SHAF Arts Trail: Half-term week

It’s half-term week and Salcombe is full of visitors. We look forward to seeing many of them on the SHAF Arts Trail.

 

michael hill | SHAF Half-term weekGuest artist: Michael Hill

I have attended Michael Hill’s classes at Salcombe Art Club for the past decade or so. I learn something new in every session and look forward to the critiques he gives before we pack up for the day.

His paintings have a magical air to them; dark and yet illuminating. And they are beautifully framed.

There were 26 of Michael’s original paintings on show at the start of the SHAF Arts Trail. There are now 25 and a lady is delighted with her birthday gift.

 

Affordable Art

My new wall placques, coasters and place mats are proving very popular.

They make ideal Christmas gifts.Place mats and coasters | SHAF Half-term week

 

There are all available in designs of your choice.

 

WHEN CAN YOU VISIT BEACON HOUSE GALLERY?

Beacon House Gallery will be open all of the half-term week until 28 October for visitors 10am-5pm each day. (Tuesday: CLOSED)

You don’t need to book ahead. Just turn up and you will be made very welcome.

 

WHERE IS BEACON HOUSE GALLERY?

Beacon House Gallery is within my home – the hall, stairs and landing, no less. It’s not normally open to the public, except by prior arrangement.

 

DIRECTIONS TO BEACON HOUSE

As you approach Salcombe, there will be yellow posters with arrows pointing the way to Beacon House.

We have wheelchair access and plenty of parking space available on our private drive.

Alternatively, you could park in the park’n’walk at the top of Bonfire Hill and walk down. There might also be parking spaces in Bonfire Hill alongside the allotments.

Please do not park on the shared drive.

We look forward to your visit!

NEW! Affordable Art

My fine art greeting cards are what I call ‘affordable art’.

Now, I have added to the affordable art range: fine art wall plaques, coasters and placemats. See them under ‘MY WORK’.

affordable art

 

Bring affordable art into your homeaffordable art

Ideal as gifts, or for holiday homes.

Come and see them during the SHAF Arts Trail: on until 28 October.

Every day:10am – 5pm apart from Tuesday.

 

Order in time for Christmas!

To order: you choose the design(s) from any our ‘square’ range.

Delivery approximately 14 days.

For more information, click here for fine art wall plaques and here for coasters and placemats.

Salcombe Art Club Summer Exhibition ends Saturday

Doesn’t time fly?

It seems like only yesterday when the Salcombe Art Club Summer Exhibition opened. Now, we have only a few days to go before the gallery is transformed back into a classroom for the winter months.

 

Last chance! My paintings on display in the Salcombe Art Club Summer exhibition

Salcombe Art Club Summer exhibitionOn display in the Loft Studio, there are five of my paintings.

On the left, from top to bottom:

 

On the right, from top to bottom:

 

I’ll be stewarding on Wednesday 26 September. Pop in and say hello?

 

The plan for the winter months

I’ve signed up for my usual two courses:

  • Michael Hill’s Tuesday class, for watercolour and acrylic paintings – more details here
  • Ian Carr’s Friday class, for oil painting – more details here

I’ve also put myself down for some portraiture workshops and still life, too. It’ll be a busy winter!

 

SHAF Arts Trail: 13-28 October

As soon as the Salcombe Art Club Summer Exhibition has been taken down, I’ll be focusing on getting ready for the SHAF (South Hams Art Forum) Arts Trail. My home, gallery and studio will be open to the public for two weeks 13-28 October.

I am delighted that, this year, Michael Hill will be exhibiting with me at Beacon House Gallery.

SHAF notice

I hope to see many of you during the Arts Trail. We have wheelchair access and plenty of parking. And there will be cake!

2018 EXHIBITION SCHEDULE

It’s that time of year – firming up the 2018 exhibition schedule. My diary is already looking full! Please put these dates in yours.

Once the days and times when I will be stewarding are decided, I will post news on my Facebook page and here also. It’s your chance to ‘meet the artist’!

 

SALCOMBE ART CLUB SUMMER EXHIBITION
THURSDAY 29 March – SATURDAY 29 SEPTEMBER 2018

Open 7 days a week from 11am until 5pm. Admission is free.

2017 exhibition scheduleAs a member of  Salcombe Art Club, I’ve exhibited in the club’s Summer Exhibition for many years now.

I usually submit 5 paintings, and the rule is that none of these original works of art can have been hung in the Loft Gallery in the previous three years. This encourages artists to keep on painting!

Handing in day is 24 March – less than five weeks away and my paintings are currently with the framer.

