Demonstrating botanical art in Coloured pencil!

Thank you all those who visited our home this weekend during the Bosham Christmas Craft Trail.

In May, Chichester Open Studios art trail involves artists who live in or around our lovely city. But in recent years it seems that there are more and more serious artists living in Bosham, a village just outside the city, who are taking part. Over the years, one of the artists has opened her house each November and invited some of the Bosham artists to exhibit with her. But as there are so many of us, she can no longer accommodate all of us, so last year we decided to have a craft trail in our own homes – it was successful.

Most of the artists who have taken part the last two years are makers (except for me), thus the title ‘craft’. The other artists taking part work with glass, ceramic, driftwood, jewellery, fabrics and also artwork for the garden. When thinking of your Christmas presents for next year, think of taking a relaxing weekend break in Bosham. We have yet to decide on the date, but although a lot of people visited us this year, Black Friday seems to have taken a stranglehold in the UK now, so our craft trail is very likely to be the week before!

During the craft trail, I moved my easel to the house, as it has now become rather a muddy experience walking down to the shed. Robin also said it was nice to have my company for a change (oops)! As usual I had some work hanging in the conservatory – I’m afraid we forgot to take any photos as it was quite busy. But I was also demonstrating what I do. The original intention had been to work on my Indian Corn picture in coloured pencil, and I did do a little more on that; but getting questions about watercolour too, I needed that available as well.

My daughter’s cat was recently very ill and the vet’s surgery put themselves out to help. As a thank you she wanted me to do a ‘quick’ sketch of the cat for her to give them. The word ‘quick’ doesn’t rhyme too well with what I do – although I did and do try!

‘Tigger” is a Russian Blue. Tigger is a very descriptive name, although he does have a very beautiful face. Someone pointed out to me today, that she wished photos were taken that hid her neck! In this picture, he isn’t too blue yet, but the green eyes are there as well as the start of the extremely upright ears. The sheepskin he is lying on hides one of the reasons for his name! He is a lovely and very affectionate cat – particularly around meal times.

Indian corn in coloured pencil, or Tigger in watercolour?
Indian corn in coloured pencil, or Tigger in watercolour?
'Tigger', a Russian Blue in Pink, with green eyes! Watercolour.
‘Tigger’, a Russian Blue in Pink, with green eyes! Watercolour.
A long - haul 'Indian corn' in coloured pencil.
A long – haul ‘Indian corn’ in coloured pencil.

Botanical art Autumn colour workshop had Autumn colours

Isn’t it amazing what several people can do to make a botanical art workshop happen! I was worried as to whether the workshop would live up to its title as just about everything had fallen off the trees. Winter had come further than I thought it would.

But, everyone kept their eyes peeled and the majority came with subjects to paint themselves, or share with others. Wonderful.

About half of the students had been to one of my workshops before and the other half were new to me. I’m glad to say that the new students had been tempted to try by others recommendations. It was a lovely group of people and we kept the bitter cold out.

Firstly the group:

Searching for subjects?
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Hunting for subjects?
Hunting for subjects?

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You have to agree that although it was cold outside, the inside was full of warmth.

Don’t forget the Bosham Christmas Craft Trail next Friday, Saturday and Sunday. You will be very welcome.

Bosham Christmas Craft Trail 2015

When we got together last year to arrange this for the first time, we had a huge discussion about what we should call this trail.

In Bosham there is quite a community of artists and all of us are serious about what we do. We agreed that the common denominator was Art, but what would that signify? Several of those wanting to take part didn’t want to classify themselves as fine artists (paints and brushes) as they were makers -although definitely artists. Additionally we didn’t want some long title to classify the scope of the trail, but neither did we want people to think that this was an ‘arts and crafts’ event. We therefore agreed on Bosham Christmas Craft Trail.

Next weekend – Friday 27 – Sunday 29 November, we are opening our homes to help you choose your special Christmas gift for your special person – or yourself of course. You will find small gifts, to large ones and all of them are crafted by well known artists.

Of course my special area is Botanical art and some of my original work will be hanging for you to see, or as limited edition prints ready for you to give away; plus of course some cards.

This is a very special time of year where we meet a lot of old friends in the comfort of our homes. I hope to see you at some time during the weekend and of course at Saltings, we will be serving a little mulled wine and mince pie.

But prior to that I am starting my final workshop of 2015 tomorrow. Please don’t laugh at the title: All those Autumn Colours; stunning leaves and things. In previous years the workshop has been popular and I worked out the date according to the best time for such colours in recent years.

For people who live in the UK, they will know that the leaves died a death weeks ago. Here in the south coast, they usually last a little longer. Unfortunately at the end of September, beginning of October, there was a long cold snap and the leaves started turning then. The colours were amazing and my Acer was spectacular – but that lasted but a few days and the leaves fell off the tree forming a golden carpet. I didn’t take a picture as I was so upset!

However, where I live there are some lovely neighbours! They called me yesterday and said that the wind was beginning to take its toll on their Maple – did I want some of the leaves. Did I?! I now have some really beautiful leaves for people to paint, if they haven’t already found subjects themselves.

Watch this space for some of the results in the next few days.

Your invite to the Bosham Christmas Craft trail. Our open home address is; Saltings, Windmill Field, Bosham, PO18 8LH. Welcome!

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Another successful botanical art pen & ink workshop in Bosham

The last workshop was a week ago – pen and ink. I’m afraid I got carried away and forgot to get a few of the photo shots before people left. I now have all of them and can display them on the blog.

When you look at them, you must admit that they are good. All of the students were using this technique for the first time, therefore, not one of them was comfortable with it. It will be interesting to see if they enjoy the technique as much as I do, long term. I know I will be keeping my eyes open to what is produced in the future.

Do enjoy the photos.

By the way, I will be giving everyone who attends the summer workshop holiday in Norway, the option to learn the technique over a couple of days during that week. I will be taking the additional equipment necessary, with me. But just one more reason why you might decide to join the group for this holiday! Do sign up.

Of course the class working. They concentrated  hard on this workshop, but it was worth it.

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