Wednesday, 18 April 2018

Bluebell Woods 2018

"Bluebell Heaven"
Bluebell Woods 2018


As always time is flying and there is so much to do. Tomorrow I have a meeting with my publisher. Last week I delivered new work to the Wey Gallery in Godalming, Surrey, UK and they will be showing my latest paintings of bluebell woods. Inspired by the woodland near my home and the bluebells that grow in the woodland area of our garden.

Spring is a wonderful time to be inspired by nature. Colour at this time of year is so tempting as flowers begin to bloom and turn the previous dull hues of Winter into lively energetic beautiful scenes that seem to change daily.

In my new book "Atmospheric Flowers in Watercolour" I describe how I paint bluebells.

This month though I discovered that using two shades in particular by Daniel Smith really added drama to the simple use of blues when painting dense carpets of flowers as those seen in my painting above. 


Small bluebell wood study

I used French Ultramarine but added Wisteria by Daniel Smith on top of the blue application. It gave me a slightly pinkish hue which looks violet in some lights and sections. It is a great combination and one I hadn't expected to use. But then painting is an activity that often leads to stunning happy accidents and surprises.

Now I am working on yet another new book which is really challenging and will need quite a bit of research to complete it. And this research will do me good!

For now I'm happily painting Spring flowers as the seasons change so quickly and if we blink we will miss the opportunity to capture as many in watercolour as we can while they are gloriously in bloom


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Monday, 9 April 2018

Spring Inspiration 2018; Tulips in Watercolour

 Tulips in a glass vase
Work in Progress

This has to be the very best time of year to be inspired. Everywhere I  turn I see new subjects to paint and I spend my evenings imagining how I will paint them when I get to my studio the next day. Spring is a time for looking forward. I feel energised and motivated especially as I was teaching watercolour workshops in UK last week. Thank you so much to everyone who not only came but added to the fabulous warn atmosphere in each session. I left on a high each day too and I know from reading emails about my classes that they were really well received and enjoyed. I do love teaching and sharing my passion for painting so much but each time I do hold a workshop I can't wait to paint myself.


So here the start to this weeks painting. I have a collection of Spring flower paintings on my easel at the moment. My wonderful husband bought me some tulips this weekend and they are to die for. Their colours are beautifully glowing and the sheen on the petals is fascinating me. Silky , shining blooms.


I started creating my first painting of tulips this year with a gorgeous first wash. It was so beautiful and fresh that I couldn't resist painting another straight away. There was magic in the first spontaneous wash. This one can be seen on the upper right corner of my easel in the photograph below. The next larger first wash seen on the left of  my easel below was better planned, in that I knew where I would be placing my flowers. I painted each individual bloom in this wash differently as I thought about the arrangement more. But to be completely honest, I actually like the freedom in my less planned wash far more. Which is often the case. I do believe we can over think a painting at times, killing the  sense of fluidity and freedom that can occur when pigments simply interact alone minus our help. At the foot of my easel in the image below  you can see a small study of tulips. This piece I quickly did on a scrap of paper to consider where I would add detail to my lovely two bigger washes. This I did as a warm up to completing them. You will be able to see more about this creative form of journey in my new book about painting flowers which will be out later this year.


 Two first washes of tulip arrangements and a small completed study of the same flowers.

 I can't stop painting flowers at the moment which my easel photograph below hints at!

 Spring flower paintings adorning my studio easel

I love the physical creative process as much as the finished paintings. So much so that I am in no rush to complete these pieces. I may even start a third wash before moving on to adding final details. Its' the joy I feel when moving my brushes that is so important to me. And this morning my heart is full of joy.  Even more so because I am falling in love again with techniques covered in my new book which is due out in June. 

"Atmospheric Flowers in Watercolour" , my new book and the journey in writing it, has given me the boost I needed to spring into life with my latest work. I'm so excited and eager to paint so I will close my blog post for now. But whatever you are doing this week I do hope you find time to paint. Nothing stimulates the artist soul better than watching colours flow. 
So get out and find your own inspiration to keep your brushes moving.

