Being an Artist can become a lonely old business unless you do something alongside your daily practice to change that fact.  After stopping my voluntary work, teaching art to teenagers and young adults suffering from cancer, at St James’s Hospital, Leeds, I quickly realised I still needed a way of meeting people and a change from portrait painting day in day out…
I find, in life in general, there are few people who really go out of their way to help somebody else.  From a young age, I decided I would be different and if I were ever in a position to help others I would do all I could.  Getting to the point – if you have a passion for art, are learning to draw or paint as a hobby or would like to become a full time artist and are in need of some hints and tips, or even if you are already an artist and would just like a general chat, I am more than happy to oblige.

Back in July 2013 I had been showing Sarah, who is soon to be starting her practice as an Art Teacher, the tricks of the trade.  Focusing on oil painting techniques and portraiture.  Sarah had mastered many other forms of art but had never really had chance to dabble with oils.  It was really nice to have someone to talk to in the studio and an absolute pleasure to share my knowledge and experience.20130730_162656crop

The image is of two beautiful ceramic bowls made by Sarah.  Unique pieces like this are available to buy (from Sarah) so drop me a line if you are interested and I will put you in touch with her.

December 2013

Laura Wiggins at Puffin Portraits contacted me: “I’d love to chat about lighting of subjects etc. as I think you have captured ‘moments’ beautifully. I have been working from photographs which are perhaps creating flat images. I’d love to learn more about contrast/light etc. Do you work from photographs? … I really feel that I am at the start of my journey (again!) and so am quite humble and grateful for any advice you can offer. It would be good to chat in your studio early in the year, maybe I could bring along a painting or two for a crit!!”

We had a cracking day of art, oils, and …childcare – we are hard-core artists (and mums) and it only took until March 2014 for me to get a day free for the lovely Laura – thank you for your patience!

Again, another very enjoyable day in the studio.  I really felt like I helped Laura out – particularly with one painting of her son she was struggling with.  The fact of the matter was, it was the photo (she was working from) at fault and not Laura.  Sometimes it takes someone who isn’t working so close to the subject, to point out what seems so obvious (you realise afterwards) that it is almost annoying you didn’t realise it yourself – but it does give a great sense of relief when this happens (speaking form personal experience there).

Alfie and Fran Mason - Graphite pencil A3

Image is a pencil portrait by Laura.

If anyone is interested in watching an artist at work or is in need of some advice (art wise obviously) feel free to get in touch.

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