Saturday, 30 June 2012

Summer Art & Craft Workshops

The Arlington Arts Cafe in Bournemouth is running an exciting series of art and craft workshops this summer. There will be friendly tuition provided in the beautiful setting of the café terrace, overlooking Bournemouth’s Lower gardens.

Ever fancied learning how to crochet, sculpt or print? Are you a keen amateur painter or a complete beginner looking to improve your skills? Then these are the workshops for you!

The workshops run from late June right through into September. Each session will be for 2 hours in the morning or afternoon and will require no previous experience. Adults and children welcome! (all children must be accompanied by an adult ).

I will be running a number of Relief Printmaking workshops as part of the summer season. From potato prints to wood engraving, relief printing is a great way to create exciting and repeatable printed images. On my workshops you will be taken through the steps to create your own original, handmade prints using simple equipment including
plasticine, card and polystyrene. 
The price for each 2 hour workshop is just £7.50 per person and includes a free drink!

Booking is not essential, but recommended to avoid disappointment. All paper, paints and equipment will be provided, so you are welcome to just turn up on the day.

To book, or find out more leave me a comment or -

Book on one of the workshops on Facebook
Phone the Arlington Arts Café on 01202 552879 or contact  Ruth Kelvin on 0758 6431184
Email or email
visit the Arlington Arts Cafe website

This series of Summer Art workshops have been arranged and co-ordinated by Ruth Kelvin of the RK Collection.

For further info and the full schedule see the Arlington Arts Cafe website

Tuesday, 24 January 2012

New Year, New Career, New Paintings!

The week before Christmas was the end of my career in IT. After more than 10 years working as an IT consultant, developing code, analysing systems and managing a team, I've taken the plunge and traded it all in for the chance to make a lifetime's dream a reality - to become an artist, full time!
It's going to be a major challenge, and will take a lot of hard work, new skills and struggles, but I'm ready for it!

In my first few weeks I've been researching, planning, stocking up my shop and starting to make the most of my time to develop my art and find my direction. I've also been working to a couple of exhibition deadlines - more on that to follow.

For now, here are a couple of my latest paintings, with some photos of the stages and how they were built up:

Pears for Breakfast

Planning - I started by arranging a still life, choosing complimentary colours and some of my favourite objects (you might recognise the central vase from some of my other paintings). The colours were also based around some beautiful yellow tulips and lovely conference pears. In the background of the still life set up I propped up one of my framed monoprints, and a book on botanical art. Once I was happy with the arrangement I made a quick sketch in pencil and watercolour, which allowed me to see anything that I needed to adjust, and got me started thinking about the structure of the painting.

First steps - I wanted the tulips to be the main focus of the painting, so without making an preparitory drawing on the paper, I started building up the tulips with loose bright yellows. I tried to keep each mark fresh, and used watersoluble coloured pencils, wax crayon and oil pastels throughout the painting, in addition to the watercolour.

Next - After completing most of the tulips and leaves I started to paint in the vase and some of the background - the little blue arches, and a bit of the cream book cover. I then tackled the other main features of the arrangement - the blue and white tea-pot, the lovely pears, the start of the mustard coloured vase, and the beginnings of the willow pattern plate:

Adding the background - The next step was to start tying the seperate areas together, and building up the background. I've used some spots of grey oil pastel to link up the middle section to the bottom left of the painting. I've added more of the monoprint and book cover behind the tulips:

Adding structure - Now that the painting is coming together I've added in a few lines to try and improve the composition and lead the eye around the painting. To echo the plate and bowl in the foreground I've added another curved edge on the left, a possible table edge. I've also added a couple of diagonal lines to draw the eye in to the composition.

Final stages - I've used some more of the deep blue from the central vase on the table edge, to balance the strong colour across the painting. For the remaining background areas I've used more subtle greys and cream, so that they don't distract from the main subject too much. There was a lovely red squiggle pattern in my framed monoprint in the background, which I've extended out from the monoprint to the far left top corner, as if the squiggles are floating from the tulips. I've used masking fluid to suggest the pattern of the green and gold tin which the tea-pot is standing on. I've also linked the apple into the painting by the addition of the rusty red sliver on the right of the pears.

