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A Watercolour Painters diary. Spring / Summer 2020

Lockdown has given me a time for contemplation, reflection and to generally slow down. Normally I am so busy rushing about, painting for upcoming exhibitions or preparing workshops for my students’ watercolour classes. Lockdown has made me thoroughly enjoy the garden – planting, weeding and of course painting in it. My watercolour painting diary started in March with the white Hyacinths followed by the spring Daffodils and Primroses- gorgeous yellows and greens and a splash of pink from the Viburnum.
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The Apple Blossom in mid-April was stunning due to such beautiful strong sunshine and shadows. I painted in the apple orchard and made a short video of myself painting to send to my students for ideas and inspiration as my painting workshops had been cancelled. The white Cherry Blossom came out very shortly after and looking upwards, the flowers sparkled like jewels against the bright blue sky. This was fabulous to paint. I found the tree had grown wild between two of our old derelict glasshouses and I hadn’t noticed it growing there. Staying in the garden certainly makes you notice things you haven’t seen before. May brought an abundance of flowers. Firstly the huge traditional white poppies with their deep dark magenta centers. Some were damaged by the wind and rain ( which usually happens most years ) so I brought the damaged blooms inside my studio to paint.
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The yellow Rose bush was beautiful and so I chose to paint this alongside the blue / violet Delphiniums. I liked the colour combination and painted HUGE – on full imperial sized paper. It certainly had the ‘wow’ factor. As I enjoyed working on a large scale, I decided to paint in June the stars of the garden- the pale pink peonies. I counted over 30 buds on one plant. They truly were a picture this year. I wet the paper with clean water and let all the colours blend together to create a softness in the petals. The buds were a beautiful shape and a deeper shade of pink. I added the Delphiniums again in the background to create a slight contrast with the pale pink of the peonies. The tall majestic foxgloves were buzzing with bees collecting their pollen. I was given some seedlings by a friend, which produced all sorts of different colours – one an unusual shade of peach.
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The beginning of July saw the first Hollyhocks bloom- in beautiful shades of pinks, creams, yellows and deep dark purple/ black, all symbolizing love, happiness and friendship. So beautiful to paint particularly when the sunlight casts shadows on the delicate frilly petals.
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For the first time in the cottage garden, I planted blue Scabious. Painting the petals in cobalt blue and violets – this gave me a chance to use my favourite colours. I built up very pale blue washes to create the delicate crinkled petals and combined them with white cosmos. Every July the yellow Galadias with their daisy like petals, show their heads. The seeds were originally given to me by my Auntie many years ago who grew them in abundance in the front of her cottage in Cheshire. Yellow is such a joyful happy colour and ‘ Indian Yellow is the perfect watercolour shade to paint these beautiful sunny flowers.
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The bird.
Most days the weather was kind enough for me to enjoy my morning cup of coffee sat outside under a tree. I noticed one day a tiny little chirping noise coming from high above me in the tree. As the days and weeks went by the chirping got louder and louder and the bird got braver and braver. It darted so quickly and so confidently from one branch to another. The parents were constantly on the go, feeding it with insects. It was a joy to watch. Then one day the chirping stopped, all was quiet and the little bird I had got quite attached to, had flown it’s home in the tree and gone to pastures new. I never knew what sort of bird it was – I think it was a spotted Flycatcher but I wasn’t too sure. I did enjoy watching it though. The natural world is such a wonderful thing to both watch and paint. I hope you have enjoyed my Lockdown diary.


Cambridge Drawing Society Autumn Exhibition.
The Leys School, Fen Causeway, Cambridge, CB2 7AD
20th - 26th October 2019. Open everyday 10am-4pm

Original Paintings, Drawings, Prints and Sculptures. I shall have 5 paintings on display (3 framed and 2 unframed)


Grantchester Gallery Exhibition, Grantchester Village Hall, Grantchester.
28th – 29th September 2019, 10 am – 5 pm.

I will be exhibiting with a group of 5 other artists/ craft makers. Refreshments served.
‘Winter Calm, Grantchester’


Society of East Anglian Watercolourists Selected Exhibition, 28th August – 22 September 2019
At The Babylon Gallery, Waterside, Ely, CB7 4AU. Noon – 4pm (closed Mondays)

I am pleased to have two paintings selected for this exhibition as well as cards and unframed works.


Melford Hall, Long Melford, Suffolk. May 1st – June 9th 2019

I have a selection of framed and unframed paintings in this exhibition.
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Cambridge Drawing Society Spring Exhibition, 22nd – 30th March 2019
At the Pitt Building, Trumpington Street, Cambridge, CB2 1RPB

Lots of original artworks by selected local artists. I have 4 paintings on display.


