Chupra, further reading

Development of a painting, Marking Out:

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Chupra 01.08.17

Chupra 01.08.17

Decision time… This page gives you an impression of the history of a developing painting and background about the Motor Vessel Chupra.

This concept sketch, one of a series of 11 was chosen as the basis of our new painting.

M V Chupra concept sketch 10

M V Chupra concept sketch 10

Graphite drawing, measuring some  13 x 18 cms (5 1/8” x 7”), available, £100.

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The merchant cargo liner, “Chupra“, encountering 30.48 m (100 foot) waves off the Cape of Good Hope where two powerful currents collide, one cold from the Antarctic the other warm from the Indian ocean.

One of a series of 11 studies exploring how we might meet my client’s brief for a painting of his Father’s last command.

This is the British India Steam Navigation Company Limited ( known as B I or BISNC) merchant cargo liner M. V. Chupra (named after a village in India) encountering encountering heavy seas.

We had in mind the sort of colliding waves 30.48 m (100 foot) sometimes encountered off the Cape of Good Hope

My original thought was a new variant of my painting of the ex Liberty Ship “Trun” including a heavy sea and less threatening sky.
That said, like my famous, memorable “Roaring Forties”, painted for Sir Robin Knox-Johnston, available as a signed numbered print (from £147.00),  “Chupra” is intended to give us an impression of what sailors can and do face at sea. Conditions most landlubbers find hard to believe but we know happens.

The evidence is incontrovertible.

Chupra Concept Sketches 29.05.17

Chupra Concept Sketches 29.05.17

The concept sketches shown here have in discussion with  my client J. Leeson & son,  lead to a larger drawing, a combination of  1. and 6.

In this case a merchant cargo liner, “Chupra” is shown encountering 30.48 m (100 foot) waves off the cape of Good Hope were two powerful currents collide sometimes creating ‘sea cliffs’, one current cold from the Antarctic the other warm from the Indian ocean. 

Chupra (7) drawing detail 22.07.17

Chupra (7) drawing detail 22.07.17

My original thought was a new variant of “Trun” including a heavy sea and less threatening sky.

Chupra (7) drawing detail 2, 22.07.17

Chupra (7) drawing detail 2, 22.07.17

That said, like my famous, memorable “Roaring Forties”, painted for Sir Robin Knox-Johnston, available as a signed numbered print (from £147.00) “Chupra 7” shows something most landlubbers find hard to believe but we know happens.

This study, ‘shows wind over sea, where currents collide.
The concept took quite a bit of thought to calculate, always a painful process for me.
Among other details I have carefully checked measurements of the amount of depth of hull normally below water, exposed by ‘The Wave’.
To my eye, at first the exposed hull looked excessive.
A careful examination of the scale of the G A of MV Chantala and photographs of other B I ships in ballast and in dry dock confirms my impression.

These days, relevant videos can be found on Utube, one on Russian convoys, the heavy weather scenes is appropriate, others include spectacular French films, our French colleagues are rather good at this sort of thing.
Most spectacular, superbly filmed, lash yourselves down and marvel: “ tempête sur la bretagne“, Tempête en Bretagne”
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hUYfYRcBNrY
and see also,
“Tempête Joachim – Bretagne”, “FREGATE FRANÇAISE : EN PLEINE TEMPETE ” Force 11 ” Échelle de Beaufort”, “D 646 Latouche Treville”,
“(7) La Terre en colère – Tempète en mer”.

If looking for ideas and inspiration, there are many more videos that landsmen find unbelievable.

Re watching the videos gave me ideas for another variant of “Chupra drawing 7” , read on, enjoy…

Chupra (7) drawing detail 3, 22.07.17

Chupra (7) drawing detail 3, 22.07.17

 

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Chupra (7) drawing

Chupra (7) drawing

Graphite drawing, measuring some  42 x 61 cms (16.5” x 23”), available, £150.

A developing painting.

“Chupra 7”, a proposal by drawing, my client did ask for a dramatic painting !

This is a relatively large and detailed drawing this time, measuring some  42 x 61 cms (16.5” x 23”).
Drawn as requested by my client, J. Leeson and son, a development of concept sketches 1. & 6., as per previous concept sketches.
In this case a merchant cargo liner, “Chupra”, encountering 30.48 m (100 foot) waves off the cape of Good Hope were two powerful currents collide, one cold from the Antarctic the other warm from the Indian ocean.

Sea Cliffs, the exist, rig your safety lines, hook on and read on.

#Seacliffs, the evidence is incontrovertible.

Chupra concept sketch 8

Chupra concept sketch 8

Graphite drawing, measuring some  31 x 40 cms (12” x 16”), available, £150.

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A development of ‘7’, in discussion with my client we decided to try the same sort of study with a less extreme sea, the picture certainly makes a fine drawing of a typical post World War 2 merchantman in a heavy sea, in this case circa 1970.

Chupra concept sketches 9 and 10

Chupra concept sketches 9 and 10

Graphite drawing, measuring some  31 x 40 cms (12” x 16”), available, £150 the pair or £100 each.

Exploring different angles, different ways to express the ideas and feelings we wish to convey.

