Wednesday, 5 December 2018

Graham Wilson - Winter Landscape in Acrylic

This was Graham's second visit to us and, as before, he entertained us with the humorous manner in which he communicated his approach to painting. You can read about his previous demonstration here

He often uses large canvasses for his acrylic paintings but favours a smaller scale for demonstrations. His support this time was mount card which he had coated with pink paint. 

 Ten images show the stages of his demonstration. He applied various widths of masking tape while he painted on a background, initially using white and then mixing into it on the support. When the tape was removed the position of the main tree trunks was marked by the pink undercoat. Pink was probably not a wise colour choice as he had difficulty covering it.

Monday, 19 November 2018

Christmas Exhibition in the Weavers Gallery

The hanging crew
Many thanks to the hanging  crew (Tony, Ian, Sarah, Daph, Kate - and Sue who took the photo) who worked for several hours on Sunday night to set up the exhibition.

The doors opened to the public (28 in all) on this cold Monday afternoon. We look forward to welcoming more than 300 as the week progresses.

Limited photography skills mean not all the paintings have been photographed well enough for publication but a selection here gives some indication of the quality work produced by members of Ledbury Art Society.

Tuesday, 6 November 2018

Tim Wilmot - Ledbury Scenes in Watercolour

The Market House, Ledbury
Tim has a very loose style and this enabled him to complete two paintings in less than two hours. Impressive! He brought along two photographs of Ledbury: the Market House and Church Lane looking towards the church tower and spire.

Based in Bristol, Tim specialises in vibrant watercolours exploiting the medium with tone and light. He has painted all his life and is completely self-taught. He loves to paint landscapes and is well known for his harbour and boat paintings. Nearly all his landscapes include figures and cars to give focal interest to the scene. You can see more of his work on his website His YouTube channel has more than 40 full length demonstration videos with commentary.

Below you'll find images showing the progress of this and his second painting and also one of his  YouTube videos.

Friday, 5 October 2018

Angela Gaughan - Flowers with Inktense

Detail of her starting point
Angela worked from a large reference photo showing roses. As her method of working is quite slow she had made a start on her painting in advance of the demonstration. 

Angela studied portrait painting but her work is not restricted to portraits. Angela works in all mediums and has demonstrated for Max water soluble oils, Daler Rowney and more recently for Derwent Pencils. She has also featured in the Artist and Leisure Painter magazines. She has demonstrated at a variety of shows and exhibitions and also on television. She is the author of “How to Paint Wildlife in Acrylics”. For more about her work visit her website

Palette at an early stage

Angela worked with Inktense pencils and blocks. For both forms she transferred the pigment to watercolour paper which was used as a palette. A brush (often a Pentel water-brush) was used for painting. Her support was illustration board.

Her tips for working with Inktense pencils and blocks were very helpful.

The blocks were left in their container
She advised against dipping the tips of the pencils in water or lifting pigment directly from the pencil tips with a brush. It was better to make pencil marks on the palette and use the pigment from there.

The blocks were left in their container which could then be used like a watercolour box.

The following pictures show how the work progressed.

Wednesday, 5 September 2018

Tim Fisher demonstration

Tim Fisher
Tim gave us two demonstrations. The first and main one was using line, ink wash and soft pastel to paint a scene at the Yorkshire coastal village of Staithes. The second showed how to enhance a watercolour painting by applying softpastel.

Tim is a regular contributor to the Leisure Painter and is the author of several books published by Search Press. You can find out more about Tim's work and the painting breaks he offers by visiting his website 

Tim based his demonstration on a photograph he had taken at Staithes. The support for his painting was Fisher400 Artpaper which is a sanded paper suitable for a range of media. This is availableUK from Jacksons Art Supplies and from in the in the US.

Tim began with an ink line drawing using a long match stick to apply black FW acrylic ink. This has to be done with the support close to vertical to prevent ink blots on the support. The ink ran down over his fingers so the problems that would arise if working flat were fairly obvious!

