Thursday, November 27, 2014

Hanging out the sheets

Hanging out the sheets
Oils 12" x 16"

This is definitely one of my favourite paintings (and subjects) from the last trip to Venice. Parts of this were reworked a little bit back in the studio, and I find there are some very pleasing passages. I have photos of this scene including passing gondolas so I don't think I'll be stopping with this motif yet...

But I'm driving off to London today to deliver this special one along with two other Venice faves and a couple of London scenes to the Russell Gallery in Putney for their winter show.

I'm also meeting a couple of artist friends for lunch who I don't see very often so that will be a great treat!

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Last hour

Last hour on the beach
Oils 16" x 20" SOLD

I painted this en plein air on the French island of BrĂ©hat this summer. It was fairly late afternoon when I got started, a very hot day, and the tide was going out. It was the usual race against the clock, and it was important to get a statement down quickly about the sea and where it reached to on the sand and pinky rocks. 
I was very grateful for the can of cold drink on my easel that Tim brought me. Some local and Parisian friends stopped to say hello. I didn't want to take my eyes from the subject!
So funny, the things you remember. Every plein air painting has a story like no other. This one takes me right back to lazy hot August days on the island.

I'm very happy to say that this painting will be exhibited in the forthcoming Royal Institute of Oil painters exhibition at the Mall Galleries, London. The exhibition is open from the 10th to the 21st December, closing at 1pm on the final day.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Portrait of Shirley


I painted a portrait demo today at Patchings art centre, in the middle of my exhibition. Shirley was my patient model, and a really lovely crowd of people came to watch. Matthew in the gallery looked after us well as always. I have just one more painting session in the gallery, it's on Saturday 22nd if you'd like to join me.
I also met a few Facebook/Twitter friends for the first time in person today, thank you for coming such a long way John and Chris, I really appreciate it and am glad to have met you. I might pop back on Facebook for my birthday at the weekend - a birthday treat!

Now I really must say a big hello to Shirley's friend Dimitra who lives on Spetses Island, which sounds like a gorgeous place! Hello!

And now I find myself on a train to London in the dark to meet my husband to catch a train to Paris! How fun!

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Oasis in Chelsea

Oasis in Chelsea
26" x 28"

This is a recent studio painting, the inspiration for which came from my visit to Chelsea in July for Pintar Rapido. This is the market place that I painted but the day before the event there were no market stalls and instead children played in these water jets. I was absolutely captivated by the subject with the bright sparkling water seen against the dark buildings in shadow. 
I really enjoyed building up glazes of colour for the darks, something that is only really possible in studio paintings with the benefit of drying time. The wet and dry, sunlit and shaded pavement area was a challenge! I tried to give the children's figures a loose treatment, to add an element of confusion, movement and splashing water.
I'm not altogether decided if it's finished, but it is hanging on my studio wall so I can glance at it occasionally and maybe I'll dip back in.

I'm taking a little holiday from Facebook so I am sorry if you are used to seeing me on there. My blog posts will still automatically update to it because frankly I can't be doing with figuring out how to stop that right now! I will be popping back on from time to time. And if you miss me you can still find me on twitter, Pinterest and Instagram. Why? Well I find those easy to dip in and out of, they just don't take up my time in the same way. 

Today (Wednesday 12th November) I will be painting a portrait demo at Patchings art centre. Still a few days left if you haven't seen my big exhibition there yet - it finishes on the 23rd.
Thank you Paul for coming all the way from Canada - you should really get a prize! :-)

Sunday, November 9, 2014

San Giovanni e Paolo

Morning shadows San Giovanni e Paolo
Oils 24 x 30 cms

It has certainly turned chilly here this week! This is one of the plein air studies that I brought back from Venice in October. I was standing on the bridge looking down at the Campo San Giovanni e Paolo in the morning. I really liked the long shadows cast by the Colleone statue and buildings and posts, and I knew I would have to act quickly to get them down and in so doing not worry too much about the drawing of the statue and column. The facing buildings, all in shadow, could be described quite rapidly. I just needed to be fairly careful about the rooflines and how they all fitted together, and then I could block in the dark shapes with just a suggestion of windows.
This was painted in oils on a small panel, 24 x 30 cms.
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