Thursday 6 October 2016

Folsom, California Demonstration October 20th 2016

Just a reminder for anyone who wishes to see me demonstrate in California. I will be signing and selling my books also!

I will be in Folsom on
20th October and everyone is welcome

The Folsom Arts Association Artist Demonstration Thursday, October 20, 2016 at 6:00 PM
at The Gallery at 48 Natoma Street in Folsom

Full details via this link.


USA Watercolour Workshop Tour : Fall 2016

"Roses and Ivy"

My blog  is about ot fall quiet as I leave for my 2016 Fall USA tour tomorrow. I will begin my tour in Dallas, Texas and then head on to two locations in California. My workshops are fully booked but I will be giving demonstrations and everyone is welcome to these.
For full details on my talks and presentations please contact the following.



I will be back!
Until then. happy painting!  

Roses in Watercolour 2016

"Summer Scents" 
Roses in watercolour 2016

I have just completed the above painting of the last of my summer roses in my cottage garden.  I absolutely love these beautiful blooms that have given such a gorgeous display all summer long.

I know my " How To Paint A Rose in a Loose Style" has been a favourite blog post for so long now. Which is why I have demonstrated painting roses like the above in my new DVD " Watercolor Flowers" 

 I really dread seeing the last of Summer, it means the last of my summer flower painting for a while as I love to sit outside to create my new paintings of each flower as it opens and evolves through each day from bud to full bloom to even the wilting stage.

I will be taking this particular painting with me on my USA tour.

But if you would like to paint flowers like this you can watch how I create them on the clip of my new DVD via the  link below.

Happy painting!


Making a Difference With Fresh Eyes

"Basking in Sunlight"
Original watercolour by Jean Haines
I always , without fail, look at all my recently finished paintings with fresh eyes every morning. The day after I have created a finished piece I can often see where a slight improvement, or not, can be made. Fresh eyes are the best for making important decisions.

Sometimes I feel a painting is definitely completed. At others I feel something is wrong, missing or needing correcting. As with the above painting.

I loved my painting "Basking in Sunlight" so much and had left it on my easel to enjoy for a while. But every time I looked at it something bothered me. My cat seemed to be floating. It needed anchoring in the composition. And so I added darker tones to create the shadow effect as the fur was nearer to the resting space the cat is laying on. To me this made the painting look far more atrractive and the story is now more complete. My cat isn't floating. It is lying on something! This is where I will put my brushes down. Any more addition of colour or detail and the spontaneity and freshness could be lost

 "Basking in Sunlight" before the shadow was added. 


Artists Tips

1) Always look at your finished work the next day with fresh eyes. 
2) Don't race to make changes or additions. 
3) Take your time to consider all your options  on how to improve your work without ruining it


A Turtles Song : Art Feature 2016

"A Turtles Song"

I am often invited to write features for art magazines. My latest
for is a really an interesting one as it looks at when we put our brushes down, as much as when we pick them up.

Its' called " A Turtles Song" and can be read via this link.

I loved writing it so I do hope you enjoy it! 

Wednesday 5 October 2016

On The Fence 2016 : Robin in Watercolour

"On The Fence"
Original Watercolour 
Copyright Jean Haines

A very hectic day. I am preparing to leave for my USA 2016 Fall tour and also delivering work to galleries that represent me. It has been a wonderful year for sales so I am arranging a collection of original paintinsg to be on show while I am away.  I am also  painting a "Birds in Watercolour" series for a gallery Christmas Show.

Above is "On the Fence ". Our little cheeky robin makes another appearance in my watercolours. I realised this would make a great Christmas Card so it could be mine this year. The eye is very bright and shiny. Just like the real eye of the bird I see daily in our cottage garden. There is lovely light on the snow too which I am delighted with.

Again I have used one of my own photographs and added a fence to it to make the composition more interesting. Snow seems to hint at a Christmas and Winter feel.

This piece will be delivered along with other new paintings to be framed tomorrow. And if you would like to see these bird paintings at Christams head to the Wey Gallery in Godalming, Surrey, UK as they will be showing this new collection of new subjects!

Details of the gallery are below. 
To purchase a bird painting please contact the gallery via this link as they will be happy to help.



Tuesday 4 October 2016

New : Jean Haines DVDs filmed in USA!

 I have been so busy that I haven't had time to share the wonderful news that my DVDs filmed earlier this year in USA are now available to purchase or download and I am thrilled with them. The film studio was fabulous and the filming crew so professional.

This is my series of four new DVDs and each one was so much fun to create


Watercolor Animals
This DVD takes you from painting eyes as a starting point to building up a whole subject. 
A favourite!

