Artist Regina Carbayo joins us from Spain with a bilingual video. Watch Regina at work creating a tonal study. 
Regina says "Seeing values when drawing means identifying the different tones from light to dark. The tonal differences are called ‘values’. I use shading techniques in this video with graphite, pencil and an eraser. I have chosen to work from the sculpture An Strachaire Fir by Joseph Higgins as I find it to be very strong and full of expression. There is a lot of contrast which will help you to easily identify shadows and light”.

Download this handy explanatory PDF

Click on the video below to view the process

To see more from Regina go to:

Initiated by the National Gallery in 2005/ Drawing Day is a nationwide event held in partnership with national, regional and local museums, libraries, cultural and arts centres.

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Understanding Visual Language

Visual Language is a crucial form of communication. Images are powerful tools for communicating messages. People need skills to interpret these messages and have thoughtful responses. The ability to decode the language of images helps us realise that a single image may have multiple meanings. Fluency in visual language enriches our understanding of Art and the world. It influences our creativity, empathy and critical thinking.

The video and downloadable PDF suggest ways of breaking the codes of visual language helping us to understand, write and talk about artworks. A handy method called 'Visual Thinking Strategy' using three questions helps us to analyse artwork. 

Click below to view the video presentation

Artwork in the video:
CAG. 1828 Andrew Boyle, Millwall, 1998
CAG. 2067 Debbie Godsell, Lady, 2002
CAG. 1734 Anthony Haughey, Lie of the Land
CAG. 1696 Anne Madden, Jardin de Nuit, 1932
CAG. 81 John Lavery, The Red Rose, 1923

Click here to download a handy PDF


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The Role of a Curator

Have you ever wondered what a Curator does? Curators have many roles in the Crawford Art Gallery working with colleagues in areas such as education, research, conservation, design and marketing. They continually develop interesting ways in which to engage the public with artworks through exhibitions, publications or events. 

Delving deeper, we explore the work of a Curator in this handy downloadable PDF.

Check out our exhibition case study which interviews Anne Boddaert, one of the gallery Curators. Anne speaks about curating the exhibition ‘Seen, Not Heard’ (28th June – 28th October 2019). We asked Anne about what needs to be considered when borrowing work from another collection or artist and hanging the work. We also chat about the experimental playspace take-over of the upper gallery, following the phenomenal response from the public.


We invite you to curate your own online exhibition!


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Drawing Faces

There are many ways of approaching drawing a face. This timelapse demonstrates techniques like comparing distances, using one feature to measure others, breaking down areas into shapes...

Try something new or find your own method. Draw people around you, use photos or magazine images or take inspiration from portraits in our online collection. 

Here, Avril referred to Fergus Martin’s 'Head No. 32001' from the gallery collection, which can be found on the website. 

Avril O’Brien is an artist and teen tutor.


Click on the video below to view a timelapse of the process

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Figure Drawing

We share tips and tricks for drawing a figure. 
Get the low down on ways of finding proportion.
Stuck for art materials? Raid the kitchen cupboards for materials to create expressive mark-making.

Avril O’Brien, Artist and teen tutor, demonstrates with a portrait from the gallery in this short video and handy downloadable PDF.


CAG.2431 Eileen Healy, Portrait of Cónal Creedon (detail), 2007, pastel on paper, 115 x 75 cm. Presented, Friends of the Crawford Art Gallery, 2007. © the artist
CAG.2431 Eileen Healy, Portrait of Cónal Creedon (detail), 2007, pastel on paper, 115 x 75 cm. Presented, Friends of the Crawford Art Gallery, 2007. © the artist

Drawing is all about Visual problem-solving. Eileen Healy’s ‘Portrait of Conal Creedon’ (2007) which is part of our collection is a stimulus for this figurative drawing video.


Expression through media, mark-making


You don’t need a collection of traditional art materials. Look around your home!

Paper- Paper shopping bags, baking paper, cardboard boxes, packaging.

Media - Spices, vegetables, condiments. We used beetroot for dramatic expression. Ground turmeric (a tiny amount added to a little water), soy sauce, tea and coffee created a sepia tone. Think about light, medium and dark tones.

Mark-making tools – what is in the garden? Leaves, sticks. Around the house? Pasta, straws, biros, scrunched up tissue, string.

Click on the video below to view a timelapse of the process

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Exploring Influences / A View from a Window

Develop your own artwork that says something about where you are - your place

To kick-start this project Avril looked at the gallery collection for inspiration and selected four paintings that explore views from a window. Each of the paintings have an individual mood, style and composition, that suggest different emotions and meanings.

CAG. 386, A.M. O' Hare, Houses in Cork, with View of Shandon, 20th century.
A.M. O' Hare, Houses in Cork, with View of Shandon, 20th century.

Avril sketched the composition of one of the paintings as a starting point and then used collage to create something new. Avril’s collage used scraps of old maps for clouds in the sky, maybe because she really misses travelling, this gives her artwork an individual meaning.

Download this handy pdf which outlines why looking at all kinds of artwork can help you to create.

Avril O’Brien is an artist and teen tutor.


You can watch Avril at work on this short time-lapse video

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Crawford Art Gallery

Crawford Art Gallery