At Colours of Ostrava Festival

This year I was drawing with the Lunchmeat Label, who were providing visuals for performers on the Electronic Stage, a new festival stage in the renovated Old Baths Building of the Hlubina Mine in the historic Dolni Vitkovice complex.My set was to accompany Sons of Magdalene, a project of American musician Joshua Eustis. I began with some rather dark-toned monochrome drawing.The Lunchmeat crew had this big screen set up behind the stage with mesh ‘wings’ on either side which meant that two ghostly versions of my images appeared on either side of the stage when I was drawing. I began with a lot of transparent ‘clouds’ which Dima then animated, enabling me to have a moving and continuously changing background over which to develop my drawing. Using animation like this with the ‘old-school’ Tagtool is something new for us in a performance – and although it was often difficult for me to draw against this moving background it looked very effective. I don’t have any video so the photos (kindly taken for us by Gome) will have to serve to give some idea of this process.



Then I began to use colour, again over an animated background and this time Dima also applied animation to the figure, making dramatic changes in scale.


We followed this with a more abstract animation with lots of fast moving lines….
…then I ‘covered’ this animation with some more figurative drawing.

To end this post – a shot from the final moments of the performance.

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Down by the riverside…

…projector bombing on the quayside at Naplavka with VJ Suave on their last evening in Prague before beginning their journey back home to Brazil.We parked the van on the quay, set up the Tagtool, projectors and sound system, started up the generator and then spent the night drawing and just having fun.Guillaume played some great music to accompany our drawing and Dima took both photos and video during the evening. I’ll have to post the video showing VJ Suave’s animations later but meantime here are some photos of our work.We had this really long wall to draw on so we were able either to combine our images to make one big picture or to work separately…

Here’s a photo of one of Ygor’s animated drawings……and in this shot, he’s beginning to ‘invade’ my black and white landscape!
Ygor uses the Tagtool for iPad so he took this opportunity to try my ‘old-school’ Tagtool. Of course he had to work ‘cross-handed’ on my left-handed All-in-one……attracting the attention of the passers-by with these great super-bright images!

Drawing ‘cross-handed’ like this isn’t very comfortable and it was a pity that we didn’t think about taking the Tagtool mini with us – something to remember for next time! Then Ygor returned to his iPad and I did some more drawing….
It had been a perfect, hot summer evening and it was well after midnight with the moon high in the sky when we stopped drawing and began to pack up……definitely a night to remember!

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On the street and in the studio…

…two magic nights of Tagtooling with VJ Suave, Maki, Seppi, Iink and Malu!
We met up with the Lunchmeat crew in Prague before it got dark to set up the Tagtools and projectors under the trees in the park. The big picture in the collage below shows the building at Malostranska in the centre of Prague chosen by Lunchmeat for the outdoor event – what a great location for Tagtooling!We were using all three ‘generations’ of the Tagtool – my beloved ‘old-school’ All-in-one, Tagtool for iPad aa well as the youngest member of the family of Tagtools, the Tagtool Play. Below – Maki, Iink and VJ Suave at work…It’s the first time we have tried a multiplayer session like this on the street using all the Tagtools and it was quite a complex set up that took a little time to get used to. We were using two matching Epson projectors, one for the ‘old-school’, the other for the iPads – ours and one from Lunchmeat – which worked brilliantly. (Since we invested in this Epson 6000 full HD projector we’ve used it at every event, indoors and out – it wasn’t cheap, but it was definitely worth saving up for!!) I haven’t many photos as most of the time I was busy drawing, but below are two stills from an animation by VJ Suave, Maki and Iink… Below, a combination of my ‘old-school’ drawing together with iPad animation…
…and this sequence of photos shows the progression of some of my ‘old-school’ drawing combined with some more iPad animation from Maki and VJ Suave….


We all had a lot of fun and all too soon it was time to pack up and go home!So here’s a big “thankyou” to Lunchmeat for organising everything and also to DJ tvprodukt who provided some great music to accompany the drawing!!

After this street session, the following evening we had a jam session at home in the studio – and this time everyone was using iPads (including Dima and me!)Of course the stills I took with my little camera can’t show DJ Suave, Maki and Iink’s clever animation techniques….but I think they capture something of the sense of fun that can be had when a lot of people draw and animate together!Another sequence of drawings on the studio wall…
…and this photo from my iPad shows how the session ended.
An iconic cat from VJ Suave…
…with a lot of additions from the rest of the company!Here Maki looks surprised by the reflection of the cat…..
…while in this photo Dima’s black and white figure menaces VJ Suave!And needless-to-say the partying went on till very late…..

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Museum Night in Prague

On 13 June from 7.00 p.m. to 1.00 a.m. many of the galleries and cultural institutions in Prague had free entry and special events for children and adults.The photo above shows the drawing I made to announce the workshop at the Veletržní palác organised by the National Gallery Education Department. Young visitors were invited to make drawings inspired by the current special exhibition, ‘Kokoschka and Prague’. At one end of the hall there was an artist demonstrating drawing in watercolours while at the other end I had this wonderful big wall (all to myself!) for my Tagtool drawing. For the visitors there were easels, paper, watercolours and a variety of drawing materials, Dima set up our two Tagtool minis for people to try and dotted about the space there were models posing.Some of the models were sitting for portrait drawing but Hana Dokalova, who was organising the workshop, suggested that I should draw the model who was doing short poses in the centre of the room. I wasn’t quite sure how this would work as a Tagtool drawing and it took me a while to decide what to do….…so I started off fairly tentatively…… then drew into the silhouettes to make the image a bit more coherent.This was a wonderful place to draw! And despite the amount of light both from the street outside and from the galleries above, our new Epson projector gave this good bright wide angle floor to ceiling image. (But unfortunately it wasn’t easy to take photographs of such a large drawing with my little camera).As well as this great location I had such a good model to draw…
And here is the final image…I’ll end this post with a collage of Dima’s photos of children drawing at the two Tagtool mini workstations. As usual, the Tagtool proved to be very popular!