Happy Painting!


First wash, early stage of my tulip painting.
And I love it at this point!


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Monday, 2 April 2018

A Steet Dog Named Abner : Dedicated to Janice Blore

 "A Street Dog Named Abner"
or
(" What big ears you have!" )

Some time back I was invited to teach watercolour workshops in Vancouver by Janice Blore who runs "Artescapes". I delightedly accepted and have since returned and each time loved my time there.

Janice is the most wonderful workshop host. She is generous, genuinely caring and extremely professional. But what hits you about meeting Janice is her heart which is huge. And my painting above is a testament to her kindness and love.

My model for this study is Abner who is a little Mexican rescue dog.

Abner is an escapee! On arrival at the workshop location each attending artist is asked very nicely to be very careful when opening and closing the door as little Abner likes the thought of running around streets still,  but he is safer under the watchful eye of Janice.

 This cute little bundle of fun entertains and is so adorable that when I picked up my brushes yesterday and initially painted a blob of colour I could see him in the " blob" long before I had even decided what it was even going to be.

I have loved teaching in Vancouver and meeting people there.

And I have literally adored meeting little Abner!

Thank you Janice for hosting and being so fantastic.

I hope this post gives you a surprise!



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Tuesday, 27 March 2018

Singing for Spring 2018

"How can I keep From Singing"
Spring flowers in watercolour
Muscari,narcissus and pussy willow 

Oh my goodness. I need 48 hour days to be able to paint all I wish to paint at the moment. There is so much inspiration around with flowers  bursting into life everywhere. This week my fascination has turned to pussy willow and their stunningly soft fluffy buds. The above painting started out as just narcissus flowers but then I felt a touch of blue would add to the colour combinations beautifully. So I added muscari. This I did by picking some from my garden to work from as inspiration. But then I saw some pussy willows on a tree whilst I was walking and I thought they would look great in the top upper corner reaching towards the upper white space, that was.

As I'm sat here I can see where a few primroses might look fabulous in the lower lemon mid section. But then perhaps a few bluebells could then balance the composition by my adding them in the upper diagonal line of the composition, away from and opposite my primroses , if I add them.

I think from this dialogue you can see how my paintings develop. They come to life and tell me what they need rather than my sitting looking at them trying to work out what to do next.

But for now I may just enjoy this piece as it is.

What joy!

Where ever you are I hope you will have some great painting time this week. Because painting is such a fantastic way to pass time!

Create!

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Sunday, 25 March 2018

A Breath of Spring 2018



 
 "Spring Whispers"
Narcissus in watercolour
2018

  I love Spring. I do. It's the most wonderful season for recharging batteries and it was a favourite part of writing my new book "Atmospheric Flowers in Watercolour". Not so much the subjects that are around and included but the way it makes me feel. Which is what I have explained in my new publication. 

I am currently spring cleaning my studio which is quite a task. I'm throwing away everything that is old including a few unframed paintings because if I look at where I was yesterday in style I will stay there. I want to grow every single year in technique. So I have looked at a few older daffodil paintings, learnt what I like from them and moved on in my new work.

I always suggest keeping a folder of old work to enable you to look back at to see how far you have come in your personal art journey. And oh boy I have grown. Not just in how I paint but in confidence too and I think that is the key to being a good artist. Having the confidence to try new things and admit when things are not going as you wished them to. Being honest with yourself and learning to understand that everyone , no matter how experienced they are as an artist, has off days when paintings simply don't work.

But today I had a great day. In fact I have had a great week. I have worked quietly in my studio and had a ball. So what did I create today? These two paintings of narcissus that were on my easel, as seen below, a short time ago.



 
 Side by side
Two paintings in a similar composition of narcissus in watercolour

My first composition was of an upright spray of narcissus flowers as seen above but it didn't seem to have any energy in it. And so I started a new composition straight away, this time choosing a flowing curved arrangement which I found far more pleasing. There is a section in my new book that talks about composition and it is playing on my mind. It is about being unique and I desperately want to be each time I paint. And better in skill always.


