Wednesday, 13 June 2018

Images from Dorset art weeks

A few images from dorset art weeks which I participated in at the grove arms, Ludwell.
This was not such a good turnout, but I think the time of year, (where the school holidays coincide)
and the gorgeous hot sunny weather, I think everyone went to the beach.
I made a few smaller sales, but nothing too exciting.

I really must thank Nina Bartlett, the landlady of the Grove Arms for helping me to do this event, and to all the staff who manned it during the days when I was just too unwell to continue. I had to leave early several times, as my fybromyalgia was really too much to cope with, so I am sorry if anyone came to chat with me and I was not there.
 I hope it was not a problem as the paintings were still on the wall for the visitors to view.
It was good fun chatting with the locals, and meeting so many
new people and freinds.
I am absolutely shattered and having a few rest days, then its
on to the next project which is commission work.
will update soon....
The Grove arms, Ludwell, 

Thursday, 7 June 2018

opening that tin again..... Nobody breath!

Here we go again then....
In hope it gets finished in time for the impending art trail,  I felt like going back to the mixed media thing again and am planning a countryside scene.

I just love playing with these gilding flakes, 
which have been pretty tricky to control in this heat! They keep sticking to my fingers! 
In the pots by the way, are irridescent powders, which I bought from create and craft on tv
they will be added, and also glass bead paste and Lava paste. 
So here is the start of the painting.  
I have actually had to put it all to one side now. Been so busy, and have also had some commission enquiries that I have to look into. 
meanwhile this will stay in the studio, until I can come back and have another look.  

Tuesday, 1 May 2018

A bridge over troubled waters!

This painting of a bridge on Dartmoor, in Devon is now finished, unfortunately I still havent managed to find out exactly what it is called, but I know it was on the way back from a visit to
Buckfast Abbey.  (I have tried to google it but am getting lots of different names.)
As I have been dealing with a few personal things in my life just recently,  - and stuck for a title, 
I finally decided to call it WATER UNDER THE BRIDGE.    
 I was stuck on the water part for a few days, not really knowing how to tackle it. It really was a bridge over troubled water!! There was a lot of staring, - and swearing too I think!
Then one day I was sitting in the studio having blacked out yet another attempt, and thought "what would you see looking into that water? There would be a reflection of certain colours"
Then I turned it upside down and it suddenly all made sense!
I took a piece of chalk and roughly plotted out the bridge arches, and found that It was so 
much easier to work it that way.
I am so glad it has finally fallen into place, varnished and finished ready for Dorset art weeks.

Thursday, 26 April 2018

Weymouth Morning limited edition print.

 This is a limited edition print run of 50 - signed by myself, and this is number 5.  - Weymouth Morning.
I have had this print for a while now, printed by a friend of mine who had a largescale printer.
I realise now that I can print these myself on my A3 canon which is so much easier, so will be framing up some more of these in this format. 
I bought the frame at Friths in Salisbury, and framed it up myself.
so impressed with the result, and its for sale.

Sunday, 1 April 2018


I am not sure if the best part of the artwork is the varnishing, but I do love to see the colours come up so much brighter and fresher. 
It is not my favourite part as it's a bit tricky at times making sure there are no dust particles or hairs on the surface, and no drips or runs, but its the final process of a painting and I breath a sigh of relief once they are dry.
 Of course it's even better when the sun shines through the windows and lights them up like this. 

Friday, 30 March 2018

Alum Illustris

Completed at last!
This is ALUM ILLUSTRIS which is painted on box canvas, measuring 20" x 18"
This painting has taken me quite some time to complete, as you can see by the detail, but I really enjoy painting this subject. I will be doing another one later on, which has them on a hillside,
but have to finish the bridge painting first.

Tuesday, 27 March 2018

Sparkford art group.

 Had a lovely morning with Sparkford art group on Saturday.

 Even though I had lost my voice, they were all very patient with me, and we managed to achieve some good looking paintings in acrylics, of this cute little cottage. 

We learned how to deal with brickwork, using transparent mixing white. Also how to paint tiles, windows and thatch. 

A very enjoyable morning and luckily it didn't snow for too long so we could all get home! 

Sunday, 25 March 2018

A bridge too far!

 Here is my latest work in progress which is a bridge on Dartmoor, Devon.
I will check to find out its name as i am not really sure.

I have been looking at this subject for ages now, thinking that I might like to have a go at a really  large canvas again. The one in my studio measures 1 metre square, but I have chickened out a little bit at the moment.
 I am going to see how this one comes out first.  It measures 20"x 18"
Look out for updates on it's progress, - I have been calling it "A bridge too far" because of all the brickwork! Not sure if I will want to paint all that brickwork again on a grand scale, but its something to look at later.

Tuesday, 27 February 2018


Sorting through my watercolour folder ready to share this fun way of painting a woodland watercolour next week.
 I didnt realise I had so many "here's one I made earlier" subjects!
They do look rather good grouped together though.


