Thursday, 14 February 2019

#444 'Trees in Snow' 30x40cm


Started outside on the last day of the snow we had finished in a warm studio! Painted one before this (see previous post) but liked the tall tree and sky so did a bigger painting in a portrait format.

Monday, 11 February 2019

#443 'Silver Birch in Snow' 30x30cm


This is the first one I did as the sun was going down on Bramshott Common. Different colours to the previous bluer snow paintings. Mainly yellow and oranges, limited palette. 
I painted another straight after (will post tomorrow) in a portrait format to get the trees in....

Sunday, 10 February 2019

#442 'Snow Shadows' 30x40cm


The second painting done straight after the first. You can see how much the sun has moved to the right and rose. Warmer blues and lots of colours in the snow! But also a limited colour palette - warm and cool.
In this one I wanted more of the shadows as I didn't get to emphasis them in the first painting. So I used a bigger board, portrait format and a high horizon line. 
I'm pleased with the result :-)

Putting in the bit that will change the quickest first- the shadows 

Friday, 8 February 2019

#441 'Snow & Morning Light' 24x30cm


I arrived early to set up and start mixing colours. So I was ready to paint the shadows when the sun just came up over the trees. Cool blues compliment well with the orangey sky. Such an inspiring subject. I stayed on and did another I will post it tomorrow! 

A tip I picked up .....use an old big sock and ware it like a glove. Make a small hole in top to insert your paint brush. So you are able to freely hold it without restriction - no bulky glove to get it in the way! Also slip a disposable hand warmer in which I did that day keeps you toastie!

Thursday, 7 February 2019

#440 'Snow & The Surrey Hills' 24x30cm


I liked the cool blue light contrasted with the warmer light of the left. Plus the arial perspective of the fading distant hills. Not easy to paint! With quite subtle tonal difference having to really observe and not think you know whats there but looking. 
Behind me was a sledging slope, I could hear arguments, snow ball fights but also kids giggling with delight flying down (towards me!) made me smile.
The day after the big snow, trees and gorse bushes laden

Wednesday, 6 February 2019

#439 'Walk in the Snow' 24x30cm


A few days ago we had a big snowfall overnight and it was so exciting to wake up to snow laden trees and sunshine :-)
I went to an area walkable to us it was so quiet and we made the first snow tracks of the day, it was beautiful.
To be able to to paint that was such a treat. By the end of the painting the sunshine was warming the branches and my subject was disappearing!

My husband who was out taking photo took this one of me.
I was wearing two of everything spot the double coat!

Tuesday, 5 February 2019

#438 'Chilly Brook' 24x30cm


I drove for over an hour trying to find a subject, not easy seeing over the hedge rows and being able to park safely when there's snow on the roads. Really pleased to find this winding stream in the Meon Valley. I adapted the composition a little by making the distant hill snow instead of all woodland, also adding a bit more snow than there was! Mainly monochromatic with a hint of warmth in the bush.

I am feeling happy (and quite tired) after the great snow we had here. Its now melted, having been here for 5 days I made the most of it with 14 paintings started en plein air! but 1/3 not finished - I will post some over the next few days/weeks.

Monday, 4 February 2019

#437 'Dawn, Devils Punch Bowl' 12x12"


Painted en plein air just before the sun came up, I've done this subject before in 2017, very paintable!

Saturday, 2 February 2019

#436 'Snow Pastels' 30x30cm


Just after sunrise when there's still a bit of colour in the sky but no direct light on the scene. It was a few days ago -8 with wind chill, bitter but worth it :-) 
Reminds me of Farrow and Ball colours! Lots of mixed greys - warm and cool. More snow paintings to come!



Thursday, 31 January 2019

#435 'Sunrise, The Grand Canal' 50x50cm


A studio painting developed from a plein air piece. I painted this subject over 15 times, so I know it well and felt comfortable painting it bigger. One for my solo show in May in London!