 The second composition seen below was so exciting as I used the same colours as I had done in my first painting but this time I kept them far softer. This piece is very pleasing to me.


 My second  and more pleasing composition in a first wash.

I am almost embarrassed to admit this but I liked the second version, above, so much more that I ripped the piece below up and put it in the bin but looking at it on my computer screen I think I may have been too hasty!


"Spring Flowers"

I think I have probably become far too critical of my own work. Only accepting the best as a finished painting. When I first started working in watercolour I would have been over the moon with the above result. But in time we seek something far more than a finished painting. We want it all. Each new completed piece has to have a magic about it and thats' where I am headed.

It is quite funny though in that when I first started painting I would frame almost everything. Now I don't. Only the very best work ends up for sale or in an exhibition. And I mean the very best.

 I'm being very hard on myself to grow because I know what I am capable of  painting. I know the skill level I can paint at. Teaching for so long on tour has taken me away from what I love best of all. Experimenting and pushing my own personal standard. Right now my goal I have set myself for this year is really high. I feel as though I am treading in old masters' footsteps because they too threw work away. Always moving onward in their quests to be superb artists.

Thats' where I want to be too.

I'm moving forward which is appropriate as the clocks moved forward in UK this weekend.


Happy painting!


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Artist tip for the day?

If you don't have room to keep old work take photos of your paintings of favourite subjects and look back regularly to see if you are improving in style or technique.  
You will soon become your best teacher and be pushing yourself to improve. 
As I do regularly.
Be your own mentor!
And go for gold

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Friday, 23 March 2018

Lambs Tails in Watercolour : A Simple Walk

 "Shaking Tails"

Today the sun shone and as I have been working non stop I decided to go for a short walk. From my studio window I can see catkins nearby blowing in the breeze. The tree opposite my studio is literally covered in these spring blossoms. In fact, have never seen so many tails hanging on individual branches. And they became fascinating to me as a subject to paint.

I stood under the tree looking upwards realising, in sections above me, twigs and branches were completely out of sight due to the heavy dangling catkins which I call "lambs tails" and have done since I was a child. I picked a branch that was within reach and carried it back to my studio as "treasure".

My first painting above started from a simple wash of Daniel Smith Walnut Ink, with water forming patterns which I could then add the catkins to. Similar to the waterfall wash described as a technique in my book "Paint Yourself Calm". Painting waterfall washes is incredibly relaxing and they can be used as a foundation for all kinds of subjects. This kind of wash certainly worked very well for my catkins seen above.

But while I was painting the sight I had just witnessed by looking up, my eyes were drawn to a few branches that just had one or two catkins on, swaying in the breeze. These I began to capture as seen below. This is an unfinished painting but it will have as much depth and interest as the above painting when it is finished with possibly a simpler composition.


"Catkins in the Breeze"


I have had the best week possible painting to my hearts' content. I have a new book to work on but for now my projects are all for me, Exploring colour, improving techniques and having a ball.

I so love my life.

It is amazing how a simple walk can lead you in a new direction. And now I will  be wondering what I will see next when I take a scenic route tomorrow.

 Happy painting!

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Artists tip of the day?

Don't just paint. Get out and see things to gain new ideas and inspiration. A break away from your studio or painting space makes you eager to return. So it is never wasted time!

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Thursday, 22 March 2018

Freedom 2018 ; Foxgloves

"Fairy gloves"
Foxglove flowers in watercolour

Oh my goodness I am having a ball in my studio at the moment . I give so much time to teaching,filming, exhibiting and writing that over the years my own freedom to paint has diminished in that I grasp any moments I can between commitments and deadlines. To paint just for me in a way that frees my soul. Right now I have another full week ahead where I can paint in the quiet space of my studio and then after that  I start teaching in UK. As my workshops here begin on 3rd April 2018.

