Tuesday, 30 October 2012

Tabitha's photos for all seasons

Like so many of Eynsham's artists, photographer Tabitha Schenk needs to look no further than Oxfordshire for inspiration. Indeed all the photos she will be showing at the Eynsham Emporium on Saturday 24 November have been taken in our county. Tabitha is especially keen to show seasonal images. 
"Fireworks are a lot harder to photograph than you'd think," says Tabitha. "With only one chance to capture the moment it explodes you just have to point and shoot, there's no time to think, it's instinctive." This photo was taken a year ago at the annual Bartholomew fireworks display in Eynsham.
"To get the best shots of snowdrops you have to get down to their level," she says. This image was taken in February this year and is available as a print (40cm x 30cm - £20).

The winter thrushes are beginning to migrate down from Scandinavia to spend the winter in the UK. Here's a very handsome fieldfare she spotted. "I took this from my kitchen window, when it snowed in December 2010."

 Many of Tabitha's photographs are available as handmade cards (£2 each or 3 for £5) and are suitable for any occasion.
Tabitha will be exhibiting her photographs and cards at the Eynsham Emporium on Saturday 24 November where you can get two for the price of one on hot drinks while you admire her work.

Friday, 26 October 2012

Maple leaves

In spite of all the recent rain, the trees are finally beginning to look autumnal. Artist Julia Loken picked these elegant maple leaves from a tree just around the corner from her house in Eynsham.

She says: "I thought they were so beautiful, that I just had to paint them. I love using watercolour as a medium partly because of its transparency, and I enjoy the challenge of finding different ways of exploring this. In this painting (fresh from the brush!) I have deliberately kept the paint very watery and delicate, so that the wonderful patterns and shapes made by the overlapping leaves are not obscured, but emphasised.

Maple Leaves ( size 13" x 10") will be on sale, sensitively framed, for £300.

Wednesday, 24 October 2012

Pine cones: small but perfectly formed

'Small but perfectly formed'
Painter Jane Tomlinson has been making a series of small canvases focusing on small things from the big wide world. These form a wall of pictures which Jane calls 'small but perfectly formed' which will be on display during the Eynsham Winter Artweekend.

There are birds and animals, flowers, grasses, conkers, stones and pine cones.

Jane says: "I'm really fascinated by the double helix formation of pine cones - a double spiral around a single axis. You see the same thing in the pattern of seeds on a sunflower head. It crops up everywhere in nature and is the dominent structure of DNA. I thought it would be fun to make some studies of a handful of pine cones I picked up from beneath a Scots pine recently."
Red pine cones - by Jane Tomlinson - £95
Pine cones - by Jane Tomlinson - £95
Each canvas on Jane's 'small but perfectly formed' wall measures 30cm x 30cm and all are priced at only £95.

Thursday, 18 October 2012

Roses are reds

Watercolourist Julia Loken is busy preparing for the Eynsham Winter Artweekend. At her home in Myrtle Cottage, Tanners Lane, Eynsham, where she'll be exhibiting during Artweekend, she's currently working on a sumptuous painting of red roses.

Each petal is carefully described in astonishing detail with subtle washes of many different reds, oranges and purples. She builds up the washes slowly to give a resonance and depth to the colours which seem to sing off the paper.

Julia's mastery of watercolour - one of the most difficult of mediums - is breathtaking. Make sure you see the finished painting during Artweekend!

Monday, 15 October 2012

Sparkling creations with silver and gold

Gorgeous textures and shapes
Eynsham jeweller Joanna Ripley has been working on her new collection for winter 2012.

She says: "It is a new and exciting direction for me, as silver and gold chains form the main element. Both metals have a hammered, textured finished and vary in shape in size.  Using the chain links as a starting point, I have adorned them with semi-precious gemstones, freshwater pearls and crystals."
Check out the shimmer on those freshwater pearls!
The results are rich, detailed and opulent necklaces that can be worn during the day or evening to enhance any outfit.

"It has been a joy to work with different gemstones, pearls and crystals. There are so many colours and textures to choose from, and their organic nature ensures that each necklace is a one-off and truly individual. I have made earrings that match each necklace, as I'm personally a big fan of co-ordinating accessories!"

A gracious combination of gold and blue crystals
Let Joanna's sparkling creations tempt you during  our Artweekend at 27 Queen Street, Eynsham. Prices start from about £20.

Friday, 12 October 2012

At the Emporium

If you fancy a cup of coffee or a pot of tea when you come to Eynsham for our Artweekend, you'll want to know that the Eynsham Emporium at 32 Mill Street, Eynsham, OX29 4JS, is offering all Artweekend visitors to two for the price of one on hot drinks in their coffee shop.

The Emporium stocks a delightful mix of cookware, gifts and flowers, and its coffee shop is a very comfortable place to be refreshed.

Photographer Tabitha Schenk is holding her exhibition at the Emporium so quite apart from the great deal on hot drinks, you can feast your eyes on Tabitha's striking images!

The Eynsham Emporium, 32 Mill Street, Eynsham.

Thursday, 11 October 2012

Winter's great beauty

'Frost on Cassington Road, Eynsham'
by Lorna Marrison - oil on canvas
20. x 15. x 1.8 cm - £100
"Winter is considered a drear time of year but there is great beauty in the soft muted colours of this season" says artist Lorna Marrison.
"'Frost on the Cassington Road' is one of my 'seasons' paintings. This small intimate canvas draws you through the dark laced branches into a frosted field. Here is frozen time waiting for sun."
Below is a sketch Lorna made earlier this year. She says: "Christmas is over and I have the January blues waiting for spring. I made this sketch down the Cassington Road in Eynsham whilst perched on some cold agriculture machinery."
Darkness - a study from Lorna's sketchbook


Wednesday, 10 October 2012

Anthony gets his hands dirty

Potter Anthony Abrahams is a retired GP who left busy Oxford city life for the peace and tranquillity of village life in Eynsham. He says: "Before I retired, I'd never done anything creative before, but when I moved to Eynsham, I fancied getting my hands dirty and making things, so I joined the Old Forge Pottery co-operative."
Anthony explained that he loves the mysterious alchemy of every part of the process of pottery - from the throwing, to the turning and finally the glazing: "you can never be quite sure how it's going to look when it comes out of the kiln, so it's always a nice surprise."

