While spring is in the air and finally the trees are blossoming and the daffodils are everywhere, my main thoughts with styling are in autumn. It can be quite hard to think 6 months in advance but in styling that is what is needed. Just before Easter I was asked to style a house outside Hungerford for an autumn edition of the magazine. It was time to think of an autumnal table.
This year I decided to go with autumnal fruits. Crisp juicy apples was the line I was going with. I bought a bag of deliciously red juicy apples which I chose to place along the centre of the table along with some cape gooseberries and some cut olive branches in a relaxed fashion. These then looked great with red candles, red and orange roses and tea lights. This is a very cheap way to decorate a table for a dinner party just before the nights start really drawing in.
It’s pretty cold out there, but there are definite signs of Spring which is really exciting. At last there is the light at the end of the tunnel of Winter and soon things will warm up. I’ve become so excited that I have been painting flowers non stop all week!
I find flowers very difficult to paint most of the time. Its so very hard as there is so much detail. The difficulty is to know where and when to simplify. It’s often best to squint your eyes to see what needs to be in detail and what not. Our eyes can find detail in so much of what we see yet most of us prefer paintings which aren’t always in focus throughout. It’s similar to when and where to lose edges and where and when to accentuate them.
‘Snowdrops’ – oil on board 10″x8″ – £65 from Alicesarthouse shop at Etsy
I tried an impressionist quick way with the snowdrops which has a blurry style which I probably like the most. For the other flowers I tried to concentrate on only parts of the flowers which I think works on the the large bunch of flowers rather than the smaller flowers. For the larger bunch of flowers I tried to use a larger brush throughout. It’s nice to try different things/styles/brushes etc.
Over the last couple of weeks I have had a couple of exhibitions which I have been rather worried about. It feels like a big step to go out there to sell your work when you are so unsure of it in the first place. It’s hard as an artist I think to really believe in your work. It’s hard to see the good things. Instead we see all the mistakes and where we could improve.
I have been totally shocked and astounded by the way my work has been received over the last couple of weeks. I have had so much positive feed back and people have been so kind. It’s been quite a learning curve. Somehow its still so hard to believe that people like your work and want to buy it. It’s an amazing boost and helps me to realise that despite all the mistakes I see, someone else likes and enjoys them. Some of these paintings have been around my house for quite a while – I’m so excited and pleased that they have been sold, but I will also miss them.
Thank you very much for your support.
This week Christmas has come early. Its August and I have been continuing with my styling but this time on a Christmas theme. Its often the hottest time of year that I do the Christmas shoots for magazines which always feels a little daft. Yet again I was in a London house and this was the wreath that I did for the door.
The house was in some beautiful greys and so I wanted to compliment it using eucalyptus as the greenery with some classic roses and the soft pinks and greens of hydrangea. I really enjoy unusual wreaths and often like the use of vegetables or fruit in them. Artichoke can often be a good choice as the purple and the spikey leaves can compliment the softness of the flowers. Also pomegranate is a good idea as they are very much a Christmas fruit with a really lovely red colour and wonderful shape.
Be bold this Christmas and do something crazy. Its a fun time of year so its nice to reflect this in your wreath. Don’t be scared!
Look out for my styling and paintings in January’s issue of Homes and Garden (UK).
Hello and welcome. I am going to try and add two different paintings or images a week. My aim is to try and paint every day and show the progress of my work. All the paintings on this blog are for sale. Please click on the title or image below to get directed to my shop.
Spring Flowers in cream jug – oil on canvas board 11″x14″
The weather has changed recently and I’m feeling all summery and spring like. The flowers caught my eye as they were very beautifully pale simple colours that were soft and elegantly placed in this rather lovely old kitsch cream jug. I loved the dramatic feel against this dark grey background. It’s time to get flowers in the house!