But there is a yearning inside of me and I can't explain it. Something is happening to my style and my passion for experimentation in a way that won't let me sit still for a second. I sleep seeing how I can add colours to make stronger patterns in my backgrounds. And I wake eager to try new ideas.

The fairy glove flowers ,or foxgloves as you may know them, above was an old painting that I hadn't finished. It was very quiet and subtle in colour originally. But these real flowers were the ones that fascinated me as a child. I saw them as magical as I had been told they were fairy gloves. Or fairy mittens. I used to think that the fairies must have had larger hands than I first imagined as these flower shapes were so big for tiny little beings. How strange that the memory still plays on my mind whenever I see these flowers. But I do think of fairy gloves as very magical flowers and my original painting didn't do that magic justice.

To improve it, first I played with the foreground adding texture and drama. Then I allowed light and movement to dance on the flowers themselves.

Is it finished? 

Not quite but I like showing my work in progress so anyone following my blog can see what I am up to.

We all change over time. And we grow in so many ways if we are open to new ideas. 
I am. 
I dread the thought of ever being stuck in a rut so I am using new colours, new products and exciting techniques to make the start of 2018 a brilliant one.

To be honest. I must confess I am reading through my new book and listening to myself. Yes we should all strive to be unique as artists and aim for something new when we create rather than always painting what we know and how we know it. Who knew that I would be inspiring "me" with this new book. But I am so glad I wrote it. I needed to read it and take all the tips and advise in!


But for now, back to painting!

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Tuesday, 20 March 2018

2018 The Excitement Begins!

 Study and first wash for an elephant painting in watercolour

 The excitement begins! After a day spent on administration, yesterday, filling cancellation spaces on my UK workshops today was the day I could literally throw myself into my studio painting time experimenting and literally having a blast. When I away am on tour  as I have been recently I give my all, in fact I do in every single workshop but I will openly confess there is a point during each workshop day where I feel very envious. I will have worked so hard to get everyone in the class as highly motivated,excited and inspired as possible but while inspiring others my own artists soul is leaping and desperately wanting to paint too. When I am in a room teaching I believe I belong to the room so I put my personal painting time aside and spend every second teaching. This leads me to times like now where I have the luxury of experimenting, building on ideas to ensure my next workshops are really fascinating. I just can't sit still with ideas. And after this last tour I came home with lots of colour ideas and great new products to try.

So today whilst painting a quick warm up wash I could easily see it would turn into an elephant and it did. I was actually cleaning my palette and the mucky collection of colours placed in a line across a large old piece of paper made the best starting point ever for an elephant to appear. Which it did as seen below. But this warm up led me to a colour great wash experiment.


 Getting to know my subject before painting a large composition


 At the moment I am thrilled with my warm up washes, as seen at the opening of each of my workshops but now, oh boy how they have changed. The break up of pigment is greater and the patterns forming are far more thrilling. As seen below. This first wash has been created deliberately as a base for a painting of a group of elephants. I have a solo show  later this year and I'm working on a few ideas that will add to my collection in unexpected ways.


The exciting first wash inspired by my study of an elephant in watercolour


Anyone who attended my workshops on my recent USA tour will instantly recognise the use of Daniel Smiths' Australian Red Gold, a shade I now adore but here it plays with Daniel Smith Amethyst Genuine creating unusual patterns and pigment formations. 

I always advise on my workshops that if you create a magical first wash that you love, paint another as close as possible to the original straight away whilst the colours you used are still clearly in your mind. Which is exactly what I am going to do right now!

This year is off to a great start. Do look out for my new book, even though the theme is flowers the techniques inside are inspiring my new work and pushing me in a fabulous direction art wise. I hope it makes you feel the same way too. Excited about painting!

I am!


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I must add that all cancellation places on my UK 2018 workshops have been filled, and once payment is made each place will be confirmed but I am keeping a wait list in case further cancellations arise so now is a good time to get in touch if you wish to be on that list!

jeanhaines@hotmail.com


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Monday, 19 March 2018

Daffs and Cancellations! 3rd April 2018

 Daffodil paintings on my easel
To the right, in a pottery vase
To the left in an ornamental jug

We have had snow in UK and the countryside surrounding our home has been covered in a beautiful white blanket that looks stunning in the bright sunlight. Although this has started to melt it  over the last few hours today. 

