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INTERVIEW - ROY CONNELLY

How long have you been pochade painting?

I bought my original pochade box about 7 years ago.

What 1st got you into pochade painting?

Tom Coates gave me the name of the man who made his pochade box and so I ordered one. I have been painting outside ever since.

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What has been your best pochade place to paint or still life?

London. Trafalgar Square is a great place to sit with a pochade box, and setting up a box easel in front of the National Gallery is a bit cheeky but good fun. Venice is also a great place to wander around with a pochade box.

What time of the year do you prefer to paint in terms of temperature and light?

The light in winter is so good. The sun never gets too high so the ‘golden hour’ can seems to last almost all day. I work outside all year round and, as long as the light is good, I’ll be out there. In the UK, it is rarely too hot or too cold to paint.

What time of the day is your favourite?

Evening.

What pochade boxes do you use?

I have several. A handmade wooden one, one I recently made from an empty cigar box and I am restoring a nice old box given to me by Jason Bowyer. I also have some half-box French easels made by Jullian and Mabef.


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What do you keep in your pochade box colours, brushes etc?

I always use the finest quality oil colours from Winsor and Newton, Michael Harding and Old Holland. My palette includes a warm and a cool of each primary, a couple of earth colours, titanium white and blue black. My brushes are handmade by Rosemary and Co in Yorkshire.

What do you prefer to paint on, canvas board, primed millboard?

I prepare my own boards. MDF with 3 coats of acrylic gesso which has a very good tooth. I find commercially prepared boards are far too slippery. For works on canvas I use Claessens oil-primed linen from Bird and Davis.

Who would you say is your favourite painter?

There are so many, I couldn’t pick one. I think Eugène Boudin, who taught Monet to paint outside, is overlooked. Monet, Sickert, Whistler, Sargent. Bernard Dunstan, Fred Cuming, Richard Pikesley, Jane Corsellis, Tom Coates, Ken Howard and Peter Brown aka Pete The Street are all great painters.

What do you look at in a good painting more than anything?

The light.

What is your favourite size to work on (box size)?

I don’t have a particular favourite - I am just as happy to work on a 4x10 inch board as I am on a 36 inch canvas on the box easel.

Have you exhibited any pochades? If so where, gallery/sites/shows?

My plein air work has been shown at Royal Academy Summer Exhibition, the New English Art Club - NEAC, Royal Society of British Artists - RBA, the Discerning Eye, Chelsea Art Society and at various commercial galleries in London and the south-east.

You can find out more and see my paintings at:
www.royconnelly.com and www.londonoilpaintings.com

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