OPEN 23 & 24 NOVEMBER 10AM TO 5PM.
I think I must be mad! I shall be doing my third Open Studio this year, one at my house, one with my son in Birmingham and now one with three other artists at a friend's house.
One of the great things about sharing a studio is the company at those slow times when no-one is visiting - yes there are times when an open studio is packed full of visitors but other times when it can be quite slow. When the slow times happen at my own house I sit and paint, when they happen in someone else's house we chat.
It is a good way to keep up friendships and find out what your studio sharers are doing both art-wise and in their lives. It also gives me the chance to have a good look at the other artists' work on display.
This Winter Open Studio I will be at Diana Kazemi's studio in Church Street, Chesterton just along from the wonderful St Andrew's Church with it's beautiful grounds. Diana is a potter, think beautiful blue tableware, vases and even pottery earrings! Joining us will be artist Carmen Renwick and jeweller Indira. I have not shared a studio with Indira before but her jewellery is magnificent. I might have a problem buying too many of her pieces!
The Winter Studio at Diana's is very special. We put up lots of fairy lights and then more and serve mulled wine to all our visitors. Because the studio is during winter it can be rather cold so we have to keep the front door closed (there are lots of flags outside to show the way), so when you enter it is very magical with all the lights and the smell of the seasonal drink.
This year I shall be showing some new paintings and prints as well as my greeting cards and notebooks which are ideal as a small gift. As usual all my work is colourful and detailed and has the influence of medieval art and tapestries with carpets of flowers and lots of gold leaf.
Our studio is number 4 on the map attached and is part of a trail of 10 artists which can be easily visited walking or cycling as well as by car. We look forward to meeting you.
It's Christmas Cracker time!
I love the exhibition at Byard Art this time of the year. The gallery is choc-a-block full of beautiful paintings by a huge variety of artists from far and wide. I am very proud to say that they have invited me to have four of my small paintings in the exhibition this year.
As many of you may know I have been on a journey to change the materials that I work with. For years I have painted in oils but one of the problems I was facing was that I have been asked to make more paintings, which is absolutely great, but because of the many layers of detail that is the way I work my paintings are not dry enough to varnish and exhibit for up to eight months. Hmm, I felt I was letting people down.
So I began my journey to find some quicker drying paints. I didn't like the obvious choice of water-based oils as I couldn't get the glowing, vibrant colours. So I tried out all sorts of acrylics with slow drying mediums. Whatever I tried I never found a medium that had the kind of buttery consistency of oil that was workable for a day or so. I also didn't like the colours.
Just as I was thinking that I would never find what I was looking for I found myself in Jarrold's Art Shop in Norwich. On the shelf were some new kind of paints I had not seen before, 'Golden Open, Slow Drying Acrylics'. I had a chat with one of the very knowledgeable assistants who had tried them who told me that they did dry much more slowly, in fact they stayed workable for a long time. I bought a few primary colours and back in Cambridge set about testing them.
Although they do not react exactly like oils, in drying time they were what I was looking for and the colours are wonderfully bright and easy to mix and shade (I do a lot of shading). The two paintings shown are using my new set of 'Open' paints. I shall still make some paintings in oils but if I need to do some in a tighter timescale I shall use the acrylics. The only downside I have found so far is that because they are very transparent and perhaps less dense than oils I get through the paint much quicker.
Painter living in Cambridge. Mixes fantasy and realism and loves medieval art and it's detail. An avid sketcher.
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