I have started my week with administration although I must admit I would much rather be painting. But my watercolours have had to be put on hold as I deal with my UK 2018 workshop bookings. These had sold out last year as soon as the dates were announced but life has a terrible way of creating unavoidable hiccups sometimes and I have been dealing with a few cancellations which has seen me contacting my wait list in the order of recieving them. To offer the now available places. When the workshop dates were announced last year there weren't enough spaces for everyone to attend. Unfortunately with only weeks to go to fill these now available slots it isn't always easy for others  to be able to attend, especially at short notice.  

But one space is coming up soon so I'm going to announce it here.

If anyone would like to attend a workshop with me on Tuesday 3rd April, please could you get in touch for full details?

Which reminds me, if you would like to add your name to my contact list in case of cancellations please do contact me now
Life does often create hiccups and spaces do sometimes appear!

But for now I can get back to my paintings of daffodils, cheery yellow against a grey sky is such a terrific colour to work with.



Daffodils in a floral arrangement
First wash


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Thursday, 15 March 2018

Art isn't easy!

 Snowdrop composition coming to life in watercolour

I meet so many people on my travels when I teach my workshops all over the world and the one thing that seems to be a common denominator in my art courses is my coming across people who tell me that they find painting really difficult. In that their results aren't always as pleasing as they want them to be or simple to achieve.

  I think theres' a point that we all miss at times.We all love painting and we all want to paint. But art isn't easy! It takes years of practise to get to a level of painting where you feel you are creating something worthwhile but even then, you still take time to perfect your skills. I cannot imagine one single famous artist  starting out in their career and simply painting a masterpiece straight away. In the same way that a famous golfer didn't get a hole in one on their first attempt at playing golf.

No painting isn't easy at all. 

I still have days where I face a new subject and what I achieve in my results may be passable as a finished painting but it will be far off from where I intended my results to be. In fact I am going to be totally honest and say I must be such a hard task master as right now I know exactly where I want my latest snowdrop and daffodil paintings to be and I am almost there . But not quite. In my mind I can see the daffodils blowing in the breeze and my results although beautiful don't quite say this. But they will. My snowdrops I want to glisten as if in early morning light under fresh snowfall. They aren't there yet but they will be.

Note these three words.

They will be.

Why?

Because I want them to be. Its' as simple as that. Mind over matter. I want to paint a great painting. I want to fall in love with my finished work myself. I am the driving force behind my work getting better and that is the most important point. Lets turn that around to you.

You.

You are the most important key to your own work getting better. How good a "key" you are is up to you but unless you keep turning that key and aiming at "somewhere" you will never reach that destination. It helps of course if you know where you want to be in your art journey. But most o fus want to be better.

So for me this morning, it is back to painting flowers and aiming for the painting that is in my mind, just out of reach. The one that I will always strive to get to as a higher level in my art.


Happy painting!

 

Wednesday, 14 March 2018

All Ears? 2018/2019 USA Workshop Information

"All Ears"
Half a hare!


I have received so many requests regarding my next USA workshops so I am sharing an update here. Please bear in mind that some locations are already fully booked and others are not yet open for registration.

2018 USA Workshops

Daniel Smith , Seattle WA
22/23rd October  Fully Booked
24/25th October  Fully Booked
27/28th October  Fully Booked
29/30th October  Fully Booked
 Demonstration  26th October  
To be added to the wait list in case of cancellations please email me on jeanhaines@hotmail.com

Kennewick WA 
 2/3rd November Fully Booked
5/6th November Fully Booked


Keetons Art Store, Bradendon, Florida
9/10th November   Fully Booked
12/13th November  Fully Booked
15/16th November  Fully Booked
Please contact me for booking contact details jeanhaines@hotmail.com

 Bonita Springs Art Center, Florida
26/27th November  Places Available
29/30th November  Places Available

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 2019 USA Workshops

New England Watercolor Society 
Boston
 1/2nd February Places Available
 4/5th February  Places Available


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California
Please Note: Registration for these courses will be opening later this year.

