Saturday 31 December 2011


" The A Team"
Filming complete on my new book

This morning I have shared several posts on my blog and while doing so looked back over last year. During the very last day of 2010 I had no idea how exciting 2011 was going to be. I knew I had so much to look forward to but I had no idea  a best selling DVD was going to be a highlight or that in so many ways my life would be  so rich via art and artistic friendships.

This moment in time sees a small Celtic artist trying to hide her inner excitement at the year ahead. Invitations are flooding in from all over the world to exhibit and hold workshops. And yes, on top of that wonderful bubble of  sheer happiness at a book being completed, there is also a little fear of it  about to be launched.  You see, it is a very special book and for the rest of my life I know I may never  write one quite like it again. I will be sad to let it go. That moment is nearing,when it becomes yours as well as mine.

I face a new chapter in my life and I face it with the respect for living and the knowledge each moment, yet alone day, we share on this earth is a privilege.

I am so very lucky. I looked at all the presents around my Christmas tree this year knowing without opening one, I wanted nothing. I looked at the love in my families faces over Christmas and understand I am one of the luckiest women alive.

Tonight know I leave a year that truly was amazing.

But my spirit tells me 2012 is going to be the very best of years. One to be enjoyed and treasured  for what it is possible  of bringing. With it doesn't just come hope, it heralds a whole new year of fresh white paper to be covered in vibrant exciting colour in ways  we hadn't believed possible before.

We are all capable of achieving far more than we believe we can.

I wish you a colourful year ahead that is rich in love , excitement and enthusiasm.
I wish you a year that is like a fresh piece of white paper, just waiting to be covered in memorable brushstrokes and happy memories.

And I am so thankful to be a tiny part of it.

God Bless you and



And this small message is to all  the wonderful friends and blog readers who have  personal reasons for not wishing to stay in 2011.

Yesterday has gone, yesteryear is disappearing and your tomorrows are about to arrive. 
I wish you , most of all joy.

At midnight your tears will wash away your sadness,and lead you fresh faced into a whole new year.

Hang in there, let go of  2011 and welcome 2012.

It's going to be a magical year.


2011 A Year in Demonstrations

Biscuit in my studio

Art Societies
Amazingly this year I have lost count of the number of  fantastic Art Societies I have visited to give talks to and hold demonstrations. I really would like to say a huge thank you for the  many invitations that have come my way and to everyone for making me feel so welcome. Jumping in a car and heading to an unknown destination to meet a room full of people you don't know seemed very odd a while ago. Now it is a huge part of my life. I seem to regularly walk into a room full of up to a hundred or more artists to smilingly share my joy for working in watercolour. I have far too many favourite societies to mention but many of you will know I would happily come back when time allows!

My demonstration at the Mall Galleries during the SWA.Society of Women Artists 150th Annual exhibition has to be  one of my best memories this year. I had arrived early to set up for the day so imagine my surprise to be met by artists  already eagerly waiting outside the prestigious London venue before the doors  had even opened. This was to ensure they had a good position to watch me while I worked. I had thought at this point there would be no chance of not seeing me in action but as the day passed the crowd grew bigger and I was once again stunned and humbled by the enthusiasm of other artists for my passion for watercolour and my style. Anyone who attended that will have absolutely no idea how happy you made me feel that day.Thank you so much for coming,watching and supporting me.  I will be demonstrating again this year and as my new book will be launched by then I'm already planning a very special day and book signing there. I will also eagerly be sharing my new techniques which until now have been kept secret!

Enthusiasm and interest during my Mall Galleries,London Demonstration 2011
Just the beginning!

My workshops have grown in popularity too and sadly I have to admit my sessions for 2012 have all, long since, been fully booked. Every time dates were announced places were immediately taken.  I am very aware there is a long waiting list of artists who would still love to attend. For this reason I excitedly agreed when invited to  tutor at Dedham Hall next year, this course too is fully booked.

I will be at various venues next year  giving demonstrations so please try to attend if you can. I will be the guest artist at Banstead Art Festival and at Patchings later this year. I really would love to meet you.

