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Archive for the ‘Local Artists’ Category

Portrait Of A Local Artist – Dick Hewitson

Monday, August 7th, 2017

Portrait-of-a-Local-Artist-Dick-Hewitson Portrait-of-a-Local-Artist-Chapmans-Pool---oil-on-boardThe landscape and its variety attracted artist Dick Hewitson to Dorset.

A keen walker and living in the county since 1970, he taught biology and used to run very successful residential biology field courses in the Purbecks.

Now a full-time painter, Dick finds much inspiration from the area. “I do some plein air painting, and tend to prefer coastal locations, including the Purbecks,” he says. However, many of his paintings arise from drawings, so he does quite a lot of charcoal drawings when researching a painting. “I often paint recognisable places, like Chapman’s pool, but do not really paint ‘views’. There is always a degree of abstraction in my paintings and I am not aiming for photographic realism.”

As a university student in the early ‘60s Dick studied biology. In that period he became very interested in the arts, especially the visual arts. “During my post-graduate teacher training course at Birmingham, training to become a science teacher, I had the opportunity to learn about oil painting, one morning a week for a whole term, when I studied with a tutor from the art department of Birmingham University. I was the only student. Basically, I learned how to handle oil paint.  I began painting on my own in those early days, but I spent my working life mainly as a biology teacher. I did not pick up painting again until about 2011.

I realised long ago that if I was to paint seriously, I would need to put a lot of time into it, which is why I spend several days a week painting, most weeks. I am very attracted to the natural world, and this may be reflected in the rather ‘organic’ quality of much of my work.”

Dick is a member of Creative Coverage, which represents selected professional artists and craftspeople. www.dickhewitson.co.uk


Portrait Of A Local Artist – Nick Andrew

Wednesday, June 7th, 2017

Portrait-of-a-local-artist-Nick-Andrew-b&wWiltshire Artist seeks a gallery for a solo Show

Nick Andrew from Warminster was preparing for an exhibition of his work depicting London parks at the Curwen Gallery, London in April. But he was let down at the last minute when he learned that the Curwen Gallery was closing after 35 years of trading.

Each week since January 2016 Nick has been taking his sketchbook to a different public garden or park in central Portrait-of-a-local-artist-Brompton-CemeteryLondon, drawing, discovering, meeting park users and researching for his Sticks in the Smoke project. “I am aiming to cover all of central London’s 60 parks and gardens, from the huge acreage of Hyde Park to pocket handkerchief spaces such as St. Mary Staining,” he says.

These drawings, as well as studies (small paintings) he creates after each visit, were the basis of his exhibition with a follow-up show in 2018. Additionally, a proportion of the exhibition sales were going to support the Sensory Trust charity which aims to make the outdoors accessible and enjoyable for all people, regardless of age, ability or social circumstance.

Not one to dwell, good news was soon around the corner when he won the Individual Artists Award at the Wiltshire Life Awards. “A real surprise, a boost and validation! It was a great evening (even though black tie isn’t really my style!)”

Nick opens his studio at Bull Mill Arts close to the banks of the River Wylye in South Wiltshire, near Warminster every first Saturday of the month and from May 27 to June 4 he will take part in the Wylye Valley Art Trail.

Nick studied Art and Graphic Design in Oxford, London and Cheltenham. Since graduating in 1979, he has been working as a painter and has exhibited widely, in galleries and events throughout the UK, mainland Europe, and the USA.


Portrait Of A Local Artist – Jenny Sutton

Saturday, April 8th, 2017
Portait-of-a-Local-Artist-Jenny-SuttonOil painter Jenny Sutton is a Dorset girl, regularly revisiting the county. “My 96-year-old mother grew up in Wimborne and her father was HJ Evans, who was a well-known character in the town in the ‘20s and ‘30s,” says Jenny, who attended Parkstone Grammar School. “He owned the newsagents and booksellers in East Street and when cars first appeared in Wimborne he used to take pride in personally directing the traffic.”

Jenny’s other grandparents ran the Coventry Arms at Corfe Mullen until the mid 1950s, where her father Ralph was brought up.

“I have happy memories of fishing in the River Stour at the bottom of the then beautiful garden behind the pub. One summer, when I was six, I came across a snake in the vegetable garden. It was an adder, and Grandad dispatched it quickly with a hatchet. It was then displayed outside the bar for all to see!”