Don't forget to check out the new addition "WATERCOLOURS"  at the top of the blog on the pages bar. 
I know most people know me for my bold acrylic style, but I also paint and demonstrate in this difficult medium when asked, and undertake commissions.
Forgotten Dreams

Throdmill cottage

Friday, 9 February 2018

Shaftesbury snowdrop festival

Off to the Shaftesbury Snowdrop Festival annual exhibition tonight, for the preview night.
Really looking forward to it, as there seemed to be quite a lot of artists at the handing in afternoon, and it
is so nice to catch up with other likeminded souls, some have become good freinds and great support.

So here is my effort for this year, called  "Spirits of Spring"
 It has some irridescent medium in there to make it shine.

 As you will probably remember, (and you can read all about it in Blog archives)
 I won the people's choice prize, the very first year this event was born so I feel it is a really good cause, 
so much fun to be involved with it all, and also to encourage tourism to Shaftesbury.

9th to 18th February
Shaftesbury art centre, Bell street, Shaftesbury, Dorset. SP7 8AR

Saturday, 3 February 2018

Working in the studio, Finally finished!

Finally finished this one!
 Had a bit of a struggle with the reflections, but I think it is worth it now that it is done and 
I can stand back and admire! 
It has no formal title yet, but it depicts the treeline on the headland at Budleigh Salterton.  I think it may be something with the word "Reflections" in there somewhere.

 you get a bit of a flavour of where all the magic happens, in my small, - but very cozy studio, 
which I love to call "COAL HOUSE STUDIOS" where the ideas are born.


This acrylic artwork is titled " Waiting for the tides" and depicts weymouth harbour.
These two boats are always moored in the same place, and I know they have been on many magazine covers for Dorset.  I had been meaning to paint them for some time, making several sketches in the past, but of course, the day I went down to see them again and make sketch studies they had all moved around! 
I always love to watch all the boats in the harbour congregate into a procession, waiting for the time when the alarm bells go off, and the road bridge parts and rises up so that the larger vessels can come in or out.

I started this painting back in the summertime, as a demo piece for a "meet the artist event"
If you scroll down this page you will find the info on the time I spent at the Cove Gallery in Weymouth, where I sat in the window painting, and meeting all the lovely people who came in to say hello. I had such a great time, as I love meeting  new people, and the children were so interested in my sketchbooks, that I actually gave them a quick lesson, then their parents were off to buy rollerball pens from Lidles!

Friday, 19 January 2018

prints available now at Edie-mae's

These images are now available to buy from EDIE-MAE'S gallery and Tea rooms.
This is such a lovely place to visit, you can spend plenty of time there just looking around.
With it's gallery upstairs, and tearooms, and lots of lovely upcycled furniture to admire or purchase, you can even take a course on how it's done!
There is such a lovely welcome from the owner Claire, and a diverse collection of artists and makers exhibiting here.  
Really easy to find right on the main road through Stourpaine village, next door to the local pub, just outside of Blandford Forum in Dorset. DT11 8TA


These are framed in white, and there are a couple of smaller ones wrapped and mounted,
but please do contact me if you would like them framed in a different colour.

Thursday, 9 November 2017

christmas doodle presents

 After taking that pen and wash class, (which I really enjoyed,) I am now working on some charming little sketches for 3 of my friends who I know love to receive my artwork. 
They had one each last year and loved them, luckily I still had the same frames to match.
 I get a bit of a buzz giving presents to close friends and family, made by my own  fair hands! 
But I could'nt decide what to paint for each one, so they have the same, 
slightly different, daisies.

I can now update this post, as I couldnt say much before and spoil the surprise, they have been given as christmas presents now, and were really pleased with them. 
They were such fun to create, and I will be doing another class in this medium again, and I will
post details of future dates. 

Monday, 6 November 2017


Well its been a bit of a busy couple of weeks for me. I haven't had much time to update the blog as I had courses to prepare. 

The first one was with Bratton art group, Nr Westbury, Wilts
They are all very skilled artists in various mediums, so I must admit I was very nervous. 
They said that they would like to go back to drawing, and re-discovering the discipline that goes with it. I like to make my lessons fun, so I prepared a pen and wash morning.

Starting with this lovely loose sketch, that I just doodled out of my head one evening, I wanted to make the water and ink do all the work. No stress on the detail. just enjoy. 

Next we tried out these sweet little daisies. 
Again it was good to get everyone used to the flow of the pens and splashing the water around. 

I use really cheap roller ball pens found in such places as Lidles! 
I just find the cheaper they are, the more they flow. Children's pens are also a good idea as they are washable from clothing. 
Also, I cannot stress enough, about the texture of the paper if you are thinking of giving this a go. I have used Bristol Board for these, which I found is a little expensive for practicing, but I usually use my sketch books which are equally as successful, and they are just thick cartridge paper. 
Watercolour paper, sugar paper, or anything with a good absorbency is not good for this technique as the paper sucks the water down into its core, and you are trying to float the ink around on the surface of the paper.