2012 Diary
My diary for Art Society demonstrations is already full for 2012 and at this date I am not taking any further bookings for 2013. But I will be updating my blog with news of my activties and I will be sharing any possibility of new workshop dates later this year if they arise.

Art Magazines
I have also be shared demonstrations in print. My recent feature in the Artist magazine proved highly popular and  there was a Jean Haines competition on Painters Online which closed in December,the winners will be announced  in 2012.


2012 will see me holding workshops in Texas and New York and my Australian friends may have some very good news soon also!

Watch this space!


Time has flown in 2011!

To everyone I have met in the last  twelve months on and offline, 
I am wishing you the happiest of New Years!

2011 A year in Books and an Amazing DVD

Amazing ways With Watercolour
Still flying off the shelves and being sent all over the world!

2011 has been amazing in many, many ways. I had been approached by Townhouse Films to create a DVD. At first I was hesitant but  loved the filming days and the whole team when we met. Later I was completely stunned to learn that my new DVD, "Amazing Ways With Watercolour" immediately broke all pre sale order records as requests for copies continually came flooding in once the title was publically released. It became a best seller in record time and to this day is still flying all over the world to artists who are not only enjoying watching the  film but continually sending me fabulous messages letting me know why they love it so much. Now I know I was right to make the decision to film and  I have agreed to create a new DVD in 2012!

"How to Paint Colour and Light in Watercolour"
Over ten thousand copies sold and still selling!

But it wasn't only my DVD that did well in 2011. My first book " How To Paint Colour and Light in Watercolour" reached over  ten thousand sales earlier in the year,having gone to reprint it continues to sell yet again to many countries all over the  world.  I was over the moon to receive copies of my first book in Italian  this summer.

How does all this good news make me feel? To be honest I am overwhelmed, feeling small and undeniably stunned. I have always loved painting from the time I escaped as a child through my art to where I wished to be. As an adult I seem determined to aid others achieve their dreams via a brush and reach their own goals whatever they may be.

There is no doubt about it, but  holding a brush and painting something that thrills your soul is the most highest of highs in life. I get this buzz every single time I paint and I have adored trying to capture that  heady emotion in text and paintings throughout every page of my next book which will be available in 2012. It contains so  much information, page after page of  fascinating insights into working what has to be the most magical of mediums.

And I will be signing copies in many locations so please come and meet me and let this small Celtic artist enjoy meeting you too!

Its a Wrap!
Filming my new book is  complete.
The team from Search Press at Roddys Photographic Studio 2011
Juan, Roddy, Gavin, Katie and Me!


Roll on 2012, a new book and a new DVD!


Signed copies of my first book, and my first DVD are available from my web site after January 11th, 2012


*News of how to pre order my new book and new DVD will be released on my blog  soon*

2011 A Year in Exhibitions

Celebrate Spring, The Frame Gallery 2011

I am starting my 2011 New Years Eve with a look back at the last twelve months. How incredible they have been. I seem to have been  in so many fantastic exhibitions throughout the year including a burst of Spring colour at the Frame Gallery in Odiham to my exciting and successful solo at the Wey Gallery in Godalming,Surrey,U.K.

Watercolours With Life Exhibition,The Wey Gallery 2011

Later in the year I exhibited in the 150th Annual Exhibition of the SWA Society of Women Artists during which a Charity evening was held in aid of the Lady Taverners. I donated a painting called " Flying Colours" which was a main auction prize including a day at the races and  an evening with Tom Jones in concert.

I was delighted to showcase my dogs in watercolour at the Dogs in Art Gallery in Stockbridge

And more recently I have been invited to show at the Lyndhurst Gallery in the New Forest.

The year has been full of Spring,Summer and Autumn Shows along with exhibitions in a number of locations. I have shown with some incredible artists and met friends old and new during the year at  amazing Private Previews. And regardless of the financial climate sales have consistently been wonderful. My watercolours continue to be collectible and can be found in homes from all over the world.