The finished painting - Pears for Breakfast

Watercolour Mixed Media  - 48cm x 36cm

David Hockney

I'm a huge fan of David Hockney and I've been wanting to paint his portrait for some time, it was great to have the time to do it!
I took quite a few (bad) photos of this as I went - I find it really helps to see your progress on screen, it's the same as looking at it from a distance really. I'll save you from a detailed description this time, the main stages were:

  1. Pencil drawing directly on the watercolour paper, in an attempt to keep the energy of the drawing, rather than tracing from a separate drawing.
  2. Watercolour for most of the painting but I've used some watersoluble coloured pencil to build up the darkness and depth of parts of the face.
  3. When I'd almost completed the portrait i decided to add a simple background.



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Tuesday, 18 October 2011

Life Drawing with Trish Jubb

A couple of weeks ago I spent a great day's life drawing at the Arlington Hotel as organised by Bournemouth Creative Breaks and taught by Trish Jubb. Trish is a great teacher, I've been to a number of life drawing classes in the past and often the teacher gives very little teaching or advice. Trish's exercises were really useful, and she explained everything very well and didn't try and teach too much at once.

We had a lovely day including a sunny lunch break spent on the terrace overlooking Bournemouth gardens and listening to live rat pack classics from a singer on the bandstand. Here are a few of my favourite drawings from the day:

Sunday, 18 September 2011

Pride in Bournemouth - Lions Under the Hammer

After a summer spent brightening up Bournemouth all 50 lions will be going under the hammer this evening to raise funds for the Born Free Foundation and Julia’s House Hospice. Decorated by artists from across Bournemouth and Dorset the Beautiful Lions have been gathered together for the last time on the south terrace of the The Bournemouth Pavilion. They’ll be on display until 3pm today so head along for your last chance to see them before the auction.

The Gala auction is set to be an exciting event, with actor Martin Clunes, children’s TV presenter Chris Jarvis together with wildlife campaigner Virginia McKenna. The auction is being led by celebrity auctioneer James Lewis.

Tickets for the auction are available from the BIC Pavilion from just £5.

I managed to take pictures of some of the Lions before they were removed for the auction:
Middle-Earth Safari by Elanor McBay

Leatherbound by Lisa Berkshire

Fireworks by Carol Childs

Mist of Bournemouth by Dhaval Husmucial

Frankenlion by Domini Deane
Hylas and the Nymphs by Claire Pound

Temba by Natalie Guy

Ford Robot by Stuart Palmer

See more of my Lion photos on Flickr - Pride in Bournemouth
A bit about the Charities:

Julia’s House

Julia's House is dedicated to children with life-limiting conditions. The majority of the children they care for are unlikely to live beyond the age of 18.
The Julia's House Community Team consists of 80 Nurses and Carers who travel the county. The children's hospice provides life-changing support for families both in their own homes and in the hospice itself. In 2009 they provided 22,592 hours of care, an increase of 81% on the previous year’s total.

Receiving only 3% of their funding from the Government, Julia's House relies on the Dorset community to help raise the remainder of their required income.

The Born Free Foundation

The Born Free Foundation is an international wildlife charity, devoted to conservation and animal welfare. They work to prevent the suffering of wild animals and protect threatened species in the wild. Working with local communities to help people and wildlife live together without conflict, Born Free believes wildlife belongs in the wild and works to phase out zoos. Born Free protects species including elephants, lions, gorillas, polar bears, tigers, wolves and many more in their natural habitat.

Thursday, 1 September 2011

Life Drawing: Day-long workshop in Bournemouth!

