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Eagle Owl

Get ready for some epic paintings folks!   Just received from my lovely wife Chris-  the most amazing birthday present;-  a magnificent stuffed eagle owl.  Can't wait to take it to the studio and get started.

Oley artist residence

Residency in Clay on Main ceramics workshop going SO well.  Really taking to the medium, working on various clay types using coloured slip and scraffito techniques.  Never dreamed I would take to this medium so happily...want to do more. 

Sebastian's chair.

Painted an image of a chair with an archery target on the backrest. It is St .Sebastian's chair. Also a nicely stuffed antique chair wrapped with barbed wire. . . . . . all between games of ping pong!


Stuffed toads playing billiards.  Wonderful tableau by expert taxidermists!  Now I've seen this I want to do some paintings with such an atmosphere and spirit in mind!

Money laundering !!!!!!!!

Do any of you artists get requests from abroad to buy your artworks?  I do-  and they are always some kind of scam/money laundering enterprise by unscrupulous villains. Be suspicious and careful. Don't give them any of your financial details.


Looking through  30 odd year old sketch books of mine the other day. I realised that one doesn't change very much throughout one's life.  I still have the same thoughts, the same drawing style and am still interested in the very same subject matter. Surreal situations, irony, natural history, garden ornament, follies, Yorkshire identity, the bizarre........... it is still all there in my present work.

2012 and the 'Fabulous Czainskis'. . . . . . .

Been a crazy year 2012 has.  Hence no blogging for months on end.
 From an artistic point of view it has been an incredible year for me. (and Chris too of course).   We took on our new 'alter ego'  - the 'Fabulous Czainskis'. . . .   and this opened up so many new avenues for us to explore.
 I suppose 'LOVE BAG'  (our latest art performance) was the most fun, if not a little bit sweaty, - concealed inside that cotton bag for three quarters of an hour!  We really intend to actually edit the video and get it posted onto our websites ASAP. . .  really. . . .
 Then there was our joint show at the Wendy levy gallery in Didsbury. - The 'Fabulous Czainskis' sold a few artworks but we don't really feel as though the Manchester public quite 'get' us yet although we were well compensated by a terrific article written by Wendy Levy herself in the 'Art Observer'.- in the form of a years art diary, with great pictures. (Thanks Wendy).
 Then in May, Chris and I took ourselves off to the Shetland Isles in our trusty duffle coats, for a months' residency.. .BLISS.   Goodness! we did so much work there,- the islands are incredible and inspirational!
 I tried my hand at soft pastel and improved my water colour technique. It was a perfect opportunity to study and paint skies and clouds;-  I know my paintings have improved since that residency." WE WANT TO GO BACK THERE"!
 The highlight of the summer was our trip to New Orleans. I did some artwork there about 14 years ago and was SO excited about going back to do some more and showing the city off to Chris.
 Even though I am saying this myself, we produced there some of the most beautiful work we have ever done together. It was a recreation of an ancient Roman fresco- 'Lydia's room'.   I had extra fun painting a ceiling in the style the artist Cy Twombly. We returned home with a happy client and a wealth of stories and experience. 
  The 'Fabulous Czainskis' struck again at the STAITHES FESTIVAL in september. Check out the link. It is worth the few moments of your time to watch the video;- you may well be wanting to come to 2013's even more exciting art event. 40+ cottages opened there doors to let artists from far and wide exhibit within! .....
Chris and I exhibited in our own cottage and HUNDREDS of visitors popped in to check us out! I can't wait until September for the next festival; where 'the fab......kis'  are turning the cottage into a 'pop up paleontology- museum of curiosity. . . . . .
 Feeling no richer although a bit smug at the moment. A new art book has just been published - 'WHO'S WHO in VISUAL ART' 42 Masters of Realistic Imagery' .  I've got pics, credits and info inside and one of my paintings was chosen for the cover!

About time for more blog.

Is it really that long since I last blogged?