With friends Nicholas and Annie Parsons

What is interesting is that my  aim for 2012 is really unique in that regardless of how popular my paintings seem to be becoming I am not racing to my studio to paint as many as possible. In fact I am doing the exact opposite. My year ahead is going to  be full of art that is in every way full of life,light and movement so that by the end of the year I can look back and know I achieved what was in my heart all along.

To be a good artist,one who paints from the soul to create art that is unique so that the selected galleries who represent me are proud to hang my originals and showcase my work.. And know that collectors are buying a piece of art that was not painted for the sake of painting but enjoyed via  every  single brushstroke during the creative process.

This is me,who I am and where I wish to be.

And I know where I am heading in 2012!

Happy New Year.


Friday 30 December 2011

A Magical Eve

Bearded  Collies appearing from a first wash

It has been a wonderful week without a minute to spare to add to my blog. This time last week was the evening before Christmas Eve. I had agreed to paint a commision of two Bearded Collies months ago but hadn't given much thought to the paintings collection date. My client couldn't get to me  before Christmas Eve so a time was arranged for the pick up of the piece.

Christmas Eve morning arrived and like many mothers and wives from all over the world I was deeply engrossed in preparing for our Christmas meal the next day. My cottage was festively decorated in every room. Cards adorned every possible space from our wonderful family and friends who  are now dotted in countries far and near My heart was happy and I felt the giddy excitement  you would  expect from a small child about to see Santa  as if  for the first time. Heaven knows why I feel the way I do at this time each year but "annoyingly happy" probably describes me best!

I waited for the stranger who was buying the commission to arrive and wondered if he would like the watercolour.  He hadn't seen it yet. The doorbell rang and a tall man with a little toddler smiled at me as I opened the door to welcome them in.  The  cute little boy  was thrilled to see so many Santa ornaments  here and there in my hallway.  Luckily my client adored my painting  and we exchanged  in a friendly conversation before he left.  I learned that the toddlers Mum had given birth to a baby girl the night before  and was still in hospital. For reasons I won't explain publically I soon realised this was no ordinary family as  the love given to others over the years by my client and his wife was obviously endless.

Considering I had made my mind up to refuse any commssions over the last few months whilst my work load was so high I look back and realised why I took this one on. Something just made me instantly know I had to, as one of lifes instinctive moments in time.

My 2011 Christmas Eve was very special and my Christmas Day that followed was full of the family feelings that should be stirred at this time of year.

One week later I am sat  looking ahead to New Years Eve and wondering what that will bring. I know my year ahead is already filled to the brim with wonderful  events that I relish arriving, one after the other, throughout the year.

I have far too much happiness, luck and joy for one person. Life isn't fair in that way so my 2012 wish is to give as much happiness away as possible in whichever way that I can.

Starting with my wish for every blog reader that whatever you wish for, your own dreans come true and you achieve at least one impossible goal in the year ahead,because you can!


Friday 23 December 2011

Merry Christmas 2011

Home made Mince Pies fresh from the oven

I start preparing for Christmas weeks in advance. I usually make everything from scratch including my own mince meat for my favourite mince pie recipe. When I was tiny my stepmother always told me that unless  you loved who you were cooking for the  results would be disappointing. I adore my family and friends and I know I am very loved. So each minute creating in my kitchen  will see me imagining my family and friends enjoying what I have made for them.

All of my life,whatever I do I always put my my heart and soul into it. Especially when it comes to working in watercolour. And I am noticing a very valuable point.The artists who I meet on my workshops always seem to get far better results when they are painting either something they truly love as a subject or  when they are absolutely passionate about moving their brushes.

I wish you a very Happy Christmas and an even more magical New Year to follow where your dreams come true with  a time ahead that is full of  many  special memories.

Thank you so much for following my blog and I do hope to share smiles, inspiration and  my passion for watercolour in 2012 which is already promising to be a very exciting  twelve months!

And a very special thank you for the lovely email that brought tears to my eyes letting me know how much my blog is enjoyed!


By the way, I have just looked at my photo of mince pies and realised I wish I had time to paint them too!

Saturday 17 December 2011

Frosty the Snow...........


 "Frosty the Snow Dog" makes an appearance in todays Bearded Collie Christmas Choir painting.