Cambridge Drawing Society Autumn Exhibition
The Leys School, Fen Causeway, Cambridge, CB2 7AD
21st - 27th October 2018. Open everyday 10am-4pm

Lots of paintings, prints and sculptures on display.
I am showing oils and watercolours
I have four paintings on display.
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Society of East Anglia Watercolour Exhibition at the Babylon Gallery, Waterside, Ely October 2018

I am thrilled to have 3 paintings selected... My portrait of my daughter Jessica and 2 Cornish coastal scenes
This is a fabulous exhibition of Watercolour paintings - Well worth a visit.
Tuesday 16th October - Sunday 28th October, 12 - 4 (except Monday)
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Cambridge Open Studios 2018

A Saturday 7th and Sunday 8th July & Saturday 14th and Sunday 15th July
11.00 am – 6.00 pm
www.camopenstudios.co.uk
Watercolour paintings on display inspired by my trips to Cornwall and Corfu.
New ‘en plein air’ oil paintings as well as greeting cards and prints.
See where I paint and learn about my watercolour techniques and art materials.
Look forward to seeing you.


Cambridge Drawing Society Spring Exhibition
April 14th – 21st 2018 from 10.00 am – 5.30 pm
(Closes at 4 pm on Saturday 21st April)

In the Pitt Building, Trumpington St, Cambridge , CB2 1RP
Over 250 original artworks by selected local artists.
I have four paintings on display.
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August 2017 'Lily'

A long awaited horse commission finally finished. This large painting is extra special as poor Lily tragically died shortly after I had taken photos of her. Painted on full A1 size paper, I wanted to show both the movement as she trotted around the field and the light and shade on her summer coat. The owner was so pleased and very moved by the painting and felt I had captured her spirit and character perfectly..


Society Of East Anglian Watercolourists Exhibition
Babylon Gallery, Waterside, Ely
Wednesday 30 th August – Sunday 17th September 2017, 12 noon – 4 pm Closed Mondays
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Thrilled to bits to receive an award at the Society of East Anglian Watercolourists Private View last night. I won the sponsors 'Lighting Sensation' award for outstanding use of light. The title 'Sunshine, shadows and white washed pots' was inspired by my recent trip to Corfu. My award was presented to me by the President of the Royal Institute of Painters in Watercolour , Rosa Sepple. Also on display is my painting 'In the shade of the old Olive Tree' painted en plein air.
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Cambridge Drawing Society Spring Exhibition
April 1st – 8th 2017 from 10.00 am – 5.30 pm
(Closes at 4 pm on Saturday 8th April)

In the Pitt Building, Trumpington St, Cambridge , CB2 1RP
Over 250 original artworks by selected local artists.
I have four paintings on display.
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Parallax Art Fair, London - 25th and 26th February 2017
Chelsea Town Hall, King’s Road, Chelsea, London

I shall be exhibiting with members of the Society of East Anglian Watercolourists
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November
Cambridge Open Art Exhibition
19th - 20th November 2016

At Swavesey Village College, Gibralter Lane, Swavesey, CB24 4RS
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Foxton Art Exhibition
18th - 20th November 2016

At the Foxton Primary School, more details on www.foxtonart.org
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October
Cambridge Drawing Society Autumn Exhibition
Sunday 23rd - Saturday 29th October 2016


At Leys School, Fen Causeway, Cambridge
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Cambridge Open Studios
July 9th/10th and 16th/17th
11.00am - 6.00pm

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You are warmly invited to visit my Open Studio at:
Garden House, 33 Cootes Lane, Fen Drayton, Cambridge, Cambs, CB24 4SL. Tel 01954 231847
Vibrant, colourful, watercolour and acrylic paintings inspired by flowers, gardens and water.
Originals, prints and cards for sale.
Look out for the Yellow Cambridge Open Studio flags


August
Society of East Anglian Watercolourists Exhibition
Babylon Gallery, Waterside, Ely
27th August - 11th September 2016


Melford Hall Art Fair
Long Melford, Suffolk
2nd June - 3rd July 2016


Society of East Anglian Watercolourists Spring Exhibition
21st - 27th May 2016
Bury St Edmunds Farmers Club, Northgate Street, Bury St. Edmunds


Afternoon Tea and Painting Workshop
Thursday 12th May
At The River Tea Rooms, Bridge Street, St. Ives


Cambridge Drawing Society Spring Exhibition Studios
9th - 16th April 2016
At The Pitt Building, Trumpington Street, Cambridge

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