Coachella Watercolor Society
12/13th February 2019
 14/15th February 2019

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California Watercolor Association
19/20th February 2019
22/23rd February 2019
Enquiries :  registrar@californiawatercolor.org


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Tuesday, 13 March 2018

New Book: Atmospheric Flowers in Watercolour


 I am thrilled to share the news that my new book "Atmospheric Flowers in Watercolour" will be launched this year. It is now available to pre order, for first edition prints, from Amazon.com.

It has been a journey writing this book as for years I have always wanted to write a book about painting flowers. In fact this was the first book I ever imagined writing. But when my publisher invited me to write it as my sixth publication my art, style and subject matter had changed dramatically from when it was first a seed of an original idea in my imagination.

Now , at this stage in my art journey I wanted to share demonstrations that were different covering subjects that might be less well known or popular in many existing floral art books.For example, I chose painting white subjects as a challenge for one whole section and my approach can be used for many other subjects as well as flowers. 

The process was filmed entirely in my garden. So readers are visiting me at home in each chapter throughout the year. This was so lovely as there were always endless subjects at hand to create in watercolour as I am a keen gardener. But it was difficult to stay with flowers only as wildlife in the form of insects and birds visit my garden daily so these too leaped onto the pages.

 
 My cottage garden

It has been a magical journey and one that took a lot of my time. A labour of love . In fact, I was still working on it while I was on tour but it has now gone to print. Finally. 

To purchase a pre order copy please see this link and I will be signing copies and selling my book at Patchings this year where my book will be launched. A very exciting time!

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Jean-Haines-Atmospheric-Flowers-Watercolour/dp/178221545X/ref=sr_1_5/262-7299350-9639453?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1520959816&sr=1-5&keywords=watercolour+flower


 Roses from my cottage garden



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Monday, 12 March 2018

Spring 2018: Daffodils " Showers of Flowers"

Spring Showers
Showers of "Flowers" that is!

Oh my! Well I am truly back in UK . Back to grey skies showers. Rain has been falling non stop today but thank heavens I can paint my own sunshine in the form of cheery daffodils which are blooming in my garden brightening up the landscape.

When I am home, I start every Monday in my studio catching up with admin and because I have been on tour for so long there is so much to do!

Firstly, I am working on my next tours. My Fall USA tour is now all organised and there are places currently available in two locations in Florida. I will share this information in another blog post. I am also working on my 2019 Spring tour when I will be in Boston and two locations in California.

My UK 2018 workshops are fully booked but I have had a few unexpected cancellations so if your name is on my wait list you may be hearing from me. If you would like to be added to my wait list please email me as soon as possible.

jeanhaines@hotmail.com

I am in an exhibition which opens on 24th March so I have been arranging collection of my art. 

And I badly want to spring clean my studio. I do every year but right now it needs a really good clear out!

Whatever you are doing I hope you have a great week ahead and if its' raining where you are how about painting your own sunshine too!

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Sunday, 11 March 2018

Mothering Sunday Bouquet 2018

Mothering Sunday 2018

For years I used to dread Mothering Sunday for personal reasons. But the joy each year now grows and intensifies.

I always try to paint a special bouquet at this time of year and , as I create, I think of others who may miss their Mothers, who may not even have had Mothers or share the very happy memories from their childhood known to friends around them.

It can be a hard day for many. For others it is a very special occasion.

Whatever you are feeling on this special day of the year I wish you joy, happiness and peace.

 Happy Mothering Sunday 


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Drops from Heaven : Snowdrops 2018

 Snowdrop paintings on my easel
March 2018

 I couldn't wait to race to my studio this morning to continue working on my paintings of snowdrops.
I left a first wash of a second snowdrop painting on my easel last night and completed the piece this morning. As seen below.