Jenny, whose mum still lives in Wimborne, remembers summer holiday hikes with school friends across the Portait-of-a-Local-Artist-Jenny-SuttonPurbecks. “I always had a paintbox in my rucksack and usually ended up at the Bankes Arms at Studland for a ritual ginger beer! I also had a friend whose family lived on a converted lifeboat in Poole Harbour, and we would sometimes go to one of the islands to give the boat its annual airing. There we would picnic and swim, and of course out came the sketchbook!”

Jenny read Fine Art at Reading University, and then ran her own gallery in Hampshire. She now regularly exhibits her own oil paintings, most recently being selected for the Creative Coverage Exhibition at the New Forest Centre Gallery in Lyndhurst, which finishes on April 2. Jenny is a regular exhibitor in Hampshire Open Studios. She is an elected full member of the Royal Birmingham Society of Artists.


Portrait Of A Local Artist – Juliet Wood

Monday, February 13th, 2017

Portait of a Local Artist Juliet-Wood Feb 2017“I love the character of the Dorset landscape, especially the coastal landscape and some fine gardens,” says artist Juliet Wood, who has fond memories of childhood holidays in Swanage.

Recently Juliet has visited Dorset twice, staying in Martinstown village “to draw and paint the beautiful churchyard”.

“What most inspires my work is the interaction of people, whether in an urban or coastal situation, and the atmosphere in a subject,” says Juliet.Portait-of-a-Local-Artist-The-Greeting-by-Juliet-Wood

Juliet studied at St Albans School of Art and the Slade with William Coldstream, followed by a study year near Rome. Her 30 year teaching career in London, Marlborough, and Swindon School of Art and Design focused on life drawing and painting. Juliet is an oil painter, and also uses oil pastels. Portraiture has always been part of an ongoing commitment to the expression of human life. She is well established throughout Britain, with portraits in the Scottish National Portrait Gallery, Royal Society of Edinburgh, and many other public and private collections. Both her portraits and thematic paintings based on drawings vary from the small and intimate to the large and complex. Raising her five children contributed positively to both aspects of work, giving a deep understanding of human dynamics. A major Swindon project to encourage interest in visual art involved touring her series of paintings, Alone and Together, Brunel’s People to venues in Swindon and Southwark throughout 2013–14, launched by a public drawing event. She says of the paintings, “We are strangers while I draw. Later, as I interweave their shapes I come to know the people in these paintings as well as those who sit for me.”

In October 2017 Juliet will have a solo show of new paintings and oil pastels at the Chandler Room, The White Horse Book Shop, Marlborough, Wiltshire.



Portrait Of A Local Artist – Tanya Hinton

Sunday, November 13th, 2016

tanya-hinton-local-artist-december-2016Wildlife in Dorset regularly inspires the artwork of Tanya Hinton, who lives in Gillingham.tanya-hinton-local-artist-pheasant-december-2016

“I collect driftwood from beaches near Bridport including Eype,” says Tanya, who has lived in Dorset since she was 17 years of age. “I also gather wood from old houses – I was recently given twelve 17th century doors. Various dumps and skips can provide some lovely finds, too.

I love the county’s varied and rugged landscape and how unchanged many parts are; it’s still a scene from a Thomas Hardy novel.”

Over the past few years Tanya has been producing unique paintings on wood that she has discovered washed-up on beaches, buried in gardens and reclaimed from old buildings. Each piece of wood offers wonderful possibilities: the sea-worn textures, grain patterns and old, flaking paint might suggest misty landscapes, rippled water and other settings. Tanya paints creatures which enhance each background and which she feels are appropriate to the wood. These beautifully painted animals and birds each have an individuality and detailed expressive features.

tanya-hinton-local-artist-skadi-on-an-aged-panel-door-december-2016Tanya was born and brought up in Berkshire, living on the banks of the Thames. Her extensive experience and skill as a painter dates back to her childhood, when she would carefully paint the faces and detailed costumes of figures for her father’s world-renowned model soldier business. Under his guidance, Tanya learnt about handling paint, colour mixing and attention to detail at a very early age. Since then Tanya has always been involved in creative work: painting, ceramics and as an artist’s model. She has exhibited her work at various galleries and events, including: Fisherton Mill, Salisbury, Dorset Art Weeks, Shaftesbury Art Centre, First View Gallery, Stourhead and Wylye Valley Art Trail.


