Posts

Poem in the pandemic.

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Sometimes I compose poems in my mind to sort things out. I thought about this poem in the early hours and although some lines are forgotten, I decided to write it down the following day. I posted it on FaceBook for my friends to read. They gave me kind feedback and seemed to like it, so I thought that I would share it with you :-

Far away in China it seemed to hold no fear,
although for unknown reasons,
that I will never fathom,
people stockpiled loo roll,
they just had to have 'em. Then as Italy was struggling,
to Cheltenham punters went,
packed together in their thousands,
did they think the virus would relent? Told to stay at home to protect the NHS,
save lives and care for others, we'd do our very best.
Overwhelmed with volunteers,
too many to be needed,
the message was loud and clear,
and it was duly heeded, The people they did not complain,
they decided to get stuck in,
to baking, growing, teaching and zoom,
with patience we would win. The skies were bright and airy,
not…

Lock-down Art

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So far today, we have had cloudbursts, mini hailstorms, sunshine, wind and calm. Not bad considering that it is only midday. The weather is a roller-coaster today and it very much feels as if we have been on one since the beginning of lock-down. I of course speak of my own experience and realise that we will all be experiencing this time in our own unique ways. Today, I feel exhausted, yesterday I was full of energy, today I feel fearful, yesterday I was full of optimism and so it goes on. 

For the first month, I admit that I created very little work. I simply couldn't settle or make myself switch off the rolling news. However, that all changed once I turned off the news and turned on my music. As we know, once you are absorbed in your painting process, time flies by. I soon realised that I'd been painting all day and had worked through the bizarre daily bulletin. 

I have always worked best when I have a deadline approaching. With cancelled exhibitions and shows, this impetus to…

Making a living online as an Artist working from home

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Ways to adapt your Art business whilst self isolating at home
Whilst the health and well being of our friends, family and neighbours is foremost in our minds at this time, there is no getting away from the financial implications that self isolating will have on your business. 
I would guess that most Artists are self employed and rely on income from teaching and selling their work at exhibitions and art fairs which are now mostly cancelled. Having recently paid fees for upcoming events and all the costs of framing and preparing work, this is arguably the worst time of year for Artists to be facing this challenge.
With that in mind, I thought it may be useful to you for me to tell you a few of the ways I make money from my Art online.
I will list these in order of revenue, highest to lowest :-

 Skillshare
This is an online learning platform. Students pay a monthly fee (around £10) to access as many courses as they like. Tutors upload courses broken down into short classes. My courses a…

Basic Cubism - Spring Tulips in watercolour

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Cubism Simple Tulip painting for Spring

As I write this, the weather is warming and this year's tulips are making an appearance. They are one of my favourite flowers. I love their simple but elegant form, large variety of colour choices and how easy they are to grow!
I have painted them several times in the past for YouTube and wanted to create a new Tulip tutorial for beginners in a different style. Looking at the flower shapes, strong stems and large leaves, I thought that they lent themselves to a Cubism style.
Cubism began in 1907 with Picasso. Cubists painted their subject by breaking it down into geometric shapes. They approached the same subject from different angles together in one painting, overlapping and using transparent layers. In his early Cubist paintings Picasso used the muted earth tones. In this exercise, I decided to use bright colours.

Create your own Spring flower painting Step 1  Choose some flowers that have a simple shape, Tulips are ideal for this. Study …

Beginners painting - How to paint snow

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Snow is rarely white!
Over the last week, I have uploaded a tutorial to YouTube talking about how to paint snow. I have expanded on this with a more in depth step by step course on Skillshare
Artists of all levels often encounter difficulties when our brain overrides our eyes. When we learn to trust our eyes and don't allow our brain to "fill in the dots", drawing and painting becomes much easier. However we do need to constantly remind ourselves!
In the case of snow, we have lived all our lives with the assumption that "snow is white". Of course snow is white under perfect conditions, however in reality it can appear to be many colours. The snow will be affected by the light source, cast shadows, reflections of surrounding objects and the sky.
If you look carefully at the photographs below, you can see that there are many different colours in the snowy areas. Before beginning your painting, look carefully and makes notes of the colours that your eyes see!
The Yo…

NEW ink and watercolour beginners course, teaching on Skillshare

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Today I uploaded my first online course to Skillshare. I hadn't heard of Skillshare until a couple of weeks ago, when a fellow YouTuber recommended it as a good platform for both learning and teaching.

If you haven't heard of Skillshare, it is basically a website full of online courses in a vast array of subjects. It has both a free to view section and a monthly subscription option. 

Courses are broken down into short lessons, so each student can work through the course in their own time when it is convenient to them. 

This format appealed to me, as I feel it allows for a much more comprehensive and in depth course. However, it has also been quite a lengthy process. Filming, photographing and editing 15 classes for the course is much more involved than filming a single YouTube video. It also has to be said that the Skillshare upload page isn't the greatest, some patience is required for the upload process and you may need to try different browsers!

My first course is in ink an…

Reference photographs for Artists and taking care over copyright.

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A few days ago a user in a Facebook group I follow asked other members if they had reference photographs that she could use in her artworks. Many members kindly uploaded their own photos for her to use, therefore giving their permission to reproduce them. However, one member surprisingly advised her to "just look through Google images", which I would strongly recommend you not to do.


Whenever a photographer, either amateur or professional takes a photograph, the copyright is theirs. The copyright remains theirs, unless they specifically and clearly state otherwise. Whether or not the photographer uploads their photo to a public site such as Instagram or Facebook etc. is irrelevant, the copyright belongs to them. Incidentally, this is the same for your artworks, the Artist automatically maintains copyright even if a painting is sold, unless otherwise stated.


You may think that it is "not such a big deal", if you are "only using them to practice" (quotes I …