Tuesday, 17 July 2018

And its' back to work!

Monday Blues
Experimental wash

 Well the excitement of being at Patchings Art Festival is now gradually wearing off and I am back in my studio working on my next new book. But there is so much else to do!

I am reading so many emails from visitors to the festival last week , many asking for places on my fully sold out workshops so at the moment the wait list for cancellation places is really long. I will be replying to everyone as soon as I can.

Right now I need to prepare paintings for completely new step by steps for my next publication. Many include fascinating washes and colour combinations similar to the one shown above. Light has always been a huge influence on my work. Light and movement so this is what I am aiming to capture in even my abstract compositions to gain a sense of dramatic excitement.

But for now, I think I have had far too much excitement. Its' time to settle down and paint quietly!

I did mention in my demonstrations last week that no matter how busy we are we should always find time to warm up with watercolour work outs regularly. Just playing with colour to see where it leads.

I'm very happy with my colour experiments from today!


Artists Tip?

We don't always have time or the inclination to paint a full composition or serious piece of art. But playing with colour for a short time on a regular basis keeps us in the right frame of mind to want to paint when we do have that luxurious time to do so.

So paint, paint and paint!

And have fun experimenting with colour.


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Monday, 16 July 2018

Sold out! The Excitement of Patchings Art Festival 2018

The last copy of my new book sold at its launch, Patchings 2018

Wow, what a week has just past. I went to Patchings Art Festival where I had been invited as a celebrity guest artist for St Cuthberts Mill marquee. I also had my own marquee where I was launching and celebrating the release of my new book " Atmospheric Flowers in Watercolour". The first night there I set up my marquee with the help of my terrific friend Lindsay and then rested before the opening day.It had been a long day getting there.

Over 45 coaches arrived the next morning to see the Festival and the car parks were quickly filling up.  I was demonstrating at 1.15 p.m.  and wandered outside my marquee for some air before making my way towards the demonstration marquee. Outside I could see a huge long line of people queueing up to see an artist and then I realised they were all queueing to see me! Everyone laughed when I told them. I will admit it is still a little overwhelming when things like this happen as they quite often do. You would think I get used to this  because I travel, film and teach so much but no. I am still completely surprised when I see a huge audience. Surprised and thrilled.Humbled, taken aback and prepared to show as many techniques as possible to ensure everyone watching has a great time.

There was standing room only to watch my demonstrations on the first day and with the intense heat at the time I admire everyone who sat through the hour long demo which everyone did until the very end. The applause then was a lovely way to close the session and I quickly  raced next door to my own marquee to sign copies of my books. The crowd had now moved there. But I was taken aback because I sold out of everything on day one at the festival. In the morning I had a lovely display of many books piled ready to sell. And sell they did! This is actually quite a feat as I had discussed the order of my books with my publisher well in advance. Because it was so big I had expected to bring some boxes of books home with me. But no, they all sold and quickly which left me with a terrible dilemma. I now had nothing to even show anyone who came to Patchings on Friday and Saturday.  Luckily my publishers wonderfully came to the rescue and drove all the way from Kent in UK to Nottingham with many more boxes which we all agreed would see me through the next two days easily. How surprised they were when I had to tell them the good news that my new book had sold out yet again! By late Saturday afternoon I had no copies left.

I gave three sold out demonstrations to over a thousand people, I signed so many books that I lost count and I met the best people ever making my return to this fantastic annual art festival a truly memorable occasion.

The only blip this week was right before my Thursday demonstration when I had to be seen by a medic to check I was okay before going on stage. They also checked me out afterwards. In fact they were brilliant.  So if anyone in the front row could see what was going on outside the marquee at the front, I am fine and I am sorry if it worried you! Being totally honest I was offered the opportunity to not demonstrate at all but I couldn't do that. I know my workshops are fully booked and some of the audience had looked forward to seeing me at Patchings for so long that I simply couldn't let anyone down. Luckily ten minutes into the demonstration everything settled and I gave quite a closing telling everyone what had happened and how ecstatic I was to have pulled the tips and technique demonstration off.  I have never in my career not gone on stage or not turned up for a workshop and I don't intend to start now. I even taught several courses in UK in a wheel chair once after breaking my ankle, as artists had flown from all over the world for them.