During the next few weeks, I’ll be sharing previews of these paintings. If you are keen to purchase any of this latest crop, and want to buy ahead of the exhibition, you can save 10% on the purchase price …

 

ONE-MAN EXHIBITION IN THE REDFERN HEALTH CENTRE
THURSDAY 28 JUNE – THURSDAY 26 JULY 2018

Full members of Salcombe Art Club are asked to display their work for one month – so that those visiting the Redfern have something to admire while waiting to see the doctor. On one occasion, a gentleman recognised Burgh Island in one of my paintings as the venue for his marriage many years previous. He purchased it as a surprise for his wife. How romantic!

It’s an honour to be on the team again and to know that my paintings may provide some cheer to those having health issues. The Redfern benefits from all sales; – a percentage of the purchase price is donated to their funds.

 

ONE-MAN EXHIBITION IN THE LITTLE STUDIO IN THE LOFT GALLERY
SUNDAY 5 AUGUST – SATURDAY 18 AUGUST 2018

Salcombe Art Club invite members, including associate members, to take one or two weeks in the Little Studio, to display as many of their paintings as they can hang in the space.

More recent paintings that didn’t sell last year can be hung so they usually get another airing.

I’ll be stewarding all day both Sundays – 5 August and 12 August – so that’s a good time to pop in and chat, if you want to ‘meet the artist’.

 

SHAF ARTS TRAIL
SATURDAY 13 OCTOBER – SUNDAY 28 OCTOBER 2018
2017 exhibition schedule

The South Hams Art Forum (SHAF) is now a fortnight long, including half-term week.

Viewings at Beacon House Gallery are usually by appointment but, for the period of the SHAF Arts Trail, we will welcome visitors 11am-3pm Monday, Wednesday and Thursday, and 10am-5pm on Friday, Saturday and Sunday. (Closed on a Tuesday)

There will be a private preview evening on Friday 12 October – with wine and nibbles. On the guest list are gallery owners and previous purchasers of my work. If you would also like an invitation to this invitation-only event, please contact me.

 

BEACON HOUSE GALLERY
PRIVATE VIEWINGS 2018

Beacon House Gallery is not open to the public, apart from during the SHAF Arts Trail, but if you would like a private viewing, please contact me to arrange a convenient time for us both.

SOLD! Reflections at Batson

Reflections at Batson hung above the TV in our lounge during the SHAF Arts Trail last October, and stayed there until this past weekend, when it was sold, during a private viewing.

 

The history of Reflections at Batson

This painting – number 96 featured above – was completed in the summer of 2014. It was one of four which I’d created ahead of a trip to the photographer who provides the digital images I use for prints and card.

Only last week, Anne and I made the trip to Plymouth with the latest crop of paintings. This time it was six images, all destined for the Salcombe Art Club’s Main Exhibition. More on those in later posts!

Back in 2014, the four paintings –

Reflections at Batson,

Reflections at Batson

Dapple Light I,

Dapple Light I

Low Tide at the Crabshell Inn and

Low tide at the Crabshell Inn

Racing Past Blackstone

Racing Past Blackstone

– were all watercolours. This year, my crop comprised five oil paintings, one acrylic, but no watercolours. Why no watercolours? Because in March 2014, after three years of traipsing from one rental to another, Anne and I moved into our forever home: Beacon House. Here, I have space, not only to paint, but also to stack my still-wet oils in a large airing cupboard. Prior to that, it only made sense to use watercolour – it dries more quickly.

 

How many watercolours do I have in stock?

The purchaser of Reflections at Batson specifically asked to see my watercolours.  And I only had a very limited number on show.

Of those four watercolours produced in 2014, only Racing Past Blackstone remains unsold, but all four are available as fine art greetings cards – thanks to that trip to the photographer back in 2014.

Like many of my paintings, Reflections at Batson was displayed a number of times before it was sold, for example: in Michael Hill’s Watercolour class exhibition in 2014, in my one-man exhibition in the Little Studio in 2016, and at the Redfern Health Centre in 2017.

Some paintings, though, sell very quickly – within a few days of going on show. And I have to have ‘spares’ ready to hang in their place. Hence the need for six paintings now, even though I can only enter five as a full member of Salcombe Art Club.

 

What inspired me to paint Reflections at Batson?

If, like me, you walk the short distance from Salcombe to Batson, you’ll see the view that inspired me to try to capture this idyllic setting.

At the top of Batson Creek, a collection of thatched cottages delight the eye. They sit around a triangle of grass complete with its old-fashioned telephone box. (At least, the phone box was there, the last time I visited!) The reflections of these cottages in the water only serve to enhance the tranquility of the scene. Isn’t it beautiful?

