Saturday, 22 December 2012

Merry Christmas from Ashley & Denise

We would like to say a BIG thank-you to all of you who have supported us in the last year, come along to the workshops, painting holidays and exhibitions and also to those of you who have followed Ashley in his most successful year to date.

Our last 2 workshops were very well received . From the feedback of  the 'Drawing & Painting the Life Model' workshop, it seems that everyone enjoyed the experience and would like to do something similar soon: we have St Breward Village Hall booked for Sat 23 Feb & Sat 1st March, so pencil in the dates, more details to follow early in the New Year!

Painting by Hunter Graham
Ashley's most recent 'Freedom in Painting ' workshop in Canterbury Christchurch University was once again a full house with 16 artists. The workshop began with explorations into colour and as always there were a new set of challenges.

Colour & Balance Explorations taken by Claire

This time everyone was asked to think about the word 'Libra' in advance of the workshop as a means of investigating the idea of balance/imbalance in painting. Everone worked really hard and some interesting work emerged by the end of the second day. Here are some shots of some of the paintings in progress.

Photo by Claire Bliss


Painting by Rosemary Graham
Painting by Catriona Campbell

Next year's Holiday/Course' Freedom in Painting in the Cornish Coastal Landscape' to be released vey soon, watch this space!

We would like to take this opportunity to wish you and your families a very merry Christmas and a Happy New Year with best wishes from Ashley and Denise.

Wednesday, 21 November 2012

The Discerning Eye and Next Workshop Update

Ashley was delighted to have 'Charlestown 7' selected for the prestigious ING Discerning Eye exhibition. Six judges, a combination of Artists, Collectors and Art Critic's were invited to make individual selections for this exhibition. Each group of work is hung separately giving the impression of six individual exhibitions. Ashley's painting was chosen by Gerald Walker, CEO ING Commercial Banking UK, Ireland and Middle East.
The show continues at the Mall Galleries, London until 25th November.


Ashley will be hosting his popular 'Freedom in Painting' workshop once again at Canterbury Christchurch University Mon-Tues, 17- 18th Dec 2012.
Bring an open mind, explore the language of colour and the possibilities in painting. Ashley will endeavour to challenge and inspire you with his expertise of colour, oil paints, technique, mark-making and composition. His aim is to help you take your painting further and find your own ‘Freedom in Painting’. Ashley always has something new and inspirational to offer. This workshop is suitable for students and artists with some experience in painting.
Some comments from students on his last Canterbury workshop:
"Thank you for your time, patience and marvellous guidance over the last couple of days in Canterbury. Really helpful and great ambeince too."
Margaret Anderson
"Thanks to Ashley I had the confidence to enter the painting that I produced at his workshop into Whitstable's A1 Open Art exhibition"
Catriona Campbell
"I usually work using a lot of detail, this course helped to loosen up my style and helped me to approach painting from a different angle"
Wendy Buckland
TO BOOK OR FOR MORE DETAILS Email or call 01208 77656

Friday, 9 November 2012

Photo's of PV at Canvas and Cream Prize Winning Show

Thanks to everyone who came along to the PV of 'Landscape in Flux'.
A great turn out, a great evening  and a terrific show! It was very exciting to see all the paintings from the 'City of Glass' series together for the first time . 

Ashley and Susan

'Graft ii' and 'Graft i' by Susan Eyre 

My fellow prizewinner Susan Eyre's work is both exquiste and enigmatic and although our approaches to landscape are very different, the work complimented each other.


Thank you to everyone for your positive feedback and a special thank-you to Joanna and the team for all their hard work in putting the show together.

'City of Glass 5 (Truthville), and City of Glass 4 (Hope Falls, hope falls...)

Gallery Shot

'City of Glass 8' and 'City of Glass 7''

The show continues until 20 Nov, Thurs - Sun open 10am - 5pm

Friday, 26 October 2012

Canvas & Cream Art Prize Exhibition

Canvas & Cream will  be the first showing of Ashley's new exciting series  'City of Glass' in it's entirety - so far. Combined with Susan Eyre's urban and spiritual approach to the landscape this is going to be a show  - not to be missed.