So, to everyone who came to see me. THANK you so much! To everyone who bought a book or brought one to be signed, thank YOU so much. And to everyone who came to say Hello, thank you so much too!

I have more to share which I will over the following week but its' good to be back in my studio right now. Painting and loving life here again.

Happy painting.


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Tuesday, 3 July 2018

Patchings Art Festival 2018 : Jean Haines Demonstration Tickets and Book Signing Event 12-14th July

 "All White"

This morning I started my day by deadheading the flowers in my garden . This daily routine gives me time to think and plan ahead. This week I am preparing for my demonstrations at Patchings Art Festival which takes place next week.

I love Patchings! Its' a place where everyone who loves art and crafts unite in the warmest and friendliest of surroundings.  I have been invited by St Cuthberts Mill who produce my favourite watercolour paper , Saunders Waterford , to demonstrate as a celebrity guest artist in the main festival marquee. I will be demonstrating on Thursday, Friday and Saturday. I also have my own marquee where I will be happy to sign copies of my books which will be on display and for sale.

For new comers, please note that buying tickets in advance for  my demonstrations is a wise idea as they can sell out on the day. At the foot of this blog post is a link to help you if you wish to purchase tickets. 


Some advise for Patchings visitors:-

1) Buy your demonstration tickets on line in advance to make sure you get to see your favourite demonstrations!

2) Do come to this event with cash or cheques as not every stand will be taking credit cards.

  
3) Part of me wants to say do come wearing blinkers so that you don't buy everything BUT.... don't wear these in the Daniel Smith marquee where all my favourite colours will be available! 

4) If you can't carry everything make notes of products you wish to try and make sure you know where to purchase them from. later.

But now back to my painting of white roses, why  is the title "All White "? 
Because I have so much to do this week that I am reminding myself that everything will be "all white on the night"! 

I started the above painting by placing three shapes for flowers as white spaces to form the flowers and I created a background around them using Daniel Smith Green Apatite Genuine and French Ultramarine Blue. The centre of my flowers are created with Aussie Red Gold, highly diluted on some of the petals to add a sense of warmth. The first stage is seen below and detail has been added in the above painting which is yet to be completed.



First stage of my white rose painting


If you have my new book " Atmospheric Flowers in Watercolour" you will see the white rose paintings included in it along with composition ideas. 

But now I must get back to work preparing for next week. Do please say Hi if you come to Patchings as I would love to see you!

To buy tickets for my demonstrations please see the link below for full information.


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Saturday, 30 June 2018

Waterlilies in Watercolour 2018

"Side by Side"
Dedicated to two sisters who inspire me constantly.
Carol and Gayle.


How funny life is. I woke this morning determined to work on my new book. The paintings in it so far look stunning and are hopefully my best ever. I know I am growing in my personal art journey and gaining many "light bulb "moments as ideas on technique hit me over and over again recently. I am dying to host my next workshops with so much to share but I will be demonstrating at Patchings Art Festival soon. So can at least show everyone my new favourite colours and techniques there.  N.B. Please do  pre order your tickets if you want to watch me as they apparently are selling fast.

And so I came into my studio this morning absolutely raring to go on compiling a new chapter for my new book. I had dreamt abou tit all night. But I took a few photographs of my garden first and shared them on Facebook.  My mistake or was it?  I have many friends on my personal Facebook page who I have met over the years especially on tour. Two wonderful friends I love staying in touch with on line are Gayle and Carol. sisters from Oregon USA.  They have the most wonderfully loving family, are both fantastic creatives on every level and I adore hearing from them and seeing their Facebook posts.  They probably have no idea how much I love seeing their name whether they are posting or replying to me, but I do.