Portrait Of A Local Artist – Chris Wood

Monday, October 3rd, 2016

portrait-of-a-local-artist-chris-wood“I love the isolation of Portland and its rugged, elemental, wind-swept scenery.”portrait-of-a-local-artist-spinnaker-tower

So says artist Chris Wood who “spent a wonderful week on a stone carving course in Tout Quarry”.

“We carved locally sourced Portland Oolitic Limestone, which was formed 145 million years ago. By day we worked in the quarry, standing at our ‘bankers’ (slabs of stone about the size of a table) on which our embryo sculptures took shape. We used a nylon mallet with a wooden handle, which absorbed the shock that is transferred to your wrist when you tap the end of the gouge. By the end of the day amateurs like me certainly knew how hard they had been working! Portland stone is relatively soft and you don’t have to beat the living daylights out of it to chip away small pieces of the surface. Little and often is the way to do it – keeping up a steady rhythm. In conclusion, the process was somewhat noisy, dusty and exhausting – but well worth the effort. I stayed in a former 19th century lighthouse, which was converted into an RSPB bird sanctuary and hostel that housed about a dozen people. The evening banter over a few beers was an interesting mix of sculpture, art and bird watching.

He adds: “As a marine artist the waterside at Weymouth cannot fail to be an inspiration with its collection of brightly coloured fishing boats with their marker buoys and flags fluttering in the breeze. The light in Weymouth and Portland is spectacular and whilst I now prefer to work in oils you can only really do the scenery justice by using watercolour, which offers fresh and crisp tints.”

Chris Wood’s work can be seen in Jack House Gallery, 121 High Street, Old Portsmouth and Atelier Gallery, 86 Castle Road, Southsea.


Portrait Of A Local Artist – Andrew Halliday

Wednesday, August 3rd, 2016

Portrait-Of-A-Local-Artist-Andrew-HallidayA father’s skill as an artist inspired his son to follow in his footsteps.

“It’s simple as that,” says Andrew Halliday from Lymington, who often visits the coast near Christchurch and is particularly fond of Highcliffe Castle.

“I hope to visit soon to create a new body of work including the grand and romantic Victorian building that resides there.”

Andrew had always had a fascination for painting and drawing – the home was full of his dad’s pictures, some abstract, others allegorical and mythological. “Dad’s talent drew me in, and I found that the school art department, which was basically a collection of pencils and paper, was just not good enough for me. The decision to follow art seemed natural to me and I wasn’t good at anything else anyway.”

Andrew first studied seriously at Bourneville School of Art where he was taught to draw properly by teacher and artist Terrence Clarke.Portrait-Of-A-Local-Artist-Beaulieu

“My BA degree had woeful support to prepare me, or indeed others on the course, for life as a pro,” reveals Andrew. “This has been a lifelong process and I’m still learning!”

A highlight of Andrew’s early career was being invited to study at Amsterdam’s prestigious Rijksakademie, a premier school that has great international respect. There he mixed with many professional artists from all over the world and enjoyed living in a beautiful and richly historical city.

“My present painting focuses on architecture and how we interact with it. Ten years ago I was greatly influenced by the Edward Hopper retrospective at Tate Modern and my goals in painting became clearer, more focused. Hopper was fascinated with the inner worlds of the people who inhabited the lobbies, squares and avenues of his cityscapes. I like to look instead outward, at how the physical world can illustrate the thoughts within us. I currently have work on show at the Riverside Gallery in Barnes, a part of London in which I used to live and work.”


Portrait Of A Local Artist – Rachel Fenner

Thursday, June 9th, 2016

Portrait-of-a-local-artist-Rachel-FennerAward winning artist and sculptor Rachel Fenner has been visiting the Purbecks since she was a student. Portrait-of-a-local-artist-Summer_Remembered

“I find the landscape very inspiring,” says Rachel, who has continually revisited the area for more than 50 years.

She had always had a desire to become an artist since childhood, which ultimately led her to study at the Royal College of Art from where she graduated from in 1966.

“I did a two year Foundation Diploma followed by a National Diploma in Design at Wimbledon School of Art,” explains Rachel. “I then won a place at the Royal College of Art to study for four years on the postgraduate ARCA course.”

Portrait-of-a-local-artist-Unstable-Rock-ArchOn leaving Rachel became a full-time professional artist, which was quite a feat for a woman at that time when like in many areas of life, art was male dominated.