The art is keeping me so busy,-  which is good!  New, capacious, spacious, airy studio! ...and can't wait to get in there every day to get on with my new directions, projects (and microwave lunches! :-)   'm pleased with my first ever major portrait*   which shows my lovely Chris in spotty attire. She is seated at a spotty bedecked table . . . . .all FOUR of her!.  I call it 'Installation' - because I think that is what it is.  I've also finished my next Madonna;-  a trompe l'oeil of the blessed virgin, standing in a niche surrounded by roses. 
I'm experimenting with collage and painting over pages of old Christies/Sothebys catalogues,- which is great fun and generally involves odd depictions of fish.****
Looking forward to our joint 'Czainski' show at Wendy Levy gallery in April and to exhibitions around the world with the 'Uncooked Culture' collective  :-)     also, the affordable art fair in London in a few weeks- (fingers crossed for some sales).  Our artistic life is blossoming and we are just so happy to be 'doing our thing'. Chris and I are planning more collaborations and future performances*  and will present ourselves as - 'THE FABULOUS CZAINSKIS'  as distinct from our own individual personas.   
We enjoyed our annual preview at the 'Venice in Peril' show at W.H. Patterson  in London as always, but no sales this year  :-(     My stuff is more expensive now but also more challenging for such a conservative audience. I'm going to paint more works with imagination and message, no matter what!  ...... I'm a grown-up now and don't need to waste my experience on the ubiquitous 'memento' depictions of Venice.  I really do believe that painting skills and craft are only tools in the making of a successful painting and definitely not the 'be all and end all' of it.
Took a couple of drawings to 'SHINE'-  a business/arts centre in Leeds. today for a group show. . . .  let's see if there's any response there?  and I'll be dropping off more works at Staithes gallery and Water street gallery shortly.  It is great having a big enough body of work now to spread around a bit*  :-) 
 Had stuff in the Christmas exhibition at wh patterson and the Christmas show in the Viaduct Cafe space at Dean Clough, Halifax. . . - so I've been extraordinarily busy;  and now I've got a few commissions to paint (some, long overdue).    BLISS!    

New studio space.

  Since the last blog I have been busy with a mixed bag of stuff, the most interesting being a commission for WHPatterson's gallery window! This was to do with the recent Royal Wedding and I painted a trompe l'oeil of Kate and William. (see image).

It's been RNLI  annual exhibition time again and Chris and I put a mixed bag of entertaining and challenging works into the group show.  I even sold 3 works, which is great considering that very few people put their hand in their pockets this year.

Just now I am busy with drypoints as for the whole of June I will be exhibiting over a dozen of them at Dean Clough in the Viaduct Cafe.  If anyone wants to come to the private view it's from 12 noon until 1.30pm on Saturday 11th June, 2011.  I will be showing with a Dean Clough photographer, Anni Kurmis.

The Affordable Art Fair this year in London was enjoyable and profitable.  At last somebody bought 'Beacon' and 'Under Starter's Orders' (I thought they would have been snapped up ages ago).

Venice in Peril Exhibition etc.

   Christmas shows-  Venice in Peril Exhibition-  Commissions-  Moscow.
Not blogged for 3 months,-  just been ridiculously busy!  Really getting some 'Art' done these days.               Did a bit of orchid painting in the summer and managed to get on with another trompe l'oeil Madonna ...
this time in a fetching 'floral chinz' gown.  Went to Tatton Park- and was blown over by the mad,  gaudy summer bedding in the greenhouses;- knew I was going to paint a large canvas inspired by this, as soon as I got home ...  so I did!   just finishing touches required now.
The client in Moscow liked my watercolour of the proposed murals for the guest bedroom in his new house there-  so off Chris and I went, to tackle the walls. It was a monkey 'caprice' in sepia with  trompe l'oeil
borders. We are very proud of this creation and have been paid!.. which is always a good thing.  We may well sort out our choicest photos from the month spent exploring Moscow, with a view to mounting a
small exhibition.  
NH design  asked for two more 9ft. canvases! ' Daliesque', again in sepia colours  -and now they have found a home in a Surrey mansion! I thoroughly enjoyed doing these enormous pictures... a pleasant change from the 'tight', smallish works that I tend to produce in the studio.
Then had to think about Christmas shows!  Sent an 'Elvis' and a 'Marilyn' to the Wendy Levy Gallery in Didsbury. Hoping they'll sell, although they are quite unique and unusual- so may not suit the conservative clientele there.   The new gallery in Todmorden;-  The Water St. Gallery, took a few things from me and lets see what happens,  as their Christmas show runs for another week or two.  I was privileged indeed to be in the Christmas group show at WH Patterson in Mayfair again and have sold 'seaside postcards' a nice trompe l'oeil thatI've been hoping would sell for some time!
Things are still ticking over nicely at Staithes Gallery. I've sold a couple of drypoints and the oil painting -
'Spotty Botticelli' over the festive season.
Managed to paint a large botanical watercolour for a lovely client just before Christmas- and really enjoyed doing this one! Would love to paint more weird and wonderful rarities from her superb plant collections!
 Next thing is the 'Venice in Peril' exhibition, starting next Tuesday 11th January.  I hope I cause a stir with my three latest paintings;-  'Nannyboat',  'Merry-go-round'. and 'The Great North Sea Gondola Race".

