Lovely people for the Fruit & veg botanical workshop

Sometimes I feel really privileged to meet so many lovely people in botanical art.

I love painting and often wish I could just sit and paint all day every day. But that would be boring in the end. I don’t think my husband would be too happy about that either!

However, as I teach regular botanical art workshops, I am pulled out of the shed at the bottom of the garden to meet these lovely smiley people who turn up at my front door. They are always so pleasant and wanting to learn, and it is such a pleasure to help them.© 02.IMG_2007

 

 

 

 

 

 

Who could be more blessed than that?

The Fruit and Veg workshop was no exception. For both days the weather had turned sour and rainy, but they still stood at the front door looking really happy. Luckily it didn’t rain too heavily whilst they were choosing their subjects in the garden and they were back in doors by the time the heavens opened.© 01.IMG_2005

But as you can see from the photos, we still had some sun.

We don’t have too many subjects in the kitchen garden, but funnily enough they all chose things that were completely inedible. The globe artichokes were pointing skyward in all their majesty, but even the purple petals on the top were now brown. However, half of the group were attracted to these and the other half with radishes that had long gone to seed and were all large and wonky. One person brought their own subject – a sweet corn still suitably jacketed.

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But whilst all this was going on the cook was in the kitchen preparing lunch  and of course the Strawberries and cream for tea.© 03.IMG_2008

But these are what you are probably wondering about.

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I am pleased to say that from emails I have since received, that those taking part in the workshop thought it was successful, they learnt a lot and had enjoyed it.

The next workshop is Friday to Sunday September 30 – October 2 (Colour in the Hedgerows), just before I head off to Pittsburgh in the US to take part in the  ASBA annual conference. Although there are no more places on the workshop in Pittsburgh, there are still some vacancies in the one in Bosham, West Sussex, so please do get in touch if you want to take part. You will find the booking form here: Workshop booking form, or you can send me a message in the form at the bottom of this page.

 

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A new YouTube video – tomatoes in coloured pencil

I mentioned previously that I had been trying out various papers to use with coloured pencil, rather than my favourite, Fabriano Classico. The trouble is that I kept on having to start my tomato picture again and the ultimate goal was to film the process to use with my online botanical art course.

In the end I gave up and the video is based on my fourth attempt, but with my favourite paper! I hope that this will make some people happier about their numerous attempts with whatever media they might be using.

Having read the above, you will think that I didn’t find any suitable replacements for the Fabriano, but that isn’t quite true. The problem was that I chose what seems to be a simple subject, which in reality wasn’t all that simple to do. The tomatoes are very red, smooth and shiny. The red was the problem.

For those who work with coloured pencil, they will know that the colours are translucent and therefore the colour or colours that you are aiming for are in fact a layered mix of different colours. The tomatoes were a yellowy red – simple; but they also had areas of deeper red, areas of pinky-red, colder areas and warmer areas.

I have also been painting a Crocosmia ‘Lucifer’ recently, and I encountered similar problems with that, because of the red.

I suppose what I am trying to say is that if is difficult, try and try again; it will be worth it. Particularly with coloured pencils it is worth trying out different mixes before you start and sometimes simpler is best.

I finished the series of videos for the course, starting off with tracing the line drawing, a separate short video for each of the tomatoes and then one for the sepals and truss. But unless you are signed up for the course you will only see this video which concentrates on the second tomato. It is speeded up considerably, therefore not going into huge detail about techniques. But you do see how the tomato develops and the list of colours I used for the whole picture is in the information section underneath the video.

Three tomatoes-2nd tomato

This is the Youtube video linkThe second of three tomatoes in coloured pencil.
This coming weekend is the ever popular Fruit and veg botanical art workshop. It looks as though it won’t be such glorious weather as has been for the last couple of days, so everyone will be able to concentrate on their painting, but be rewarded with strawberries and cream at the end of it!

Places on botanical art workshop starting two weeks today.

Before I update a little more, there are still a few places on the ever popular botanical art workshop ‘Fruit and Veg’ or ‘Strawberries and Cream’. The last part isn’t intended to paint as we will be eating them. However, there is no reason why shouldn’t reserve some strawberries to paint.

Please do get in touch as soon as possible if you would like to attend the workshop, Friday and Saturday 19 & 20 August, between 10:00 and 16:00, including lunch.

The workshop is held in Bosham near Chichester. There are plenty of B&Bs in the vicinity and I have a list should you need it. But these days it is easy to find accommodation on the internet.