Image from

Thanks to the weight of local demand, we at Bournemouth Creative Breaks have decided to open up the forthcoming Life Drawing Weekend to non-residents as well! Saturday’s workshops will be from 10.00am to 1.00pm and 2.00pm to 4.30pm - group working sessions with an experienced nude model and the opportunity for one-to-one guidance from Trish Jubb. There will be comfort and tea/coffee breaks, and a light lunch of sandwiches and fruit will be provided. All for the extraordinary price of just £60.00

But that's not all. Because it is our first ever event, we'd like to encourage as many people along as possible so that we can ask for as much feedback as possible. So, if you're prepared to have your work photographed to talk to us in a VERY informal focus group and fill in a couple of questionnaires for us at the end of the day, we're prepared to discount the ticket price even more, to a mere £32.50!

So, what might you expect from a day of Life Drawing with Trish Jubb?

Well - I'm the organiser of Bournemouth Creative Breaks, obviously, but in real life I am a Community Musician, working with adults who have learning difficulties. So, I don't necessarily rate my abilities as an artist very much. I can sing and play the guitar and a whole host of percussion instruments, but DRAW? From a live model? No, probably not.

Determined to challenge this fundamental belief about myself, I decided to attend one of Trish Jubb's Life Drawing Classes.

I freely admit that it took me a minute or two to 'get over' seeing a naked man other than my husband, for the first time in about twenty-five years. But Trish didn't give me a chance to dwell on this - the early exercises we did were all cleverly designed to demolish fear - most especially, fear of failure.

Fear of failure is something that can prevent you from trying anything new, especially anything creative and new. That's a shame. With Trish's encouragement and lots of support from the rest of the group, I ignored the little voice inside my head saying things like "You can barely even draw the curtains - what makes you think you can draw a naked man?" and just got on with it.

This was my first attempt. I had exactly three minutes to get this:

Then, we had two minutes, and I came up with this:

Then, we had to draw with out non-dominant hand (i.e. my left) and, after a few moments, let it be joined by the other hand, using a different colour. So, I had two pencils on the page at the same time. It was insane! It was hysterical! It was so much fun! And it looked like this:

By this time, I had forgotten all about not being able to draw. My next attempt came out like this:

 - which I don't mind telling you, I was rather pleased with.

Last but not least the model held a much longer pose, which I found quite testing. However, the greater amount of time was beneficial in that I was able to - with some more help from Trish - identify where I'd drawn things in a way that I didn't like, and learn ways in which to correct them. This was wonderful, because this was where the real learning began.

Life drawing, like any creative endeavour, is a skill - it has techniques that can be caught and practiced and improved upon. I got this:

Still very rough, but reasonably good on the perspective and the proportions. I'll be going back in a week's time for more!

If you'd like to have a day devoted to life drawing, remember the first Bournemouth Creative Break is now open to non-residents as well. So you don't have to stay overnight (though if you do need accommodation, that can easily be arranged.)

Saturday’s workshops will be from 10.00am (registration is at 9.15) to 1.00pm and 2.00pm to 4.30pm. The focus group runs between 4.30 and 5.30pm.

These workshops will be group working sessions with a nude model with the opportunity for one-to-one guidance from Trish Jubb. There will be comfort and refreshment breaks. A light lunch of sandwiches and fruit will be provided. No materials whatsoever will be needed - we will supply everything - making this day of workshops even better value!

To book a place please call the Arlington Hotel on 01202 552879 or look at their website.

Thursday, 4 August 2011

Art Auction for African Famine Appeal

Art Auction for African Famine Appeal

Please support this initiative by Chichester artist Lorrie Whittington. Spread the word!