The new owner of this painting, I hope, will enjoy this view as much as I do.

 

Viewings by arrangement

Beacon House is my home and, within it, I hang my stock of paintings in what we call ‘Beacon House Gallery’. It’s actually our hall, stairs and landing! We are not ‘open to the public’ except during the SHAF Arts Trail (13-28 October 2018) but, if you wish for a private viewing, please contact me to arrange a time convenient to us both.

 

Work-in-Progress: November 2017

An artist’s work is never done – and here is an update on my work-in-progress.

 

What do artist’s do when the ‘season’ is over?
house portrait

House portrait: preliminary sketch of Anne’s daughter’s home in Melbourne, Australia

Once the SHAF Arts Trail is over – that’s at the end of October – you might think artists put down their brushes and take a holiday.

Most years, that’s precisely what I do!

Every three years, Anne and I visit her daughter in Melbourne. We aim to spend at least seven weeks travelling and, although I take a minimal watercolour kit with me, the time is mostly spent with family, and relaxing. We enjoy a well-earned rest. However, this is something I painted during our most recent visit: a house portrait of their home. This is just the sketch; the finished painting is on their living room wall.

Every three years, we also spend the Christmas holiday somewhere else by ourselves: Malta or Madeira, anywhere warm … and again I take an art kit with me. I tend to spend more time painting on these holidays but only because Anne is usually busy with a writing project. In our apartment, we set up our separate corners – a studio area for me, a writing desk for Anne – and only meet up for walks and meals! It’s a complete break from our usual routine and, even if we are only away for a few weeks, we need that change of scenery to recharge our batteries.

Every three years, and it’s this year, we stay at home – to play host to friends and family at this special time. This is also my chance to catch up on my painting. The real stuff. The paintings I need in stock ready for the start of the next season.

And Anne is very busy, writing her latest NaNoWriMo novel, so I’m grateful she’s made time to type up my blog for me.

 

Studio update

My new studio space

While we were away last Christmas, we had a lift installed so that our home is wheelchair friendly. This was very much appreciated by at least one visitor to our home during the SHAF Arts Trail fortnight in October.

In the redesigned part of our house, I now also have a new studio. It’s larger and lighter than the previous one, and it’s already full of my ‘stuff’. It may look a bit of a mess to you, but I know where everything is.

 

Work-in-progress

You’ll notice, on the far wall, the gallery-style strip at ceiling level. There is almost invisible plastic ‘wires’ hanging down on which, in other areas of the house, I hang pictures that are available for sale. In my studio, I’ve devised a system of bulldog clips to hold my work-in-progress paintings. You can see three of them on the right, and there’s another on the easel.

Yes, there are quite a few! And there are more – mostly oil paintings – drying in the airing cupboard.

At the moment, only one of these paintings is signed. I sign my paintings when I feel that I should do no more to them. A signed painting is, therefore ‘finished’ and ready for the next stage.

 

Are any finished yet?

A finished, signed, painting ready for the next stage

Only the one so far … as you can see, it’s an oil, on board.

My handwritten notes to myself are still visible, as well as the guidelines for the photographer.

It is square in shape and therefore ideal as a fine arts greetings card. No cropping necessary …

 

What happens next?

Good question! Before any of my paintings are varnished or framed and made ready for sale, I have them professionally photographed.

Rather than taking paintings one at a time, I batch them. So, two or three times a year, we book a session with the photographer and trek into Plymouth for the day.

Ahead of that appointment, Anne and I sit down together and confirm the sequential number of each painting – this one will probably be number 136 – and its title. This data is added to the computer records of my art, and also written on the back of the painting for identification purposes.

Because I paint a limited number of scenes, coming up with an original title can be a challenge.  It can’t just be the place name. I need more. Low tide at … Dawn at …

Sometimes, especially when I have decided to paint one scene in different media, or in different sizes, we resort to Roman numbering: Salcombe Dawn I, Salcombe Dawn II, Salcombe Dawn III, …

Having decided on the number and the name for each painting, and recorded it, we forward that information by email to the photographer so he knows how many paintings to expect and can name his electronic files in such a way as to avoid confusion. This is especially important when I have a series of very similar paintings.

 

And then what?

I leave the original paintings with the photographer for a few hours, and Anne and I make good use of that time, shopping in Plymouth.

Then, I return to the photographer to see the results of his work. The images he has taken are printed onto good quality paper, so that I can check the colour match against the original. And, at a later date, I can arrange to have giclée prints made – knowing the print will be as close in tone and hue to the original as possible.

And then we put all the originals back in the boot of the car and head for home.

Job done … except then, I need to make time for varnishing the acrylics and oils and book the framer.

