The Cotswolds Hare Trail

Here it is folks! I was so delighted to be taking part in this years Cotswold Hare trail, and I had so much fun working on it. This huge 5ft tall hare will be joining many other hares also painted by local artists, schools and groups which will begin a trail around the Cotswolds on the 22nd May. Now the hares have been painted, I am waiting for a sponsor to take up my hare to join up with the trail. Once the trail is ended in September they are auctioned off for their forever homes. Perhaps you’d like one for your garden…

A bit about painting the hare – I designed the hare around the theme of the Cotswold garden. The rambling roses growing up the walls in the summer and the textures and unique colours of Cotswold stone, I felt made a beautiful combination to interpret into the hare. When my sculpture arrived, I also admired the shape and form of the hare, so I wanted the design to compliment the shape.

Different to my usual medium, I painted the hare in acrylic paint. I quite liked the acrylics I used, which were intense in colour and some of the colours had different transparencies, so I had a play in layering up the colours and experimenting with some bold, block colours. I felt the design needed to be bold and dramatic and eye catching. I treated the hare and the surface as if it were a canvas, which was the best approach really! It also needed to be fully weatherproof, so with an exterior gloss paint (I won’t bore with the details!) it is tough and can clearly stand any weather! Above – here it is surviving one of the many snow hits we had from eastern storms. Also looking magnificent…!

Last week, I was proud to see my hare amongst the many others at a special launch event in Northleach. I couldn’t fit all of the hares in one photo there were so many! Not one hare was painted similarly, and all were so unique in their own way, which was amazing to see.

For now, I have waved goodbye to him, and was quite glad to have the space back in my studio, but as soon as I know where he’s off to on the trail I can of course keep you updated!

For more information about the trail visit their website http://www.cotswoldsharetrail.org.uk where you can view all of the hare designs and the artists involved. The hares were also featured in the news recently, here’s a clip from BBC Gloucestershire news https://www.facebook.com/bbcgloucestershire/videos/1608540619195546/

The Garden Exhibition – next week!

Just a little reminder blog post that my exhibition is just around the corner…yes, it begins Monday! I am open from Monday 27th – Sunday Dec 3rd from 10am to 4.30pm. I am also open for two evenings, the first being the private view on Monday from 7-9pm, and the second for the Stroud Goodwill evening on Friday 1st Dec 7-9pm. See my earlier post for more info, and I look forward to seeing you there!

Everything is nearly ready…too exciting for words! My greetings cards arrived the other day, in four different designs, and will be available to purchase at my show. Another surprise for the exhibition are my sculptures I have been creating over some time now, exploring woodland settings and creatures in shadow boxes.

As a sneak peek, here’s a detail shot from one of my large paintings on show, titled ‘View from my window.’

Aside from the exhibition, my commitment to the Stroud Valley Artspace life drawing evenings have been great for me to continue my practical drawing skills and observational techniques. Throughout the sessions I use conte crayons on toned paper to evoke a sense of light and depth to the nude model.

Both these drawings are on A3 sized paper, which gives me enough room to explore different marks made by the crayons and to focus on creating a life like drawing under the time constraints. Most of the poses are 15 mins, which puts me on the spot to think quick and to draw accurately. Hopefully after the exhibition I shall experiment with painting the figure, and work these drawings into expressive oil paints, so stay tuned!

Exhibition invitation

Today is the 1st of November, which means it’s 26 days until my opening of my solo show! Here is the leaflet I have been circulating, with all the details. The private view, which you are very welcome to, is on Monday the 27th November from 7-9pm. If you can’t make the private view, don’t worry as I will be there invigilating the show throughout the opening times shown above!

There will be a great range of my recent artworks at the show, all inspired by the garden throughout the seasons. I have long been inspired by artists that study and paint their own gardens, and inspiration is never too far away. Above is a sneak peek of works currently in progress, exploring the shapes and colours of the garden. I’m getting very excited (and a bit nervous!) for the show as the pressure of the show has really made me think about my work and be creative with the project.

Look forward to seeing you there! Until then, I will be madly dashing around my studio with my brushes and paints making sure it will be a beautiful show.