 Watercolor Flowers
Who doesn't enjoy painting flowers? A fabulous new DVD just on painting one of my favourite subjects!

 Watercolor Workout
If you can't get to one of my workshops please buy this DVD and work through all my favourite workshop warm up exercises. No stress painting that will improve your skill and techniques while working in watercolour in a fun ,easy to understand, approachable way of learning and improving.

 Watercolor Mindfulness
This DVD goes with my latest book " Paint Yourself Calm". This film shows you how to relax whilst painting. It also makes you think about what you are doing when creating. A lovely film. 

You can buy these films from or

They are also available to download! 

I loved creating them and sharing my favourite ways to work in watercolour and I hope you like them too!

Happy painting.


Robin in Watercolour 2016

"Soft As Snow"
Original watercolour by Jean Haines

It's that time of year when most artists start thinking about painting their Christmas cards if they need to get them printed. And I am way behind in this matter. I have been invited to show some bird paintings in watercolour in a gallery Christmas Exhibition this year. So I started my bird collection with this small robin today. 

We have a robin that visits our garden regularly. In fact one used to regularly come into our cottage for food. Which I wasn't too happy about but he seemed house trained as he never left any messages for me to clear up after his visits. Thankfully!

Our robin in our cottage kitchen. A regular visitor!

 Our robin in our garden. A sweet little bird with beautiful bird song.

 My photographs  of our robin are mainly against green backgrounds so I have made my todays' painting of one up. Using my own resource photo but adding snow to the branch the sweet little bird is sitting on. I was going to add a background but I love the painting just as it is. So I am going to take my own advise of stopping painting long before you think your painting is finished and start a new piece.

What I really wanted to share in this blog post is the wonderful feathering effect you can achieve with watercolour if you simply allow the colours to fuse together minus the use of a hair dryer.  Just look at the lovely markings below in the close up of my robin painting before the branch was added.This effect is created using Cadmium shades. The cadmium pigments are so bossy that they fight for attention pushing each other out of the way. This robins chest was painted using Cadmium Yellow and adding Cadmium Orange to that area whilst the first application of colour is still wet. If you are reading my books or watching my DVDs try experimenting with your warm up washes with these two colours on damp paper to see what happens. You might be amazed!

"Rocky Robin",
Cute in its unfinished stage.


I share my techniques in all of my books and DVDs but my latest DVD film about painting animals in watercolour is possibly the best for learning how to  paint subjects with eyes!

More details via this link




Basking In Sunlight : Cat in Watercolour 2016

"Basking In Sunlight"
Cat in Watercolour

So you reach that moment when you know a painting is finished and you just can't put your brushes down. We all recognise it. You have a painting in front of you and the last few brushstrokes have brought it to life. You are thrilled. You actually like your own work and want that happy feeling to go on and on and on.

But this is where we often ruin a painting.

Stop long before you think a painting is finished is the best advise I can offer many artists on my workshops and I have to heed it myself at times. Especially on this piece. I am painting my own cat Buster. Actually Buster was a very pretty cat and we couldn't decide what name to give him when he first entered our lives. At first he was just " Kitten". And then I would pick him up and say " Okay Buster, you will have a name that suits your beauty one day".  Well unfortunately I got so used to calling him " Buster" that the rest of the family called him that from then on and the silly name stuck. Poor Buster. He should have been called something far more regal. And far more worthy a name for  such a handsome fellow.

Well here he is, basking in the sun not risking closing his eyes in case a mouse or bird is daft enough to walk right in front of his nose as at this moment he isn't moving far too quickly to reach it if they are luckily too far away. He is in pure "laze" mode.

Now to move on to the next painting and I may take a break from cats for a while.

Or not!

I do believe when your heart is screaming at you to paint a subject you should until that song has past. I feel I have created beautiful "meow-sic" this week but what is next I wonder!


Artists Tips

1) Stop long before you think your painting is finished.
2) Don't add a " last brushstroke" that could over work or kill the spontaneity in your result.
3) Paint what you want to when you want to.
4) Love the subject you are working on and feel a connection with it.


Sunbathing 2016

New cat painting in watercolour
Work in progress 

What a day. I have had two deliveries to my studio. And I was fascinated to see both of the individual delivery guys enthralled by the cat paintings on my easel. My new cat painting, seen above as a work in progress, is on my easel and my own cat Buster is the model. Buster used to stretch out in sunshine and was quite a gorgeous fluffy monster. When young his eyes shone incredibly brightly so my focus is on those at the moment.

