to finish.   I first saw an image like this on the HBO TV series The Sopranos.  There was a monkey holding a human skull.  The idea of the monkey looking at the scull, wondering if there was a connection really captivated my imagination.  In looking for source material I found a number of artists have felt the same.  I did wonder if I should proceed as the path was not a new one, but on reflection this is my take and it was modelled freehand without using reference material from other artist’s work.  The sculpture for me is not the last part of the process in this case, I want to work on a mould so I can reproduce the figure in either cold cast bronze or stone, maybe marble.


Looking at the question, how far does the apple fall from the tree?  Well as a person watcher, I look into the bars and cafés and see fans at football matches and come to the conclusion that we are closer to our primate roots than we might like to think.  To quote W.S. Gilbert, “Darwinian man, though well behaved, at best is only a monkey shaved.”


Art about town

Posted in Art, News on June 23, 2011 by Richard Savage
Over the last 6-7 years I have been working on projects for the town.  The initial idea came about when our town entered the “Anglia in Bloom” competition. Essentially it is a flower show, but there are a number of elements that make a difference to the town’s final result.  One of the things is the town being involved with community groups and societies.  My involvement started when I was asked to help brighten the facades of derelict buildings along the judge’s route. They are rather comical subjects designed to raise a smile. 


The essence is life sized rather cartoon like characters. This year we have revamped two of the oldest shop fronts, that were looking rather shabby.  I was also asked for a new display board.  The idea for this is to be put up at the town’s historical festival and people can have their photographs taken with it.  There must be a name for these things but I have no idea that they are.  When I have tried to talk about the problem I have made a rather elongated description; “it is one of those things people stand behind at the fairground”.  Seriously if you know what they are called do let me know.  

"One of those things you stand behind at the fairground!"

It is rather fun being involved with these larger projects as it is something rather different, last year’s project was massive, by far the largest surface area I have been involved with in a single project. It spanned approximately 80 feet in length.  They are fun things to do but there is always a feeling of relief when they are completed and out of the studio.

In situ

All the panels shown together


Bound to Cast

Posted in Art, Erotica, News on June 23, 2011 by Richard Savage

I have been working on are some new life casts. The idea was to do some bondage casts for the D/s and BDSM market. The impetus was more from the model than myself, if the truth be known, as I was aware of the technical difficulties involved, but her enthusiasm carried me along and it is always interesting to tackle difficult and unusual subjects. It was an interesting session which lasted a weekend. It was largely experimental but we did get some nice casts.

Preparing for to cast

In previous casting sessions I have worked with a substance called alginate which is a seaweed extract, if you have had any dental work done and have needed a cast of your teeth you would have bitten into alginate. We usually use this substance in life casting for its exquisitely fine detail. I have in the past cast with clothing but there is a huge problem when it comes to rope; it sticks like the proverbial to a blanket. I don’t know why it should stick so much but believe me it does. As a consequence to this I elected to use silicone as a moulding compound for these new casts. There are two big drawbacks to using silicone. First, I had never used it before and had no idea of it’s properties and, second, it is devilishly expensive compared to alginate.

Experimenting with silicone and rope

Our model was very patient considering my lack of experience and we blew most of the Saturday morning with only one cast to show for it and that was an alginate cast involving chain rather than rope. The afternoon didn’t get a lot better and I wondered if I was wasting everyone’s time. The Sunday session went a lot better and we got a total of five good casts thanks to my rigger, Rarius, my assistant, Marian, and, of course, our model who asked to remain anonymous. You can see more about casting on my website here.

What is it with creative people and publicity?

Posted in Art, Odd rants on June 10, 2011 by Richard Savage

This is a topic I have talked about quite a bit over the years, I think I have blogged about it before too but I want to talk about it again!  🙂  

There are two points I would like to talk about,  both applicable in the writing and art worlds, but it really makes a difference in any area if you have something to promote.   In writing, I cover this subject quite a bit with my friend, and CEO of Black Velvet Seductions, Laurie Sanders.  It struck both of us that a writer will spend a number of months, maybe even years, writing a book or story.  Once written some writers resent spending a minute promoting the book!  I just don’t understand; I have four stories in print and I am still as keen to promote them as I was when the first was published five years ago.  It’s a given! 

In art, which is the reason for this post really, the subject of artists and publicity.  Before I start, I have to say, I am equally guilty!   Publicity is not something that comes easily to creatives for some reason.  Maybe it’s English thing?  I don’t know.  I would love to hear your views on this.  It might be that artists feel it is in some way “showing off”,  there can be issues of confidence and self-doubt too, but surely if you have gone to the trouble of putting an exhibition together you would like a few people to come along to have a look…??   

