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Blockley, John 1921-2002

BLOCKLEY, John 1921-2002

PERSONAL: Born November 1, 1921, in Knighton, England; died January 16, 2002; married 1949; wife's name Margaret; children: Ann, one other daughter.

CAREER: Atomic energy authority, engineering draughtsman, designer, and head of design studio, 1952-74; painter, 1974-2002; painting instructor, 1967-2001. Held several engineering positions in northern England.

WRITINGS:

The Challenge of Watercolour, Pitman, 1979.

Creative Watercolour Techniques, Taplinger (New York, NY), 1980.

Country Landscapes in Watercolor, Watson-Guptill (New York, NY), 1982.

How to Paint with Pastels, HP Books (Tucson, AZ), 1982.

Getting Started in Watercolor, North Light (Cincinnati, OH), 1986.

Watercolour Interpretations, Collins (London, England), 1987.

Pastels, HarperCollins (London, England), 1998.

Author of A Personal Record.

SIDELIGHTS: John Blockley was trained as an engineer and worked for much of his adult life in that profession. He became increasingly dissatisfied with the engineering profession. It was not until 1974, at the age of fifty-two, that he quit his engineering position in order to paint full-time. Surprisingly Blockley had no formal training in painting.

In The Challenge of Watercolour Blockley describes the process he followed while painting over eighty water colors. Information on tools, canvasses, and paints is also provided. "Well produced and nicely illustrated," claimed Dick Field in a review of the book for British Book News.

Watercolour Interpretations is an instructional guide for the advanced watercolor painter. In Watercolour Interpretations Blockley counsels readers to paint using more non-traditional techniques. He provides examples by showing a traditional painting and how it can be changed. "A very instructive, very handsome book," concluded Brad Hooper in a Booklist review.

Blockley's Pastels is a volume in the "Learn to Paint" series which includes nearly twenty instructional art guides for the beginning artist. In Pastels Blockeley instructs beginners on how to use pastels in their art work. An Arts & Activities contributor noted, "He writes well and provides basic information effectively."

BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:

PERIODICALS

Arts & Activities, September, 2000, review of Pastels, p. 45.

Booklist, February 1, 1983, Barbara Jacobs, review of How to Paint with Pastels, p. 710; November 15, 1987, Brad Hooper, review of Watercolour Interpretations, p. 527.

British Book News, June, 1980, Dick Field, review of The Challenge of Watercolour, p. 365; June, 1987, review of Watercolour Interpretations, p. 371.

Library Journal, March 15, 2002, Daniel Lombardo, review of Pastels, p. 78.

ONLINE

Manor House Gallery Web site,http://www.manorhousegallery.co.uk/ (July 18, 2002), "John Blockley."

Royal Watercolor Association Web site,http://www.rwa.org/ (July 18, 2002), "John Blockley RWA."

Times Online (London, England), http://www.thetimes.co.uk/ (February 25, 2002), "John Blockley."*

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