More information can be found at:

Monday, 15 October 2012

National Open Art Competition Private View

Ashley, Faye, Ollie & Denise by 'City Of Glass1' 
The whole family enjoyed a fabulous weekend in Chichester. Friday night we attended the Private View of The National Open Art Exhibition and were very impressed with the quality and diversity of work. Both Ashley and I loved the piece  'The Lacemaker' by Joy Wolfenden-Brown, a very worthy winner of The Towry Award for Best Work in 2012 . The show is on until 21st October and then transfers to The Prince's Foundation Gallery in  Hoxton, London 24 October - 1st November. There were over 2,000 entries this year and the judges selected around 95 pieces for the show. So well done to all the artists that made it, in the exhibition.

Ashley has been invited along to BBC Radio Cornwall, Tuesday 16th October at 3.30 to talk about his work and the exhibition, so tune in if you would like hear  more about his thoughts behind his paintings and his painting process.

Neil Lawson Baker of the NOAC with the opening speech
Faye & 'The Lacemaker' -top painting!

Jon Isherwood's 'Singer of Tales'
Our cultural weekend continued when we went to the Cass Sculpture Foundation park in Goodwood. It was magical seeing so many different forms of sculpture by so many artists all in one location. The landscape really worked the pieces with the weather elements adding another dimension to the work. Ashley particularly enjoyed seeing some of his friends work, Jon Isherwood and Diane Maclean. Ashley painted most of his 'Americascape' series in Jon's barn while he was in the US on his Boise Travel Scholarship from the Slade. The children even enjoyed themselves- it was a very different walk in the park!

Diane Maclean's 'Encampment'
Julian Wild's 'System No 19'

Thursday, 4 October 2012

'Drawing & Painting The Life Model' Workshop

I am delighted to announce our next 'Drawing and Painting the Life Model Workshop'.

Sat 17th & Sat 24th November 2012,
9.30am -4.30pm at St Breward Village Hall.
You are welcome to book this as a 1 or 2 Day Workshop.

Ashley feels this workshop is an essential discipline for all students and artists, regardless of ability. He says 'Most artists begin with life drawing, it's the starting block that you return to throughout your career and life as an artist.'

To Book : Contact Denise on 01208 77656 or

Book early- limited space available.

 'Colour & Coast' Exhibition 6th October - 3rd November 2012
Ashley's returns to the Hotel Penzance this Saturday where there will be a good selection of Cornish work on display. Hope you can come along.

For more details go to

Wednesday, 3 October 2012

September Holiday Photos & More

The group on our recent Painting Holiday was once again a great bunch of diverse people of different ages and experience. We even had some brave enough to return after our first holiday and bring along their friends - thank-you Jane and Tina!

It kicked off with a double rainbow on our journey down to Trebarwith Strand.   Considering it was the same week of the floods in the North of England, we really got off quite lightly, with a variety of sunshine and showers, all adding to the drama and intensity of the landscape.

It was the first time we had included Trebarwith on our itinerary and it proved to be a definite hit with its dramatic coastline and raging seas.

By 12 o'clock we were all ready for a welcome break at The Harbour Tea Garden Cafe in Boscastle for lunch. The food was great and most of us were so full , there was no need to worry about dinner.  Boscastle gave us an alternative landscape with a combination of harbour views and wild sea - if you were brave enough to make the climb!

Then our second day out on location began in Charlestown, a favourite of Ashley's. Once again rainbows followed with plenty of sun, rain and sea to capture in our drawings and field studies. Not only did the Pier House Hotel lay on a great lunch for us all, they also allowed us to dodge the rain and sketch from the restaurant window. After lunch a ferry journey from Fowey took us across to Polruan. A sleepy coastal village with infinite viewpoints from both high up and ground level. Was it possible to capture the magnitude of the panoramic views from the top or concentrate on the peep holes of   roof tops, boats and sea instead?

