Image shows Winter Light III, oil on canvas, the reeds of the estuary and distant hills in winter.

The exhibition is showing at the Wyeside Arts centre until April 5th, thank you to the arts centre staff for help. See ‘events’ on a-n for more information on opening times and travel.

A visual journal of the sea estuary west of the Cambrian mountains

inter-tidal zone (inspired)

my journals and sketches began quietly, with walks along the estuary last summer.

I am attempting a mindful state in my drawing, some of the first views are of the reeds on the estuary.


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After a busy few months the exhibition went well, throughout the eight weeks people appreciated the paintings’ calmness and the reminder that there is a summer, somewhere, on the horizon.

The arts centre staff were truly supportive as ever, which was welcome after the multitudes of buses and trains I was on through the hills with the art in boxes although some went by courier. The journey between the two counties is at an awkward right angle inland over the Cambrian mountains then south (anyone who lives on the welsh coast knows what I mean!) I was living in a different place when I booked the exhibition so hadn’t taken that into account.

For a rurally placed arts centre the Wyeside packs a lot of activity into it’s schedule, with about three films per day, as well as theatre and exhibitions, fairly typical of most of the Welsh arts centres. After hanging about 30 pieces for a few hours with the technician, I switched off by watching Peter Rabbit in the cinema, hilariously, it somehow reflected the exhausting but chaotically cheerful escapade across country I’d had.

The paintings themselves are back with me after a couple of sales, which is normal after a medium sized show, it doesn’t anywhere near cover the cost, which is why I only exhibit every couple of years, but the paintings gradually find homes later.

A welcome quiet phase to catch up with the MA, means I have some time to think about direction , it my interest in the symbolic/visionary in painting is emerging again, whether through archaeological history or collections of paintings.

Landscape painting, even visionary I would add, has a long tradition in Wales and I’m feeling my way into that genre as a Wales based artist. Having visited the national library to view a selection of Welsh painters works, an art group asked me to talk about those works as an artist, it was an unexpected request so I used my instinctive responses, it became clear to me that I had properly reconnected to the landscape after moving around for a few years. I feel more of a sense of connection with those paintings.

Inter-tidal was produced with an intense part time job in the background which turned out to be a 6am start to 6 pm home on the days I worked. It was outside so I got to know the rhythm of the day and coastal seasons but it left little energy to really focus on developing my studio painting work and I can never focus wholeheartedly if there background chaos. I rarely paint within academic ideology, I have found it to be restricting (for me) but I’m willing to try and merge the instinctive ‘life’ of the work with some concepts of art history, continuing study will provide that framework and support.

After freeing up time to visit galleries in north Wales I found new painting and crafts at the Mostyn, a favourite. There were some stunning photographs at Oriel Colwyn, Antonia Dewhurst’s Hearn/Iron and Pete Davis’, Great Little Tin Sheds of Wales exhibited together- a friend commented on the subtle hues which the photographer’s catch, especially poignant of the light, morning and evening, both evocative and memorable in terms of the remote aspects of this landscape. I also visited the Alison Bradley gallery late last year and talked with her about her work for a little while.

I have ideas for my next painting project, but it needs some time to warm up, like our spring!

maybe with the wild ox in mind…from Builth Wells, bu-alth -Wild Ox on a Wooded Slope.








From now through solstice the early winter light is uplifting capturing it is momentary due to cloud cover in the day. It’s been humid and the days unfold into light rain, the tides are influenced by a wider sky,

Herodotus described the Nile tides as being fixed alongside the solstice seasonal shift, marked by it’s ebb and flow, an influence on building with regard to the position of the sun.

Painting days are timed for before the seasonal holiday rush, where holiday traffic builds in the town and again just before January when the traffic is quiet, the peaceful atmosphere of the land is at it’s best.


gwydir forest ref; painter unknown


This lake painting has been in my archive for a while, I don’t know who the artist is but the brush work is  interesting on closer viewing, especially towards the sky.

Inter-tidal has been a long project to produce, due to intervening jobs to support the work.The finality of it in terms of landscape and water took me inland again, in holiday time with friends we reached some local lakes and into the beautiful Gwydyr forest, this painting reminds me of its atmosphere of stillness.

A lake painting was inspired there and more may follow, to form a few end group of paintings in the arts centre space.

In a sense the lake/llyn of coastal Wales are a good representation of the source of the rivers which flow into the estuaries. They meet the sea water at the inter-tidal zone which is the environmental inspiration of where it began. If anyone here recognises this Autumn painting let me know.


Equinox 1

Equinox II

The paintings are completed for this project, the artwork will be stored for the winter to exhibit next year sometime, hopefully Spring.

It’s been an interesting project for me because of the way painting activity coincided with the cycle of the Autumn equinox which is when it began two years ago.

Being in a very rural region the pattern of the seasons determine life activities in a direct way.

I’ve learnt a lot about the sea and it’s moods and colours, but also a fragment of the history of the coast, which is vast and rich.

With an ongoing engagement with possibly one of the smallest maritime museums in Wales ‘Ty Gwyn’ , which houses a whole display of items found off the coast relating to a shipwreck, it seemed fitting to display some of my coastal drawings there longer term.

I’ll write a post when the exhibition is displayed and look out on a-n events when I exhibit the project in 2017.

thank you for reading, appreciating and following this blog  !





I have two blank canvases to paint and a few drawings to frame before the close of this project- production wise.

The timing falls within the equinox change to Autumn so it seems fitting especially when the coastal feel has changed again from light and busy to a quieter place, almost deserted of traffic.. and warm sunshine, although Autumn can bring the sun and stunningly clear evenings.

The last painting I did was based on the sea gulls song.

Song of Seagulls