This time next week I shall be setting up for a very informal ‘Works In Progress’ Open Studio Saturday 1st and Sunday 2nd December 10-5pm 🎨….lots to show and share from the Autumn…find out about my newest work…seasonal shopping opportunity🎄…and a chance to find out about my exciting plans for 2019!….and have a coffee☕️! ….What’s not to like? If you can’t make that some of my work from Jane Austen’s House Museum and Hampshire Cultural Trust will be in Winchester Museum from December 5th (more on that another time)…..or contact me for a PV at my studio another time if you can’t make the weekend 🙏 Hope to see you soon!
#Spain #galicia #asturias #galifornia #pleinair @briteinair #Hampshire #fareham @skyartsartistoftheyear #sketchbooks #inktober #wninktober @moleskine @hantsculture @janeaustenshousemuseum
Good morning all! Another day of @hampshire_open_studios in #Fareham Many thanks to visitors yesterday and of course buyers especially 😍. So sorry if I missed you in the afternoon as I slipped out early to see #stereophonics and @feederofficial and @jakebugg 😱at #victorius. All excellent artists in musical terms not sure if they draw too or not? I’m here all day today and tomorrow. See you soon I hope x
#Hampshire #OpenStudios #August I collected my brochures today for @hampshire_open_studios I am really pleased to be taking part in this event for my third year…although my openings will be limited to the Bank Holiday weekend…I am really looking forward to meeting you and showing you all my stuff! Things from #Chawton @JaneAustenHouse earlier this year and #LandscapeArtistOfTheYear 2016- last year our Summer was really hectic with lots of secret filming #LAOTY at the same time as HOS!! So I am taking things at a slower pace this year….and even having a little holiday with my husband too! 🏛☀️See you in August 😉
Well – this really is the end of the commission posts. Here are some small versions of the six selected peices- I will let you know if the intended merchandising is realized incorporating them!
Watercolour of The Copper at Jane Austen’s House Museum 76x102cms Kim Whitby ©2017
Ink on paper View into Jane Austen’s Breakfast Room and Writing Table 75x55cms Kim Whitby © 2017
Oil on canvas, View into Jane Austen’s Breakfast Room with Kettle and Writing Table, Kim Whitby © 2017 40x30cms
Watercolour, Snow drops at Chawton; Jane Austen’s House Museum, Kim Whitby © 2017 20x30cms
All that remains to say is what a special and unique experience it was to work and create in such an influential place….Jane Austen has been my favourite writer since my A levels many years ago. So you can imagine what a great honour it was to be invited to work there.
Many thanks to Hampshire Cultural Trust, Jane Austen’s House Museum and all the lovely staff and volunteers at Chawton. ❤️
I will be opening my studio as part of Hampshire Open Studios in Fareham on August 26,27,28th if you would like to see some of the peices and sketchbooks in real life. All welcome.
See my News and Events page for full details.
February 28th 2017
The last chilly trips to Jane Austen House Museum, with the review and selection from my time here by Hampshire Cultural Trust and the museum in partnership.
I spread all my things out in the education room ….and a few weeks later a final selection of six works was made. These are intended as merchandising starting points….let you know next week what was selected!
How tardy am I posting a whole day late!!! Apologies! – doubtless some clever person at JAHM will know a Jane Austen quote about lateness to properly chastise me with!!
Saturday 18th February
The weather has been unhelpful for water based stuff (i.e. not suitable/possible for drying things like washes in ink or watercolour either outside or in unheated outbuildings) so the weather forecast of dry – with possible afternoon sun today, is a real bonus. I have only a few sessions left to work here at Chawton and so far done very little ink or watercolour. I will be selecting to work here only on the better weather days from now on.
Indoor working has given me the opportunity to have a initial look at the jewellery connected with Jane Austen too.
Fingers crossed for tomorrow’s weather also 🤞
Sunday 12th February
This Blog was written in very cold February….how different the weather is today....😉
Even in a warm house it has taken the better part of the day to work up some of the washes and dry them on these peices. I have my initial work and sketchbook images to work from – incidentally NO PHOTOGRAPHS – but they will all be double checked on site too for colour and tonal values. I can’t work from photos – it just doesn’t work for me. There’s not enough reference. I’m not clever enough.
Gum Arabic washes have helped me build up the luminosity of the colour and depth of the ink without muddying the colours.
Friday 10th February
Really getting going now with the Bake house and Donkey Carriage (not a cart as I had rudely referred to it before correctly reading the information plaque!)
Whilst drawing the carts 10 wheel spokes I had rather a mathematical challenge to establish the correct number of degrees between each. However the interesting thing is……along with counting the 13 back spokes on the seat and 5 either side of the seat (there’s lots of real maths involved in drawing) ….I discovered that the triangular angles to set out the spokes is mirrored on the triagular decoration on the arrangement of spokes outside the axle. I’ve placed the photos in the wrong order but I think you can work out the spooky relationship – clearly no accident by the carriage maker though.
Very damp cold conditions (it tried to snow too) so drying my watercolour washes was a proper challenge today.
Maybe a bit of off site work required….
I am posting this after a return visit to Chawton this morning this time as a visitor. What a difference two months makes to the weather and garden. Lovely to see you today. 😉
Wednesday 8th February.
Today I am making use of the arrival of the larger paper (which will fit a full sized watercolour of the Bakehouse copper and full size Donkey Clark wheel. Both of which are 24″ across).
I am struggling with the composition – which I thought I’d planned. So I spent some time re looking at that…..which is what the sketchbook circles are all about, and the drawing on my board…all very important to my process but nothing I am precious about – a bit like breaking eggs to make an omelette – but I keep the shells…..all smashed up…it’s called a sketchbook….maybe there an abstract artist in me somewhere?