We have a kitchen garden, although not too much in it as we were away during a vital period. We took cucumber plants to my daughter in Norway; she has cucumbers, our plants died! But we do have exciting overgrown radishes, apples on the way and blackberries already here. The runner beans are beginning to produce, but the broad beans are few and far between. Our neighbours got plenty of Raspberries whilst we were away – all gone now, but you never know, some may pop up.

I will put a form at the end of this blog so that you can get in touch with me quickly should you decide you would like to join in the fund and games. More information and booking form at Gaynor’s Flora workshops.

In the last update on 1st of August, I mentioned that I had beens struggling with painting tomatoes in coloured pencil as I was trying out different papers. For my fourth attempt I used my trusty old supply of Fabriano and it is now finished. I will show it to you another time as in reality I only did it as a teaching video for my online botanical art course. I still have to edit the video.

I also mentioned our trip into the mountains in Norway and showed you a list of plants that I might do for my next RHS submission. Here are a few sketches of the Heath spotted Orchid from my sketchbook.

Heath spotted Orchid sketchbook page
Heath spotted Orchid sketchbook page
Heath spotted Orchid flower detail
Heath spotted Orchid flower detail
Heath spotted Orchid leaf detail
Heath spotted Orchid leaf detail

They are in a Stillman & Bern Zeta sketchbook in watercolour.

Get in touch about the workshop in two weeks time.

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!

Bos-A5-Flyer-2015

Hedgerow produce botanical art workshop in Bosham.

Once again a good workshop (I think), with lovely people (I know). There were some struggles on the way and changes of subject once everything was put on the table and the garden checked out. There was even a change of medium too, giving unexpected results.

Here are some of the photos taken during the process and at the end.

Other results;

The chef, with a few fluid ingredients at the ready.
The chef, with a few fluid ingredients at the ready.

Happy students

And finally a picture taken last night by one of the students.

The lunar eclipse

The next workshop is pen and ink 30-31 October. Do get in touch if you want to take part.

Fruit & Vegetable workshop + gluttons for botanical art workshop (punishment).

Yes, gluttons for punishment! On Tuesday and Wednesday I was teaching the Gloucestershire society of Botanical illustration. Two from that group took the long trip to Bosham for the Fruit & Veg botanical art workshop, when they had already been on the pen & ink one at the beginning of the week. They assured me that it was really Robin’s cooking they came for. I have to say, his lunches are getting really good.

Anyway, once again I am told that the students who attended the workshop over the last couple of days, had a good time and learnt a lot. The group included a couple who hadn’t done any botanical art before and a couple who wanted to learn to use either coloured pencil or watercolour, when they had used the opposite very successfully for many years. They did well, although I know from experience it can be a struggle converting one to the other. It will be interesting to see if they try the new medium again. I hope so, as it is useful to be able to ‘master’ more than just the one medium. Although, I don’t think anyone can claim to ‘master’ any of them. It would be useful to hear if anyone thinks this possible?

We had incredible weather over the two days, so there were some frequent trips to the kitchen garden.

The first picture only includes a few of the students. I’m afraid I forgot to take these until the other tables had already packed up.
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Now the gallery of pictures. Make sure that you have a reasonably good Internet connection. Unfortunately, it seems that when out and about, some of the connections limit what you can pick up and sometimes one is unable to see the pictures until you have a full broadband.

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Gloucestershire Society of Botanical Illustration workshops -2nd day

Whilst in Gloucester I had been asked to do a second one-day workshop with different members. I felt it was as successful as the first day and here are the results for you to see. You will notice that in fact two of the students came for a second day and continued with their pictures.

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Watch this space for the results of the ‘Fruit & Veg; strawberries & cream’ workshop happening this Friday and Saturday in Bosham.

Gloucestershire Society of Botanical Illustration workshops

What a lovely group of botanical artists – so welcoming.

I was invited to have a one- day workshop with the Gloucestershire Society of Botanical Illustration (GSBI), using pen and ink. I of course said yes as I had heard that the group are very active with a love for botanical art and illustration.

Apparently, as soon as I agreed to this and it was announced in the group, all the places were filled with an additional waiting list. Further discussions and a second workshopday was agreed. That will be tomorrow.

Normally I do this workshop over two-three days as time is also spent on composition and drawing. This one was purely to teach technique although in reality further advice in the field of botanical art is always given.

I know from feedback I get that people reading my blogs are always interested in the workshop results. Here are today’s group. Rather good don’t you think?

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