Once in the studio, Ashley didn't waste any time in stepping up the pace. After a series of colour and mark-making exercises it was time for everyone to transform the inspiration found in the landscape to their paintings, discover something new and find their own 'Freedom in Painting'. Ashley encouraged everyone to find new ways to work, immersing their canvases in colour, discovering, pouring, smearing and dripping the paint on. Then came the precision and linear elements to the paintings. There was some fantatstic work made with lots of interesting compostitions, intense colour and individuality.With all this hard work going on, we did still find time for a bit of fun and frivolity! (Sorry Rosey, I couldn't resist this one!)

By the time Friday evening came  we were all ready to let our hair down and relax over a few drinks and a few laughs - knowing we had deserved it and given it our all. The Crown Inn as always served up a First Class meal and Ashley and I were sad making our goodbye's to the group.

A BIG thank-you to you all for joining us and to everyone for being such a brilliant group and helping to make our Painting Holiday another success. Thank-you too,for all your wonderful comments and generosity. We thoroughly enjoyed your company and it was a delight to show you a little bit of our beloved Cornwall. Hopefully the teaching wasn't too bad either!

Ashley & Denise

We now have dates for next ' Freedom in Painting' holiday/course with Ashley for 2013.

Mon15 April - Sat 20 April
Mon 23 Sep - Sat 28 Sep

If you are interested to find out more or would like to be included in our mailing list for information on courses/holidays, workshops or exhibitions etc contact or call 01208 77656

Tuesday, 18 September 2012

The Discerning Eye & The National Open Art Competition

Some great news this week, the first painting in Ashley's New York Trilogy series 'City of Glass 1' has been selected for The National Open Art Competition to be held at the Minerva Theatre,  Chichester 11th - 21st October. The show then moves on to The Princes Foundation Gallery in Hoxton, London 24th October - 1st November.See link for more details.

In addition 'Charlestown 7' has been picked for this year's Discerning Eye Exhibition 15th - 23rd November at The Mall Galleries, London SW1

Also in November, Ashley will be showing the complete 'New York Trilogy' series  at Canvas & Cream Gallery in Forest Hill, London 7th - 22 November. You may remeber that 'City of Glass 1' was one of Ashley's prizewinning paintings at the gallery in February earlier this year.

Hotel Penzance Exhibition

Ashley has his next solo show 'Colour & Coast',  6th October - 3rd November at the Bay Restaurant and Gallery, Hotel Penzance. There will be a good selection of Cornish paintings including work from his Porthleven, Charlestown and Penzance series.

The gallery is open daily 11am - 4pm.

September Painting Holiday

We are very much looking forward to meeting our guests-artists new and old on our 'Freedom in Painting in the Cornish Coastal Landscape' Holiday next week and are delighted to say we are now fully booked. Let's hope the weather is kind to us. Regardless of the weather, we do hope you all find the experience worthwhile, inspiring and fun.

Part-Time Art Course with Ashley at Truro College

Ashley will be hosting his 'Colour & Coast' evening class at Truro College from Wednesday 3rd October once again.This is a great opportunity to work with Ashley over a 10 week period and develop your painting knowledge and experience. Using the 'Coast' as our theme, students will explore the principles of colour-mixing, composition and oil/acrylic painting techniques and application. As always, Ashley will be hands on demonstrating and sharing many tips and techniques.  

The course is suitable for all abilities and you are free to work in any meduim, although Ashley's speciality is oils.
For more details contact Truro College on 01872 265800 or see link

Monday, 20 August 2012

Work in progress: 'City of Glass 9- Fiction & Facts'

In progress- 'City of Glass 9: Fiction & Facts'


During the final session of 'City of Glass 6', it struck me that one of the piers at the southern tip of Manhattan resembled the letter 'L'. Then I remembered painting the perfect 'O' of  Madison Square Garden, introduced to the painting as a subtle 'maverick element'. The excitement grew and the idea for a new piece took hold, reconfirming the magic of working in series with the paintings feeding each other.