Yorkshire Sculpture park and Jerwood Painters

Very pleased with our 'Shared Icons' show at the Staithes Gallery;-  flogged nearly 30 works between us which is good going in the present economic climate. Now looking forward to Chris's exhibition with 8 other 'Outsider' artists  in London soon, (check out her website,.... see links).  Before that, we're off to Moscow to paint a mural, which gets us out of the studio for a while*-...    not a bad thing because we've been highly focused, heads down in there for ages and it will be refreshing to attack big , blank walls, away from our demanding, all-encompassing obsessions.

If you've not been there yet?  get along to the Yorkshire Sculpture Park to see the David Nash exhibition........... 'BLISS'  - you won't experience a show much better than this!.. honest!

Just about finished another Madonna. She's standing in a niche and has a lovely floral print dress on. I think she may be better than the last one* (she was wearing a willow pattern frock).  Also just finishing a large canvas; its a blow up of a detail of the bedding plants in the glasshouse at Tatton Park in Cheshire. It is highly coloured and painterly. . . .   a new departure;- I'm enjoying the freedom of slapping on tons of bright oil paint for a change! 

Might paint a few more orchids after Moscow and also some plant and bird studies on a gold- leafed ground!

Chris and I went to listen to four 'Jerwood Painters' prizewinners talk about their work last Saturday. We enjoyed and hated the experience at the same time*. There was a lot of cringe-making 'Artspeak' and it was obvious that the poor students  (all R.A. ...and I think all pals) have the same philosophy books for breakfast. It was interesting too, how aesthetics (certainly the discussion of it, anyway) was avoided almost as a taboo subject. Other topics and points avoided were:- enjoyment,  the viewers understanding of pictures,  the value (monetary or otherwise) of a painting,  technique,  ambition, the spirit of a painting,  a painter's place in society (outside of the art-school system and the *"artworld")....      It was extremely worrying, the way that the speakers had 'learned' how to describe, using conceptual jargon, what they were trying to get across through their work. ... I thought ...."REALLY?"???    as my eyebrows moved further up my forehead.

Long time!

Long time since the last blog but so much has happened! It's been a slog...head down preparing for our two person show at The Staithes Gallery.  Chris and I had a great opening night and we are enjoying a good response from all ages:- art lovers and non art lovers alike!  A few sales have really helped too and hope this continues till the end of our show on 11th July.

At Artsmill in Hebden Bridge we have put in a few artworks for a 'Green' Art exhibition, (Environmental Issues).  This is on until; 20th June and well worth a look.

I'll be putting some pictures into the Summer show at the Wendy Levy Gallery in Didsbury,  Manchester soon and some works are crossing the Atlantic to the USA for a fair in NANTUCKET!!

September sees us both in Moscow, we will be painting a mural for a private client and then possibly on to New Orleans for a fun project in the old French Quarter.

If you have read to the end of this blog and you are still interested, then you may like to visit my painted elephant-- it is right outside the Victoria and Albert Museum and is part of the 'Elephant Parade'.....the biggest outside charity event ever in London!! It is to raise funds for habitat creation/conservation for the endangered Asian elephant.

Good news for Chris-- she's been offered 2 exhibitions in London; one in the Autumn of this year and one next year. 

If you are still reading this then you could visit our Open Studios on the 2nd, 3rd and 4th July as part of Hebden Bridge Open Studios 11am--5pm.