I have had so much fun adding daily to this fun Christmas watercolour. Today I can't help realising just how much I am enjoying painting sheerly for the joy of  placing colour on paper rather than considering if a gallery needs new work or whether I should be writing for a book or a new art feature. I should be giving my focus now to next years exhibitions but when you are a professional artist you  need a break from work just the same as in every other career.

But what can you do when your passion lies within your career?

I can't imagine a day where I don't enjoy painting.Or an evening when I don't look forward to picking up my brushes the next morning. I believe I have kept my enthusiasm so high because I have a sense of humour, a vivid imagination and a strong,pure love for working in what many call a very difficult medium to master.

I wish everyone could have heard me laughing when I added the snow dog to this  painting today, or  know what has crossed my mind as the next addition.

Painting CAN be fun!

It really is a good lesson in life to fully understand we shouldn't take ourselves too seriously for 100% of the time, especially in art.  Relaxing brings its' own rewards.
Happy painting,happy Christmas and see you soon on my next post.


N.B:  It might be an idea to start counting the Beardies now ! 
How many are already in this painting?

Friday 16 December 2011

"O Come All Ye Faithful"

"O Come All Ye Faithful"

"We Three Kings" my three original Bearded Collies now have grown into a full choir!

There is plenty room for more fun on this ever changing painting so I will see what I feel like adding tomorrow. It could be more Beardies, a snowman or a complete surprise!

Watch this space!


To all the possible "Grinches" out there, Christmas CAN be fun!!

But She Painted a Robin Last Year!

That New Design
I posted the last of my Christmas cards this week. I smiled because only I knew the reason why a robin has been chosen as a subject the second year running for my 2011 Christmas Design. Every year, as a tradition, I aim to paint something new to bring a smile to friends faces as they open my cards when they arrive. It has now become a wonderful guessing game as to what each years new design will  be.

Happy Memories
There was a snowy church scene one year which allowed the original painting to be auctioned to raise funds for our  own local church. And it fast became a favourite seller. Another year there was my lovely Bearded Collie,Taffy, in a Santa hat which certainly did create smiles long after Christmas had past. Santa Taffy cards are now on sale at the Dogs in Art Gallery in Stockbridge, Hampshire this month. I painted this special card with Taffy as my subject the year before he passed away as I  had an inkling that would be his last Christmas with us and I was right.

Last Years "Robin" Christmas Story.
Last year I painted a robin as my Christmas card design and there was a story behind the painting. We had moved into our cottage which had been lovingly renovated by an amazing man. Every detail  in it was perfect. The care taken over the whole project as he patiently oversaw builders and craftsmen bring our cottage to life was outstanding. We lived nearby waiting for the completion date to arrive and visited daily to see the work progressing.

While our home was being restored this incredible man befriended a robin. " Rocky" became so tame he fed from the builders hands taking morsels of their lunch daily. Rocky would also come inside the cottage and sit on windowsills. He became  a part of our new home. So much so that every builder and craftsman was sad to leave and know they would be missing him!

Rocky is still here with us and still just as tame.

 "Rocky" 2010
To thank this very special man I painted a robin last year as my Christmas card design and aimed to give the original watercolour to him as a gift. Unfortunately life has a funny way of changing events because my painting as well as others sold in a hectic Christmas run up to the 25th December 2011 in a gallery. A gallery visitor had immediately fallen in love with it.

Rocky 2011
So this year I lovingly painted a new robin card design as a gift. Only the real Rocky at the moment is looking a little overweight!  I painted him with his feathers fluffed up against a snowy sky. He was sat on a branch and I loved bringing his eye to life.  The real Rocky watched me working in my studio with his head slightly tilted to one side. I felt he was letting me know this year the painting had to be a gift and reach his friend as a suprise.

A Special Gift
Yesterday I had a wonderful day with friends including a fabulous artist I have known for years who lives in Dubai. They always visit me when they visit their family in London each year.  After a fabulous day together I drove my friend to our tiny village train station  so that they could return to London. On the way home I dropped into the house where my robin painting was going to live. It was wrapped with a red,shiny ribbon, the original painting from this years card design.

