Saturday, 5 December 2015

Painting against the elements...

Here is a little oil sketch of the Bath views from Alexandra Park in Bath. This painting might look similar to my other paintings. However, there is something quite special about it: it seems it wasn't meant to be painted. Let me explain: sometimes, you feel that all the elements are against you and that only the willpower of a superhero will get the job done. Well, that was the case here. See below for the full story.

Cold winter day, Alexandra Park  10"x8" oil on board - click here to buy this painting

Here is what happened: I got up at 7am on a saturday morning and by the time I took care of my daughter, prepared my painting kit, got wrapped up for this cold day (7 layers of clothes in total!), drove to the park, set up my kit and was ready to paint, it was already 11am (I'm a slow starter I know). As I was inspired and ready to put my first brushstroke on the canvas, I suddenly realised that I forgot my paints tubes home! Every painter's nightmare! I packed my stuff, got back home and then realised I didn't have my home keys on me. Fortunately I caught my husband just as he was leaving the house. I got my paints, put them in my rucksack and gave a lift to my husband and daughter on my way back to the painting spot. I waved them goodbye and then 2 minutes later realised my husband took my rucksack by mistake! I wanted to ring him but my phone was in there too (alongside my paints!). So I parked the car and ran around town like a mad woman looking for him ! Fortunately it all ended well: I finally found him, got my bag back and could get ready to paint again (it was 12.30 by then...). It was a bitterly cold day but I managed to finish this little painting and was quite pleased with it, maybe because I had to work harder to get it... I like the abstract quality of it, probably because I had to stop adding details before my fingers froze!

Here is below the view from Alexandra Park. I was painting the middle right section, with the train tracks going pass Widcombe.

This is me with my 7 layers of clothes and looking ridiculous as always:

Here are below the various steps of the painting. One passer by looked at the painting at that point and kept looking at the view with a confused look wondering what on earth I was painting. I tried to explain this is just the start so it is normal if it looks like a two years old's drawing at this stage!

The finished painting with the view:

A couple of close up details below:



This painting is available for sale on the link below:

Before I end this post, I need to tell you that I will have a painting for sale at the charity Art sale organised by renowned painter Tim Benson to raise funds for those affected by Ebola in Sierra Leone. 

The event will be held at the Mall Galleries, London on the evening of 10th December from 5-8pm. All work is donated by the artists and funds raised from the sale of works will go directly to the Ebola survivors and the frontline healthcare workers who he met on his recent trip to Sierra Leone.

Below is my painting that will be on sale at the show:

Looking up to Gay Street, October afternoon  oil on board 8"x10"

Click here for more info:

If you wish to reserve/purchase the painting please contact directly Tim Benson by email at And if you can, have a look at the show on 10th December, which promises to include some great work, including some paintings by Tim himself.

Finally, just a quick note to remind you about all my products for sale directly from my shiny new website (calendars, postcards, prints, and original paintings) which can make great Christmas presents to my humble and neutral opinion :-)


  1. You deserve to sell this plein air painting Valerie, seeing what you went through, and the weather. My, you are brave. All the best.

    1. Thank you Victor! I don't think I deserve to be called "brave" though for doing something I like doing but it's true that when people tell me "painting must be so relaxing" it makes me laugh!