My studio is at Oatsroyd- email me! and Chris is at 59 Steps Studios in Hebden Bridge (email me!)
Hebden Bridge Open Studios


Where's the fun gone from (in general) art these days. I was inspired in my schooldays by the likes of Patrick Hughes - Anthony Earnshaw - Oldenberg - Magritte - the hilarious antics and anarchy of the early 1970s - (Leeds Poly. for instance).   ...then  Ivor Cutler - Glen Baxter. . . . .  .  does anyone who subscribes to A.N. magazine  (I'm sure all ye artists buy it or borrow it)  feel  mildly depressed after deciphering the artspeak in the vain hope of finding a little 'joie de vivre' or a hint of a good time?  We need someone  up there with the Hirsts,  the Emins etc.  who's not afraid to brighten all our lives and teach us artists not to be so serious or intellectual in our aims;  instead, to let ourselves release our inner honesty,- which I'm sure contains large measures of humour.    Its good to giggle!      Art can be funny,  it is not mysterious- just creative ... so we are allowed to laugh.

Looks like its going to be a great year

Having a roller coaster of a time artistically and it looks like it is going to continue.  I am full of ideas for paintings and Chris and I are back dancing again and really enjoying it. Mario, our Cuban dance teacher is brilliant and we are learning and laughing. 

Just about to paint an elephant (5foot tall fibre glass sculpture) for The Elephant Parade in London in the Summer.   It's a collaboration with Nicky Haslam and if all goes well the finished elephant will be put on a plinth in a prominent place in London for all to see. 

Looking forward to a brief visit to New Orleans and doing some  painting in the style of Cy Twombly.  I have already enjoyed painting a few Twombly panels for myself.

The Christmas Show at WH Patterson went really well as did the Venice in Peril annual exhibition and I am really pleased that I did so well with the sales.

Last week completed a 15' x 9' screen inspired by Salvador Dali for a drawing room in London.
Now I have to think really hard about up and coming shows in Monaco, London and of course the joint exhibition with Chris at the Staithes Gallery.


Gosh so much has happened since the last blog.  Christmas shows galore at Pattersons, Cupola gallery, Arts Mill, Hebden Bridge and Dean Clough, Halifax, Wendy Levy, Didsbury, Manchester and our Open Studios at 59 Steps in Hebden bridge.  The big one was at WHPatterson in Mayfair.  YIPPEE it was my first group exhibition in London (The Gallery Christmas Show) and I did really well, selling paintings before the show even opened, I couldn't be more pleased.

I managed to paint a couple of commissions (nature) and a Venice painting in the run up to Christmas so I have been really busy.  Enjoyed painting our annual Christmas Card and doing a few drypoints.

 Looking forward to preparing for the Chris and paul Czainski, husband and wife show at The Staithes Gallery, in Staithes on the Yorkshire Coast. Contact Staithes Gallery for further information.

Grab yourself a copy of Y (The Yorkshire Tourist Magazine for 2010 - Welcome to Yorkshire)  Chris is featured in an article about Yorkshire artists and has recently become a Yorkshire Patron and somewhat of a Yorkshire tourist attraction!

I can't beat this but I have recently been confirmed as a fully fledged Fellow of the Faculty of Decoration.(certificate going on the wall shortly next to my Bronze Medal Personal Survival and 'Woolley Edge Well Done, signed Big Chief Wogglehopper, Certificate).

Hamish, Jellyfish and Beetle

Chris and I have been hard at work all day in the studio and that's after a one and a half hour French conversation class!

It was drypoint again today and our competence is growing together with our confidence.  Chris has done a lovely series of drypoints taken from her image of upturned boats (fishermans huts)! on Lindisfarne.  I meanwhile managed a few extra prints of Hamish our now very famous honeymoon bull.  We celebrated with a couple of Aphrodites puddings (quince based steamed delicacy).

We both have several Christmas exhibitions on the go (more later), consequently we just can't produce enough or fast enough to supply our public's needs!  Check out Chris's new wearable art collection at Dean Clough, Halifax.  They are amazing.  It is jewellery with attitude and extra bling.  Here is are some  examples

I have been contributing in no small way by supplying fragments of painting behind glass using gold and silver leaf and paint.

Great night with the stars

Mixed with the glitterati again last night at the launch of our favourite patron's book, 'Redeeming Features', the irrepressible Nicky Haslam.  Wonderful cocktails, magical ambience and lots of catch up time with old friends, colleagues and clients.  Said hello to Michael Craig Martin (Mr Conceptual Art himself)!!  He was my tutor at Goldsmiths in 1970s. 
Preceding this Chris and I went to the RA to see the Anish Kapoor spectacular.  The red wax train was a REVELATION.  Miss this show and it's your loss.