Plein air study

Sketch book drawing on location (later in the day with more traffic on the water)

Monday, 28 January 2019

#434 'Old Fishing Boat' 24x30cm



I liked the colour combination of this, very Mediterranean looking.  I used my location sketch to help with the composition. Painted with long flat brushes gives a quality to it. The rusty old winch gives an extra element and helps composition. Tried to keep it fresh and bold.

Sketch studying 4 tones

Sunday, 27 January 2019

#433 'Red Sky & Fishing Hut' 24x30cm


This scene was the next bay along from where we were staying. Such a bonus to find a characterful fishing hut and great old boats. 
I sketched it out in the day time but went back the next morning at sunrise to take photos. So I combined the two as I really loved the sky and how everything had a warm reddy tinge.
Sketched on location in sunny Gran Canaria

Thursday, 24 January 2019

#432 'Sunrise, Gran Canaria' x 2

24x30cm Sunrise, Gran Canaria
My husband Nick and I had a week in the sun over the Christmas holidays, a proper break without my paints or his camera. (First one since our honeymoon 4 years ago!)
I did however bring my sketch book, and we were blessed with stunning sunrises from our balcony, I drew it twice, to try and 'learn' the subject ready to paint it back in the studio.
The above painting was my second one which included all the palms. Wonderfull silhouettes and hot colours - different from the UK sunrises especially this time of the year!
Making sure the colours are bight and light but the sun one stage lighter in tone to stand out.
3 tone sketch, studying the silhouetted shapes

First painting 18x24cm, small to practise the colours and shapes

Sketching from the balcony :-)

Friday, 18 January 2019

My First Solo Exhibition!!...Save the Date

New flyer
Just 4 months until my first solo exhibition in London. The time has come around quickly and I am started to feel excited and also think there is so much to do - reminds of planning a wedding!

I've finished designing these 'save the date' flyers and sent them to be printed. I hope you can 'save it' and possibly make the show- it would be great to see you :-)

I will also be getting some PV invites printed nearer the time, if you would like one email me clare@clarebowen.co.uk

Took 22 paintings to be framed this week, not easy choosing so many frames at the same time, we have very good framers 'The Artistic Framing Co.' in Waterlooville Hampshire, with 40 years experienced helped! Plus my Mum has a good eye.

I hope to have 50-70 paintings in the show, I need to do more of Landscape and London, thankfully still time to do it!

Monday, 14 January 2019

#431 'Low Winter Sun over The River Hamble' 10x12"


I actually started this painting before the previous post no.430. Having chased the sun and finally found a location and subject, I drew out this composition and mixed some pools of colour. But by then the low sun had changed into sunset colours and more clouds had formed I wanted to capture them on a wider board so abandoned this one. 

I finished the painting in the studio trying to keep the fresh feeling of plein air even though it was from memory and a photo. One way of doing that is deciding on the time of how long you want to paint for - say 90 mins and try and complete the painting in this time.  It means less time to fuss and fiddle and helps to make you decisive and confident with making your marks.

Friday, 11 January 2019

#430 'Sunset Over The River Hamble' & Perseverance


Thank you so much to those who have emailed me and commented re my previous post. It's really good to have feedback as it has been hard to gauge what you think of my blog! 
It seems like the consensus is to carry on with the format I have been doing - paintings and a bit of writing but to also include some informative posts along side the usual painting posts. I am happy to keep going with it :-)