I thought I would share my work in progress as I have come across a common problem when artists paint cats on my workshops. They tend to get to this stage and think something is terribly wrong with their painting. This is when they will strentghen colour to the fur or eyes, or try to adjust the cats features and actually all that is wrong is that their cat has no whiskers!

When you are working with animals it is best to place all the details and features you want in place before you begin to make any corrections or major changes.

Its' a fact.

Cats look odd without whiskers!

So having shared my sunbathing cat at stage I can go on to add the whiskers and complete him. 
He is pretty lovely! 
Very cute and quite adorable!


Monday 3 October 2016

Cattadiction : 2016

 "Kitten Love"

Okay. I need to put my hand up and confess I have become addicted to painting cats. Hence the title of this blog post "Cattadiction".  If you haven't caught this addiction yet do not, I repeat do NOT start painting cats. One painting leads to another as you strive to reach purrfection. This from the artist who believes there is no such thing as perfection. You can always improve as an artist. In fact you can always improve as a human being too. No matter who you are.

So today I came into my studio and loved seeing what I had left on my easel last night. I quickly did a warm up wash using golds. But then looked at the grey cat I painted recently. I liked it and wondered what it would have looked like as a kitten. So I have given my model a " facelift" and knocked off quite a few years by aiming for cute and cuddly in this new painting of exactly teh same cat. Now the title of my new painting is " Kitten Love".  And who doesnt't love kittens? Actually my husband John isn't too keen on kittens. He thought our two were really destructive. They were. My first ever kittens and I rather naively said out loud " They will grow out of it ".

They didn't. 

Two ripped arm chairs, a scratched leather settee, many ruined sweaters and several years later I still love our now fully grown cat Biscuit but we lost Buster to Cancer earlier this year. Can I face owning new kittens? Probably not right now, but I love painting them.

This is what my easel looks like this afternoon , seen below, and my cat gallery on my web site is beginning to look a lot healthier too! As my new paintings have been added although these will be kept for a show collection for the time being.

The three amigos!

Below you can see the warm up wash I created,which I will work on now as it is quite interesting. Believe it or not I was trying out colours for ginger cats!

Three amigos and a wash!

I wonder what tomorrow will bring subject wise! 


Sunday 2 October 2016

Lake Tahoe October 2016: Workshop Places Available

Lake Tahoe
Watercolour Workshops 
October 2016

 I have just heard that there are a few last minute cancellations for my workshops in Lake Tahoe.
These are my last workshops of 2016 and I aim to make them memorable.

If anyone is interested please contact Barbara urgently via the following link.

Cats, cats and cats : 2016

 "Excuse me?"
Cat in watercolour 2016

Well before my world crashed recently I was painting feeling as though I had crossed a bridge in my style and techniques when painting in watercolour. It is only natural as an artist to fall a little when emotions knock you sideways and oh boy, they did when I had to face up to losing my best four legged friend  and faithful companion, Bailey.

But I have been telling myself off. And woke this morning determined to get back into my studio and paint. I also felt for all my blog readers who must be reading my posts dreading what is coming next from me, as I am usually so cheerful.

I am happy to say I did paint this morning. And more like me, the artist who loves colour and creating from her heart. In fact painting lifted my spirits because of the subjects I chose. I felt like painting animals but my heart wasn't in painting dogs. Not yet, but it will be after today. I can feel my spirits lifting gradually with each new brushstroke.

I chose cats as a subject today as I want to update my web site and my cat gallery page needs new art on it. 

Initially when I started painting the "grey sky mood" from yesterdays blog post was still very much in my soul. So my first cat painting was in grey. Seen above and below.


I gave this painting the title " Excuse Me?".  As I was rather amused by the expression of the cat. It looks as though it has been disturbed and is absolutely disgusted that anyone would dare do so. It is regal and is created by very soft watermarks for fur. I enjoyed painting this so much that I aimed to copy and repeat my first cat watercolour but with a body next time. Which is a bit of a feat as there is only a head and shoulder shot to work from at the moment in my studio.

I also knew I had to move away from working in grey colours. When you are feeling sad its' easy to opt for working in shades that match your mood. But if you stay with these shades for too long your spirits will fall even lower than they already are.

I chose to work in warm golden shades for my next painting and instantly my soul started to feel that familiar sense of soaring.  No matter what anyone says or tells you. Painting is good for the soul. It is therapeutic and can change how you feel better than any medical tonic as far as I am concerned. I painted the same cat face shape in my new piece but with new colour options and then added a body from my imagination. I am trying to stop before I add feet and a tail too. I love what has happened so far. And as my mood is lifting so are the eyes in this new watercolour. They are brighter, happier, more cheerful and the expression seems far more relaxed. 