Monday, 25 July 2011

BC’s July Mini-Awards Night: Winner Announced

Words: Claire Wyburn
Pics: Danika Westwood
Bournemouth Creatives isn’t just about networking with fellow artists in the community – it’s now a self-sustaining group which can support new projects with hard cash. Held on the third Wednesday of every month at the Winchester pub, Poole Hill, July’s meeting saw three artists compete for a £100 towards their new ventures.
Johanna Lawrence, Trish Jubb and Laura Cousins took to the stage, where they told members of Bournemouth Creatives what they would do with some extra funds. Then it was up to the audience to vote for the winner – X-factor style – and with the gregarious Peter John Cooper reciting poetry before introducing each act, it was just as entertaining.
Trish Jubb, Johanna Lawrence & Laura Cousins

First behind the microphone was artist Johanna Lawrence. She recently set up The Real Art Academy, based at Roumelia Lane in Boscombe, with Martin Close. ‘We met at April’s Bournemouth Creatives, thus proving that social networking does work,’ she explained. ‘There is a lot of missing knowledge amongst artists, even teachers. And we hope The Real Art Academy will fill in that gap. We will teach the skills of the old masters to a new generation.’
She continued: ‘At the time, Martin was teaching in his front room, but the premises weren’t suitable. I suggested our current location. However, it’s difficult to find us if you don’t know exactly where we are.  We’re opposite the back of Iceland, where there is no pavement for us to put up a sign. Local pub Chaplins have offered the use of their wall. The Bournemouth Creatives Award would go towards designing a professional and eye-catching sign.’
Life-drawing tutor Trish Jubb was up next. ‘I’m addicted to it,’ she explained. ‘I get ratty if I can’t draw every day. In fact, I’m so restless my husband is often tempted to throw me out of the house!’
Trish started her life-drawing classes in Moordown, but currently has no premises. She wants to introduce one-off drop-in classes for potential artists. ‘Most people don’t want to sign up for a three-month term because they have busy lives and can’t make that sort of commitment. My classes aren’t about sending people out with one finished piece. Instead, you learn a little bit more each lesson. Beginners will learn to see proportion and I help more advanced artists to look at their work in a different way.’
Continued Trish: ‘Life drawing classes are expensive, because I need to pay the model, as well as rent. But £100 would buy me several classes. I could concentrate on teaching the skills without having to worry about numbers.’
Last on stage was Laura Cousins, the woman behind Bournemouth Creative Breaks. She hopes the town will soon rival Brighton as a centre for the arts. ‘I’m tired of Bournemouth being seen as the place to go to die, or get incredibly drunk for a weekend,’ she said. ‘In fact, Dorset is a hotbed of creativity. My weekend breaks at the Arlington Hotel will focus on this. People arrive on the Friday night, eat great food, chill out and get to know each other. By Saturday, they will be in the mood to investigate their artistic side. They can choose from a variety of workshops hosted by local artists, including music, creative writing, life-drawing and painting. The artist within us all likes to be playful, so these sessions will be fun, rather than serious. I’ve even included a workshop on sandcastle-making.’
Continued Laura: ‘I desperately need money to spend on Facebook and Twitter advertising, where I can effectively market my concept to the right people. So please, vote for me!’
BC Director Elanor McBay handed round bits of paper so everyone could vote for their favourite artist in secret. Meanwhile acoustic/folk singer Krista Green, winner of Bournemouth Unplugged 2011, played soft melodies which helped soothed the audience through their excruciating decision-making process (and it was tough to choose between three such worthy projects!). Even though the 26-year-old was ill, she still turned up and sounded superb – a testament to the tenacity of local creatives. She left everyone wanting a slice of her ‘Cherry Pie’ and wishing they could ‘Move Along In My Own Time’, as Peter and Elanor announced voting time was up. 
Krista Green

The Winchester fell silent with anticipation. All eyes were on Elanor as she climbed on stage. ‘There is a clear winner,’ she announced. ‘I also want to say that there are no losers – the other two artists both came in at second place. I won’t keep you all waiting any longer,’ she paused. ‘Laura Cousins, come and collect your award.’
Everyone in the pub applauded enthusiastically – for although it was a difficult choice, most people agreed that Laura’s project would be beneficial for Bournemouth as a whole. If successful, Laura’s Creative Breaks will change the national image of Bournemouth and local artists of all kinds can get involved. For more information contact Laura Cousins at her Bournemouth Creative Breaks facebook page. Her first holiday is scheduled for 30 September.
Added Elanor: ‘Bournemouth Creatives plan to have more mini-awards like this in the future. So if you have a project which needs support, keep checking our facebook group and website for details.’

