Digital Drawings | Elaine Jones

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Elaine Jones

Tree in Halki

Introduction Drawing plays a fundamental role in Elaine Jones’ practice. Not only do her drawings provide a starting point for her paintings, increasingly they are playing an even greater role in the finished pieces as Elaine layers drawn marks over the top of abstract shapes. Finding that photographs very rarely capture the element of the landscape that interests her, Elaine prefers to document her travels through drawing. In recent months she has started to experiment with using an iPad as a tool for drawing and a means of getting information down quickly. The iPad has been particularly effective when out on location as it enables Elaine to combine the textures and effects of oil paint, watercolour, pens and pencils in one place and provides an even stronger link to her paintings.

Greece Last August Elaine travelled to Greece with her family, stopping first at the tiny island of Halki before moving on to Symi, where they stayed mostly in the more remote areas of Pedi and Emporio. On both islands they became immersed in the more traditional aspects of Greek living, with few tourists and few residents on Halki in particular. Throughout these studies Elaine was keen to evoke the sheer beauty of the islands; the deep blues of the sky and sea, the bright sunlight with a backdrop of red mountains and beautiful olive and fig trees. She also wanted to capture something of the essence of these small, unspoilt places; slightly rough around the edges with simple tavernas, old rowing boats, chickens and crumbling painted doorways. For Elaine it is a place where time has stood relatively still and there is room to breathe. Beach with Fig Tree

Greek Rooftops

Trees, Halki

Olive Trees at Symi

Greek Bay


Olive Trees, Pedi

View from the Apartment, Symi

Beach with Taverna and Umbrellas

Interiors At first glance these interior sketches appear to be very different to the more ephemeral, abstract landscapes that Elaine is well known for. However, they too are rooted in Elaine’s desire to capture something of the feel of a location. A number of these interior studies are of holiday homes that she has stayed in and focus on capturing their character, including the little knickknacks that are placed on the mantelpiece, designed to evoke feelings of cosiness and of a home away from home. Similarly, Elaine has also done a few studies of Grandma’s house, looking at the objects that represent the owner and contribute to the history of that place.

Bedroom with Radiator and Plant

Plant Study, Interior

Mantlepiece with Cat and Grandfather Clock

Spare Room in Blue

Lounge Study

Mantlepiece with Plant

Still Life with Pink Chair

Through the Window, Easter

Salcombe Salcombe and the South Hams is an area that Elaine visits often with her family. Whenever she returns to this corner of Devon she feels a renewed love for the beauty and softness of the land and coastline here. There is a wealth of inspiration to be found, from the stunning beaches, such as Mothecombe Bay, Hope Cove and the vast sands of Bigbury, to the dramatic cliff top walks up to Gara Rock. The views of Mill Bay from East Portlemouth and North Beach Sands are particular favourites of Elaine’s and frequently appear in her paintings.

Coastal Treeline

Visiting throughout the changing seasons with the huge difference in the hours of daylight between winter and summer also provides Elaine with a varied range of imagery to draw from. The dark, brooding skies and the skeletons of bare trees in winter, yellow oilseed rape fields and bluebells in spring, lush greens against the blue sea and sky in the summer and of course the rusty oranges of autumn give a constant supply of fresh ideas and colour palettes.

Across to Salcombe

At the Beach, Mill Bay

Mill Bay South

Service Station, Devon

Batson Creek

Collapit Creek

Devon Hedgerow

Devon, Mothecombe Bay

Devon Landscape

Gara Rock

View from Mill Bay Study

Gardens Elaine’s series of garden drawings are the result of long periods of observation, particularly as some of them have been executed during the coronavirus lockdown. Elaine has found great pleasure in taking the time to sit down and really look at nature close up. Working in this way is very new to her as she usually tries to capture much larger landscapes and to evoke the essence of a place as a whole. With this set of drawings however, Elaine has been focusing on individual details; leaves, branches and the negative space in between them. The drawings of these fascinating patterns remain loose so that when you hone in on a detail the shapes become quite abstract and are therefore not direct representations.

Winter Garden with Conifers

Potted Camellia

Garden (Majorca)

Grape Hyacinths

Climbing Clematis

Winter Garden

Holidaying with Palms

Road Trips The road trip sketches are the first set of drawings Elaine completed using the iPad. Drawing from the passenger seat of the car, Elaine was trying to capture an image that was only visible for a few seconds as well as getting a feel for the new language of marks and effects that the iPad could offer. This way of working is reminiscent of the exercises Elaine did in art college, whereby the class would have 30 seconds to produce a life drawing with whatever medium was close to hand. The drawings from the road trip are honest and spontaneous, the focus on taking down the most important information quickly and giving an overall sense of the landscape.

M5 Study South IV

M5 Study South VI

M5 Study South II

M5 Study South I

Devon Expressway I

Devon Expressway II +44 (0) 7791699138

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