27 June 2016

Back to the Beach

Back to the Beach is my latest exhibition and my most exciting to date!  Set in the historic Tynemouth Station Bridge Gallery, the seaside location is the most perfect setting for my summer exhibition. 

Six months ago I was approached by Ylana First the curator of the Bridge Gallery and long time friend of Tynemouth Station. She notice that I had recently been working on a deckchair for the Staithes Arts Festival and mention she had 10 vintage Whitley Bay District Council 1950's deckchairs in storage and asked if I would be able to make an exhibition out of them? And so the idea was born!


Four months of hard work later and a collaboration with my sons local primary school in North Shields I put together the exhibition called Back to the Beach.
The exhibition explores the revival of the British coastline and celebrates the love for our local beaches.The deckchair was once synonymous with the great British seaside holiday. It saw a decline in the 1960’s with rise in package holidays abroad leading people away from our once thriving coastline. I brought back to life these original 1950’s deckchairs by creating new chair slings with my artwork, which combines painting, collage and stitching techniques. 

Local is the essence of this show. I made sailing boats from driftwood collected at Tynemouth Haven. I used maps of the area and collaged them into each deckchair sling and of course the old deckchair frames themselves that used to adorn the beaches of our North Tyneside coast.

The exhibition also combines my own artwork with a collection of deckchairs designed by pupils from Whitehouse Primary School in North Shields. I worked with the local school children to create some stunning designs using their colourful seaside drawings. It was fabulous working with the children and together we also made the colourful bunting that decorates the exhibition.

It is the biggest exhibition of my career so far and one of the most challenging spaces create to work for. Viewing is from all sides and it encouraged me to work larger scale with more 3D pieces. 
The exhibition runs from the 11th June to 31st August 2016 in the Bridge Gallery in Tynemouth Station (The actual bridge that takes visitors over the metro railway!)

You can also watch me paint live in the gallery on the 3rd 10th & 17th July Followed by a sneaky peek at 3pm for a closer look inside the gallery space.

8 April 2013

Making a painting...start to finish!!

People often ask me how long does a painting take??.......one of the trickiest questions to answer!! Some take longer than others and often the best pieces of work come quickly and easily. So I thought I would take you all through the process that I work through to create a painting.

Step 1. The idea. This is a light bulb moment that pops into your head, my head is filled with them. Anything can spark one off, a walk on the beach, the colours of the sky, the shape of the landscape........most will stay in my head but one or two will make it onto paper. This particular painting was a commission so it is a collaboration between myself and my clients ideas. 

Step 2. The sketch. Getting those ideas out of you head and onto paper. Doodle and draw, go to the view that has inspired you and sketch it out.  I like to figure out a composition at this stage. Often I am selective and make more of the most exciting elements within a scene and leave out what is not so pleasing to the eye. I always take photos too to remind me of the detail, technology is there so why not use it!

Step 3. Preparing the canvas. I like to work on a textured surface so I paste crinkled tissue paper to my board or canvas, let it dry then roughly gesso over it. I then paint my base colour. In this case blue. This will be the colour that will show through and create my lines.

Step 4. Redrawing onto canvas. Using a white pastel pencil I draw up my sketch onto the canvas.

Step 5. Get painting :-) Usually I start by blocking in larger areas and then work towards the finer details. Finishing off with white as my final colour.

Step 6. Knowing when to stop! Often when I think I have finished I will hang the painting on my wall at home and often I see a few additions that need to be made before I call it finished.

Step 7. Scan or photograph,  varnish the painting then head to the picture framers.

Ta da! All finished. This painting was a commission and will be hung in a private cottage in Craster.


26 March 2013

New Seaside Cards for 2013

Welcome folks, I would like to introduce you to my new collection of seaside cards for 2013. Throughout last year I have been working with torn paper, collage and paint to create some new designs all inspired by the seaside of course! 

If you run a gallery /gift shop we are happy to fulfill trade orders, please email / telephone us (0191 296 0446) for a trade catalogue and order form :-)  They will also be available to buy through our retail webshop http://www.joannewishart.co.uk/GalleryCatalogue.aspx?did=26

2 October 2012

Staithes Festival of Arts and Heritage

Staithes in North Yorkshire was the beautiful harbour location for my latest pop up exhibition. I was invited to take part in the first ever Staithes Festival of Arts and Heritage. Property owner Alice (below) invited me into her enchanting fisherman's cottage to exhibit my work for the weekend. 
Greeted with a strong cup of Yorkshire tea, cake and with the warm glow of the log burning stove, I knew this would be a good weekend. The lovingly refurbished cottage still retained all of its charm and the village setting would be equally as interesting to the visitors as the exhibitions themselves. My little display was one of over 50 venues as part of the event which included arts, music, heritage and food. 

During the week it was a pleasure to meet resident Staithes artist Rob Shaw who's work I much admire. If you are ever in the Staithes Gallery his work is worth a look as it really captures the essence of Staithes.

If you missed this years event, I am sure after the first years success it will be on again next year. For those interested in any of my North Yorkshire paintings you can find them in the Artsbank gallery in Saltburn and you can find my prints and greetings cards on my website:-) 

Thomas & Rocky on Scarborough Beach. 
Limited edition print  £100 from my webshop.


26 June 2012

Alnmouth Arts Festival

Alnmouth Painting
One of the highlights this summer was exhibiting at the Alnmouth Arts Festival. The festival was in its 8th year and this years festival was the biggest and best yet.  I had a great space to show a good selection of work and was impressed by the 10am rush of customers! 
I love going back to Alnmouth, my mum grew up there and I spent many summers visiting my grandparents and playing on the beach.   
 Before the rush!
This years festival was a family affair and it was nice to enjoy the Saturday with my boys, mum, dad, my brother and his family. A good day out was had by all! On touring the festival it was nice to see some old photos of my Grandad and Uncle Maurice on the Golf Club wall. 
I don't often bring my boys out to art events but I think they enjoyed it. Finley here modeling my business sign, he got more attention than my work with his cheeky grin! 

5 June 2012

Seaside Holiday!

Refreshed and inspired after a lovely week long holiday in Scotland. Ross, myself, the boys and my parents escaped to a wonderful Fisherman's cottage at Cellardyke in the beautiful East Neuk of Fife. Heron House  with its charming decor and sea views was the perfect setting for our family seaside holiday.
The sun came out so we headed to the beach at Elie. Grandma treated the boys to a bucket and spade each so they were happy! I couldn't help myself and started to collect driftwood and other interesting beach finds. I collected a bin bag full by the end of the week. I am thinking of making some new pieces for the 20cm x 20cm exhibition at the Mushroom Works Open Studios in November.
The next day we visited Crail one of my favourite places on the Fife coast line. Ross and I camped  here about 6 years ago and I loved painting the harbour. The buildings have so much character with their small windows, tall chimneys and winding streets.  

Lobster fishing dominates the harbour with hundreds of lobster pots stacked high. I love this sign below as it shows the harsh weathering that bombards the coastline.  
Sadly the sunshine didn't last all week so we headed for Pittenweem to visit one of our stockists, the Fisher Gallery. The gallery has been stocking our cards for a couple of years now and it was great to pop in and see them on the shelves. Pittenweem holds an annual Arts Festival in August which is a great trip out if you are an art lover. I would like to take part one day!