Career highlights include winning the prestigious Sainsbury Award in 1966, having her first solo show in London in 1976, then being appointed as the City Sculptor for Portsmouth in 1979, and being commissioned for the Jubilee sculpture in Winchester in 2003.

Born in Scarborough, Yorkshire, Rachel now lives in Hampshire. She retired from public art in 2004 to focus on painting and now works almost entirely as a painter. Her paintings follow the Modernist tradition of English Romantic Abstraction and are largely inspired by the coastal landscapes of Pembrokeshire and Dorset. She has regularly exhibited her paintings in London since 1992. “These landscape paintings draw upon the physicality of landscape rather than simply being paintings of landscapes,” says Rachel. “In this sense they have become abstract and have assimilated the language of the geometrical forms that underpin much of my environmental sculpture.”


Portrait Of A Local Artist – Tim Burns

Thursday, April 7th, 2016

tim-burnsDurdle Door, Lulworth Cove and Kimmeridge are all beautiful locations that have frequently inspired Tim Burns,Tim-Burns-Widemouth-Bay who can often be found painting in-situ.

Tim has always been interested in art, having painted since his school days. “But during some periods I directed my energy exclusively on drawing, I have also worked in clay quite extensively,” he reveals.

In 1973 he took his Foundation Course at Medway College of Design. This sufficiently wetted his creative appetite driving him to take an art degree at West Surrey College of Art and Design in Farnham (now University of the Creative Arts).

Now living in Hampshire, Tim first exhibited in 1977 at the New Ashgate Gallery in Farnham. One year later one of his paintings was exhibited in the Royal Academy Summer Show.

“I then enjoyed my first one man show,” he recalls. “During the intervening years I taught art whilst maintaining my own work and exhibiting throughout that period. I retired from teaching in 2013 in order to work full time on my painting.”

Tim-Burns-Seaside-still-life-with-Ali's-bowlSince taking early retirement from teaching in 2013, Alton based Tim has been working mostly on marine Tim-Burns-Feathers-and-fruitlandscape and related still-life subjects often bringing both elements together in one painting.

“My work reflects the world around me, whether it be the places I visit, the contents of my fruit bowl, my ceramics collection or bits and pieces from the beach or garden,” he explains. “Each painting reflects an aspect of my world and many of them have their own story to tell. Whatever the subject of my work, be it on canvas, paper or driftwood each painting is another step on a journey. The subjects are traditional but I am picking my own path and the paintings document the course that I travel: literally and creatively.”

Tim regularly exhibits his work and he is a member of Creative Coverage.          www.timburns.co.uk

Portrait Of A Local Artist – lan Langford

Tuesday, February 9th, 2016

Alan-Langford-Local-Artist-Feb16Alan Langford was born in Bournemouth in 1952 when the town was still part of Hampshire.

His father’s family lived in the Bournemouth and Poole area and Alan remained there until he was five years old. “I then emigrated with my parents and siblings, to Australia,” he recalls. “But my father was homesick and so three years later we returned to the UK. And from a rented bungalow in Elizabeth, near Adelaide, South Australia with a television we then had to live in a small caravan on a campsite in Blackfield moving on to Dibden in the New Forest. I love the new Forest and am also fond of depicting the landscapes of Dartmoor, Wiltshire and Dorset. I am inspired by the literature of Dorset’s favourite son, Thomas Hardy.”

Since 1979 Alan has been a professional artist but has always enjoyed drawing since childhood. He was voted a full member of the Society of Equestrian Artists (SEA) in 2008. Five years later his distinctive work was included in the Nags to Thoroughbreds exhibition at Southampton Art Gallery.High-Spirits-Local-Artist-Feb16

“A career highlight was seeing my painting ‘High Spirits’ hung alongside that of Sir Alfred Munnings and Lucy Kemp Welch which I greatly admire. I would only recommend becoming an artist to the tenacious and gifted,” he says. “My advice to someone wishing to become an artist is to draw, draw and draw some more.”

Alan’s work can be seen in the Creative Coverage exhibition at Gallery 4, Salisbury Library from March to April 2016. From April 1, 2016 Alan’s exhibition Horses in Landscape takes place at Godshill. At some point in 2016 his work will feature in the SEA exhibition and together with his wife Janet he will participate in a mixed plein air exhibition in the autumn.

Alan’s book Welgora, which means horse fair in Romani, is published by Little Knoll Press, priced £17.99.                   www.alanlangford.co.uk