Also loved the Eric Gill, Epstein, Gaudier Brezska exhibition also at the Royal Academy.

Busy week

Been painting orchids again, delivering new paintings to WH Patterson, visiting the Affordable Art Fair in Battersea,  London and doing a drypoint workshop with Temsuyanger Longkumer at The Contemporary Urban Centre, in London.  Check out Temsu's website, he is a really interesting  guy and a wonderful and patient teacher.
I created a drypoint which I think is my best so far; a fine Scottish bull. 
Came out of the AAF feeling a little jaded this year, there was nothing much that was memorable, but today things cheered up a bit at Dean Clough in Halifax. There were several previews (and wine) with Chris Vine as usual making everyone smile with his surrealist water colours and paintings.

Graining and marbling olympics

Just got back from the graining and marbling olympics in Blackburn, Lancashire.  Had a great time watching demonstrations from the continental contingent and looking at exhibits of fine examples of convincing exotic woods and marbles. 

Gave a talk and demonstration to Keighley Art Club on Wednesday (lovely people) about my work from when I started to the present day and had a good response.  The tea and cakes weren't bad either.
I don't normally give talks ( a bit shy) but amazingly soon got into my flow.  Thanks to John Wyeth, the president of the club for inviting me over to Keighley to show off.  

Graining and Marbling

Look out for a new section to my website very soon, this is to do with graining and marbling.  I have been marbling and graining since 1975 and very seriously so in the early days but now I use it mainly as an adjunct to my studio work or within larger commissions of decorative painting.  This weekend we are off to sunny Blackburn, Lancashire to check out the 'Graining and Marbling Olympics',  sounds strange but specialists from all over the world will be exhibiting and competing (showing off) and generally networking and studying their competitors.  I will write a short report next week.  This has encouraged me to join some kind of guild/federation/fellowship and I am keen to find out what all these decorators are doing out there.

Been painting beetles today and tomorrow its back on with painting the masdevallias. 

Mermaid things

Having a mermaid for a wife makes washday much more fun.  For her birthday I painted her birthday cards showing off her spotty garments.

Trompe L'oeil seagull

As if there aren't enough seagulls in Staithes, I have painted a herring gull above our outside door!
It has caused a bit of a stir and increased the tourist traffic through our yard which is just what Chris and I had hoped for.  I have dropped off some new stuff in the gallery there so get on down to Staithes and check out my 'Mona Lisa with a Large Haddock'. 

This week I am painting orchids for a passionate orchid collector which is a new departure for me.
I am also busy sending pictures off to various competitions, you never know someone has to win, it might as well be me. Hee hee hee!..... fingers crossed.


In between bouts of picking bilberries from the moors and fruit from the garden I have managed to get some time in the studio.  You could  say I am on a roll at the moment working on a series of trompe l'oeil postcards on woodgrained backgrounds. One of them shows a Medieval woman with a stick of Blackpool rock sellotaped to the surface ..... really pleased with it.

About to paint a seagull and also to think about pictures for future competitions (about time I won something!).  Will put new pictures on the website soon.

So much has happened since my last blog, I am now an exhibitor at Wendy Levy Gallery, Didsbury, Manchester,

I have already sold a couple at their Summer Show for newcomers which is great news.  I have also got some pictures now at Gallery Top in Derbyshire, for the duration of their Summer Show.  Pop in on your way to Chatsworth House and have a look.

If you happen to be visiting Madrid this year I have got 7 of my favourite works on show at Galeria Gaudi,  

Chris has got 7 great art works there too.

We have had a very busy open studio at the beginning of July and generated a lot of interest and followed this with a fantastic Open Garden, (our studio was open for that event too).  I produced a garden sculpture which I was happy with but don't know what the public made of it.  Coincidentally we made over £500 for Overgate Hospice (Chris's cakes must have been very popular).

I got considered for the Threadneedle prize exhibition but they didn't take any of my pictures.  Will definitely try again next year.  My last goldfish, Boris, passed away recently so I have immortalised him as a little trompe l'oeil on a woodgrained board.

Staithes Gallery are doing very well for me at the moment and have offered Chris and I a joint show next year.  To which you are all invited!  More details later.