The next stage looked a bit scary to start with as Tim applied washed of various brightly coloured acrylic inks across his drawing.

The images that follow show how the painting progressed

Tuesday, 26 June 2018

Painting Challenge responses

Here are two interpretations of the shutters image in the latest painting challenge

Helen Welch

Richard Hyde
It's always fascinating to see different approaches to a reference photo. Helen has included the pigeon and boards whereas I have left the space 'open'. Perhaps I could have relieved the dark rectangle with slightly lighter tones to indicate that there might be something in the room behind the opening.

Even the photo chosen involves some selection. At some stage there was a second pigeon sitting on top of the leaning shutter.

If anyone else wants to contribute a painting do send an image to

Tuesday, 12 June 2018

Best in Show

Congratulations to Brian Griffiths whose watercolour painting Talybont and the Brecon Beacons proved to be very popular with visitors. It gained more votes than any other painting by quite a margin.

Visitor numbers were high this year. Ten paintings sold and cards sold well.

Brian does have his own website so you can see more of his paintings and also his photographs

Monday, 4 June 2018

Summer Exhibition photos

The exhibition started today and here are some photos of the paintings. Some, unfortunately, pick up reflections from the windows but still give a reasonable impression of the paintings on show. We also have cards and unframed paintings and prints for sale.

Monday, 28 May 2018

Summer Exhibition and Painting Challenge

The exhibition stars of Summer 2017
I'm looking forward to our summer exhibition which starts on 4 June in the Weavers Gallery, Church Lane, Ledbury HR8 1DW

It's open to the public:
  •  2 - 4 pm on Monday 4 June
  •  10am - 4.30pm Tuesday 5 through to Saturday 9 June
  •  10am - 2pm on Sunday 10 June

Ledbury should be buzzing on the Saturday as that is the Community Day when the town's many clubs and voluntary organisations showcase their work. For information about all the groups (arranged by venue) visit

Last week I painted four pictures. Three were to suit titles I'd dreamed up when on holiday in Italy and entered for the exhibition. The fourth was because one of the paintings I had already done for the exhibition was really badly done and I don't know why I had entered it. Painting so much in a short period is a useful challenge and I recommend trying it sometime.

Shutters in Garda
One of my paintings was based on this photo of delapidated shutters. My wife complains I don't take normal holidays photos! You are free to use my photo as a reference for your own painting or drawing in whatever medium you favour. If you'd like to share a digital image of your work then do please send it to

Friday, 4 May 2018

International Watercolour Masters

State of the Union by David Poxon
What an exhibition! A great outing by coach to see this exhibition at Weston Park. We even met David Poxon, the exhibition organiser, and I know a few bought his book. For more details of this exhibition go to  (which is also the source of the image here)

It is well worth the visit. Go ... and be inspired!

You might also like to visit the websites of the individual artists or look for examples of their work online.

Here's one of the live demos on YouTube

Tuesday, 1 May 2018

Tia Lambert - Flowers in watercolour

Tia worked with watercolour and with acrylic inks, The image to the left shows a partially completed painting of bluebells on the Malvern Hills. The image was based on one she had used for April 2012 on her first calendar.

For more information about Tia and her work you can visit her website 

This particular painting was on stretched 140lb NOT watercolour paper. She had drawn the trees before coming to demonstrate but drew the foreground bluebells at the start of the demonstration using a dip pen and sepia ink. She uses Daler Rowney FW artists acrylic ink as it is lightfast.

Drawing the bluebells
using reference photos

After drawing the bluebells she put the painting aside to dry and then showed us some of her sketch books and her very portable outdoor painting kit.

She then demonstrated various techniques for working with watercolour and inks. The images that follow show some of this and the application of washes to the bluebell picture.