Thursday, 21 July 2011

Life Drawing Weekend in Bournemouth

Our next Bournemouth Creative Break is Friday 30th September to Sunday 2nd October 2011, and features an entire weekend of LIFE DRAWING.

The human figure has been the subject of drawings since prehistoric times. Though it may seem an advanced subject to the novice, life drawing is in fact suitable for everyone, even if all you can draw is a stick figure! For beginners, progress can be surprisingly fast.

Life drawing is the process of drawing the human figure from observation of a live, nude model, and is often said to be one of the best disciplines to acquire in order to improve one's drawing skills.

The weekend's courses will be run by acclaimed local artist Trish Jubb. Trish specialises in life drawing tuition and runs courses and workshops locally. She also exhibits her work and takes commissions.

This is your opportunity to:
  • Spend a relaxing weekend with like-minded art enthusiasts (equally suitable for experienced artists, those keen to revive their drawing skills as well as those new to life drawing)
  • Work with two experienced models (one on the Saturday and another on the Sunday)
  • Enjoy the freedom and space to pursue your own style and work at your own pace.
The Arlington Hotel will be used exclusively for this painting and drawing weekend.

The price of the weekend is only £199 per person (if you book before the 31st of August). This incredible price includes welcome drinks on the first evening, dinner, bed and breakfast at the Arlington Hotel for two nights, lunch on Saturday and Sunday as well as life drawing workshops on Saturday and Sunday.

Bournemouth Creative Breaks has been inspired by Bournemouth’s traditional identity as the place for rest and recuperation.
  • No experience necessary
  • No equipment required (we will provide all the basic materials)
  • No partner needed – come alone or bring your friends. There’s no supplement for single bedrooms!
To book your place for this weekend: Call the Arlington Hotel on ☎01202 - 552879 or use the Book Online facility.

The programme for the weekend:

Friday 30 September 2011

Make your way to the Arlington Hotel in Bournemouth. Settle in to the hotel and perhaps take a short stroll to the sea before the planned events commence. The weekend proper starts at 6.00pm with a glass of wine and an opportunity to meet the workshop tutor Trish Jubb, Bournemouth Creative Breaks organiser Laura Cousins and the other participants. Then over dinner you’ll have the chance to get to know each other better and discuss your expectations for the weekend. Trish’s work will be on display in the hotel and after dinner join Trish and Laura in the hotel bar for an introduction to Trish’s particular style and approach with some simple creative activities.

Saturday 1st October 2011

Enjoy a leisurely breakfast (and perhaps a quick walk along the seafront or through the gardens). Saturday’s workshops will be from 10.00am to 1.00pm and 2.00pm to 4.30pm. These workshops will be group working sessions with a nude male model with the opportunity for one-to-one guidance from Trish Jubb. There will be comfort and refreshment breaks. A light lunch of sandwiches and fruit will be provided. At the end of the afternoon you will have time to have a rest, or go for a walk. Meet up with everyone back at the hotel for dinner at 7.00pm.

Sunday 2nd October 2011

After breakfast Sunday’s workshop will be from 10.00am to 1.00pm. The workshop will be a group working session with a nude female model. Afterwards there will be a hot lunch in the dining room. Over coffee or tea there will be a closing session with an opportunity to review the work of the weekend, to discuss any outstanding questions and to share feedback. The weekend’s scheduled events will finish at around 3.30pm-4.00pm.

Friday, 10 June 2011

Children's Film Tackles Divorce

A Dorset filmmaker is producing an animated film to help children embroiled in divorce.

Dean Evans of Retro Films directed the short film and draws parallels with experiencing creative blocks and the stung feeling of abandon that children often experience during separation from parents.

Disenchanted tells the story of a creative young boy who stops uses his imagination in the event of his parent’s divorce.

The original screenplay written by Dean Evans and Sarah Peace, has already garnered the attention of industry organisations that have come on board such as Open Society and Christchurch’s Regent Cinema, where the film will be premiered on July 2, 2011.

