Saturday, 25 November 2017

Art Room Macclesfield

Rob Miller The Art Room Grosvenor Centre  Macclesfield Cheshire November- December 2017

For me, making a landscape or a seascape painting is like making a poem, it is both an expression of a feeling and an impression of a place; Whether my focus is the brightening field corner, the running shadows of a stream or the feeling of awe in wild spaces under changing skies I try and portray the sublime in nature.  Working outside, makes this a felt experience. Depending on the nuances of the paint, the wind or the sun, my work finishes somewhere between abstraction and figurative. For me this is part of an almost spiritual occupation full of emotive intensity a journey where the start is never a constant and completion is when it arrives. 

The works featured in this show are selected from a number of themes that I work along.
Western Isles seascapes have a narrative that concerns the Atlantic shore line of Scotland,  the gloaming which is the fleeting northern light, and its echoes in the ebb and flow of the tides. This is my third series focussing on this area.  They have a much diminished human presence.
A long term series focussing on the word ‘Northern’ painted in a format developed by the Impressionists en plein air pochades, They are of found places during my weekend country rambles over hill and dale, past rivers and Lakes. They constitute places explored more deeply and memories concerned with colours. Painted outdoors by Rivers and on Lakes many feature the Lune and Ribble Valleys, Derwentwater and Ulleswater following in Turners and Ruskin’s footsteps.
Yorkshires Gold and Cludders Stack inspired by Ted Hughes poems in his book Elmet they are concerned with summertime along the Lancashire Yorkshire border on the high moors from Bronte Country to Cliviger.
Rob Miller 22-11-2017

Tuesday, 14 November 2017

Lancashire Coast-Blackpool North Seascape-Art Commission work in progress

Lancashire Coast-Blackpool North Seascape-Art Commission work in progress this was shot on my iphone 6 plus with a space of a couple of weeks between shootings. The commission itself is a 1 metre square painting. I'm more than enjoying making this commission, its focus is Blackpool and the wild view across the shallow seas of Morecombe bay towards Barrow. I'ts taken me a while to focus and shake of the fairground status of Blackpool. There is a beauty in this foreshore and the view beyond towards.  As a Lancashire painter and a Lancashire artist there are some dichotomies that I have to face up to here -- I search for beauty in a changing industrial seascape..there is a wild natural rawness I stand watching the shimmering silver grey waves caress a hard beach that over time has claimed some famous wrecks including a post Trafalgar  Flag Ship of the British Navy, its also home to scores of sea birds that wheel and dive-face the sea and you couldnt feel more wild - 

Tuesday, 7 November 2017

Demonstration for Keswick Arts Society

Demonstration for Keswick Arts Society Nov 2017
By Rob Miller, Nov 7 2017 04:26PM
I've jotted down a few notes here about an afternoon I had. I'm going to try and do more of these so that you can get a feel of my working life as an artist painting in the beautiful English Lake District and Lingholm in particular.

I've copied and pasted this from my blog on the Lingholm website so if you want to see more please click here

I had a great time last Friday at the Herberts Centre in Keswick with Keswick Arts Society. I managed two demonstrations the first 45 minutes with a triptych watercolour of the Northern Derwentwater Fells this was a real gamble watercolour on this scale can easily go wrong but even with the short time slot, I think I did well. Challenging oneself is the only quick way to develop and test your skills and mentally your concentration whether its in private or in public. if you do and it comes off then watercolour is amazingly good at looking bright and fresh...perfect really as it keeps this fresh quality forever.

After tea came the second half. I had already stretched some Windsor and Newton oil paper and had prepared a box of all the materials I would need so I got straight into making a sepia painting using Pip Seymour Acrylics AKA. I covered the whole sheet in a light wash of lemon and raw sienna and whilst still wet had some fun wiping it off with a cloth, moving the paint around the surface, before painting with a cloth , brush anything in my box trying out all sorts of non traditional ways in order to quickly get to an image that I liked. The Art society members appeared to love it, this method is not only quick fun but also produces some stunning work by some of the UK's leading artists. At the end of the demo, we talked about using this technique for a full day workshop in the new year.

Tuesday, 19 September 2017

Lake District Art:- Newlands Hause The road to Buttermere watercolour artist Rob Miller

Lake District Art:- Newlands Hause The road to Buttermere
watercolour artist Rob Miller
I enjoyed making this Lake District water colour painting of Newlands Hause. The Hause is a place that always brings happy memories of wild camping below Rigg Beck and the purple house, It was always a place to dive up to and across when the rain made a day out on the fells too  damp..and a drive to Buttermere to see the waterfalls and a meal a good idea. This particular spot is one of the best views from the road  of Dale Head.

