blog

Sharing some of the main events and highlights of my journey...

RWA Open

28/09/2018

Wowee. That was close!!!! The RWAOpen (The Royal West of England Academy Open) was the only competition I entered this year with any of the major institutions, and I genuinely had no expectations of it, and had actually chastised myself for 'wasting' the entry fee. So when I found out that not one, but two of my paintings had been pre-selected I was absolutely over the moon. Maybe it isn't THE Royal Academy, but it is one of only 5 Royal Academies in the UK, so it's still quite a big deal - for me anyway! So my paintings duly delivered to RWA in Bristol - they are somewhere in that room, waiting for the Jurors to deliberate. I didn't make the final cut, but being in that room was enough for me! And there's always next time!!

30th Arundel Gallery Trail

27/08/2018

Whilst the 10 days of the Arundel Gallery Trail is quite intense, and a fairly significant commitment - it is such a joy. I never tire of just being in the background and seeing and hearing peoples reaction to my work. It is always a real treat. And this year particularly has brought some other opportunities - which is really exciting! One of them being The Chester Art Beat in October!
And this year we had some fun taking selfies with The Big Mummas!

Portrait Masterclass

04/08/2018

I'm loving that my other half has taken to buying me fabulous workshops and master classes for birthdays and Christmases! It's a brilliant opportunity to learn from those at the top of their game, push yourself out of your comfort zone, and meet other artists!! On this occasion I was at The Rag Factory with Andrew James NEAC and The New School of Art. This was only the third time I had worked with a life model, and in this amazing and supportive environment with Andrew's brilliant demonstration and tuition I learnt SO much, and really felt like I made a bit of a leap forward. Happy Days!

Holly Bush Emerging Woman Painter Prize

12/07/2018

I had impulsively taken a punt at submitting for this prize organised by Ecclestone Art Agency, and staged at Burgh House and Museum, Hampstead. So I was completely blown away to find myself as one of the 21 finalists! And the most wonderful part of this has been meeting some of the other artists - a particularly lovely bunch of women!

Part of wider project to support and celebrate female artists, the The Holly Bush Emerging Woman Painter Prize focuses on supporting and encouraging the careers of emerging female painters. This prize is aimed at women painters who wish to extend their artistic practice and develop their artistic careers beyond the studio

Surrey Artist Open Studios

02/06/2018

It's such a treat to exhibit in Shamley Green at Alison Harding's house with her for Surrey Artists Open Studios. She's one of those amazing women that whatever she does, she does it artfully. Her whole house and garden are beautiful - everything either holds a memory, or is beautifully crafted, or arranged, and so it all speaks of warmth, personality, family, colour and art.
Plus our visitors are lovely - always lots of chatter and laughs, and we get great feedback.
This year I exhibited along with Alison Harding, Zuju Shareef, Paula Smith, Nancy Goodens, Clare Lewendon and Mandy McKenna.

AppArt 2018

29/03/2018

This exhibition goes from strength to strength, and is now a central part of the calendar of South East art events. Evelyn and Gwyn Phillips, the AppArt founders, work tirelessly to gather an incredible range of artists and sculptors from around the country to take part in this event which is by selection. I am proud to have been a regular!

You can imagine I was tickled pink when I found they had featured my painting in an article on the event in a local colour magazine. And even more tickled when a lovely lady arrived within the first half hour of the Private View with the intent of buying my painting, having seen said article!! Much celebrating followed ;)

Portrait Workshop

11/11/2017

I'm a very lucky bunny, having a very supportive other half! For my birthday I got a Max Hale workshop at Pegasus Art in Stroud. People are my main focus, but I only ocassionally attempt to capture a likeness, and so this is an area I want to improve! Only ever having worked with a life model once before, very briefly - I was a little trepidatious though! But they were a lovely crowd, and Jan was a very patient model!

I will definitely be trying more portraiture!

Arundel Gallery Trail 2017

19/08/2017

Arundel Gallery Trail is such a wonderful event - not only seeing the work of over 150 artists, but getting to have a peek inside some of Arundels amazing historical buildings in the process! Plus the Arundel Festival runs concurrently - so there is heaps to see and do!

