Roses roses roses……

“What’s in a name that which we call a Rose by any other name would smell as sweet; So Romeo would, were he not Romeo call’d,“ thanks WS.


Oh to be able to post their sweet perfume, to bathe in their delicate scent, so heady, it takes me off to places dreamy and magical!

The garden is filling up with roses in such numbers I have not seen for ages. Even the David Austin in the front garden which has been so weedy for years, we built it a trellis last year to encourage it to climb and this year it has gone mad!

I fancy making Pot Purri as the rose heads are so full I wouldn’t need many. There’s lots of tips online and this is just one version I like from
Fifty flowers.

Colours from the Hedgerows.

As I walked our puppy in the lane this morning I was amazed at the amount of colour I found in the hedgerows. So I am sharing them with you and the secret to my clear bright paintings. Painted only transparent colours.
Here is my palette: Alizarin Crimson, Scarlet Lake, permanent Rose, Burnt Sienna, Transparent Yellow, Sap Green, Dioxin Violet, Phthalo Blue, Ultramarine and Indigo.

From my “Stay at Home “ sketchbook.

If you want to see a little more then go to my Instagram page and see the colour groupings. @bramblesartretreat

Brentor Autumn Arriving.

After a weekend of teaching Autumn Colour I was keen to paint the same scene in Acrylic, to capture the turning of the season from summer to autumn. This painting epitomises that point in the year. I put a base of warm orange on the canvas as a starting point. This was to harmonise the whole painting with tiny bits of orange peaking through.

Thee is some orange left in the sky, orange stalks on the foreground flowers and grasses, and hints of orange where the paint has only just cover lightly the surface of the canvas.

It’s important not to leave too much orange in the background as the warm colour brings forward the image and flattens out the painting.

As each areas is “blocked out“ less and less of the orange is visible.

The beauty of Acrylic is the use of many many laters so that bits of colour show through.

It’s important that once you think your are finished to walk away and look back with fresh eyes and decide where it can be improved.

By looking at shape, tone and detail you identify where to add the finishing touches. Then stop, don’t overdo the painting.
Available as a limited edition, signed, framed print – £150.00

Religious icons

I recently went to Perugia for a few days and in their National gallery I saw an exhibition of Icon and religious paintings. Wow how beautiful, I’m not religious but I can appreciate the skill, talent and beauty of this work. What really turned me on was the decay, the wear and tear, the fading away of these wonderful pieces.

I have been working with Watercolour, pen, acrylic, gold leaf, and collage on hand made paper. It’s all about the textures, and the distressed effect from ageing.

Exhibited at the Tamar Valley Centre, Gunnerslake, Cornwall

Autumn Courses

Here we are at the end of October and the colours of Autumn are upon us. We have hosted a weekend and five day course with the dominating theme of autumn.
Emphasising the importance of using transparent colours we focused on the gorgeous colours of fallen leaves.
The aim to capture the rich burnt browns, oranges and greens found on the fallen and rotting leaves. Wow did we have fun!

We are hosting two more courses In November, a weekend 8th – 19th and a five day 10th – 15th, we will be continuing to explore the Autumn theme exploring rich strong colour in watercolour.
As we head in to a dramatic winter landscape we use of a Charcoal to capture the lack of colour and drama of Dartmoor, the trees and skies. Fancy a creative weekend? There are a few places left.