This morning I shared a photograph of the water lilies that are on the pond in our cottage garden. These flowers are absolutely glorious this year. Shortly after I had posted the photo Gayle responded with " I would love to see you paint this". I smiled. I had no time to paint water lilies today but the idea was now firmly planted in my brain. Try as I might I couldn't ignore my artists' heart strings begging me to paint these beautiful floral blooms. As I worked hard on my new book I couldn't help but realise I have never painted a full composition of waterlilies before. The thought would not leave me.

Well. I guess you know where this blog post is going. The above painting is of course a clue! 

I pulled a scrap of paper out of my trash bin and looked at it. It could work easily as a background for a painting of water lilies and before you could say "dragon fly" I was off.  Far away from my pre-planned schedule andI was  painting the above scene. And how very happy it made me.

I could hug Gayle for pushing me in this alternative direction and strangely enough I now have an idea for my new book that could incorporate this painting! A huge bonus from going astray.

You know, life has a very strange way of making you do the things you should do when you need to . If you would only listen to what your instincts are telling you. We don't though. We often quell what we feel would be a fabulous thing to do because another far more important deed or chore needs our attention.

Well as far as I am concerned life is far too short to ignore doing what we want. As a child I was often told what I could and couldn't do. What I could and couldn't wear. As an adult I am darned if I am going to be " told what to do" and "when to do it".

I am going to have fun non stop and if the above painting is an example of me painting for me I think I'm onto a roll and a winning formula.

So my artists tip for today is?

Do what you really want to do and if a subject pulls at your heart strings to paint it don't leave that particular piece until tomorrow or when you have " time"

Paint it today!

I just did!



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Gayle and Carol, I was going to paint you two white roses today as you are on my mind but Gayle disracted me and I am so grateful for that distraction. Thank you! 
Hugs to you both xxxx 

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Tuesday, 19 June 2018

Poppies in Watercolour : Vibrant Colour

 Poppy painting as a work in progress

Goodness as always is flying and it seems like ages ago that my last workshop was held in UK but it isn't actually that long. I have been working on my new book, experimenting and finding easy ways to paint popular subjects. I am aware that it is frustrating when you look at an art book and the full instructions are missing in a step by step. And it happens. 

Funnily enough this week I have been approached by a few artists who couldn't get a technique they had read about. And they were asking me if I could help them. As it wasn't my book I kindly suggested that they write to the author as maybe they could help them reach their goal.  I also felt it might be helpful to that particular author to know there was a problem with understanding the particular technique which isn't one I use.

I do help as much as I can, whenever I can, when asked questions about watercolour but this recent situation reminded me of a cook book I once helped put together for a charity when I was living in Hong Kong. The proceeds from the book were to go to an orphanage and everyone contributing was doing so for free.  Every recipe would be tested by a group of willing volunteers, myself included, and if the recipe was successful it would go into the charity cook book along with the contributors name. We had some fantastic recipes donated from all over the world and we cooked each one. Most worked beautifully but one recipe was a disaster. No matter who cooked that dish it never looked or tasted right. I had the horrible task of contacting the contributor to ask if they had made a mistake with the ingredients. There was silence at first at the end of the phone. Then came back shock and disbelief that their recipe hadn't worked. I then explained honestly that several teams of volunteers had each tried to cook the dish following the exact given instructions and not one had ended with a good or edible result. Finally the contributor admitted that they had left one very important piece of information out of not only thelist of  ingredients but also the method of cooking too. It was a "secret" family recipe and they wanted to keep it secret. But they had also wanted their name in the book. I suggested they forward another recipe with all the ingredients included and we would try that one instead. It ended happily . Their name and new recipe was in the book. A huge relief to all involved!

But some art books are like that too. One missing piece of information can really cause problems for anyone trying to follow any included demonstration instructions.