River Hamble
I had made a solid plan for where I would paint - Seascape of Bosham, I'd checked and rechecked the weather forecast, sun and cloud - perfect. Not too much wind and tide was the right level. Picked the boards/canvases that I thought would suit that subject. Left at 1.30pm ready to do two paintings a later afternoon and a sunset.
Work in progress, beautiful sunset!
It was heavy cloud all the way down to the coast. Left which is the Bosham area a thick blanket no sun, right had sun on the horizon, I made the quick decision of turning right, I drove into Portsmouth but decided there wasn't enough sun, so I came back out and went towards Southampton. I knew there was a river a long there having walked some of it with my Mum 10+ years ago.
A friendly security guard at a Marina said walk that way for some good views. I wasn't decked out to be walking and had to dump some of my boards (getting rid of weight) in the car. I walked on a path next to the river it wasn't a great view and I didn't know if it would get any better but decided to persevere as I'd come this far. I went about a mile when the river bent into the direction of the low sun, the clouds had broken up into a wonderful formation and there was the view! So relieved and happy to find something inspiring to paint. 
Although the time was ticking on, I'd mapped out a composition and quickly mixed some paint colour ready, but by then the scene had change too much so I started another this time just painting the sky, after it had changed again I painted the sea and foreground. I finished it in the studio.

Perseverance pays!
When I first drove down to the coast looking at the sky, grey and more grey with a tiny amount of light. But to carry on with the uncertainty of finding a decent subject and to end up painting a new place was definitely worth the angst! It doesn't always end in a positive! Plein air is such a challenge in so many ways and this was just one of them!
Clare

Tuesday, 8 January 2019

#429 'The Edge of Winter', & Changing my Blog?

'The Edge of Winter' 40x50cm Oil on canvas

I have been thinking about my blog and have want to change the format of my posts. 

At the moment I post every painting I do and have done that for 3 years. What I propose now is posting less often possibly once every two weeks. I will write about art topics, from equipment choices, painting techniques, exhibition reviews, art books I'm into, and more...

(You can also suggest any)

Each of these posts will have a painting I've completed during the two weeks.


I hope this will work, and I can keep it up for year, time will tell! 


Please comment on this post or by email clare@clarebowen.co.uk to tell me if you like this idea or want to keep my previous way of posting?


It is hard for me to gauge how many people actually read my blog so any feedback gratefully received!

Sunday, 30 December 2018

My Painting Year 2018

My favourite paintings of the year
I wanted to write a summary of this years happenings....I have completed a whopping 160 paintings (not including the duffers and wipe offs!) quite a few more than last year - mainly because of the Venice trip. And it's not all about quantity I have been aiming for more quality pieces and a bit bigger in size too. 

This is the Instagram top 9 where an app counts the most likes for each painting, and then puts them in the top 9 order.....


Instagram Top 9 2018
I entered The Artist Magazine competition which exhibits the finalists at the Patchings Art festival in July. I won the Royal Talens award and received £250 worth of linen canvases! Plus The Artist Collection award - exhibiting with the top 10 finalist.


'Gateway to Bramshott Common' 10x10"
Wining painting exhibited the Patchings

One of my highlights this year was being accepted into the New English Art Club (NEAC) A prestigious exhibition held at The London Mall Galleries. They call themselves the contemporary impressionists which is how I see my work as well! This was the painting accepted.
'Silver Birch in Snow'  8x10"
In October I was part of the Chelsea Art Society annual open exhibition which has had many famous artists who have exhibited here including: Turner in the mid 19th Century, followed by Whistler, Sickert, Augustus John and John Singer Sargent, it's wonderful to be included in!

The Artist Magazine I have been reading this on off since the 80's! and have always wanted to write an article for them. This year I did that! Plus I'm now writing another for next summers edition.


My Article in Januarys The Artist Magazine :-)
Venice in September I was lucky enough to spend 30 days in this dream painting place! I felt truly inspired and even though it was exhausting to keep painting intensively the whole time, it was worth it and couldn't really get enough of the place! I producing 45 paintings. Plus some bigger pieces since I've got home.
I have already booked to go back next September for 21 days!


My Venice painting haul!
'Venetian Cafe' 30x30cm
Completed back home in the studio 
This small plein air I thought could go bigger and have more content so I tried an enlarged  version in the studio and I'm pleased with the outcome!
40x50cm Oil on Canvas Studio piece                                              9x12" Plein Air Sketch

I have decided to continue to blog for another year. It's been quite a challenge to keep on top of the posts, especially when I am producing a lot like when I was in Venice doing up to 4 a day! But I think it's still a beneficial process for me and hopefully those of you who read it.

