Sunday, July 5, 2015

Back to the roses

Walled garden, Belton House
10" x 14"
I grabbed the chance to go back to the garden a couple of days later. I was rained off on this one, spent about half an hour fiddling about with the umbrella. Undoubtedly I would have gone on longer but really what more was there to say? I think it's all there, with a refreshing spontaneity. Sometimes we just go on too long... like an after dinner speech...


As seen (unframed) in a group of paintings in the studio

All of these paintings except the two small ones on the right are now wrapped up and on their way to Josephine Harpur Fine Art, to be exhibited in Suffolk shortly. 

Saturday, July 4, 2015

I'm here!

Rose garden at Belton House
12" x 16"
Ok so it seems as though two months has passed since I spoke to you last - it isn't that long but I've been packing a LOT in to the last four weeks! I'll try to get you back up to date with a lot of mini blog 'postcards' and action shots!
This is my favourite of the three paintings I did for the 'Where in the world is plein air' video event. This was day three for me and again I was blessed with fantastic weather. It was a really hot day but I had a tree fairly close to me so I was able to step back in the shade and cool off now and then. What an idyllic spot and subject, I didn't know which way to look! The roses in England have been absolutely amazing this year.

It was a nice surprise to find one of my Facebook friends/blog subscribers sketching in the garden too :-)

Actually this is one of my favourite paintings of the whole year so far, and it's now in America at the Illume gallery in Salt Lake City along with my other two from the event. If anyone could show me a photo of them in situ I'd be enormously grateful, it's a little far for me to get to at the moment.
You can watch the video of it's creation here.
You could even be the rightful owner of this gorgeous painting :-)

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Where in the world...

English summer pasture
12" x 16"

This is my second painting as part of the Illume Gallery's 'Where in the world is plein air' event. For three days over a hundred artists took part from all over the world and made short videos to accompany their paintings.

It is so much fun watching the videos and fascinating to see where everybody has been painting this week. You can see my videos here and then click on 'artists' to choose which other videos you'd like to see.

I was amazed what I heard Lori Putnam say when she was filming for day one, about the passers by who stopped to chat!




Now all the finished paintings are for sale with the Illume Gallery of Fine Art in Salt Lake City in Utah, so I will be wrapping mine up and posting them off there. 
The team involved has done an incredible job co-ordinating all the artists and uploading the videos, and now they have a big exhibition to organise! 


'Down on the farm' - just needed a piece of straw to chew on!


Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Regency picnic

Regency picnic, Gunby Hall
12" x 16"

It's not every day you get a chance to dress up in a regency style dress and bonnet, to paint similarly attired people having a picnic in sunshine at a beautiful stately home in the countryside, is it? 

Painting the picnic

I count myself extremely lucky to have done exactly that at Gunby Hall in Lincolnshire, and I also made a short video of the day which you can see here!


Selfie in bonnet - I always wanted to be in a Jane Austen movie ;-)



Sunday, June 14, 2015

Great Art Award

The thaw, Drove allotments

Another very happy and fortunate event from my Patchings festival week... my painting 'The thaw, Drove allotments' won a prize in The Artist exhibition in the Barn Gallery!
The exhibition is open until the 19th July and well worth a visit, but if you are too far away you can see all the paintings in the exhibition, plus the Leisure Painter exhibition, and the Highly Commended entries here - click on the links at the side to view all the categories. You can also vote for your favourites for the people's choice award.




My prize is £250 to spend on art materials from Great Art - woohoo! I have received my catalogue and vouchers and will really enjoy spending them :-)

Many many thanks to Great Art, and Patchings art centre and The Artist magazine and the judges!


With Penny German and Sally Bulgin, editor of The Artist magazine

I was absolutely over the moon that my friend Penny German won The Artist purchase award with her beautiful painting of the cribbage chair. Take a look at Penny's daily painting blog here.

And enjoy the armchair viewing of the exhibitions at Patchings! :-)



Saturday, June 13, 2015

Patchings festival 2015



My stand, ready for visitors!

I finally have a few moments to share my experience of Patchings festival with you! It was my fourth year as an exhibitor at the festival and as always I loved every minute of it. It is an intense week, as it takes me a couple of days getting things ready at my end, then a whole day setting up the stand. I was very lucky to have my husband helping again with this! The festival then runs for four days and I travel to and from home each day, so I leave the house at 8.00 am and by the time I get back at about 7.00 pm I'm pretty shattered. As you can see from the photos things get really busy!