I stood by the  beautifully lit Christmas tree outside the house and was met with a warm welcome. I was delighted to hear my posted Christmas card with this years robin on it had arrived and was very much loved. I listened happily as I heard it had been placed in a frame.  I smiled widely as I heard there had also been a recent visit to the local gallery to see if another original painting of Rocky Robin by me was there for sale this year at Christmas, as the family wanted one so much.

Imagine the scene, as I knew in my hands was the painting they had been looking for recently and hoping to buy.

To explain I was holding the original painting from this years cards as a gift was a wonderful feeling. And looking at their faces as it dawned on them as to what was in my hands was a moment I shall remember forever.

The Gift Of Giving
I drove home feeling brilliant.

This week I have given three paintings,all original new watercolours to very special people in my life who have touched my heart in ways I cannot type about. There are times when giving a painting away to a home where it will be truly loved and enjoyed, with the special meaning from the heart when it was given, far outweighs any huge fee a sale from a gallery can bring.

This is a special time of year and I love every second of making everyone I know around me  feel happy, loved and included in my life. I wish every month could hold the magic that December carries. Maybe it could if we allowed it too.

We should  feel the Spirit of Christmas all year around!


Wednesday 14 December 2011

We Three Kings

"We Three Kings"
Bearded Collies in the snow

Goodness time is really flying at the moment!  I am working on the last of my Christmas commissions and delivering gifts to  special friends and  colleagues. Yesterday I visited The Frame Gallery in Odiham and was delighted to see the wacky reindeer from my "What  Is It Challenge" on my blog beautifully framed and ready to be given as a gift to a gorgeous little boy.

I had a meeting yesterday afternoon, looking ahead to 2012 which is going to be a very full and exciting year.

I am going to gradually add details here on my blog but for now I must get back to my brushes.Otherwise there could be asome disappointed faces next week when Santa does not  deliver what he was expected to!


A huge thank you to the Fleet Art Group for a wonderful Monday afternoon. I loved seeing everyone and  demonstrating for friends  old and new.


Sunday 11 December 2011

That Time Of Year

The Christmas Card List

I have always written our Christmas cards. Each year  a list comes out with all the names of wonderful friends, business contacts and loved ones who now live all over the world  Every year  the task seems greater as the list of names  has grown so very much.

I tend to find quiet time to enjoy writing them because at this time of year I can be in touch with everyone I know and let them be aware that I haven't forgotten them. When I open each card I recieve I feel I am loved and remembered too. So it is  really important for me to  carry out this very special Christmas tradition.

But I am surrounded by people who complain about having to write their cards. They can't find the time, have too many to write, dread doing it and even put if off until it is that last minute when they have to be done.

I met an elderly lady a few years ago who I will never forget. I asked her if she had written her  Christmas cards yet. Her reply was " My dear, I have no  one left to write one to".  I can't imagine having no one in my life who is dear to me and so writing my cards has become even more important now.

So if you are reading my blog and having to take time to  send your greetings to everyone you care about,with each new card you write please be thankful. How rich your life is because you have someone in it to wish a Merry Christmas.

It is that time of year.

Merry Christmas to all my blog readers!


Search Press Annual Conference 2011: Guest Artist

I have had a wonderful few days yet again A while ago I agreed to be  the guest artist at my publishers Annual Sales Conference .Time has flown since the initial invitation  and I found myself demonstrating to a room full of non artists last Friday, describing my style,attitude to art and my new book which will be launched next year. I gave a demonstration which was followed by enthusiastic applause and recieved by a room full of smiling faces. It was a terrific day followed by a Bollywood themed evening at the hotel venue.

It was a  brilliant way to see the other side of writing,meet  the representatives from all over the world who will be selling  and promoting my book along with enjoying the company of the  amazing team at Search Press. My publishers are unique and I am so thrilled to be on their list of authors.