So here I am looking at this poppy painting as a work in progress thinking about how I could describe what I have just done so that in a book even the newest of artists will understand. And be able to follow my step by step. I may have an idea of  how to do just that. But if I left my blog post here that would be like the recipe with missing information story and terribly unfair to you!

How did I create the painting this far?

 This is all about water flow of course as you can see in the image above which way the colour is running. There is Cadmium Orange in this piece for very bold stubborn colour that is harder to move than other translucent pigments.. There is strong bold Perylene Red by Daniel Smith. Lots and lots of water moves the pigment across the paper which is turned as I work. Then  I have added a drop of black ink in the centres of my imaginary flowers, where I  think they will look good.. Just a tiny dot, not too much. 

Why Ink? Read on!

Now I can create patterns but how?

I haven't just used water. I have , with an old brush dropped on my still wet paper tiny dots of granulation fluid. This now forces the ink to push through the red and orange pigments forming gorgeous veins of patterns as they move. The Cadmium Orange is stubborn and slow to move but it does begrudgingly.

I am going to say here , this wouldn't work as well with quiet watercolour products. The red and orange shades I have chosen by.Daniel Smith are so powerful they really will give me fantastic patterns as they interact with both the ink and the granulation fluid.

The full painting as a work in progress can be seen below. It looks beautiful in reality. The power of the colour is lost on screen.



"Poppy Dance"
Work in progress


Artists Tip
If you can't follow a demonstration in an art magazine or book  try contacting the author/artist as your not being able to follow their written directions may help their next book or written article become better. Quite often each time authors write they too are on a learning curve and need to learn how to improve their descriptive skills. 
As long as they are of course sharing the "whole" description!


Perhaps my poppies now won't be in my next book as I have talked about them here so I will go and try another experiment but I must admit these are rather lovely!


Have a great day and  happy painting!


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Thursday, 14 June 2018

Atmospheric Flowers in Watercolour; New Book Available now!

Paintings from my new book
"Atmospheric Flowers in Watercolour"

 Thank you so much to everyone who has contacted me to let me know you have a copy of my new book "Atmospheric Flowers in Watercolour " which has just been released.

This was such a special book to write and one I have dreamt about putting together for so long. In fact this would have been my first book had things worked out differently but finally I was able to write it and I am glad I had to wait to do  so because I have learnt so much over the years that would have been missing from the demonstrations had this been written years ago. I can now pull on all I have gleamed from painting to share with others to create floral paintings that are unique, beautiful and of course a joy to paint.

It is available now on Amazon.com UK and leading art stores and art stockists.

Now I can wander around my garden and fall in love all over again with the flowers that were filmed here last year, remembering the very happy times of creating this very special publication.

Thank you so much again, for liking my books and helping me be an author. Every single time I get a kind comment about my work I think about how very lucky I am .

I am indeed.

Very lucky!

 My latest book "Atmospheric Flowers in Watercolour"
Available now!


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Colour Explosion

Colour explosion
Experimental work in progress

Oh my, am I having a great time in my studio.  I held workshops in UK recently and couldn't wait to get back to my own personal painting time to create. I am working on yet another new book and this one is filled with colour work to lift the soul and feed the artist within.

I am also doing so much research for this new project that I am out often, day and night looking into why art effects me in the way it does. It is definitely healing but far more than this it is energising. So do look out for yet another Jean Haines publication next year. For now I have so much gorgeous work to do involved with it that I cant wait to awaken each day. It is wonderful.

The above was just a fun playing experiment with colour and different products. Yes of course, artists who know me or follow me will instantly recognise some strong use of Daniel Smith watercolours but a lot more is in this piece as well as just colour!

I feel I should have a big sign over my head saying " Watch this space" as I never know what I am going to create next , but all I do know isthat I feel great and I love creating. Shouldn't we all?

Have a great day and happy painting to you!


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