"Snowdrop Curtsies"

Then I continued adding detail to my favourite first snowdrop watercolour that I began and shared on my blog yesterday. Each small snowdrop flower is beginning to come to life in this piece.


Snowdrop Heaven


I have used Cascade Green by Daniel Smith for the foliage of these delicate flowers. The blue is mainly Cobalt Turquoise but I have added Iridescent Electric Blue for extra drama. It is such a gorgeous blue and works beautifully to enhance this scene.

I am so happy to be back in my studio at last. I have missed my quiet painting time whilst I have been teaching and travelling.

It really is so good to be home!



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Saturday, 10 March 2018

Home At Last 2018!

Snowdrop wash, painted from plants in my garden

I am home at last after a very long tour which involved filming new DVDs, teaching ten watercolour courses in Florida, New Orleans and Hawaii which included four watercolour demonstrations.  I also gave interviews and attended book signing events. Behind the scenes I worked with my publishers on the final stages of my new book and the last proof I saw of it looked gorgeous. I am now in the process of judging a Russian watercolour competition so I am still hard at work but it is so lovely to be home. Back in UK and in my studio too.

The first thing I did on my return was wander around my garden to see what it is like after my long absence. There are clumps of primroses and snowdrops everywhere.

I couldn't resist applying colour for a first wash of snowdrops as seen above.

I can't wait to catch up, share my news and paint in my studio again. I have so many new ideas that I simply don't know where to start but start I will. And on Monday I hope my easel is covered with gorgeous washes and new ideas for paintings. 

And I will be able to add long overdue inspirational posts to my blog!

I am back.

I hope you missed me!


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Monday, 15 January 2018

Filming with Artists Network TV.com 2018


My blog has fallen quiet yet again as I have been filming new DVDs with Artists Network TV. I arrived in Fort Lauderdale, Florida just after New Years Eve and prepared to film here.
Last week I met the most incredible film crew at the filming location and we began the first shoots. Filming is such a terrific experience but I will confess at times it can be very exhausting. We worked straight through each day trying to beat the changeable weather that effected the lighting on set continually.

I tend to take each set of every film in one shoot, minus the need for any out takes. I love painting in a spontaneous manner so working with a crew as talented as this was pure bliss. They got every single pigment interaction on camera as needed in close up superbly. The tuition will be extremely easy to follow.

My only niggle is that I was interviewed outside on the first day. Why would this be a problem you may ask? In humid conditions mixed with drizzle my natural hair tends to do its own thing and oh boy it did! In the first film please, if you download it, look at my painting demonstration and not me! I must have looked alarming as the day passed because the film director raced me to a hairdresser as soon as the words "It's a wrap" on the first day were mentioned. To everyone's relief I walked in looking more like me on the second day.

Actually that wasn't the worst of my problems and I possibly shouldn't mention this but I was asked to have different outfits with me to change into for each film. No problem at all but when changing from one outfit to the other I had a slight hiccup with the microphone that was attached to my clothing. It went for a "swim" and as I was changing in the bathroom at the time I'll let you guess where! These outfit changes are quick, almost as fast as when I used to model years ago so clothes are thrown off and in seconds. While I felt really embarrassed explaining what had happened to the microphone to the director I was assured this has happened many times before. It may have done but not to me! I'm usually far more professional.

Anyway, at the end of last week three beautiful new DVDs had been filmed. "It's a wrap" are fabulous words to hear when you have been working intensively. I loved being told how easy I am to film with, a huge compliment but I love teaching and sharing my joy for working in watercolour.

I will share the news when these exciting new films are available. I can't wait to see them!

For now though I owe a huge thank you to Artists Network TV for inviting me back to create new films and to the exceptionally talented film crew who made each filming day a pleasure.

What an exciting life I lead!

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Tuesday, 2 January 2018

2018 Workshop and Demonstration Schedule





  Title: Orchids In the Mist
Medium: Pure watercolour
Size: 57cms  x 38cms 

I will be teaching watercolour workshops over the next few weeks in the following locations. Whilst the workshops are fully booked I will also be giving demonstrations in Florida in Fort Lauderdale and Sarasota. 