I have returned home to a really special weekend with my family and this afternoon I will be giving my last demonstration of the year to an art group in Fleet, Hampshire. The following few days I will be meeting with friends for the first of many Christmas events and lunches,  again I can't help but think how very lucky I am in life


Wednesday 7 December 2011

The Frame Gallery in Odiham,Hampshire Christmas Show

This morning I delivered  new paintings to the Frame Gallery for their Christmas Show. Every time I go into the gallery it appears to be different as paintings are regularly disappearing over the December period which is wonderful news.

Jan the owner was delighted with her Reindeer Christmas Card and now I am back in my studio working on a gorgeous new collection of watercolours which will not be released until 2012.

I also have a commission to complete  as someone will have an amazing surprise when they open their painting on Christmas Day. This is one watercolour I would love to share on my blog but I know it could be read and seen before Santa has a chance to wrap and give it as a present so I will be really good and keep it hidden!

I mentioned recently that I rarely accept commissions. I completed a very special giant painting recently because I had met the new owner at an exhibition,was impressed with what they saw in my art and agreed to take their request on. This current  commissions is emotional and pulling at my own heart strings  so when it is complete I will be delighted to  contact my client.

It is time to paint!

Tuesday 6 December 2011

December Challenge plus Rudolf the Red Nosed Reindeer!

Wacky Rudolf!

This is my Christmas Card to the owner of The Frame Gallery. They gave me a gift of a reindeer last Christmas so this year I am giving one back in my own style!

Happy Christmas Jan!

Thank you so much to everyone who tried to guess what my mystery painting was, I loved reading all the suggestions.

Now it's your turn!

Take one of your most unusual Christmas decorations and paint it, bringing it to life as  a Christmas card design. But don't stop there! The aim is to give it to someone who made you smile this year.

Have fun,be unique and aim to have a touch of craziness in your results.This is not a time of the year to restrict your energy or happinness from moving your brushes,

Have fun

I dare you!


What is it ? Rudolf!

Here is the inspiration for the What Is It Challenge this week!

I seriously do find beauty in all around me,everything I see is either a serious or fun  challenge to bring to life in watercolour in a unique way. As artists  we often take our art far too seriously. I listen regularly to many who feel like throwing their brushes away because they , in their own eyes,aren't getting anywhere.

I have to ask this question.Why ARE you painting? If it  is to enjoy the experience of seeing colour flow on paper and learn to master a medium I take my hat off to you. But if you are aiming at being a famous star in the art world, the pressure you are putting on your  shoulders to achieve is tremendous. The wieght of your expectations alone could bring you down!

My philosophy in life is to enjoy every minute. Especially when my brushes are in my hands but I won't restrict myself to very serious art.  My career is one part of my life but the joy from painting something as funky as this reindeer has  lightened my mood, made others around me smile and even opened imaginations. I am still laughing at the guinea pig suggestion!
Your challenge is about to be set on my blog so please read my next post!

And smile!


If you live in Hampshire and wish to buy one of these wacky reindeer you need to race to the Frame Gallery in Odiham but I fear they may have already sold out!

Monday 5 December 2011

What Is It ? Continued!

 Mystery painting?

I am really working very hard proof reading the final chapters of my new book but every now and then have popped online to check my messages. Amongst bookings for demonstrations next year wonderful emails are heading my way with guesses of what my mystery painting so far could be.

So far I have had  the following suggestions
1) A Christmas Bauble with Holly
2) A Christmas Elf
3) Santa with his sack
4) A Christmas Pudding
5) A Reindeer
6) A Donkey in snow
7) A Rabbit

.....and my favourite of all

8) A Guinea Pig!
All will be revealed tomorrow as  today I desperately needed to  continue proof reading!

Sunday 4 December 2011

What Is It ? Second image and Clue!

What is it ?  Clue 2.
This surely is easier now to guess what it may be? 
Or maybe not!

 I have been in fits laughing at  some of the suggestions that have flown my way since I posted an image earlier today on my blog and asked you to guess what it was.

This is not a Christmas pudding,or start of a painting of a mince pie or Christmas cake but there must be some very hungry readers of my posts as most of the suggestions have been related to food!

First stage and clue.