As always bunting and fairy lights!

Things got BUSY!

We had fantastic weather for the whole event, apart from some pretty extreme wind on the Saturday. Thursday was baking hot in the marquee which was unpleasant at times, but at least the sunshine brought all the visitors out.
 As always I was chatting to people all day long but I managed to get some painting done, starting off with a large canvas of Polperro harbour. Yes it was hard to concentrate on the painting because I break off to answer somebody's question and then before I know it two hours have passed!


A small crowd watching me paint

Just starting

Thursday morning, me and Sue ready for action!

We sold lots of cards and 2016 calendars and four original paintings, and gathered lots of email addresses for the newsletter. I'll be pulling a name out of the box any day now to win the painting of clementines. Good luck if you entered!


As always an original painting in the prize draw (above the flowers)

Choosing a frame for one of the paintings sold during the festival

More than anything we had lots of fun chatting to old and new friends, and as always it was great to catch up with twitter and Facebook and Instagram friends - meeting some of these for the first time! I also had friends who were stallholders for the first time this year and it was great to see them doing so well and having a happy experience. It is such a friendly festival and I'm looking forward to next year already.


With Robin Mason, fellow Harbour Gallery artist

With Luigi from Venice, who was a gondolier for 45 years!

With twitter friend artist Alice Hall from Cornwall



Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Blowsy clouds and Patchings

Blowsy clouds and dappled light
Oils 16" x 20"


I only have time to show you quickly this new painting from the allotments, it's becoming an impressive display of greens there now :-)

I've been at Patchings Art Centre all day setting up my stand for the festival, and I'll be there each day from now until Sunday. Hope you can make it over to see me, and all the other exhibitors of course!

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Painting collection books and calendars



Front cover of my new little book

I've been having an exciting few weeks for new printed items, having designed my new calendar for 2016 and the latest volume of my little book of paintings which includes over 60 of my favourite paintings from the last year. I've also added around ten new greetings cards designs this year, so I should have all these new things with me at Patchings Festival (June 4th to 7th) as well as recent oil paintings of course. 


A sample of pages from the new book

A sample of pages from the new book

Some of you might be aware that I produced a little book of favourite new paintings in 2013 and then a year later another little book of paintings from 2013-2014. I know that some of you have collected both of these and so it was time to produce a new version with paintings from 2014 - today!
For me they make a fantastic memento of where I have been painting each year and it's so interesting to see how my work is developing.

Back cover

All three books together

All of the books and greetings cards are available via my website.

New calendar for 2016

My new large (A3) calendar will be in my hands any day now, so I am starting to take orders already! The price on my website includes postage/delivery costs to the UK.
These are some of my favourite paintings from the last twelve months, together with little inspirational quotes. I do hope you like my selection!


The inside pages of the calendar with large image at the top

Each month has a large image which can be cut out and framed if you wish :-)

The back page of the calendar showing all the images

As for my new book on oil painting in association with Search Press, work is progressing nicely! I'll keep you updated but publication will be in the second half of 2016 :-)

Saturday, May 23, 2015

Painting with friends

After four hours painting - unfinished 24" x 26"

I'm happy with my own company, but also I'm very sociable and love a chance to paint with friends. Yesterday I drove to London to meet with two of my favourite artist friends and two lovely young models to paint together by the canal. It was a perfect day!
I worked on a large white oil primed canvas, 24" x 26" which was a lot of ground to cover! After around four hours I got to this stage. I love the composition and I wanted to get the main colours on and the white covered. The swan kept coming back and forth so I really had to include it in the painting.





The light was challenging. We started with heavy cloud cover but by the end of the session it was full sun. I couldn't start to introduce strong shadows at that point. If we can arrange another day together I'd really love to finish the painting from life. Otherwise I will do my best with it in the studio.



With Michele del Campo and Adebanji Alade and a chocolate brownie thief





Thursday, May 21, 2015

Monterey wharf

Monterey Wharf

Writing has been keeping me busy lately, as well as a little teaching, travel planning and organising next year's calendar and some new greetings cards. Still, I'm getting to the easel as much as I can! We had a fantastic weekend workshop at Old Bank Studios in Harwich the week before last. Next year we are already planning a plein air weekend in May so I really wanted to give you advance notice for a change! Email Bev at the studios if you'd like to be in that group next spring :-)


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