Full details, dates and workshop contacts are seen below:- 



FLORIDA




 GOLD COAST WATERCOLOR SOCIETY
Gold Coast Watercolor Society

Workshop 1:  16/17th January 2018  FULLY BOOKED
Workshop 2:  18/19th January 2018 FULLY BOOKED 
Free Demonstration January 16th 




  ART CENTER SARASOTA

Workshop 1:  22/23rd January 2018  FULLY BOOKED
Workshop 2:  24/25th  January 2018  FULLY BOOKED
Free Demonstration

http://artsarasota.org/
 
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NEW ORLEANS

 February 2/3rd 2018   FULLY BOOKED
 February 5/6th 2018   FULLY BOOKED
February 8/9th 2018  FULLY BOOKED



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HAWAII


Workshop 1. 13th -14th February 2018  FULLY BOOKED
Workshop 2.  16th -17th February 2018  FULLY BOOKED
Classes@AkamaiArt.com


Exciting 2018! Flowers anyone?

Magical Orchids in the Mist
Work in progress

2018

It will be a year of flowers this year!  Why?  Because I am making it a year of flowers!
My new book "Atmospheric Flowers in Watercolour" will be launched in June 2018 and I am also on my way to film a new DVD about painting flowers, in different ways.  Bringing life and energy into our work. I'm deliberately avoiding subjects I have covered before in my book and DVDs so do keep an eye out for some really lovely demonstrations,with  new colour combinations and fabulous techniques to make painting even more enjoyable.

I am about to complete the above painting to start my new year. I have white orchids in my living room in our cottage and even though I am busy I just had to paint them today. They were screaming at me to do so.

I have several blues in the background o fmy first wash, there are lovely lost and found edges and I am about to add the detail. Not too much. Just enough to tell the story!

I am never happier than when I am painting.

How about you?

Have a great 2018!


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Welcome to 2018: The Year of Colour!

 Simple colour wash creating distance and "veins" in colour runs

Welcome to 2018!

Wow, what a start to the year I am having. Tomorrow I leave to film my new DVDs in Florida with Artist Network TV.com. Everyone is so excited about my returning to film again with them and I am thrilled too. I can't wait to get there. Over the last few weeks I have had conference calls from the USA team to discuss my new demonstrations and film content. Its' been so exciting and yet with Christmas and New Year get togethers', trying to focus on this trip has been really difficult. Hence my silence on my blog for so long.

I used to contribute to my blog regularly but now any free time is so very hard to find . Just at the point in my art life when I have so many new ideas and far more to share. Its si frustrating in some ways as my technique and my painting approaches have changed dramatically over the years. Especially so with colour. Mainly because I travel so often and see so many tempting sights to paint . But also from my time spent at Daniel Smith in Seattle where I find myself  completely immersed in colour absorption from all the exciting shades there on display, readily available to try. By the way there are now just a few slots available for my workshops there at the end of this year when I will be returning.

For now I am still working on my new book which is huge! It is full of inspirational tips and demonstrations which I hope everyone will love. I am proof reading it at the moment and adding text for a few extra demonstrations in the last sections. This is a book I can't wait to get my hands on to be honest. It will be my favourite for years to come for many reasons. I will share more about its' launch  in other blog posts but I will be at Patchings this year to celebrate, if you would like to join me there.

For now though I want to wish everyone a very happy new year and I will make another wish. I hope whatever your goals or dreams are for 2018 they all come true. 
But do remember. 
Sometimes dreams need a little patience while waiting for them to happen, or they may just need a little nudge  in the right direction.

Lets' see what happens over the next twelve months but my tip would be try starting the year with some new colours! And of  course new colour combinations. Don't lets' get stuck in "yesterday" or what we have always done in the past. This is the year for excitement, dramatic paintings and stunning results.

Lets' all go for gold this year!

HAPPY NEW YEAR!


Wintry Shadows