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May 2019 news from Paul Taggart's studio

May 2019 news from Paul Taggart's studio
When I started out on my collection of large Masterworks oil paintings for ‘Webstrand, the Tooth Gatherer’ (my second book in the Elphen Chronicles), neither Eileen nor I could have possibly foreseen the ways in which this one book would have manifested itself and evolved.

Hello and welcome back to our studio, from where we send you our best wishes, warmed by the log-burning stove that is keeping us toastie on this somewhat damp day in May! Who would have thought, after the past few weeks eating breakfast outside and welcoming friends to an al fresco lunch; that we would need to set the fire to keep us warm as we work away at desk and easel!
            However, we do know that our farming neighbours desperately needed the rain, after a long dry spell and our garden was certainly in dire need of watering. So the soft Highland rain is hopefully benefitting them, as it is the plants and trees in our garden; Wisteria and Laburnum dripping with racemes, copper beech hedges smothered in green, pond stuffed with flotillas of tadpoles, boulders and rocks draped in a plethora of different lichens and mosses. And yes, we do need to find time to plant out our summer salads and herbs ………..…. and yet ………….. the pull of the studio and the call of the Elphen Chronicles is ever-present, as is our schedule for filming tutorials (more about our latest tutorial releases coming soon).

When I started out on my collection of large Masterworks oil paintings for ‘Webstrand, the Tooth Gatherer’ (my second book in the Elphen Chronicles), neither Eileen nor I could have possibly foreseen the ways in which this one book would have manifested itself and evolved. For instance, the advent of online videos presented us with the ability to share the creative process and we have grabbed that opportunity with both hands; which is where our dedicated behind-the-scenes videos come into play, under the series banner ‘Watch & Wander through Paul Taggart’s Elphen Chronicles’ - such as this reveal of ‘Webstrand’s Gathering Swarm’ - click on the thumbnail to play. 

We invite you to celebrate the talent of those who are working with us, in this FREE-TO-VIEW behind-the-scenes video; our latest release, that charts the process of creating the Elphen soundscape from the first original composition, through to the finished work. Watch this and you will see for yourself the sheer amount of effort and commitment put into producing, what ultimately became, an extensive collection of original material, composed exclusively by Liza Mulholland, for our multi-artform project – click on the thumbnail to play.

Who would have guessed, from our initial hope for an Elphen song (which is part of the story), that Liza would become so immersed in ‘Webstrand, the Tooth Gatherer’? Involved, to the extent, that she went on to compose over thirty pieces of soundscape/music; some twenty pieces being longer musical motifs inspired by characters and events in the story. Click here to read more about Liza Mulholland, her work as a TV & Radio Producer, Writer, Musician, Composer.

In this video, Eileen features a ‘timeline’ of clips (extracted from approximately 35hours of RAW footage) covering some of the musical motifs inspired by Chapters 1 to 3, which continue to feature throughout all nine chapters of our Video-StoryBook. You will see the initial get-together, way back in June 2017, in which Liza explains her thought-process; followed by the next meet-up, in which she reveals more of the compositions in progress. Then you will see us in the recording studio, with the talents of musician Alasdair Taylor on mandolin, Liza on keyboard and accordion and of course Steve Bull (Recording Engineer), not to mention a certain artist humming a sea shanty. Following that, back in the studio again for the mixing session - culminating with the finished piece - along with some extracts from the Video-StoryBook itself, such as the central theme that mirrors the changing story through to the final scene. Listen to how Liza switches from a ‘fun-filled’ jig to the monumental echoing chamber of the crystal caverns; note how she coaxes her accordion, whilst formulating the bridge required for a successful transition, from one key to another in preparation for the Elphen song.  

            We do hope you enjoy this peek into our world of creativity, every bit as much as we are enjoying the collaborative nature of this evolving project; in which everyone has willingly allowed Eileen to film them, so that we can all invite you to experience the process that every musician goes through to bring their music to life and public attention. You can also read more about this collaborative project, in one of Liza’s regular columns for the SPP group of newspapers, in which she explains how collaboration enriches her work as a musician - click here to play. 
            But before we sign off, just one last little piece of news – this Elphen Soundscape doesn’t end with the
Video-StoryBook, we have plans for something more ………… which is why there has been a lot of recording activity once again in Steve Bull’s studio.
            Want to know more about the Video-StoryBook?
Click here and let us tell you all about it - click on the thumbnail to play
            As ever this comes with best wishes and All Elphen Happiness from, Eileen and myself, not to mention Sunita and Liza

Paul Taggart
Artist, Author, Presenter, Producer
Oils : Watercolours : Acrylics : Pastels : Drawing
Tuition and Guidance for the Artist in Everyone
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