Sold! Torcross Sunrise

Torcross Sunrise

Torcross Sunrise

Torcross Sunrise was purchased during the SHAF Arts Trail – a two-week exhibition at Beacon House from 13 October until 29 October.

 

WHAT IS THE SHAF ARTS  TRAIL?

The SHAF Arts Trail is an annual event in which SHAF members open their studios, or inhabit galleries and other exhibition spaces, and welcome visitors to see their art. At each venue, artists were happy to discuss their art-form, explain the processes involved and provide the opportunity for their visitors to view, appreciate and buy unique pieces of work.

Following the Arts Trail also gave visitors an unusual opportunity to explore the glorious South Hams as they mapped their route and discover more and more artists’ venues (as well as cream tea venues).

This was my third year with the SHAF Arts Trail. Having two weeks instead of one – and coinciding with half term week when we have more visitors to Salcombe – has provided us with more than double the number of visitors in previous years.

I’ve also enjoyed greater success in that four paintings have been sold – and many, many of my fine art greetings cards too.

 

Why did I paint Torcross Sunrise?

Prior to purchasing Beacon House four years ago, Anne and I had three years of upheaval. We had a flat which we couldn’t occupy due to renovations imposed by the management, and then our attempts to sell the flat took forever. We had to rent somewhere to live instead. And we had four different rentals in the space of three years.

Seven weeks were spent in Torcross and this view was what greeted me at dawn. How could I not paint it?

 

Are there other paintings done at that time?
Slapton Ley Torcross Sunrise

Slapton Ley

Torcross

Yes, I painted two other paintings during that 7-week rental: Slapton Ley and Torcross.

Between them, they show the view from the upstairs lounge window of that rental.

To the left, Slapton Ley shows the Ley, and the causeway which separates it from the sea beyond.

To the right,Torcross shows the tank memorial and then the houses at Torcross.

You’ll notice that I didn’t include the public toilets!

Both paintings are watercolours and capture the variety of weathers seen from our rental.

Torcross was sold some time ago but Slapton Ley is still for sale.

 

Affordable art

Both designs are available as fine art greetings card, although the images have been cropped to fit the square design of my cards.

Torcoss

Torcross card

Slapton Ley

Slapton Ley card

 

Are there other paintings of that coastline?
074 Torcross Wave Torcross Sunrise

Torcross Wave

Yes: an acrylic called Torcross Wave.

This acrylic painting is still available for sale but is one of the designs that I did not use for a greetings cards.

 

 

 

 

Watercolour

SOLD! Salcombe Dawn III

108 Salcombe Dawn III one-man exhibition

Salcombe Dawn III

Salcombe Dawn III was purchased as a gift for a special birthday.

It’s a delight that this painting was chosen during the SHAF Arts Trail – a two-week exhibition at Beacon House from 13 October until yesterday, 29 October.

 

What is the SHAF Arts  Trail?

The SHAF Arts Trail is an annual event in which SHAF members open their studios, or inhabit galleries and other exhibition spaces, and welcome visitors to see their art. At each venue, you will find artists happy to discuss their art-form, explain the processes involved and provide the opportunity to view, appreciate and buy unique pieces of work.

Following the Arts Trail also gives visitors an unusual opportunity to explore the glorious South Hams as they map their route and discover more and more artists’ venues (as well as cream tea venues).

This is the third year I’ve taken part in the SHAF Arts Trail. Having two weeks instead of one – and coinciding with half term week when we have more visitors to Salcombe – has provided us with more than double the number of visitors in previous years.

I’ve also enjoyed greater success in that four paintings have been sold – and many, many of my fine art greetings cards too.

 

The Salcombe Dawn studies

Salcombe Dawn III  is a watercolour, and one of three studies of the view across to Salcombe from Snapes.

Salcombe Dawn II

Salcombe Dawn II

The other two were both oil paintings and one of those has also sold already. The remaining painting is Salcombe Dawn II – which is available as both an original and a fine art greetings card.

This image of Salcombe was captured very early one morning.  I’d invested in a photography course with Bang Wallop, and a small group of us drove up to Snapes in the early hours so we’d be in position as the dawn broke. I’d never before sat in the dark, with a group of strangers, cameras ready, waiting for the sun to appear on the horizon. It was a magical experience and provided a series of wonderful photographs.

 

Affordable Art

Out of 135 completed paintings to date, 80+ have been sold, but 59 are available as fine art greetings cards.

In Salcombe, my card designs are stocked at Bonningtons (the newsagents) and Salcombe Information Centre (both a short walk from the Loft Studio).