Oh how our moods effect our painting results!

 "Absolutely Darling"
Gold shades bring sunshine and warmth to my new cat watercolour

If you look at the two paintings side by side on my easel below you can almost feel my brushwork begin to relax as my newest cat painting gradually comes to life.

Two new cat paintings in watercolour, coming to life on my easel.

I am feeling better today and my brushwork shows that I am. I have so much news to share and I am now back on my blog. And very grateful to the wonderful friends I have here who are helping me get back into my usual way of living. Happily via my brush.  Not forgetting Bailey, but happy at the years I have been lucky enough to share with him. I will paint him at some point. Right now for that watercolour my heart isn't quite there yet. It will be. But not yet.

Happy painting.


Saturday 1 October 2016

Grey Skies 2016

Grey Skies

Thank you so much to everyone who has sent me wonderfully kind messages for the loss of Bailey, my wonderful Bearded Collie which has come as a huge shock.He had been looking so well and recently acting more like a puppy than his thirteen and a half years, so we were not expecting such a devastating experience. We miss him terribly which is only natural for a well loved fur family member.  Ever since this dog came into my life he has been a huge part of it and I must admit he wasn't always the easiest of pups to deal with.  To his dying day the word " Come" meant nothing at all. Even if you had a treat in your hand. Bailey was stubborn, determined but still so very wonderful. And extremely comical. His loss has hit me hard but I am slowly coming to terms with what happened and how it happened. Which now I know was best for Bailey. He didn't suffer at all and any loving pet owner would want that for their pet.

But where did losing him leave me?  

Obviously not in a happy place. But surprisingly my own words have helped me so much, taken from my latest book " Paint Yourself Calm". Little did I know that when I wrote this book I would be needing it so very badly myself this year. It has been a comfort in so many ways. As has every single kind word from friends all over the world who have been so very kind to me. Understanding what I was going through and still am. But today I feel I am getting better. Gradually.  

I have been looking out of my studio window. Even coming here has been difficult as Bailey always lay by my side inside my painting haven, or outside near by. It is so hard not to have my art critic around. He also timed my painting sessions. He would be as good as gold for an hour or so but after that I would get a nudge suggesting I went inside for coffee for me which meant a treat for him. The longest he would leave me without a nudge was two hours. After that I would simply have to walk around the garden with him which often gave me thinking time on the work I was in the middle of creating. We don't know what we have until it is gone for sure. I did value the time with my four legged buddy so much. And he taught me quite a lot too.

Through owning my four legged art companion I often stopped and admired nature.  But so often looking down not up. Seeing plants and wildlife. Now I am looking at the heavens. The skies this week in UK have been grey matching my mood completely. I decided if my heart felt full of tears I would paint that feeling. The first sky below is a soft gentle wash. It forms clouds sweeping the sky as if brushing the tears aside.

Sky wash1.

As fast as I painted the sky above the pattern of the clouds changed. The sky darkened and the cloud formation became one of long straight lines almost. No hard edges of white. Just grey skies with whispers of white space appearing. As seen in the sky wash below.

Sky Wash 2.

To be honest. Sitting watching clouds and painting them was calming. I became engrossed in what was happening in front of my eyes and it was the perfect distraction that I needed. And so I painted several skies, observing the real thing and bringing what I saw into each new wash. I was looking in one direction. My daily dog walking route.

At the end of each painting day I always walked Bailey in the field and up the hill behind my cottage. Together, whatever the weather we climbed that small hill to the top. It was good for both of us. I can see the top of the hill clearly from where I paint. And I added our favourite tree to my first sky wash.  As seen in the image below.

 "Flying Free"

At the end of the day I'd walk with you
And you would walk with me
We'd climb the hill and look around
Enjoying all that we could see

The ancient tree, a burial ground
Birds flying overhead
Peaceful silence, nature at its' best
And now the day I dread.

No more walks with you beside me
Bounding at my heels
I was not prepared for the tearing pain
Of sudden loss and how it feels

But you my friend can race above
You're free to sniff at will
 I will miss you dearest pup
Each time I walk "your" hill.


I miss my beautiful Bailey but I am so grateful for all the years of laughter and love brought into our family by this four legged comedian.

Again, thank you so very much for all the love, support, kindness and really amazing friendship I have felt this week. I am really grateful. He may have been to a non pet owner " just a dog", but to many he was far more than that.

He was love , loved and and loving