Further screenings will take place at the Forest Arts Centre and The Arts University College in the following summer months.

The film will use a combination of live action sequences and traditional stop motion photography to bring to life mythical characters from the story, who haunt the young lead.

10-year-old Adam Robert Nightingale from Weymouth was spotted during a TV presenting gig and has been cast in the lead role. He said, “The story is amazing and I can really relate to my character, Sam.” Adam will be supported in the role by Elizabeth Platt and former CBBC presenter, Michael Absalom, who plays his estranged father.

The National Child Development agency have surveyed the implications of family break up and revealed that divorce is still highly damaging to children, despite it being more acceptable.

Director Dean Evans said; “This film will colourfully narrate a poignant issue that is in the spirit of our time by addressing an issue many can associate with.”

Wednesday, 1 June 2011

Bournemouth Creative Breaks Blog: The First Bournemouth Creative Breaks Weekend

Bournemouth Creative Breaks Blog: The First Bournemouth Creative Breaks Weekend: "Here at Bournemouth Creative Breaks, we're delighted to be able to give you details of the very first weekend, which runs from Friday 30th ..."

Wednesday, 18 May 2011

Dorset's Green Fortnight Returns

Bournemouth and Poole’s Big Green Fortnight returns to Dorset this weekend। Following last year’s success, the festival is set to more diverse with a wider range of events and activates on offer.

Organizers of the festival are keen to showcase how living within our means brings better health, encourages closer communities and is fun and cost effective. This is certainly a positive shift from materialism and the increased spending that often comes with the summer.

Bournemouth Arts is most excited about the Big Green Film Festival, which will showcase a selection of exciting films and animations being screened at various locations during the fortnight. Key screenings are from the Arts University College and Broadstone Film who are all presenting films centered on a ‘green’ theme.

A cycle powered cinema will show ‘In Transition’ which will be followed by a discussion and talk where audiences will experience the practicality of running a film projector by pedaling! This particular event runs once only on the 26th May. Admission is free but registration is required. Contact Amy Gallacher for booking on 01202 633398, or by email on

Other highlights of the Film Festival include screenings at the Lighthouse, showing:

· Wall-e (Saturday 21st May)

· Home (Saturday 21st May)

· Our Daily Bread (Saturday 21st May)

· The Pipe (Tuesday 31st May)

Other activities include a Talk by Geoff Jones from Dorset Humanists on Eco Living and building an Eco home. Other highlights include a Fashion Show (Eco Fashion Experience), The Green Unity Fair, Fun 5k Walk/Run, Exercise days for holiday makers and endless runs of activities for children.

The Big Green Fortnight runs from Friday 20th May - Sunday 5th June 2011. Visit for further information.

Wednesday, 11 May 2011

Bournemouth Creatives New Mini Fund

Bournemouth Creatives are launching a new Mini Fund for the arts.  We plan to award small amounts of money to people who can come up with a great way to spend it.  This could be to allow you to buy materials, to use for advertising your idea, to produce printed material etc etc.  Your only limit is your imagination.

The fund is open to everyone; individuals or groups, but you must give a good reason for needing the money.  The fund is also for all forms of art – from painting, music, theatre, photography – anything creative!  Please write a proposal on one side of A4 (digitally) and include your name and contact details.  BC will choose the best of these to ‘pitch’ to the group at a meeting.  We will then have an anonymous vote to choose the winner who will be awarded the money on the night.  The first award will be for £100.

Bournemouth Creatives will publicise the winners and the results of the money being used.  This should help bring the artist publicity, but also check they have spent the money as per the proposal.

The first award night will be at our July meeting – 20th July.  Entries must be received by 30th June and those chosen to ‘pitch’ their idea on the night will be notified by 13th July.

If you are not sure whether this is for you – maybe unsure if you’d qualify – just give it a go anyway – all you have to loose is the chance to win £100 to spend on your arts project!

Email your proposals to by 13th July 2011.