Publicity!  If you have ever been on a marketing course you will know it takes at least three hits for anyone to take any notice of you or your work.  Two artists I know have exhibitions starting this week, one’s exhibition opened last Monday, he told me about it Monday evening.  The other opens tonight and I receive the poster today with a message asking me to promote it as much as I can.  He didn’t even send me the poster himself,  it was sent by a mutual friend.   Do we really think that people are clairvoyant?  

Artists!  Writers!  Be proud!  Believe in your work.  Stand up straight  and promote, share your gifts with the world!

The Paranormal and Me

Posted in Art, Miscellaneous, Writing on April 11, 2011 by Richard Savage

Over on the Black Velvet Seductions blog this Thursday and Friday I will be blogging about my paranormal experiences and the effect they have had on my work, both art and writing.  This is part of my blog on the subject:

The Paranormal and Me

by artist and author Richard Savage

I have always been fascinated by the paranormal and the occult.  To quote William Shakespeare from Hamlet, “There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio, than are dreamt of in your philosophy.”  I am not sure about that, I bet there is a lot of weird stuff that is dreamt up, some of which has fueled my art and writing. 

There have been quite a few things that I have experienced that I have not been able to explain, first of all, spiritualists.  I have seen four spiritualists – mediums, call them what you will.  Let me say first I went into this with a skeptical outlook.  I expected confidence tricksters and charlatans.  The first was a one on one session and it was uncanny, he was an elderly guy, who put me at my ease, it was a conversation in which he told me of things he could not possibly have known.  He mentioned a friend, whom I had lost in a vehicle accident, by name.  He mentioned things that seemed to make a lot of what I felt about my life make sense.  I have always had an affinity with the air and he made the claim that I had a previous incarnation as a First World War flyer.   As I say, it made a kind of sense to me but even so it still had a half-baked quality to it, if you said it out loud.  On the strength of seeing this first guy, a couple of years later I wanted to repeat the experience.  The next two spiritualists were, how can I put this, real con merchants.  It was like a fishing expedition on both occasions.  “I feel a presence in the room…  does anyone here know a John that may or may not have passed to the other side?”  Give me a break…. On both occasions the spiritualists had a go at looking for the gullible and vulnerable in the audience.  Nothing good came from either of those two experiences and furthermore it made me doubt the validity of the first one.  There was a gap between these events and the next one.  In the mean time I changed career paths from an entertainer to that of a pub-restaurant owner.  Events happened there that made me reconsider the nature of spirits and the like…….

To read the rest of the piece visit the BVS blog on Thursday

Colour blind art

Posted in Art, Arty ponderings on March 21, 2011 by Richard Savage

How do colour blind people perceive art?  This was not a subject I had considered much until recently.  I have an artist friend that is colour blind, his solution is to draw with a graphite pencil.  He is very successful and his colour blindness causes him few problems, with one exception.  He mentioned to me an incident where he mixed a number of paints together for an outdoor project and made what he thought was a nice powder blue.  When his wife came home she asked “what inspired you to paint the shed pink?.”  From then on he’s not been tempted to play with colour!   

The only other time I have really considered the subject was when one of the people that comes to my art class, who is colour blind, wanted to draw and paint in colour.  It posed a dilemma and I needed to find a language that we could both use, for example, you can’t say I think it needs to be a bit bluer, or I would give it a warm wash.  The breakthrough came because artist grade materials, watercolour, pencils, acrylic and oil or whatever, have a proper name.  The different manufacturer’s products may well vary marginally from colour to colour but they are, by and large, called by the same name.  So we have a language in colour, burnt and raw umber, burnt and raw Sienna, yellow ochre, Alizarin crimson etc.   The artist and myself worked for several months and he came up with his own takes on working with colour.

Having not thought much about colour blindness in an artistic context before, I would love to hear from others who have stories of a similar nature either overcoming disability and art or just general stories of overcoming adversity.  As you may know I am dyslexic which poses challenges for writing.  But the more I talk to other writers there are a surprising number of dyslexics in art, writing and the arts in general, so I would love to hear your stories.

Let’s make movies!

Posted in Art, Video on March 12, 2011 by Richard Savage


For ages I have been a keen movie goer and have always been fascinated about how they are put together. Back in the 80s I had the opportunity of working on a hospital TV station and learned about edits and a few production techniques. For ages I have been toying with getting back into it, mainly for promotional purposes and as an aid to teaching art techniques.  Here is my first YouTube offering:

Hopefully there’s more on the way soon. And I hope to be doing some for BVS too. As always I’d love to hear your thoughts. ;o)