January is that cold month where the pre Christmas rush of photography editing and art commissions is over, and I just want to stay in and semi-hibernate with endless mugs of hot lattes and my big stock of Christmas chocolates.

It’s the month when I really start to take stock for the year ahead – it’s spent researching, thinking and planning. And this month has particularly got me thinking about my art style. 

I have been painting professionally for more than fifteen years now, and it’s time to really narrow down the style that I love. For this year I intend to analyse the style I already have and to take it further, into a series of paintings that all reflect what I love most. 

I currently don’t use black or brown, and most of my work is bright and light – I use mainly primary colours, rather than muted tones, and I like to use a wide variety of colour on one painting. My work usually consists of bold lines and structure, with definite edges, rather than sketchy, fuzzy work. It’s more formed than haphazard, and my subjects usually reflect beautiful and delicate things in nature, such as trees, butterflies and flowers.  

With all this in mind I looked carefully at my three all-time favourite artists.

Yvonne Coomber – she paints the most beautiful flowerscapes in gorgeous colours.
Like me, she doesn’t use black or brown and her colours are bright, primary ones, combining many beautiful colours together. Unlike me – her work is haphazard and thrown together – literally thrown/splashed onto the canvas. It’s the colour and vibrancy that inspires me.

Natalie Rymer – again, like me – her subject is predominantly nature, but she is a lot more structured than Yvonne – she uses gorgeous bold shapes made out of forms of nature to create striking landscapes. The compositions are carefully figured out with flowers, grasses, seed-heads etc. creating the foreground detail, and the overall effect is  striking and fascinating. 

Georgia O’Keefe – the most famous of the three, I have loved and been inspired by her work for over 20 years. It’s her subject of natural form and the way she blends beautiful oil colours together with a definite contrast between light and vibrancy that particularly draws me to her art. I love the way she takes a tiny detail from a living object (usually a flower) and makes it into something dramatic and stunning.

Therefore – the conclusion I have come to is that my work this year will combine the elements of these three inspirational ladies:

  1. Many beautiful colours working together – with white as a highlight
  2. Structure and form with carefully worked out composition
  3. A strong contrast between light and darks – ie. the whites and the very vibrant colours

It’s the delicate forms of nature that inspire me – so I will be hunting out beautiful seed structures, flowers with strong shapes, and intricate details. 

Oil is my preferred medium – I love the way it can be blended and the vibrancy that can be created, so will continue to use this above all other mediums.

I have also created a Pinterest board of a range of beautiful things to help me narrow down what I really love. Two of the items that caught my eye are below:

Watch this space for a gorgeous new range of paintings that will be coming out of my studio this year!!! So exciting!!  

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