Have you ever tried using a pastel? It breaks into pieces, is dusty, dirty, and when you work/draw down the paper the palm of ones hand usually rubs the image you have just perfected! Somewhat frustrating until you learn some tricks and skills.
It’s wonderful to watch a professional artist who understands the medium and is in control. In Rod Bathgate’s case an Australian artist who has an affinity with the medium itself. In fact he has mastered the use of pastel and it has become his forte! Is he Australia’s best pastel artist?
Whilst he is a fine artist in the medium of oil paints, he possesses the skills to capture the effects gained with the pastel medium with ease. His trademark effects with water reflections, light and movement culminate in the subject of his paintings being alive and exciting!
Rod I believe has developed a relationship with both the subject and the medium. He has the ability to capture a moment, often pleasing to the eye. We the viewer, are taken to that place he has capably recorded on paper or canvas.
I have seen many ‘pastel artists’ both in Australia and in my travels and it is my opinion ROD BATHGATE is outstanding! I believe he has an insight where he has developed a “feel”- being totally comfortable working with the pastel medium in a unique fashion!
Cooks Hill Galleries is fortunate to have him as a long-standing gallery exhibitor. We as viewers may take his pastel painting skills for granted; don’t under estimate the natural skill and abilities Rod possesses. Whether they are learnt or he has been born with the talents, he has an affinity and respect for art of all styles.
“The fact he can paint upside down in a bucket of water and with his elbow’ is an exaggeration of Rod’s skill, however it goes somewhat to expressing his abilities.”
The breadth of the subject matter he works on is worth reflecting upon also: comic characters with Walt Disney influences, historical re-creations, seascapes, bush and landscapes.
Many people have tried to emulate Rod’s style and fall short. I respect and love his pastel painting skills!
Rod Bathgate’s new exhibition “The Summer of Love” is showing from the 7th – 21st December 2012 at Cooks Hill Galleries. Join us for the opening by RSVPing here! Rod will be in attendance.