Category Archives: Articles

What we get up to in lockdown



Norfolk Wildflowers

For some time now I have turned my ‘artistic’ attention to the wildflowers growing in our neighbourhood meadows and hedgerows.  They have become such an absorbing interest that I decided this year to attempt to grow some myself.
Having sourced the seeds online I sowed them in modules in our greenhouse in March and decided to monitor their progress by sketching them as they develop.

Art, Skye and The Outer Hebrides

If you are looking for a place where you can relax in the sun with a glass of chilled white wine in hand then sadly, I cannot recommend you follow in our footsteps.
However, if horizontal wind and rain, interspersed with sun, amazing scenery, some glorious sunsets, and a dram of whisky are your thing, onwards to Skye and the Outer Hebrides. We were touring during September in our campervan.


I thought I would let you know my experience of down- sizing and moving my home and Studio to a new location.

I had a bit of a tough time a couple of years ago, losing my husband and Mum in very quick succession, so when I found myself rattling around in a three bedroom house on my own, I decided to downsize into a Park Home.

Fact or Fiction? *

In these times that we have so much to think about, I wanted to share one of my artistic adventures.

I had recently moved to a new area and was eager to find a way into the local art scene. Delivering flyers for a workshop I was planning, I stumbled onto a fine art and antique gallery. It was a funky sort of place with a good buying public. The well-connected gallery owner, Mr A, was eager for me to bring my work by.

A visit to the ‘Art Deco by the Sea’ exhibition

Art Deco by the Sea

Art Deco by the Sea

It was a wet and blustery day for our visit, so we were relieved to reach the shelter of the Sainsbury Centre, Norwich. A quick coffee, then we joined the 12 pm guided tour of the Art Deco By the Sea exhibition. Our guide was so knowledgeable and dedicated, almost losing her voice but she valiantly soldiered on.  She was quite happy for us to dip in and out of the tour as we walked round.

There was something for everyone really…. paintings, furniture, pottery and textiles, all beautifully staged and curated.

Follow up, “Why Do We Paint?”

Roger Julien Dufour, Veuve de l'île de Sein (Widow of the Isle of Sein)

Roger Julien Dufour, Veuve de l’île de Sein (Widow of the Isle of Sein)

Following on from my question “Why do we paint?” in December’s Update, I have carried out further research via the internet [technology can have its rewarding side!] into the source of the tiny print, which was hanging on a cafe wall in Ireland, and so inspired me 22 years ago. It has thrown up some very interesting information, and posed yet more questions.

Antony Gormley Exhibition At The Royal Academy

Antony Gormley, Subject II, 2019. 10 mm square section mild steel bar, 189 x 51.5 x 37.5 cm. © the Artist. Photo: David Parry / © Royal Academy of Arts

Antony Gormley, Subject II, 2019. 10 mm square section mild steel bar, 189 x 51.5 x 37.5 cm. © the Artist. Photo: David Parry / © Royal Academy of Arts

This exhibition had a profound effect on me – I found it inspirational and am so impressed with this man.

Antony Gormley is described as an internationally renowned sculptor. In my mind he is much more than that. Having visited this exhibition I would describe him also as a visionary, philosopher, architect, and engineer.

Why Do We Paint?

My own version of ‘A Hopeless Dawn’

My own version of ‘A Hopeless Dawn’

The reason will often be apparent in the work you produce. For instance, artists will create portraits of pets that are no longer with us. Portrait painters work to a commission. Many paint for the sheer pleasure of creating something visual. Painting is also ideal therapy.
 It can take you completely away from ‘ life’s many problems ‘ for a while. Every time you pick up a brush or pencil, do you stop to consider why you are doing this? A professional artist will paint for money, and that has a marked effect on what and why they paint a particular subject.


We are very lucky to have so many talented artists amongst our membership and even luckier when one of them gives their time freely to inspire and teach other members.
Many of you will have seen Helen Walker’s beautiful mosaics on display at our exhibitions.  Helen, very kindly, agreed to give Gill Repper, my friend and fellow member and myself a day of inspiration and guidance.  It was such FUN!   We both like getting our hands dirty and always seem to be working in a mess and this day was no exception!  Helen was an amazing teacher and even gave us a printed list of where to buy supplies etc. as well as supplying us throughout the day with tea, coffee and chocolate biscuits!  She also gave us templates to take home and continue experimenting with this exciting medium.
We started at around 11 a.m. and finished at 5 p.m. and we’re both very proud of what we achieved.  

Garden Sculptures and Water features at Chatsworth

(photos by Chris Ward)
It was a beautiful September morning as we made the short drive from our holiday cottage to Chatsworth House in the picturesque Derbyshire Dales. The road wound through the steep wooded hills and sloping fields that divide the valleys of the river Wye and the river Derwent. Arriving early, as we did, without huge numbers of people about, Chatsworth did not disappoint, sitting majestically on the eastern banks of the river Derwent and set in a landscape designed by none other than Capability Brown.  Historic houses like Chatsworth have beautiful interiors, but for me it is the landscaped gardens that I feel drawn to.