My host, Mary Bayford, is a gemstone and chainmail jeweller, and watching her work is incredible - I wouldn't have the patience! It's a very happy 10 days for me - getting to meet such a variety of people, and it's always great to get direct feedback on your work from visitors.!

Forest Gallery Fine Art

21/07/2017

This is turning out to be quite a summer!!! I am now being represented by Forest Gallery Fine Art. I am so proud and delighted to be working with them - they were in Guildford for many many years (which is where we lived too) and are now in Petworth - so it is fabulous to be working with a Gallery that is so familiar and is so local!

The London Art Show

20/07/2017

Gobsmacked! I was selected to be part of The Stroke Associations inaugural 'London Art Show' staged at The Coningsby Gallery in Fitzrovia. I couldn't believe I was in the room with artists of the calibre of Tim Benson, Martin Yeoman, and Eileen Cooper!! Plus I actually got to meet Tim Benson (one of my art heroes!) so the event couldn't have been better!

Unity in Variety VII

10/07/2017

Gabriel Fine Arts invited me to take part in this mixed exhibition held at The Nehru Centre, in Mayfair. The Nehru Centre is the Indian Embassy's cultural centre, and they stage a wonderful mix of events. And it was such fun to meet such varied group of artists from all over Europe.

Surrey Open Studios

03/06/2017

Surrey Open Studios is all about visiting studios, meeting artists and makers, seeing them at work, browsing completed works and seeing work in progress. Cranley Cottage, in Shamley Green, is such a delightful venue, and I was lucky enough to share this space with the venue host Alison Harding and 5 other artists - 4 painters, a jeweller, textile artist and a glass artist. It made for a really interesting mixed exhibition, and our visitors felt it was very worthwhile, and said lots of very complimentary things!

Plein Air Painting with Haidee-Jo Summers

13/05/2017

I'm a strong believer in pushing yourself, and facing your fears. I'm a studio painter of people - I'm terrified of painting trees and landscapes - I mean where does a landscape start and end?? Whereas people are heads and shoulders, knees and toes, knees and toes! You know where you are with a human, you can see where they start and finish! And as for painting plein air???? Ugh!

So I asked Father Christmas for a weekend workshop of Plein Air Painting - and he was very accommodating :). And if you're going to learn something, learn from one of the best. Thats how I found myself in lovely Harwich at The Old Bank Studios for a course with none other than Haidee-Jo Summers!

Seeing a master at work is invaluable, seeing how they set up, how they handle their brush and medium - and its humbling when you find they are so generous and sharing of their knowledge. Im still terrified of landscapes (Trees especially!) but I feel empowered by that weekend, and will definitely be manning up and having another go at some point! Thank you Haidee-Jo!

AppArt

01/04/2017

I've been delighted to be a regular of this annual event, now staged at Priorsfield School in Godalming. It is always such a wonderful mix of artists, and so well attended by the public! Evelyn & Gwyn Philips, of AppArt, always curate such a great show, creating a brilliant blend of 2D and 3D, both indoors and out!

Guildford Art at Clyde & Co

01/03/2017

Guildford Arts is a volunteer run organisation who organise, publicise and develop arts activities in the Guildford area - and are really passionate and dedicated to what they do. I was invited to take part in a mixed exhibition at Clyde & Co's corporate offices - plus I was asked to give a presentation on my work and process at the Private View! Daunting but I actually really enjoyed the experience and it seemed the audience did too - so all good! Phew!

Artrooms

20/01/2017

70 artists were selected from over 800 entrants by a selection committee that included the likes of Gavin Turk - so I was a very chuffed bunny to be in the mix!. Artrooms is held at The Melia White House Hotel, and each artist is given a bedroom in which to exhibit. I set myself the theme of privacy and intimacy, as this is what I see bedrooms as being about, but my work is always about people I have seen, and I wasn't about to paint soft porn - so instead I explored how we deal with these issues publicly. But I had fun with the theme in dressing the room for the show.......unmade bed; fluffy bunny slippers; hot water bottle; room service tray parked on the side; Paracetamol on one night stand - herbal Viagra on the other; partially completed Sudoku in the bathroom - you get the idea - I made the room lived in by ordinary everyday folk!