Recently, Anthony has been creating a number of blue bowls, experimenting with overlaying glazes to reveal unexpected tones and textures. Each bowl is priced about £20. You can see Anthony's work at the Old Forge Pottery, 33A Newland Street, Eynsham during the Artweekend.

Sunday, 7 October 2012

Food at the Talbot - discount for Artweekend visitors!

When you come to Eynsham for our Artweekend, you'll see there are many places where you can get something to eat and drink. Today we'd very much like to recommend The Talbot which is offering a 10% discount on food for Eynsham Winter Artweeked visitors - just speak to Trevor to qualify.

The Talbot is on the edge of Eynsham on the road towards the Swinford Toll Bridge. It has a lovely deck overlooking River Thames' Wharf Stream - which may be a bit chilly in November!-  so sit inside and enjoy the warmth of the fire while you choose from a selection of delicious traditional pub food, such as sirloin steak, smoked salmon fishcakes or a slap-up mixed grill.

Friday, 5 October 2012

Julia Loken - painter of plants

Eynsham artist Julia Loken doesn't have to look far for subject matter to inspire her - her garden, in fact - as Julia specialises in botanical subjects. In her charming cottage garden in Tanner's Lane, Eynsham she grows plants and flowers which will, in time, become the subjects of her paintings.

'Down by the fishponds, Eynsham' - watercolour painting by Julia Loken - £295
Julia's painstaking attention to detail records the sometimes subtle differences between species.

"There's something about winter trees, when the leaves have gone and you're left with the wonderful tangle of branches and undergrowth..." she says.

In 'Down by the fishponds, Eynsham' (pictured below) Julia's rendering of the thick, damp green moss on the tree trunks is especially haunting.

Thursday, 4 October 2012

Snow scenes are Eric's coolest!

Eynsham artist Eric White is an absurdly talented user of soft pastels. Here he explains why he so drawn to painting snow scenes in this most difficult medium.

Eric shows off one of his many sublime paintings of snow
"Whenever there is a forecast of snow I make sure that my schedule will allow me to get out with sketchbook and camera to capture the magic of a landscape transformed by the white stuff.  Since normal life often comes to a standstill after a heavy fall, no excuse is needed to don appropriate boots and clothing to head off into the countryside around Eynsham and, if the roads allow, a little further afield.

"Part of the appeal is the sheer physicality of the exercise. Seeing one’s breath on the cold air; feeling one’s gloveless hand numb as it grips the pencil; being the first to crunch the crisp new snow under one’s feet – it all adds to ‘being there’ and ‘capturing the moment’.

"Then there is the beauty of it all as contours are softened, all untoward ugliness is masked and the familiar beautified. The key change is with the light. How often is it that snowfall is duly followed by an intensity of sunlight not usually experienced on a regular winter’s day? In this light snow isn’t just white; if you look hard enough into its shadows you will discern a myriad of blues, pinks and purples. If the scene is still overcast and promising further falls, then it is the sky that takes on its own unusual colour spectrum. Everything is seen quite literally in a new light.

"Enjoy each season in turn. Be thankful for the life-giving rain and sun, but above all relish those all too fleeting magic days of snow."

Wednesday, 3 October 2012

Graham Rice's firey forests

Graham Rice has been working on a series of glowing and lustrous forest paintings. He says: "I've always painted, I need to paint... Sometimes I simply want to experience the joy of making a piece of art, the solving of the puzzle as you fit all the elements together. Other times I need to express an emotion, or tell a story, I need to get a idea out into the big wide world, I need to make something that will touch people.

"With these pieces I wanted to explore the complexities of relationships, being apart and together. I wanted the specifics of these relationships to be as layered as possible, to allow the viewer to project their own experiences and dreams onto each piece, to step into their own forest.
"The paintings developed through a variety of different stages. Starting with an application of folded tissue paper followed by a loose layer of paint, this is where the bones of the painting begin to form as I find the features I want to build upon. I'll then start to glaze on several layers of paint, some simply rubbed on with fingers, others carefully painted to define the characters or creatures within a composition. Once that's complete the first layer of resin is applied, this forms a very hard and shiny surface which is then painted over further, primarily to add the more abstract foreground elements. A final layer of resin and a polish complete the painting and give the colours their deep lustre."

Tuesday, 2 October 2012

Conker time

Painter Jane Tomlinson is fascinated by the natural world; the big things and the little things. Right now it's conker time and Jane has been gathering conkers dropped by the horse chestnut tree in the middle of the Eynsham churchyard to make a study of them. Jane shows us the process of making her painting of conkers. 
1. Firstly, I start by drawing out the composition and block in the colours very roughly.
2. The next thing is to 'anchor' the conkers with shadows,or they just become random shapes floating in a sea of white. I added a few highlights on the shiny nuts and began the leaves.
3. I strengthen the shadows and redraw the top leaves more accurately.
4. More details, including softening the edges of the shadows, the whirly grain on the front conker and the spikes and bruises on the outside of each fruit, and then it's done!

'Conkers' by Jane Tomlinson - 30cm x 30cm - acrylic on canvas - £95

Jane will be exhibiting this and many more paintings of the natural world during Eynsham's Winter Artweekend at 18 Newland Close, Eynsham, OX29 4LE.