#Birthday# Cards#

Always difficult buying something special for my grandchildren. Their rooms are packed with toys and somebody always seems to have got in first with a new doll or the latest robot etc. But I can be original by painting them cards!!!


I have to be very careful to choose the right colour palette. This picture was acceptable in  pastel greys, blues and pinks, so is displayed on Chloe’s desk!!

My daughter’s birthday was just a few days later so it was a bit of a rush to get a card ready for her. The joint party (Chloe’s and my daughter’s) had a Chinese theme so I wanted to paint a beautiful lady with a resemblance to her.

Unfortunately I didn’t stick to her favourite colours – she does not like red, and in fact I was disappointed to see the scarf looked a bit like a tea towel!! I think my second attempt works far better in the softer blues, purples and yellow!!! A pity it was too late for the party though!!


And this was my first opportunity to use the Chinese seal I had cut when in Hong Kong recently!!


New#Pictures#on the 10a#Noticeboard

Each of the Highgate Watercolour Group members, about 25 I think, have the chance to put a selection of their paintings up for 2 weeks. There have been several already this year but I have only become aware of the last two contributors – Sue Lees and Chris Baker.




More Inspiration in Nice!!!

I wanted to see the wonderful Yves Klein pictures in the Gallery of Contemporary Art with the blue resin figures on a gold background, as well as the famous blue Fish pictures, but they were not there – I was told that they had been sent to Paris for an exhibition in the Paris Museum of Modern Art. (However I have looked on line but unfortunately can’t see any details of the exhibition – anybody know about it??) Never mind – there are plenty of other interesting things to see including some Gustav Adolf Mossa pictures tucked away on the top floor. His pictures are actually very sinister.

This picture was in the catalogue in the Musee du Beaux Art I visited the day before, so it was interesting to see the original painting. The girl looks so beautiful but on closer examination, she is sitting on a pile of naked men, her headdress is made up of skulls and dead ravens!!!

I loved the sculpture made from workmen’s wrenches. They appeared to be shimmering fish from a distance.


These shoes are very striking and reminded me of the “Hat” pictures I did in pastels from photos I took in Portobello Road.



I have tried several times to visit this gallery. Once  I  struggled up there in the boiling sun on the wrong day – next time, also a very hot day, it was partially closed for refurbishment (typically French – no reduction) but this time we braved driving rain and were rewarded with the museum being fully open!!! A beautiful building with lovely paintings – a great many by Raoul Dufy and a whole room with Gustav Adolf Mossa cartoons. A gallery I will certainly want to visit again!


Raoul Dufy





Quite a change from drawing in 10a this morning! Vanessa and I spent a few hours in the Woodman Pub which is just across the road from Highgate Woods.

Very peaceful, just a few mums with their babies. Vanessa seized the moment when a nanny came and sat near us – she was quick to include her into her picture. The nanny was delighted!!!!

We plan to return to The Woodman for more inspiration very soon and possibly find more people to add atmosphere.

Vanessa’s picture is the one with the nanny!!!!





Pastels#at the #Mall#Gallery

A very busy day but I’m so glad I managed to squeeze in a quick visit to the Pastel Society Annul Exhibition. A member of the group I belong to  (the East Finchley Open Artists) has 2 beautiful pastel pictures in the exhibition which closes at the end of this weekend.

I photographed her pictures but they have not come out that well. One Of the hallmarks of Christine Watson’s work is the deep deep colours she achieves – not an easy thing to do with pastels.

These photos don’t do justice to the actual pictures!!!

A few more of my favourites

fullsizeoutput_45fbThe top one of these three breathtaking pictures by Matthew Draper deservedly won one of the awards.

Then I am always attracted to more formal graphic pictures and loved all of these!!

Before leaving the gallery I took a quick peek at the Wapping Group of Artists Exhibition in the smaller gallery. Loads of wonderful paintings of boats and barges as one would expect. This exhibition is on for another week


New#Painting#for my #Hall

I wanted to brighten up my hall with some new paintings. The prints I had, dated back at least 20 years and I had ceased to notice them.

The colours needed to be predominantly  mellow yellows, greys and blues.

I started with this heron


Then worked on some cockatoos

Still not satisfied – now for my third attempt


This is the one I have chosen to go with the heron

The two pictures hang side by side in my hall

Monochrome#Exhibition at The #National#Gallery

Friends who know my love of painting in monochrome have been surprised that I have not been earlier to this wonderful exhibition! I think the main reason it has taken so long  (the exhibition is about to close) is that I have been keen to move on, to experiment with colour. But there were some fascinating pictures – a lot of classic pictures like this very detailed painting titled A Girl at a Window by Louis-Leopold Boilly and a portrait by Duerer


The Dutch artist De Witte painted with such skill that his pictures really do look like bas-relief



But surprisingly there is a Giacometti portrait of his young wife, and next to it – a Picasso.

Her is very strange painting of an early body builder –  quite repulsive!


I had hoped to buy some postcards of my favourite paintings. There were very few on sale so the assistant in the shop said I could photograph a few of the paintings in the catalogue.

The painting that impressed me the most was a portrait by Chuck Close. He had formed a grid on a photograph and created a huge painting using 2 inch squares. When getting up close you can see each square has a unique pattern,  but stand back and there is an exact likeness.


A couple of artists had taken photos from newspapers and created original paintings.

One by Gerhard Richter was enlarged and used on the wall before entering the exhibition. Stunning!!!


Ilumiere#Regent#Street London#

Magical lights on the buildings along Regent Street this evening. I missed the event last year so was determined to go along and see what it was all about after  reading  an article in Metro.

The traffic was diverted and there was a festival atmosphere with hundreds of young people swarming along the road. Of course a great many people were taking selfies in front of the beautiful buildings.

Here are a few of my photos!!!


There were some dancers with luminous umbrellas in the middle of the street


Leicester Square had some interesting lights for the children