The most striking image in the novel, 'City of Glass', is that of Stillman, by the means of his daily walks, invisibly writing the words T.H.E  T.O.W.E.R. O.F. B.A.B.E.L. onto the streets of New York.
What if, instead of the fiction, all the letters of 'The Tower of Babel', actually existed in the 'facts' of the streets of New York? Some were easy to find, like 'A' in the angled intersections of Broadway, others, like 'B' and the 'W' (Greenwich Village) more difficult to find. I still have to find an 'R' but am confident it is there. I love the connection with the spirit of the novel and the other paintings in the series, that of a building being there but not there.

At this point, the idea is stronger than the painting- I want the letters to have a neon-glow- but this will be resolved. 'Detectives' was my original title for the series and is both the central theme of the novel and the paintings. In the novel, Quinn, a writer of detective-fiction, - by accident, design,chance,choice?- becomes a real detective. In turn, myself, the artist, becomes a detective, looking for ideas, images, inspiration in Paul Auster's words. Then the viewer becomes a detective, following my clues and visual notes and language in order to understand each piece, and in this painting the viewer will emulate Quinn and follow the letters and find the Tower of Babel.

Tuesday, 17 July 2012

Exhibition News

Quite a lot happening at the moment- I have 4 paintings (including some of my favourites from the Charlestown series) in 'Coast & Country' at the Gloss gallery in Exeter which runs throughout the summer, 20 July- 15 Sept. 

PV is on Thursday 19th, 6-9, be delighted if you could join us.

'Charlestown 4'    60x50cms

'City of Glass 2' has been selected for the Ludlow Open 2012, (4 Aug-18 Aug) and 'City of Glass 6 (pages 106-112)' has been shortlisted for the Cork St Open. Fingers crossed.  Also from this weekend, 'Penzance 2' can be seen at Modern Artists Gallery, with some of the other paintings from the Penzance series.  The gallery is in Whitchurch-on-Thames, near Reading, a lovely spot. 
'Penzance 2'   150x120cms

Friday, 29 June 2012

Working together with Adventure Temples

We are delighted to tell you about some exciting developments with our Painting Workshops and Painting Holidays. We are now working closely with Adventure Temples, specialists in sourcing a host of high quality and specialist activities for people holidaying in Cornwall. Rest assured this will not have any affect on us looking after our  local people who attend Ashley's workshops, as they will be helping us to support our local courses. If anything they will help us to extend what we already do, by enabling us to offer a wider range of workshop options for the future with Ashley, offering his wealth of knowledge and experience in painting, as always, at excellent value. For more information and a wider insight into Adventure Temples see

Our next workshop 'Colour & Coast,' Sat 28th July & Sat 4th Aug is very much connected to Ashley's own art practice, his love of colour and inspiration from the coastal landscape. Come and join us in a friendly, relaxed and informal setting.

Using the 'Coast' as our theme, students will explore the principles of colour- mixing and how to use colour effectively amd creatively. Other areas covered during the workshop  include composition and oil/acrylic painting application. Ashley will be hands on demonstrating and sharing many tips and techniques. This workshop is suitable for all abilities and Ashley will introduce some new exercises and surprises for those of you who have taken part before.

Monday, 25 June 2012

New Painting- 'City of Glass 8 (The Red Notebook)'

'City of Glass 8 (The Red Notebook)'    150x120cms

I keep returning to red but there are a multitude of new reds in this painting.   The outsize notebook subverts the scale of Manhattan in the previous paintings.  Manhattan is transparent, is a window, is a city of glass. Through the window is a boiling sea or the inside of the detective's head. 

I think now is the time to introduce the New York series to the author of 'The New York Trilogy', Paul Auster.