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Blossom Fizzing

Another blossom painting emerges,bees buzzing all around me.

Another blossom painting emerges,bees buzzing all around me.

The Chaddesden pop up Blossom Studio was a success on Sunday 19th,some fabulous paintings,clay and blossom sculptures created.I was also delighted it was featured on BBC East Midlands today.
At Hardwick Hall the apple blossoms have started to fizz and I have had several days with sunshine and blue skies under the blossoms.It has been blossom heaven! Another three paintings have emerged including one using a new technique.I was fascinated how the shadows from the apple trees created patterns on my blank white canvases,so I started to photograph them every half hour which recorded the changes.I then traced around the shadow with some charcoal and overpainted the blossoms filling in the shadows too,I love the effect and want to develop this further.I am using the oil paint quite thick mixed with a little linseed oil to go on smoothly.
The bees have been incredibly busy and a squirrel joined me one morning and hid behind my large canvas.I have met some very interesting people,there have been many visitors over the Bank Holiday Weekend.I am delighted how many people have created their own orchard postcard picture,adults and children, a couple of pictures have even been signed by Picasso and Van Gogh!

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Pop up Blossom Studio Hardwick Hall

Pop up Blossom Studio,Hardwick Hall,Derbyshire

The pop up Blossom studio was open to the public over the holiday weekend.I set it up in the South Gazebo in the gardens at Hardwick.It was beautiful weather and we had over 500 people coming through.My blossom paintings were on display and many children and some adults painted alongside me, then created clay blossom sculptures.Lots of fabulous art work, a two year old did her very first painting,certainly one to be cherished. 

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The National Trust’s Hardwick Hall

The National Trust's Hardwick Hall

The orchards at Hardwick are starting to come to life this week, I have been painting the unfurling leaves and some of the first blossoms which have started to appear on a damson tree. Some visitors have taken the opportunity to sketch the orchards with the art materials I bring along with me which is wonderful. I will be displaying these in my Pop up ‘Blossom Studio’ next weekend.
I had a truly inspirational weekend at the’ Flourish’ conference in London where they have launched the ‘Save Childhood Movement’ concerns have been raised on the changing nature of family and community life, looking at the effects of digital technology, the commercial influences of the media and the impact on children’s well -being. Research has shown children’s outdoor play has decreased dramatically and that things need to be done to reconnect adults and children with nature. Outdoor physical play has a vital role in the physical, social and emotional development of young children. There are some brilliant projects which are starting to address the concerns.
The Blossom project is my way to encourage people to go outdoors, stop, take time to look
and appreciate the beauty of blossom, celebrate the natural beauty on our doorsteps.
Please take time to enjoy your blossoms whilst they are here, it is only a short time!
Post your blossom photos or drawings, I’d love to see them.
Or come to my Pop up ‘Blossom Studio’ at National Trust’s Hardwick Hall
Sat 4th,Sun 5th and Mon 6th May 10-5pm,The South Gazebo, Hardwick Hall gardens.
Garden ticket Prices;
Family £15,adult £8,child£3

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First week artist in residence at the National Trusts Hardwick Hall.I think I have fallen in love with the place.I will be documenting the blossoms from buds to petal fall.The blossoms are very late this year,a result of the cold weather,so I have been sketching the slowly unfurling buds.There’s so much anticipation and patience required it’s almost like waiting for a baby to be born (without all the discomfort)I have been delivering the first blossom art sessions to family groups in Chaddesden,Derby.The blossoms in Chaddesden are starting to flower,it won’t be long now….

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Good news! I am so happy My ‘Blossom’ project is being supported by Arts Council England and the National Lottery.Time to paint!