News for next year
I am very excited to be doing my first solo exhibition in Chelsea, London next May. 
The Title is: London, Venice Coast & Country
Date: 14th-18th May 2019
Place: "The Studio” 73 Glebe Place, London, SW3 5JB 
If you would like an invitation to the Private View on the 14th please contact me. clare@clarebowen.co.uk
I will do a post about the show nearer the time.

Thank you for reading my blog posts and supporting me though this year. I hope to have you along for this coming year too!
With best wishes
Clare

Thursday, 27 December 2018

#428 'Christmas Clemintines' 6x12" & 6x6"


Out Christmas shopping I spotted these in a garden centre. They don't usually have the greenery on in a supermarket. I haven't painted this sort of subject in a long time so I thought I'd have a go!
I remember having a clementine and walnut at the bottom of my stocking. We asked Mum to keep doing us a stocking into our 20's! :-)


I enjoyed it so much I painted another one straight after!

My studio set up

Monday, 24 December 2018

#427 'First Snow' 30x40cm Happy Christmas!

Wishing you all a very Merry Christmas and A Happy & Creative New Year!
 I painted this intending it to be my Christmas card this year but after proofing it twice at the printers to get the colours correct I ran out of time! 
It's from a photograph of last years snow near the Devils Punch Bowl in Surrey. On a coloured linen canvas. Painting from a photo I try to paint the same way as though I am outside. In other words trying not to fiddle or spend to long on it. 

Looking through all my pics of snow there were so little of snow in sunshine! I'm really hankering for painting this subject lets hope we get some! I've even brought some winter tires for my car so I can go further afield when it comes!


Sending good wishes over this festive time.
I will post a 2018 summary post on the 30th December.
Clare

Saturday, 22 December 2018

#426 'Winter Skies, Bramshott Common' 8x10, 10x12"


A plein air sky not far from my house on land owned by MOD. I like seeing the distance and feeling the space. Winter sun means its sets over the distant hills - quite perfect!
I used a textured linen coloured board to give it more atmosphere. 

This second painting was done in my studio the next day using the above piece as a starting point. I wanted another go at the sky. As i would have done two outside but the sun disappeared within 40 minutes of setting up!



p.s I will be doing a seasonal post on Christmas Eve.....

Friday, 14 December 2018

#425 'Venetian Cafe' 30x30cm


This week I have been looking after the family Shih Tzu dog, while my Mum is away. He is 12 and has lost his hearing from old age, plus he has gone blind from bad breeding, poor sausage, so it makes painting a little tricky! But I did manage this one in the studio with snatches of 10 minutes of time in between checking on him in the house!
Matte
This scene I couldn't resist with the yellow wall so bright and glowing in the sunshine, it was my last day in Venice so I snapped a pic and did a quick drawing and here is the result! The Square is Campo Santo Stefano and its the 'Art Blu Cafe'.

Tuesday, 11 December 2018

#424 'Early Winter Light, Camber Docks, Portsmouth' 30x40cm



First layer of burnt sienna and the all over thin layer of colour/tonal shapes was done on location and the next day I did a fat layer of lush paint! So fun to do. 
The big blue/black boat difficult shape as it was strong blocky, so I used thick and thin paint and a greener reflection.
I suggested the silhouetted shapes of the buildings not too much detail.
Made sure the yellow struts of the fishing boat stood out against the darker background.
The water in the foreground gradually got darker. Little pinkie flecks of colour from the sky I put in before the green blue water and blended the edges a little.

Thursday, 6 December 2018

#423 'First Light, Langstone Harbour' 30x40cm

A wintery day, and lucky to have a break in the weather as it didn't look hopeful when I arrived - solid cloud and raining! I'm pleased I didn't drive home, waited in the car and some beautiful light and cloud formations appeared, just my sort of subject!

Decided to include the cars on Hayling Island bridge to help the composition and I used quite thin paint in place to let the linen coloured canvas show through.