ART EXHIBITION supporting Cancer Research

Last week I posted a blog about our upcoming art exhibition . Let me tell you a bit more  about it – just to whet your appetite…………..

The wine reception starts at 6pm on Thursday March 29th in Holywood Library, High St, Holywood, Co Down. You will be greeted with a glass of red or a glass of white donated by Holywood Golf Club (yes THAT golf club although I’m afraid Rory won’t be able to make it!) If you’re Tee total (see what I did there?) there will be soft drinks and  nibbles.

The Raffle Table will be laden with prizes ranging  from paintings donated by members of the classes (including the painting featured on the posters) to an art voucher from Art and Home, a voucher from The Bay Tree restaurant, Holywood, a gift from Empathy Creations, Bangor, a framed print from Wallhangers, Bangor, a voucher for a month’s circuit training at Curves of Castlereagh (start honing that bikini body girls!), tickets for the Belfast Giants,  bottles of sparkly and much, much more.

Our aim, apart from all the gaiety described above, is to show the results of our hard work since our previous exhibition in 2008, to as many people as we can –  friends, family, fellow artists and guests and at the same time raise as much money as we can for Cancer Research. Last year the Thursday morning group unexpectedly lost one of it’s valued and much loved members, Joan Markwell, to cancer. She would be mortified to hear me say this but Joan was a truly wonderful artist as well as being intelligent and quietly discerning in her manner and you will be able to see some of her work displayed.  All profits from the raffle, catalogues and 25% of all painting sales (in some cases 100%) will be donated to Cancer Research.

The exhibition consists of a wide variety of media, technique and style from artists who have recently only begun to paint to those who have been painting for some time – some names you may even have seen in galleries. Here’s a little taster of what you can expect:

 Times Square, New York    Soft Pastels    Maureen Ellis

Ashford Castle  Oil on Canvas  Julie Brown 

Gladioli  Acrylic  Lorraine McCreery

Keeping On  Oil  Edward Cartin

Causeway Acrylic  Janet Clarke


The Helper  Soft Pastels David Sweet

Bluebells Acrylic  Kay McCrory

Moroccan Medley  Oil Bernie O’Hare


Orange isn’t the Only Fruit  Oil  Eilish Smith

 Eamonn  Oil  Sonia Harrison

 Poppy Heads Inks Janet Clark

The Tatoo  Soft Pastels Rosie McClelland

So come along  and have a look for yourself and chat to the artists. We are open on Thursday 29th 6pm – 7.30pm, Friday March 30th from 10am – 4.30pm and Saturday March 31st from 10am – 3.30pm

We look forward to meeting you





 of paintings and drawings

 from members of art groups led by Rosie McClelland in support of

VENUE:      Holywood Library, High St Holywood. Co Down Northern Ireland

WINE RECEPTION:  Thursday March 29th 6pm – 7.30pm

CONTINUING:  Friday March 30th 10am – 4.30pm and Saturday March 31st 10am – 3.30pm

RAFFLE DRAW: Thursday 6.45pm

Prizes include paintings, framed prints, art materials voucher, gym voucher and much more!

 All the profits from the raffle, catalogues and 25% of all sales will be in support of Cancer Research in memory of  a long-standing and greatly loved member of the Thursday morning group, Joan Markwell,who we lost to cancer last year.






Hockney and Freud

Last week I treated myself  to a day in London. Two of my favourite artists, David Hockney and Lucien Freud, were showing in The Royal Academy and the NationalPortrait Gallery respectively. Unlike my usual procrastinating self, I managed to plan ahead and get tickets for both. Now the plan was to meet Janet who had been visiting her son and daughter in London, view the exhibitions  and fly back to Belfast together but when word got out in the classes the snowball effect began. When the time came there were 15 of us wandering around the Royal Academy completely seduced by the colour, genius, scale and  boldness of David Hockney’s landscapes. Canvases which, up close, appeared as a mass of  marks, colour and pattern, when glimpsed from across the hall or through a doorway suddenly lit up and made perfect spatial sense. Yorkshire as it’s never been seen before.The grand canyon – so hot you virtually needed sun cream to stop you burning! There have been many programmes recently  reviewing this exhibition and interviewing Hockney and I love his positivity, curiosity and enthusiasm for life. He has brought colour into a very grey Belfast winter. With a second exhibition to view we were restricted by time and my only regret is that I didn’t leave more time to look more closely at the sketch books located in a room almost at the end. Looking at sketch books is how you really get into the mind of an artist.

A short tube ride, lunch  and a glass of wine later 10 of us embarked on the Freud show at the National Portrait Gallery. I had viewed an  exhibition of his work at IMMA in Dublin a few years ago  so I thought I was being a bit indulgent and that the highlight of my day had been the morning’s events. How wrong I was! In contrast to twinkly-eyed Hockney, the reviews on Lucien Freud  have painted a rather negative and complex image of the man himself – isolated and obsessive to the point of what could be perceived as emotional cruelty in his personal relationships. How true that is or was I will never know. What I do know is that his paintings are sublime. His portrayal not just of likenesses but of details and idiosyncracies that others would overlook. The finely tuned palette and the voluptuous consistency of the paint. The thoughtful brushmarks. Foreheads. Hands. Dogs. Sad gazes. There are no tricks, no clever techniques just the honesty and integrity of one of life’s observers possibly one of life’s outsiders. Despite being considered unfashionable  for many years he stayed true to his own vision. I was enthralled and immensely inspired.

Although entirely different, for me the message from both of these  artists is – just look, it’s all there.

“A Bigger Picture” David Hockney RA can be seen at the Royal Academy until 9 April 2012

Lucien Freud Portraits can be seen at the National Portrait Gallery until 27 May 2012

One of the big highlights of the day was meeting up with my big sis, Gerry http://pottershousepenketh.blogspot.com and my niece, Natasha of Nevie-pie Cakes http://amelieshouse.blogspot.com Do have a look at their blogs!


Donegal Painting Holidays – Change of Dates!!

Killybegs Harbour – Evening Light – Oil on canvas

OK, I have to confess I should have checked my diary a bit more carefully! Here are the new dates:

Sunday July 1st – Tuesday July 3rd 2012

Sunday August 5th – Tuesday August 7th 2012

Everything else remains the same – Tuition fee: £100 including a light tea with a mini demo on Sunday evening at 7pm and a sandwich lunch on Monday and Tuesday

Painting on location Monday and Tuesday from 10am – 5pm (lunch 1 – 2pm)

I have cleared the dates with those who have already booked so no great harm has been done and my apologies to those who won’t be able to make the new times and are disappointed. I shall be staying on in Donegal for a day or two after each holiday so anyone interested in staying longer and going out sketching with me is very welcome.

Contact me or see my previous post for accommodation suggestions

Here are a few more photos of the area to whet your appetite:


Harbour at Towney

Ancient rocks and monuments in wide open spaces

Yes the sun does shine in Donegal – more often than you think!

Intimate nooks and crannies along the River Glen

Kilcar Main Street


Salmon Leap at Teelin