Had an extraordinary evening a fortnight ago at the Whitworth Gallery, Manchester where Marina Abramovich was hosting an event using all the gallery spaces with a mixture of performance artists.  We were part of all the performances /experiment and wore white lab coats for the four hour duration.  Check out the website for a video of one of the evenings.


Spent some time in the Garden of Eden today, our beautiful garden.  Got an idea to make a crazy monochrome stretch of flower bed cutting right through (diagonally or spirally) the top area of lawn, this should surprise a few people!  Still not painted the masterpiece in the sitooterie but I am getting seriously close to getting on with it.  We are having a garden open on 12th July, to which you are all invited, in aid of the local hospice and this will be a fantastic outlet for our creativity.  We will hopefully have more sculptures than last year, probably music and wonderful cakes and teas. 

Great news,  Chris and I have been invited to show at a large Art Fair in exciting!  as for painting I think I am doing my best stuff ever on the virgin/madonna theme.  I will get them on to the web site.

Sold a couple of things at the RNLI show at Staithes, Staithes Gallery

Hopefully more will go.  I dont know how I did at Otley but the exhibition space was wonderful (in Chippendale's old house, Prince Henry's Grammar School).

At the moment working out a wall piece for The Big Green Weekend, Hebden Bridge (local eco event), made from furniture making offcuts and my painting skills, think 'the stations of the cross meets global warming!'.

York Paintings

Visited York at the weekend.  Annual arty mystery trip with chums.  Hit the jackpot -it was the Stanley Spencer exhibition at theYork  City Gallery.  His drawings thrill me check out his 'Apple Gatherers'.  That man really knew how to make a picture.  Then toddle up the road to Fairfax House a complete 18th century masterpiece by Carr of York.  Worth seeing even if only for the displays of sugar paste sculptures and confections which graced the tables of those grand Georgian dinner parties.

Really enjoying my latest trompe l'oeil painting. It's a Madonna in a niche.  It is quite a large work for me and she is going to have a wonderful willow pattern gown.  For goodness sake someone commission me to decorate a church!!

Weekend in Staithes Studio

It was far too chilly to venture out in the blizzard so I contented myself with pen, ink, paint and my imagination.  I have got a kind of rocking fish theme going at the moment, one of which has a mermaid on it's back, another is on the promenade at night accompanied by various stray animals.
I wondered whether a rocking horse might like to get its own back, so I produced quite a scary drawing which will be posted on my website quite soon. 

Chris and I joined in a 1940's theme night at the  village hall.  Chris looked stunning and totally authentic and I also felt very comfortable in the period clothes. (Spam and Glenn Miller)  I will post a picture soon.

(Here i am)

Venice in peril

Venice is in peril from the rising flood waters due to global warming.  In order to install a new damp course funds are needed. Next week sees the 18th annual Venice in Peril exhibition at WH Patterson, 19, Albemarle St, Mayfair, London, W1S4BB.

Money is raised for this worthy cause and the more paintings sold, the more Venice dries out!!

I have presented 3 pictures to be shown there but hurry, one has sold already, even before the preview.  Check out 'Round Trip' in the picture gallery here.

New Year was wonderful and was spent partying, sleeping and painting.  Chris was busy with her mosaics outside in the freezing cold using shells and pottery fragments.

If you find it too chilly to leave the house at this time of year flop back on your settee and watch 'Grey Gardens' a delightful cult film by the Maysles brothers and be amazed.


Been a jewellery artist today, painting on fragments of Chris's Thames bones and throwing in a bit of silvering and gilding.  Common themes include images of fish, mermaids, rowing boats ans swimmers.

Spent the weekend in a Medieval Castle in Wales.  Still recovering from 3 consecutive late night parties and daytime dance sessions, all Cuban!...... salsa, rumba, son.

Hoping to do some dance themed paintings at some point.  I have already done some ink drawings on a fishy/salsa theme.

Venice in Peril

Why not visit WH Patterson, 19 Albermarle Street, Mayfair, in January and have a look at their annual exhibition in aid of the Venice in peril fund.

All pictures have to be about Venice but sadly I have never been so must conjure up paintings from my imagination.  This year I have completed a single gondola way out to sea in the moonlight with its passengers and the next picture is an homage to Michael Sowa. ( He is the man who painted a pig splashing about in a soup bowl.) My take on this, is a gondola in a soup bowl with a view of Venice  pictured through a window.