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Tagtool in Sweden – Part 3

I’ve only now found the time to make a selection of photos of the Tagtool drawings I did on 22 May at Barbacka for Kristianstad’s Kulturnatten! This was a long session, making a number of different drawings, beginning at 10.30 in the evening and ending at 1 am and, although it was quite cold, fortunately it didn’t rain (like on our last visit!) But just in case, we put up our gazebo and also had a tarpaulin handy to put over the projector (which was on the roof).My Tagtool was in the courtyard and I was drawing onto the building overlooking Barbacka – quite a long projection distance. This building presented some quite difficult drawing problems, as the brickwork was dark red and there were lots of windows. However, by prior arrangement, the lighting on the building and street lamp outside had been turned off (which helped a lot) and our big Epson projector gave good clear images, even before it was completely dark. As the photos above show, in the courtyard there was a very festive atmosphere with lots of coloured lanterns which were made by students in the Barbacka workshop.
Throughout the Kulturnatten event different groups of musicians were playing in the courtyard. The accompaniment to my first sequence of drawings was a solo improvisation by Ali Sabah, a master oud player from Malmo – his superb musicianship was a real joy for me! (hear him play on this YouTube video)
Earlier in the week, Dima and Torjus Wrangell, Director of Barbacka, had made a selection of clips of films from the archives of Kristianstad Museum for me to ‘draw over’ as part of the evening’s performance. This is something I haven’t done for some time and it was great to be able to use such interesting images from the 1930’s of people skating, processions, public meetings and and other local events.
After the archive films of skaters and city dignitaries, some figurative drawing….
…and also this landscape….…then another combination of film with a drawn image…….followed by some more ‘pure’ Tagtool drawing.I ended the evening’s drawing by using two very different pieces of film footage – below, leaving only a small piece of film visible ‘behind’ the drawing….…then Dima projected this rather strange footage (from a trade fair I think, showing contemporary furniture in a kind of ‘dolls’ house’ setting). To this, I added the little silhouettes of figures in white, ‘drawing through’ the film….
…leaving the little figures dancing over the facade to end my evening’s drawing.1 am – time for me to announce the late-night event of Barbacka’s Kulturnatten, and to relax and enjoy a performance by techno-duo J-Nilz and DJ Gazoline!

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Tagtool in Sweden – Part 2

Our visit to Sweden ended with two days of Tagtooling at Barbacka, Kristianstad Municipality’s cultural centre for children and young people. On the Thursday afternoon and evening we held Tagtool workshops in one of the centre’s buildings which was normally used as a rehearsal room. This was an ideal venue (no windows!) to hold daytime ‘drop in’ Tagtool drawing sessions. One wall had a big projection screen and in addition we covered another wall with white fabric which meant that we could set up four Tagtool workstations.As the collage of photos above shows, everyone was totally focused and absorbed in drawing – and below, here is some of the work they produced.Playing with colour….and experimenting with fading….Using both solid and transparent colour….
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as well as having fun playing with shadows and ‘drawing round’ each other.


On Friday 22 May it was ‘Kulturnatten’ in Kristianstad, with the museum and gallery open in the evening, a concert in the main square and a number of other events. In addition to their evening programme, there were a number of special daytime events at Barbacka, including this Tagtool children’s workshop.This proved to be just as popular as the adults’ workshop the day before. I took lots of photos of the children’s drawings and the parents did too!
Before the evening events began I decided to do a bit of drawing myself……a frieze using the three Tegtools and projectors we set up for the workshop and below, a landscape with lots of transparent layers using my Tagtool All-in-one.

After I faded out this drawing it was time to move my Tagtool into Barbacka’s courtyard and mount our big projector on the roof in preparation for the evening drawing performance. (My test drawing heads this post – but I will leave the rest of the photos for Part 3 of our visit to Sweden.)

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Tagtool in Sweden – Part 1

Last week in Kristianstad our first drawing session was on the facade of the theatre in the Tivoli gardens. Although painted white, this beautiful art nouveau building, designed by Swedish architect Axel Anderberg in 1908, presented quite a drawing challenge because of all the big windows. Also, because of the latitude, it took quite a long time for the sky to get properly dark, but at least this meant that Dima had plenty of time to find the best position to set up the generator and our beautiful new Epson projector.Two more shots of the first drawing sequence, made while it was still quite light…
…but as it got darker the colours looked much brighter and more dramatic.


There was quite a lot of ambient light from the lamps in front of the building……covering them with black bin bags proved to be a quick and effective solution!
Once it got really dark, when seen from a distance with the illuminated fountain playing in the formal garden in front of the theatre, the facade really glowed…

This session was arranged in order to make publicity photos for the Tagtool workshops we were holding on Thursday and performance on Friday night at Barbacka cultural centre in Kristianstad as part of their museum night programme. I was very happy to have this nice opportunity to draw on such an interesting building.
Before packing up the Tagtool we turned the projector on to these trees and I drew some scary faces in the leaves – just for fun!

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