Monthly Archives: November 2013


At last I have finished my Echinacea painting.  I seem to have been working on this forever, but in reality it is only a few weeks.  This is because I have only been able to spend a short time painting each time I sit down.  Luckily I have been working from photos I took of one of my own plants, so the amount of time taken did not matter.  Also I am still at the stage where I need plenty of ‘thinking time’ when I am working on a subject.  What appears right one day will look totally different the next!

Echinacea or Cone Flower became popular with garden designer Piet Oudolf’s style of prairie planting.  Perennials and grasses are planted in large drifts and look absolutely stunning, but I was struck by the bold lines and simplicity of this one on its own.

Echinacea 2

I had meant to photograph all the stages of painting but became so engrossed that I forgot!


And so to the finished painting…


This is the largest painting I have attempted so far, being 17″ x 12″, and I did find it quite difficult to handle.  I usually work flat, or at a slight angle, on a table and this made for quite a stretch to reach the top of the painting.  Just another part of the learning process!

I went to a demonstration by the Norfolk watercolour artist Martin Sexton this week at a local art group.  It is fascinating to watch an artist at work and see the picture take shape.  He has a very relaxed approach to demonstrating and makes you feel totally at ease, welcoming all questions, however simple.  Although I do not usually paint landscapes, I found it very inspiring and picked up a few tips along the way.

In Praise of Art Classes

I go to a watercolour art class once a week in a nearby village.   I have been going for the last three years  and would recommend them to anyone thinking about joining one.  It is a bit daunting to start with, but after a while you become so engrossed that you forget your worries (about art and life!).

It is a two hour class, too short really but it concentrates your mind.  I think we all really want to end the class with a ‘finished’ picture.  It certainly stops you fiddling too much! Pictures from this term include:


First we did fruit and berries – just my thing.  Left to my own devices I would probably only paint things botanical but an art class stretches you …  You have to try things you would normally dismiss as too difficult.

Gloucester Old Spot

One week was pigs – to paint, that is.  A Gloucester Old Spot to be precise.  I was a little apprehensive about this as it is outside my comfort zone, but again was pleased with the result.  What do you think?



The butterfly filled me with anticipation and the lion with trepidation, but didn’t work out too badly.

Rusty Chain

This rusty chain taught us how to paint rust – colours and texture as well as shadows.  As you can see the subjects are quite diverse.  We also do landscapes, but I do not seem to be able to do those ……. yet.

Anyone out there who is uncertain whether to join a class – I say do.  Aside from encouragement and inspiration you also get to talk art (and other things) with like-minded people.