I have two more pictures in mind: trompe l'oeil postcards of Venice and maybe a drowned Venice.

Just completed a pumpkin by moonlight which has a Di Chirico feel about it.... it is a Crown Prince pumpkin that I grew this year and is a monster!


Been for a visit to the seaside.
Saw the most amazing seafront bonfire at Skinningrove, on the North Yorkshire coast.

Got on with studio work in Staithes.
a. did a drawing of a wicker fish inspired by the bonfire

b.painted gorgeous sunflowers on our food cupboard

c. did a drawing of a Noah's ark inhabited by fish

d. began a painting of fishing floats

Also visited Middlesborough art gallery and the Dorman museum.  The latter should be a world heritage site!  And everyone HAS to go there if only to see the spectacular collection of speckly birds eggs!

Nicky Haslams Party of the century at Parkstead House

Still not made it down to earth after being guests at Nicky Haslam's magical party.  Never thought that Chris and  I would be among16 people dancing on the same revolving dance floor with Keanu Reeves, Paris Hilton, Sharon Osborne, Tracy Emin, Trinny Woodward at the end of the evening.  We weren't shy. Was it the Champagne????  Showed off a few of our Latin moves!

You must google Nicky Haslam's Party/Telegraph for a great video showing some of the beautifully decorated venue, designed by Nicky of course.

Been a very heady week for us after a mention in November's 'The World of Interiors', (Nicky Haslam's Swish Chalet).  Check out page 168 where we get a very generous accolade by Nicky. "......Paul and Chris Czainski-who are, according to Haslam, 'the greatest decorative painters in the world.."WOW!!

Exhibited at Manchester Art Fair, Buy Art at Urbis but no one bought anything, probably hit by the credit crunch.  A good social event though and helped David and Alison ( Staithes Gallery) set up their stand.

Also went to Frieze Art Fair but only enjoyed one piece - a bronze cast of a clump of Foxgloves. A must have by Dorothy Cross.

We both made some jewelery for Nicky Haslam's party.  Will post images on the web sites soon.

Enjoying working in the studio at the moment and half way through painting of a lovely old seaside shelter at Whitby.

Nicky Haslam's party

Special day today, preparing for Nicky Haslam's party of the year tonight.  Google Nicky Haslam birthday to read the telegraph article about it. Its going to be a splendid do!!!  As spectacular as one might expect from Nicky.

Also have a look at the World of Interiors P 159 November 2008, Swish Chalet, high praise from Nicky!

Natter (Jansen, Paris)

Does anybody out there have any pictures of the Duchess of Windsor's trompe l'oeil furniture, probably supplied by the studios of Jansen,  the foremost design company in Paris in the  20th century, especially  work by Natter?   I  need some reference images or leads.  I had this artist in mind  when I painted  'Postcards from Venice'  for the Venice in Peril exhibition, WH Patterson.

Busy week

Just completed  a glamorous dining room in London with  delicious chinoiseries-in lovely greens , greys, mauves and antique whites set off by  antique mirrored panels....   then off to  paint a library with fun marblings.  Exhausted but enjoyed every minute of it.

Enjoyed Cy Twombly at Tate Modern and indulged ourselves with  'Dark Knight' and 'Sex and the City'.  (Can't be expected to paint ALL of the time!)

P.S.  Sold the bat painting  (see painting gallery).

Marbled columns

Just  visited  Wimpole Hall ,  the  grandest  country  house  in  Cambridgeshire.  Chris and I were  delighted  to find  that   the pillars  I had painted 30  years  ago  in  the  entrance  hall  were  still looking  good  and  depicted on the postcards  too! They were  the  first  columns  I ever marbled.  There is  a  fantastic  piece  of trompe  l'oeil  on  a table  top  by Boilly ,  worth a  special  trip  to look  at  and also enjoy the Victoria Sponge in the cafe.

Garden sculptures

Just had a fantastic weekend showing off the garden (Open Gardens, Midgley).   Had 378+  visitors wandering around puzzling over Chris's  giant grass teapot and tablecloth and strange things in the wood, ( man made out of yew and sheep's fleece and severed head in the foxgloves!........ a mannequin head!).  We had our house guests sculpting for two or three days to keep them off the streets.

