Frequently Asked Questions of the Artist
I am often asked the same questions – so I thought I would try to answer some of them for you. If there is anything else you would like to know – just ask!
Tell us a little more about yourself...
I am part of a husband and wife team – Dave is the one holding the Canon 5D mark II and 6D cameras and I am the one with the paint brushes! Dave retired after serving over 31 years in the Police Service, and I gave up an illustrious and busy career in education. We are both inspired by the natural beauty and blue skies of the Algarve; and especially the beaches of the west coast where we are based.
How do you create your paintings?
I usually start with a view or object that has inspired me, and will use photographs as a reference point. I like to make sure that the objects are accurately portrayed and that my boats are seaworthy – so I always carefully draw out the detail in pencil before beginning to paint. I work quite methodically and carefully, and a painting can often take 2 weeks or more to complete. The design and colours come quite naturally to me and I can usually ‘see’ the completed painting in my mind as soon as I begin the drawing stage.
Why don’t you paint on canvas?
I dislike the ‘uniformity’ of canvas, and prefer to produce my own art boards from scratch. I can then ensure the prepared surface is exactly right for the painting I have planned – and I am in good company as the Old Masters painted on board too!
Do I need to frame your paintings?
No, they all come ready to hang. The boards are designed to ‘float’ on the wall, they have a concealed frame securely fixed to the reverse of the board with a simple hook ready to hang. The pictures are ideally suited to a modern style decor either for the home or business.
Are all of your paintings originals?
Yes – they are all unique and original works, signed by the artist. They also come complete with a Certificate of Authenticity. The copyright for each work remains with me as the artist. Limited edition signed prints of some of my favourite paintings are sometimes available at our solo exhibitions and through my studio.
What is your studio like?
Very tidy! I like to organise my space so that I can find things. I work on one painting at a time, and use a stay-wet palette to counteract the hot weather temperatures. I like to have things that inspire me displayed around me, and I love to have music playing as I paint – often American country-rock music like Lady Antebellum, Sugarland or Trisha Yearwood. I’m also going through a big Michael Bublé phase at the moment; and Radio 2, Katie Melua and Norah Jones are also regulars in the studio.
Our little Spanish Water Dog is also a great little helper in my studio and can usually be found curled up fast asleep beside me!
What paints do you use?
I only use professional quality heavy body Liquitex acrylic paints. I love their rich buttery texture and colour range; and use quite a limited traditional palette of colours, with a few surprises thrown in! I like to mix my own greens too.
Do you work from photographs?
Yes I do! I often go out with Dave my husband and his camera and direct proceedings!! I like to have seen a particular view for myself and looked at lots of different angles and options before selecting shots to use back in the studio, as this helps me to really 'feel' a place or landmark, and this in turn helps me when I am painting it.
Dave often goes out and comes back with loads of shots, and I can usually spot the one I want to paint straight away. His flower shots, for example, are always stunningly full of detail and texture and make me itch to get my paints out ...
What about commissions - how do they work?
You can find out more about how to order a commission from me via this link here.
You can send me an e-mail with your photo(s) and I will let you know if I think it will work as a painting and give you a quote upfront. You don’t have to pay anything until you are happy with the completed painting.
The modern painting 'Promenade' below was a commissioned piece – the clients gave me a rough idea of what they wanted, and then I set to work. Please be aware though that you have to trust me as the artist too – I can work with your ideas but ultimately it will be my interpretation of a piece that you will see – but there is no obligation to purchase unless you like the finished work!
I've already painted almost 100 commissions in total for different clients, which is a staggering number over the last 6 or 7 years.
What about postage and packing?
All of my paintings are lovingly wrapped in layers of bubble wrap and then covered in thick cardboard to ensure they arrive in perfect condition. My prices all include p+p to Europe and the UK – if you are outside of these areas please just e-mail me first and I will calculate any extra postage for you prior to purchase.
What if I don’t like it when it arrives?
If you are not 100% happy with your item then just return it to me within 14 days in the same condition and I will refund your purchase (minus my postage and Paypal fees) Check the Terms and Conditions page on this website for full details.
What else do you paint?
For fun I like to design and paint little heart stones, which are great for decoration, meditation or framing. I was asked by someone at an exhibition once where I sourced my heart stones from; and I made the mistake of telling them that there is a secret beach on the Algarve that has heart-shaped stones (!) .. they believed me and begged me to tell them where it was .. oh dear! Since then the story has become embedded into mythical fantasy and that is what I tell all my customers. As to where they are really from .. now that would be telling!!
Can I use your images on my website?
I am very protective of my work of course - many hours of skill and dedication go into each piece, and I ask that you respect this. However I am also often very happy for my work to be shared and used - as long as I have given my permission and I am fully credited - but please contact me BEFORE you do this!
Please note: The copyright on all my paintings will always remain with me as the artist even after the work is sold.
Please respect my Copyright
How can I find out more?
You are welcome to visit my home studio by appointment. I usually have a few paintings for sale, and I am always happy to talk through your ideas for a commissioned work. I sometimes exhibit too, you can sign up to our monthly newsletter via the link here which will keep you informed of sales, exhibitions and other news. The newsletter is often the only place to find a bargain! It will also keep you up to date with future blog posts on here, where I hope to share lots more stories, photos and work in progress shots.
A big thank you to everyone that supports, encourages and shares my work. It really is an absolute pleasure and joy to be able to paint freely and I love every minute that I spend on my art. I hope that you enjoy it too.