Gill Fox however was very quick as she guessed immediately what it could be,way to go Gill!

I will add the finished painting and a photograph of what this really is on my blog tomorrow,

It is a fun painting and has raised quite a few smiles today!


October Watercolour Challenge 2012: Lion

It really is taking me a long time to look at the many paintings of lions forwarded to me for the October 2011 Watercolour Challenge and they are all,every single one of the entries superb!

I am finding it impossible to pick a favourite but wanted to share a few watercolours before I announce who forwarded the winning painting.

This first lion painted by Linda Cullen took my breath away when I opened it because of her superb use of the medium. She has taken my request for Autumnal colours into consideration and also seems to have caught the character and personality of the lion. His expression is priceless!

Congratulations Linda for being one of my favourite artists.

Superb Lion by Linda Cullen

Next I fell in love with a painting by Mo Teeuw. I adore the use of directional brushwork in the mane and the use of a cool blue to contrast in the background against the warmth of the lion as the subject. This is a brilliant painting.

Well done Mo and thank you so much for taking part in my challenge!

Beautiful Lion by Mo Teeuw


What Is It? December Challenge

What is this going to be?

I am having the most fantastic week . Whilst I am locked away in my studio  today proof reading my new book I have taken a break and painted something just for fun. It made me laugh so much that I just had to share it. Can you guess from the first above image what the painting is going to be?

I realised if I add the next stages of this painting here it could lead to a really fun December Watercolour challenge,raise smiles and hopefully inspire everyone to paint something they might not have expected to paint  in the first place!

I find inspiration to move my brushes in absolutely everything I see. In this new challenge I am going to see just how amazing your imagination is and  what you can paint as a result of my new fun watercolour!

Please share your ideas on what this is  either by emailing me on

Or you can reply on my facebook page or  here on my blog by leaving a comment.

Pop your thinking cap on!

Saturday 3 December 2011

Your Personal Olympic Medal in 2012

The last year has been so hectic and amazingly exciting at the same time. I have leapt from one fabulous event and exhibition to another only to be invited to show again time after time.  I am in a wonderful position of having to turn many offers down. I also now open emails on a daily basis inviting me to demonstrate or hold workshops in incredible locations. My year continues in the same  heady vein as next week I am a guest speaker and I am also at a meeting for a fantastic venue with wonderful possibilities for 2012.

In 2011 I have adored writing my new book. I believe this helped me become a far better artist purely by practising the demonstrations and technique information it holds within its pages. At the moment I am thoroughly enjoying working with the fresh inspiration that I was hoping to give to readers of my new book. The energising motivational chapters held inside this publication is having a profound effect on my own watercolours. I wake each day with renewed passion for moving my brushes. I feel I want 48 hour days and ten day weeks to fit everything in that I want to achieve.

And this leads me to this mornings blog post.

I know so many new artists and amateurs who seem to be in a huge race to get to a successful level in their careers where they are selling well in galleries or  they wish to  become well known.

My advise is to take things slowly. Don't rush to get anywhere. Take your time and enjoy every single step of your art career and let things take their course . If you have talent and are original  things will happen. Bear in mind many venues are looking for new ideas so  showing them anything that looks remotely like an artist who is already established may not gain you a warm welcome. Galleries will be interested in what you achieve as an individual and in time one wonderful event can lead to another. But when it does be prepared.

Being a professional artist is a full time occupation. Often the drawback is that you don't get as much time to paint as you would wish to and you can lose sight of your personal life completely. For example I owe so much to my wonderful friends and family who have patiently waited for me to complete my new book as it has absorbed so much of my life this last year. I work hard for exhibitions so often  disappear at these times.

You need to prioritise what really is the most important thing to you.  Do you enjoying painting or are you more concerned with what happens to  your work once you have created it?

I enjoy painting.  If the day ever comes where it turns into a chore I will put my brushes down and quickly.

Before this year ends I would suggest looking at what you have painted and achieved in 2011 and decide where you wish to be in 2012 and go for it. Next year is an Olympic year so you could aim for your own gold medal!  Award it to yourself if you achieve your goal but set a realistic one that you feel you will love working towards. Maybe it will be your first ever successful painting, or your first sale, you may be in your first exhibition.