Wednesday, 11 April 2018

Frank Collict - painting with a palette knife

Frank had an early start from Penarth. He is primarily a landscape artist working in watercolour and oils. His work is about capturing the image with bold brush work while trying to convey the light and atmosphere of a place. Consequently, when painting in the field, he uses a limited palette to work quickly and keep things simple.

You can see more about his work on his website

For this excellent demonstration he painted with palette knives. The first two images here show his starting sketch made in the field and a colour visual.

He was happy to answer questions as he painted, particularly when he had to spend time mixing paint on the palette, and he made sure we understood each step along the way.

For the demonstration he worked top to bottom and back to front but his approach in the studio is a bit different and he would usually spend much more time blending colours on the palette to make sure he achieved just the subtlety of colour and tone he wanted.

Frank stressed the importance of painting daily and working outdoors as much as possible. He felt that his painting had developed very quickly once he had plucked up the courage to work outdoors and his work became much more spontaneous, particularly his watercolours. Working with a palette knife had also contributed to the spontaneity of approach, particularly in forcing him to simplify.

Monday, 12 March 2018

Golden Theme Winner

This is Jill Lloyd's painting which was voted the best on a golden theme at the AGM. Judy Giles came second. It was great to have so many paintings entered as we celebrated Ledbury Art Society's golden anniversary.

Prizes for the competition were generously provided by the SAA (Society of All Artists). These included a specially produced mug for the winner.

To find out more about the SAA visit their website

Thursday, 8 February 2018

Eric Watson - animals in pastel

Members were invited to try some of the demonstrated
techniques on this picture
Eric is a self-taught artist from Bromsgrove and a full member of the International Wildlife Artists as a professional Artist. In his demonstration he show us how he uses light and shadow using a combination of pastel, pencil watercolour pencil and acrylic to build up from a base drawing to a finished creation of stunning detail.

Eric had brought along samples of his work and you can see more on his website  Some will remember Eric came to us in September 2013 and you can see images from that demonstration on this blog here

The demonstration picture this time was of a dog standing in water. He had tackled this subject before so he was able to show us a completed painting before taking us through the stages of development needed to achieve a similar result. He had brought along several pictures at various stages of completion so that he could show how each could be developed toward the next stage.

He first showed us how to transfer an image to paper using a grid and datum lines before moving on to a second stage picture which had some black pastel had already been applied. The paper is a heavy smooth general purpose paper with enough tooth to take pastel that he works well into the paper with a finger.

He usually waits until the animal image is about 85% complete before working on the background which he likes to keep fairly simple. If the main subject is dark the background is better kept light for contrast. A background applied first would pick up lots of dark pastel dust from the subject.

The edges of the dog image are drawn with pencil and not pastel. That means he can bring the background right up to the edge, even over the protruding fur, so there is no 'halo effect' around the subject.

Scrap paper is used to avoid smudging and should be discarded occasionally as it will pick up pastel on the back.

Wednesday, 10 January 2018

Stephen Hand - From sketch to studio painting

A group of cheetahs in Namibia
Stephen showed us some sketches of cheetahs he had encountered in Namibia. To those of us with no experience of cheetahs, some of these encounters sounded a little too close for comfort!

The sketch above is too elongated to fit to most canvases so they need to be rearranged to suit a painting. While he was sketching the central cheetah sat up which made for a better arrangement so that was captured in a quick thumbnail sketch.

Back in the studio, Stephen would usually do another thumbnail to plan the layout of the painting. For our benefit he made a larger sketch on A3 paper on which he first made pencil marks to divide the sheet into thirds both horizontally and vertically.

The shapes and positions of the animals only needed to be roughly indicated. Notice how they are positioned in relation to the lower and left third marker line.

As they all appear on the horizontal line, he decided that when it came to transferring the image to canvas, the one to the right needed to come forward and the leftmost go back and closer to the middle cheetah. Various adjustments were also made during painting - easy enough with acrylics.

Stephen also had a number of photographs of cheetahs which were used as reference sources for colour and detail.