Chupra concept sketch 11

Chupra concept sketch 11

A very ambitious, difficult  graphite drawing, a solid 8 hours work plus the thought that went into preparing this highly unusual concept, measuring some  31 x 40 cms (12” x 16”), available, £200.

Ariel perspective paintings of ships are unusual, in a big sea more so.
This would undoubtedly make a very memorable painting.

The only draw back is this study is considerable more work than the original idea discussed and priced with my client.

I never try to persuade people to spend more than they are comfortable with.

One of the pleasures of my exacting career is sometime clients become friends and in any case we are in a business of making friends.

Consequently, although I was willing to ‘go the extra distance’ and did so, this idea ’11’ did not fit the brief on grounds of budget.

A pity, it would make an amazing, memorable painting, maybe another client another time, maybe not, chance, the idea hangs here suspended, not taken to it’s dramatic conclusion, a golden opportunity available for another client.

B I Background: ‘M V Chupra’  launched 1944, was one of the very successful B I (British India Steam Navigation Company Limited) ‘C’ class of “fast cargo liners”.
At one time the popular much loved B I operated the world’s largest merchant fleet.
The company eventually merged with P & O, the last ship to carry B I colours was Uganda.
Uganda’s  final task was to operate as a hospital ship during the Falklands war.

To acquire or commission a similar painting

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Chupra 06.08.17

Chupra 06.08.17

Chupra 10.08.17

Chupra 10.08.17

Chupra near finished 31.08.17

Chupra near finished 31.08.17

My chart suggests the sky should be lighter as in paler colours including the blue bit top left.

For sure the sea will receive more attention and of course Chupra needs to be more ship shape, sharpened up and many small details sorted out.

Chupra, detail 1, near finished 31.08.17

Chupra, detail 1, near finished 31.08.17

Looking in more detail at the ship a number of issues have surfaced.
A careful examination of the available photos including in B I by Laxon & Perry, published by The World Ship Society 1994, ISBN o 905617 65 7, page 176, and the GA  supplied by my client, confirms as expected, the C Class sisters varied in appearance individually and over the course of their lives.
This sets me a slight problem establishing the appearance of Chupra during Barney’s days commanding.
I have the final word now, I’m in command mine is the responsibility!
The Bridge, in particular the windows vary from ship to ship.
Chupra, in the most modern photo possibly dated 1971, taken in the English Channel that I have still has the 1944 style bridge windows were as some of her sisters have more ‘panoramic ‘bridge windows.

Other variations significant in our painting include masts, vents and some of the sisters have a boot topping, Chupra doesn’t in any of the photos I have.

Chupra, detail 2, near finished 31.08.17

Chupra, detail 2, near finished 31.08.17

I’m worrying about the colours, I’ve yet again pushed limits.
However, I’ll alter the sky before worrying to much about the rest of the painting.

As Paul Cezanne pointed out, and I am literally of ‘his school’, any change in colour affects the whole painting.

Chupra, detail 3, near finished 31.08.17

Chupra, detail 3, near finished 31.08.17

The most important ‘variation’ is some photos show a name under the bow, some don’t.
My shots of Chupra don’t.
However, I’d like to ‘include in’ Chupra’s name on the grounds it helps the uninitiated identify our ship and the name may have been retouched out of the photos to make them more widely attractive to C Class people, a common ploy by photographers back in the 1960’s which was when I attended my first art college & photography classes, (Maidstone 1995).
While aware there is still some fine tuning needed to the ship and how she sits in her wave, I’m happy with the general balance of the painting, with the appearance so far of Chuprawhich already includes some nice details like the curved corners of the superstructure and water jetting from unusual places.

It seems to me to be a busy, engaging painting for such a deceptively simple composition.

Chupra, detail 4, near finished 31.08.17

Chupra, detail 4, near finished 31.08.17

with slight alterations to concept sketch 10 is as my client has requested, now on the canvas.
Chupra near finished 31.08.17

Chupra near finished 31.08.17

My feeling having given it a few coats of thinking about it, viewing it over a few hours, is the ship should be reduced by about 1/8 so I propose doing that later today or tomorrow on the canvas.
Once that is done, I’ll tidy up the underlying drawing to make this new painting of the British India Steam Navigation Company ship Chupra, look more ‘Chuprish’.
That will include moving the stem a little further to the right and more vertical.
The stem has already been shifted to compensate for showing as requested, more of the stb side of the ship than is revealed in consept sketch 10; I think it needs to more a few mill further.

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This is the British India Steam Navigation Company Limited ( known as B I or BISNC) merchant cargo liner M. V. Chupra (named after a village in India) encountering encountering heavy seas.

My original thought was a new variant of my painting of the ex Liberty Ship “Trun” including a heavy sea and less threatening sky.
That said, like my famous, memorable “Roaring Forties”, painted for Sir Robin Knox-Johnston, available as a signed numbered print (from £147.00),

Copyright 2017:

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Gordon Frickers © 23.06.2017 updated 26,07,2017, 29.07.2017, 06.08.2017, 31.08.2017, 20.09.17

 

Gordon Frickers, the only artist member of British Marine

Gordon Frickers, the only artist member of British Marine

Marine Trades Association Member

Marine Trades Association Member

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