The second part of the class consisted of 10 minute sketches.

10 minute sketches from photographs 

here you can see the ones I did which actually took me 8 minutes on average. - (I know, Bighead!) - but then I've had a lot of practise.

I printed out a variety of photos for the group to choose, and then they had 10 minutes to complete one. 
Every 10 minutes we passed the photo on to the next person. 
I like to call it pass the picture!
I was not looking for accuracy, perspective, or any other perfection. I was bringing out the urgency, and need to get something down on paper quickly, which you would experience if you were looking at a subject outside, with your sketchbook. Also just the enjoyment of doing it.
It also brings out a sort of charm all its own, when using this medium.
 It takes a while to get used to drawing with a pen, and not reaching for pencil and rubber! 

I used to work all the time in different grades of graphite pencil, doing all the shading, and depth, only to find later on when I went back and looked at some of the work, it was smudged, and faded.
I started to work in pen, even using Biro sometimes, as it gives a lovely crisp line, which as you can see, is softened by the use of the water. 
The group enjoyed this and so did I actually. good effort by all. 

Tuesday, 29 August 2017


Saturday 9th of september was a bit of a mixed day, at sculptures by the lakes plein air festival, organised by artist Stephen Yates.

As you can imagine, it was a difficult day, with the showers coming over us in waves.
It started out really well, with the sun shining, and I had managed a pen and wash sketch
to plan out my painting. As soon as I got my paints out of the bag that was it!. 
By lunchtime I was sitting under an umbrella, trying to balance everything with only 2 hands!
It was so lovely to see the visitors supporting us, and taking an interest in what we do, even though the weather became even more trying later with thunder storms. 
 By that time I had called it a day, had a late lunch, and gave up. I managed to get some pretty dramatic photographs to work from at a later date, but I have a bit of a phobia 
about thunderstorms, (having a few near misses as a child,) so walking around the lake was well out of my comfort zone!  
Unfortunately not as many artists joined in this time, I think due to the unpredictable weather, but I found several of them dotted around doing lovely work, one of which I have 
been informed, has now been sold. I now have to finish mine at home. 

If you scroll down, 2 posts you will read about the last plein air fest at 
sculpture by the lakes, Pallington, nr Dorchester.DT2 8QU

Pen and wash sketch 
After the storm.
This is as far as the weather would let me paint! 

Monday, 31 July 2017


Image result for cove gallery weymouth

It was my turn to do MEET THE ARTIST, at The Cove gallery, Trinity street, Weymouth, this saturday. I didnt realise it was the bank holiday weekend, but it was great fun, and lots of people to chat to about art. Especially the younger generation, who were interested in getting into art. We talked about pen and ink washed sketches, and drawing skills, and they seemed to like my sketchbooks.
As you can see, I set up camp, - well studio, in the corner of the shop and people could watch me painting through the window. It was funny to start with, as I wanted to wave at them, but I continued with my painting, and gradually got used to it. 
I even had a few friends drop in to give moral support. 

I went to Weymouth a week before this, delivering greetings cards to the gallery and I also planning to get some more sketches of these 2 boats, which are always parked in the same place, but of course, not on the day I went there! They had moved further down, behind one another, as i think it was a busy time for sailing that day.  I was glad I got photos and sketches in the past to work from.

This will be the 4th time I have painted this harbour now, (which I affectionately call Ballymoray as someone once said that's what my little houses looked like!)
 I did say never again, but I suppose I can't resist it, as its so pretty. 

Ballymoray!  (weymouth Morning, 
available as limited edition prints at Cove gallery).

Looking through
 the window.
My workspace in the gallery window

Close up of the harbour buildings detail.

Sunday, 23 July 2017


Sculptures by the Lakes,
 Pallington, Near Dorchester in Dorset, DT2 8QU  this is a beautiful location.
Organised by artist Stephen Yates,this pleinair festival was well attended. 
 I can tell you this was such a fun event, even though I know a few of us were a bit nervous how we were going to cope, being away from the comfort of our studios! 
 Plein Air  means artists are expected to show up with their painting equipment and find a scene to paint in situ, and hopefully finish a picture or 2 between 10am and 5pm, we were so lucky with the weather, only having a couple of spots of rain in the afternoon. 
There were around 20 artists dotted around the grounds and a great number of visitors came along and supported us. I love to chat to anyone interested in art so it was really interesting to get the imput.
People could buy work directly from the artists, I heard of 1 that had sold, but still getting the feedback about it all. 
I think it was a successful day and we are all looking forward to the next one. 
The next date for this is Saturday 9th September, so if you missed this one you have another chance to catch us in action.