Whatever your dream is, aim for it.

Believe in yourself and it will come true.

Only you have the power to hold yourself back

Earn your personal olympic medal in 2012

Because YOU can.


A Full Week 2011

It is no wonder my blog has fallen quiet because so much is happening.

Gallery Commission
This week I arranged delivery of a large commission to a gallery for one of their clients. I had worked on the piece  over the last few months and found the experience of watching it evolve over time really energising. I rarely accept commissions but following an exhibition had visited the clients home to see where the painting would be shown. I fell in love with the location which in turn effected my brushstrokes. My first task was to source the paper needed for the giant painting and then I needed to feel the energy for the movement that was to be held within the composition. It has been a truly uplifting experience.

Charity Auction
I also donated a painting for auction at a charity event in aid of the Lady Taverners this week and was thrilled to see the winning bid go to a wonderful member who I know will enjoy it greatly. This has become a regular charity activity of mine. This particular venue and Christmas event celebrates my first ever donation to the charity some time back. I have continued with the cockerel theme ever since.

New Book Proof
The most exciting news is that I have recieved the first final proof of my complete  new book which is so exciting that I will type about it on a seperate post!

Studio Collections
In between exciting administration and diary organisation for 2012 I have begun a new watercolour collection which to me is my best yet. I will be unveiling the paintings in a show next year. They will stay safely under wraps whilst I enjoy them.  For now!

Workshop and Demonstration Bookings
Requests for demonstrations and workshops are flooding in at the moment and for Art Societies I am having to look into 2013 . The popularity and demand is so high and I would like to thank everyone for getting in touch with me.


Wednesday 30 November 2011

Snowdrop Snow

Facing Winter

What a wonderfulseason this is with so much excitement surrounding us. I am one of those annoying people who adores Christmas. The months leading up to it mean fabulous Christmas shows in galleries and meeting up with friends old and new to celebrate this very special time of year.

I enjoy looking forward to opening the stored Christmas decorations. As I hold each one  it always without fail reminds me of special memories over the years. I can look back and smile at the many times certain ornaments have adorned our trees. I  think about my life journey while I do and where I was when  many were bought or given to me. I have a tradtition of giving  Christmas tree ornaments to friends so that when they hang these on their trees each year they will think of me. I have already bought this years gifts for wonderful friends who have come to mean the world to me over time. In fact I couldn't imagine my life without them in it.
And just like dear friends some painting subjects come to life at this time of year. Painting them brings a feeling of magic that just doesn't seem to hang around in any other season. So I am painting with blues and frosty white snow effects. Robins have been on my easel more than once this week and gorgeous clusters of snowdrops.

I am working on a new horse racing collection which won't be on show until 2012 and the fast sense of movement in each is really making me think of all I have to do to makethis season brilliant for everyone around me.

Whatever you are creating I hope you are having a fabulous time doing so,and I hope your sesason is fantastic as well!

Tuesday 29 November 2011

November Watercolour Challenge: Derwent Watercolour Pencils

 Leisure Painter and The Artist Magazine

 Rabbit  created using Derwent Watercolour pencils on top of my usual watercolour techniques

November Watercolour Challenge and Prize

I haven't shared a watercolour challenge for November as I have been really busy working on Christmas Exhibitions and  looking forward to reading the first final proof of my completed book which has been a full project for me this year.

For those who are missing submitting paintings I have a wonderful opportunity for followers of my blog to participate in an online challenge with the Leisure Painter and The Artist Magazine who are running a feature of mine with a fabulous prize of over £100 worth of Derwent Watercolour pencils for the winner.

I have been working with   various ways of creating texture for a variety of subjects over the last few months and loved creating fur over my usual watercolour results by adding final touches  with watercolour pencil.

For full details of the competition please follow this link and forward your own original art  and ideas to win this fabulous prize. I will be selecting the winning painting and look forward to seeing what you come up with.

Good Luck as this  is a really great way to stretch your creative imagination!