Further afield, my cards are stocked by Malborough Post Office – they offer the entire range – The Gallery at Avon Mill, The Gallery Project at Noss Mayo, and in Bloomers, the florist in Kingsbridge.

Just think: for less than 1% of the sales price of an original painting, you can invest in a fine art greetings card. Send it to a friend or frame it for yourself.

Contemporary passions 2017 Burgh Island

SOLD! The Burgh Island Hotel

Burgh Island is a popular destination and The Burgh Island Hotel – the featured image above – is one of many paintings in my collection which incorporate this iconic view.

In this painting, I have attempted to capture the subject as seen from Hope Cove – using binoculars!

The massive cliffs of the mainland give a dramatic backdrop, while the rocks in the foreground underline its isolation. And, the late afternoon sun turns the Great White Palace into a glorious white beacon.

Burgh Island HotelI painted two of this composition: The Burgh Island Hotel and Burgh Island from Hope Cove.

The Burgh Island Hotel is in oil, on a box canvas –  12 inches by 16 inches – and it was sold, on Day 3 of the SHAF Arts Trail.

The purchaser has kindly agreed to leave the painting with me so it can be enjoyed by those visiting us during the Arts Trail, and number 119 now has a red dot on it to make sure I don’t sell it again …

Burgh Island from Hope Cove is an acrylic. It’s larger at approximately 15 inches square and mounted and framed too.

It is priced at £400.

 

Are there more views of Burgh Island for sale? Yes!

Shifting Sands at Burgh Island II is an acrylic, 12 inches by 16 inches.Burgh Island Hotel

This view of Burgh Island was painted from ground level, at low tide.

The patterns in the sand are the main focus of this composition, with Burgh Island in the far distance.

Both paintings are on display at Beacon House Gallery.

Visitors on the SHAF Arts Trail are welcome to drop by.

 

What’s the SHAF Arts Trail?

This year, the SHAF Arts Trail runs for two whole weeks, including half-term week, until 29 October.

Beacon House Gallery is ‘open’ on Wed/Thurs/Fri from 11am until 4pm, and on Sat/Sun from 10am until 5pm.

 

Affordable art!

I also have various views of Burgh Island available as fine art greetings cards.

If you purchase direct from Beacon House during the Arts Trail, they cost £2 each, or three for a fiver.

And, we have delicious biscuits … no charge!

 

 

 

 

 

 

SOLD! Shifting Sands at Burgh Island I

Burgh Island is a popular destination and Shifting Sands at Burgh Island I is one of many paintings in my collection which incorporate this iconic view.

This particular painting is an acrylic. And it’s now sold, on Day 1 of the SHAF Arts Trail.

The purchaser has kindly agreed to leave the painting with me so it can be enjoyed by those visiting us during the Arts Trail, and number 120 now has a red dot on it to make sure I don’t sell it again …

 

What’s the SHAF Arts Trail?

Shifting Sands at Burgh Island I at SHAF 2017This year, the SHAF Arts Trail runs for two whole weeks, including half-term week, until October 29th

The South Hams Arts Forum (SHAF) is a lively, actively engaged association of artists and craftspeople from across the region.

SHAF membership is extremely diverse, so while some artists create in purpose-built studios, others produce their work at the kitchen table. Consequently, the Arts Trail will lead visitors to some artists working in their home studios – as is the case for me – and to others exhibiting in galleries and exhibition halls.

At each venue, visitors will find artists happy to discuss their art-form, explain the processes involved and provide the opportunity to view, appreciate and buy unique pieces of work.

 

Why did I paint this one of Burgh Island?

The iconic Art Deco Hotel which dominates Burgh Island was owned and managed for many years by Tony Porter and his wife Beatrice. Tony called it the Great White Palace and it has featured in many films and television dramas based on Agatha Christie novels.

I’ve lost count of how many times I’ve painted it, but this one, in the sky, I included a vapour trail to remind me of a flight from Gatwick to Malta a while back. For some reason, the pilot chose to go west before turning south. Seeing this spectacular coastline from the air was a magical experience.

 

Are there more views of Burgh Island for sale? Yes!

Most artists prefer the view as seen from Bigbury but here I have attempted to capture the subject as seen from Hope Cove.

The massive cliffs of the mainland give a dramatic backdrop, while the rocks in the foreground underline its isolation. And, the late afternoon sun turns the Great White Palace into a glorious white beacon.

It is an acrylic, mounted and framed, and costing £400.

That’s a lot of money …

 

Affordable art!

I also have various views of Burgh Island available as fine art greetings cards. If you purchase directly from Beacon House during the Arts Trail, they cost £2 each, or three for a fiver.

And, we have delicious cake … no charge!