I just had time to do a spiral sculpture made from trimmings from our giant clumps of grass and hung some of my fruit and vegetable paintings in the sitooterie (garden pavilion).

Now its back to the studio and a larger than my normal painting of a lovely russet bull in a boat out at sea!

Why not (where ever you live in the world) come and see our work as we have four days of Open Studios very soon, 4th - 7th July, 2008,  as part of the Hebden Bridge  Open Studios and at the same time sample something of the Hebden Bridge Festival.

New stuff

Moved on from painting seabirds for a while.  Suffering from a surfeit of inspiring source material just now.  The queue  is as follows:  little lead race horses, broken clay pipes from the Calder and Hebble Navigation, sections of partially stripped walls at the cottage,  marbles, English Florist Tulips and  a mural for the sitooterie!

Should keep me going for a while.  More pictures on  my web-site in a couple of days.

Just produced a large  charcoal study of the aforesaid bird and sold it !  Do hope I am not turning into a bird artist! Also just finished an oil canvas of  Yorkshire fisherwomen at their knitting in the open sea in a rudderless, powerless, fishing vessel ( cobble), turning a bit stormy!

Stuffed seagull

My spectacular stuffed seagull has arrived.  It is massive with outstretched wings and a fierce expression, worth a substantial oil pailnting.  It is a slightly grimy bird and needs a wash and brush up. 

After the opening

At the Staithes RNLI show we had a great time....AND sold 3 artworks (this means 3 bottles of champagne!!)
There is still a week to go  so if you fancy a day out on the lovely Yorkshire coast, take your wallet along as there are plenty of lovely things left to buy.

Been having fun over the last couple of days in the studio, painting two large trompe l'oeil clock/barometers (on wooden cut outs). May stick them  on the web-site.

I am looking forward to painting some more seagulls, as they seem to be popular and a dear friend is  delivering a stuffed black-backed gull shortly! What a great present!

Drawing and Painting (disgruntled of Halifax)

The older I get the more I work from memory. By now I rely on my mental archive of images and ideas. What a bore sourcing material from books, magazines.... and ....God forbid, the INTERNET.

It irks me that so many artists don't draw rather they use only tracings or photoshop and that the art loving public have little idea about whether an artist can draw or not- or care?

*Just been to a big art fair with Chris .......the public were buying giclee prints, pussy cat pictures and those touristy paintings of Old Havana with the old cars   We know who you are!!!**

New Stuff

Get along to Dean Clough, Arts Business Complex, Halifax and spend a good half day (or more) exploring the corridors which are stuffed with great contemporary art.
I have just seen a fantastic show there (ongoing) of sculpture which uses taxidermy as its most important element. I especially loved the RAT salt and pepper shakers. Afterwards pop downstairs for the best coffee in the area in the Viaduct Cafe and take a look at my pictures!..... you could even buy one - they are for sale***

Lucky me, as the Venice in Peril exhibition finishes I am already framing paintings for the Affordable Art Fair in Battersea Park, in March, and the RNLI mixed exhibition at the Staithes Gallery.

Keep an eye out for Staithes paintings MINE TOO! at Otley Grammar School which will also take place mid March onwards.

My wife Chris will be exhibiting her unusual sculptures  with me at the Staithes Gallery in March (RNLI mixed show). Her web-site will be sorted imminently! Take a look and you will be pleasantly suprised and perhaps a little unnerved.

Lifeboat show

Currently  working in the studio on new paintings for the Lifeboat show in Staithes. (March 2008)

New Work

I have got  a very weird mix of artistic projects at the moment.

a. a series of paintings of Venice (oops never been to Venice!!)

b. marbling a couple of black lacquer fifties bed side chests

c. intricate paintings of sections of partially stripped layers of  wallpaper in our cottage.

d. grisaille clock/barometer  cases with baroque  designs and arabesques

e. some surreal  painted fantasies  from a sea-side fishing village in Yorkshire

Come and see some of my paintings in the flesh from 22nd  of January 2008 at

W.H Patterson, 19 Albermarle St, Mayfair, London

and at Staithes Gallery, ongoing and at the annual Lifeboat Exhibition, 20th March to 6th April 2008
See  web site for details.


I think i have just solved my problem with updating the blog!

YES. Blips sorted at last. It really pays off to keep  at it!  Was something to do with cookies and browser.

Still building

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