Tuesday 7th February… So here I am in action…in the sun!
Whoops – looks like Darren the decorator has inadvertently ‘bombed’ my photo sanding the window inside! ….I’ve edited him out!
I am working outside today (good colours and tonal contrast) on the views looking into Jane’s writing room (the dining room) where I can see her table and the hearth where she made the breakfast tea. It is strange to know that she sat here in the sun too; watching the world she knew well and writing about it. Very special to look back into where much of her art was created and make some about that myself.
At home in Wales the older rural houses were built and positioned on sites which caught the maximum sun light. This breakfast room has lovely sun and heat from the sun. It can’t be an accident this room was for mornings.
Today I am also waiting for an order of very large paper to arrive from RK Burt!
Friday 3rd February.
The Donkey carriage has been unsettling me. It is sited in a barn – not unrealistic in the way it would have been stored but as it is no longer used or moveable it had little compositional scope. Having drawn it a few times – I am now interested in a watercolour focussing on it’s wheel. (I’ve a few reasons for this…) However – today in oil I am opting for a very simple composition inspired by Whistler’s Mother…except for me the carriage is pointing the wrong way. I’d rather it was right to left. The carriage is sitting on a blank wall. The white wall picks up other reflected colours….but this barn is so dark. I am using a view which is more level and side on than this photo suggests.
APOLOGIES FOR NOT POSTING YESTERDAY – we are still in the throes of a house move 😱
Wednesday 1st February!
Wet wet wet!
I have three watercolour table tops on the go. Today I wanted to put more, deeper, and some brighter washes with wax resist on to them. It took longer than expected but drying washes takes time. I’m interested in the wax on the surface – also think I need some Gum Arabic in a few washes too. Can’t decide about including or omitting the ink bottle and quill.
Next I worked on the Donkey Cart again. I’ve been doing a measured drawing (sightsize) to work out how it is constructed. It’s a fairly standard (and to me boring ) composition that I have been working on, but working it through; looking at its relationships, mathematical elements, and patterns have given me an idea of where to go with it next. As it has some provenance to connect it directly to Jane Austen (as with the table) I would like to make it part of my final work.
More art materials required too – a significant shopping list of items became necessary today.
During the afternoon it dried up enough to begin some of the planned oil pieces (see thumbnail sketches beneath) which I hope to do; looking back into Jane’s working room through the window and including the hearth and kettle. This was a room where the family had breakfast and would make tea. Breakfast was frequently a chore which fell to Jane, and including both the practical and occupational aspect of the room seems appropriate.
I see the weather forecast for Friday is very poor. (wet) – Oil paint (outdoors only in this special and historic setting) will be a challenge.
More table watercolour and Donkey Cart afternoon. A positively balmy day to work – mild enough to go hatless indoors! Yes that’s right! That warm!!
(Last week required thermals, trousers and overalls, with 5 layers on top!) – and a hat at all times – and a scarf. Indoors and out!
Early washes on a table top watercolour. For the watercolorists out there – wet in wet. You have to look for colour – not assume colour from what your perception of wood has already taught you. Fresh eyes and no preconception required! It shines much bluer than you would imagine.
Really been thinking about my markmarking again. Lots more to do here.
Table top watercolour. Start of the day Tuesday 31st January.
Thinking about the writing table top.
Beginning again with colour mixing, wet in wet, dry brushes, mark making with tools to show the marks! and looking at darkest and lightest tones on the surface in my sketchbook prior to a larger piece. I could do with time to edit images but am anxious to get on with work.
The Bake House and Kitchen, Wednesday 25th January.
The kitchen is interesting – to me especially as I like to cook – but I worry it is rather twee! Haven’t quite got inside its visual interest yet – but the bake house ….used by the whole village ….has a fabulous ‘copper’ where water would also have been heated for laundry etc – great colour – great shape – great patterns inside. Are they like rivets ? Must find out! And I will need much larger paper – the copper is 24″ across –
Ink and first watercolour of the Writing Table. Tuesday 24th January.
So sorry to post late! A busy day today.!
All my images have loaded in reverse order! I’m a technical genius!
A day of sketches – (not shown) – and colour mixing – and finding out! Looking is a crucial stage of any artwork.
Studying the table top carefully, so as to be able to draw and paint it, is fascinating.
The tiny scratches, rings, holes, splits and subtle colour variations tell a story themselves. My imagination runs riot about who, when, how and where the marks were made. Unfortunately the tale top marks are written in a language I don’t speak, but that doesn’t stop me from trying to imagine the events which may have lead to the tables condition.
It’s history. It’s surface is magnetically attractive, and aesthetically appealing. I began to work first in ink, and then in watercolour.
The weather is very cold and drying wet work is a challenge. The room is a heritage setting and heated minimally. I finished with my first table top watercolour half complete.
It’s so early in the year that by the end of the afternoons the light has mostly gone, and evening is well on its way.
A WEEKLY BLOG OF MY TIME AT CHAWTON; EVERY THURSDAY.
See full site page for the whole story as it unfolds too…
Thinking about ink, on my first day at Jane Austen’s House Museum. Tuesday 24th January 2017.
Fabulous light on a frosty morning on the Jane Austen Trail walk into Farringdon.
I spent an illuminating morning in Jane’s breakfast (and work) room. The table sited near the window catches both the light and warmth from the morning sun. What a pleasant places to sit and work -It certainly makes me reflect upon the special opportunity, that working in the house, as she did, is for me. Drawings, colour sketches and looking, filled the day.