Thursday, 14 September 2017

Lake District Art :- Lingholm Updates Resident Artist Rob Miller

Lingholm Garden North Gate Watercolour on paper artist Rob Miller

Since my last Lingholm article, almost a year ago I have spent some time developing a number of new lines and themes based around the views of the Main house from the Walled kitchen Garden. I have also revisited the Local fells and meandered alongside the Lake shore. I've also spent some time making a series of en plain air pochades 24x30cm of the small areas of the Garden and Green house on the micro areas that interested me visually. On any normal day my artistic focus is usually and totally based on my views of a landscape or a coastal scene. Its work that I have been engaged in for some years. So it was a good and valid use of time to tear myself away and explore afresh all the new challenges that engaging within a micro landscape would throw up.
The image above is one of five studies in Wallace Seymour acrylic paint titled "Kitchen Gardens, East Gate and flower bed". The warm Victorian Manchester brick stands out against the cool Cumbrian blue slate and local stone of the main house and chimneys in the background. It replicates a part of the Lakeland gardening theme of the grand houses. The theme starts with the taming of nature, then containment and finally its replacement. A riot of blue and mauve flowers contrast with a shock of yellows constrained in tidy edged flower beds. For the painter at first sight it seems that the canvas has been made, that the colours are already chosen, that the structures of planting determine each brushstrokes and that its only the movement of plants in the wind, the changing light and seasons that create nuances and circumstances to be explored. On a deeper level I also became very interested in the individual shaped/ forms of flowers such as this study below titled "Lingholm Kitchen Garden Allium."Plants also compete for light and space and I was interested to see how they work together as in the lower oil titled "Lingholm Kitchen Garden Daisies and Carnations"
The problem with painting flowers is that there are so much going on with all the structural aspects of each plants, the bed layout, the colour, form seasonal changes. Though the studies in both acrylics and oils had helped me to look at the House and Garden I felt that they were to detailed. I felt myself moving more towards a colourist abstraction as in the detail below titled "Lingholm Kitchen Garden Sunlight and wind North Bed June 17"
This abstraction fitted into the direction that I needed my work to go in. I need the viewer to recognise Lingholm and the plants as well as taking an abstracted visual journey. The whole issue of developing a body of work on the estate was about creating a 20C impression that moved 2D art further along the continuum of modernism since Lakeland artwork was begun by the likes of Beatrice Potter in the 19C. It became important to me, whilst I sat painting amongst the flowers to represent their colour as well as the overall feeling of joy that emanated from the Kitchen and from the garden as people enjoyed their day. The flowers created a warm colourfield that lift the cool lakeland greys.
The greys here are not the drab urban grey of a dull day. Generally its fair to say that a typical start to a lakeland summers day is a soft silvery one that turns gold as the suns strength grows. Its a subject matter that has attracted painters and poets to this iconic part of the world and has contributed to world heritage award for this very beautiful landscape.As in my oil painting below titled "Early Morning down by the Lake at Lingholm"
Grey mist lies over the valleys and lakes, it's the hope of the suns presence to warm the coolness of the day that makes the expectation poetic. How the tendrils of mist lift aloft to show towering steep crags and shrouded woods. Cool silvers changing subtly the wonderful bright tones of the day. Whether you see this from the Lake shore or from your boat as in the pochade oil painting below titled "Causey Pike and the Lingholm Foreshore viewed from Mid Lake" The lakeland artists day is one of continued visual fascination throughout the day.
Towards the end of June I was fortunate to meet with met with some members of the Keswick Art Society and we arranged along with the Seymour Family for me to give a talk in the Stone Room on the "Derwentwater Fells triptychs" and their preparation. Alongside Pip and Rebecca from Wallace Seymour fine art who gave a talk on their amazing fine art materials. After which we enjoyed a plate each of the mouth watering Lingholm Kitchen Scones and tea. At some point I hope to make the notes I kept into a further article on this site.
The area surrounding Lingholm is full of wonderful places to explore, walk and paint both along Derwentwater from Newlands down to the Castle Crag and beyond. As ever I made use of this when I packed my pochade box of paints to get out and about. I produced a number of smaller paintings in oils. An example is the painting in oils titled "Dalehead in July" below.
All the works featured in this article are available directly from myself and can be seen at the Lingholm Kitchen where prints are available.
studio 07841140562

Saturday, 2 September 2017

Yorkshire Dales Art :- A painting of Ingleborough in oils titled Joy Summertime artist Rob Miller RSA

A painting of Ingleborough in oils  titled Joy Summertime artist Rob Miller RSA

This is the second painting and part a new series on the three peaks which I started a couple of years ago. As I got more involved in painting the western lake District the Three Peaks  were put on the back burner. A recent visit to the three Peaks revamped my interest and back in the studio I found the two unfinished works.  Ingleborough is one of the rare fells which offers everything for the outdoors person whether your a walker, artist, etc , its a joy in summertime on a day off to walk along the grassy trods listening to the sky larks singing. If you fancy a walk and an explore take a look this web site where to walk.

Prints available at or email

Saturday, 26 August 2017

A painting in oils titled 'Summertime Ingleborough' artist Rob Miller

A painting in oils titled 'Summertime Ingleborough'  artist Rob Miller

I started this painting almost three years ago from the small road that runs to Twistleton and past Beezleys above the River Doe it gives a great view of West side of the fell and parking etc isn't hard.. I stood working between showers on one of those splendid bright Dales days. Ingleborough the place of the gods, its flat topped shape can be viewed more or less wherever I wonder around the Ribble Valley, its also the final fell on the three peaks marathon event and its steep slopes represented hell for my tired legs. For me as a painter who is sometimes categorized as a post impressionist, Ingleboroughs Limestone colours and and form is distinctive and on a summers day close as you can get in the UK to Paul Cezannes mountain scenes... All in all a brilliant place to paint.