Monday, 19 May 2014

Summer in My Studio 2014

Sweet Pea in Watercolour on my easel.

Summer seems to have arrived and  flowers are blooming in my garden. Not Sweet Pea as its too early. Luckily though, I was given a beautiful gift of a posy of lilac coloured sweet pea by a friend and I couldn't resist painting them. I find my best ideas come from life in that I would never have thought of painting these flowers all in the same colour. In my garden I grow a variety of  shades each year. As they climb the pea sticks during the summer months, from a distance all I can see is a gorgeous  fusion of  merging colours

In the vase these flowers are curving at an angle, which also helped me  paint a different composition. The light through the window where they are sitting really indicated how I could utilise the white of my paper.

Its' incredible how one small act of kindness from a friend can lead to a whole new collection of paintings.  I may take this piece to Patchings as I have my own marquee there this year as well as being invited as a Celebrity Guest Artist for St Cuthbert Mill.

If you would like to see me demonstrating, please visit Patchings . 
You can find more details via this link.

I will be happy to sign books. 
I will also have my books, DVDs, cards,brushes and original paintings for sale.

Wednesday, 14 May 2014

Dreaming of Italy : Venice in Watercolour

 Dreams of Venice
Work in Progress

My recent trip to Italy, where I taught a Watercolour Masterclass, followed by a trip to Florence has really inspired my latest paintings. I am definitely seeing colour differently for my landscapes and the romantic atmosphere from Florence is seeping into my results.

The light on my latest painting of Venice is attracting me, as the artist. I can feel the sun hitting the architecture and the "mood" within this painting carries an amazing feeling of happiness.  

Even after all the years I have been painting, I am still totally in love with how watercolour reacts when pigments merge and are effected by application of water. Simple touches make dramatic differences leading to unbelievable outcomes. The tiniest of dots, or lines, all of a sudden play a huge role in pulling the painting together  during the creative process.

I have demonstrations and workshops to look forward to. Landscapes will be featuring!

  Close up of a section where statues amid gorgeous architecture will be placed in the next stages. 
This painting will be in my next exhibition.


I will have scenes from Italy in my next exhibition at the 
Dogs in Art Gallery, Stockbridge, Hampshire 
From 14th June. 


My first book "How to Paint Colour and Light" has a similar painting of Venice on the cover.

Signed copies are available from my web site


Nearly Foxglove Time!

Foxgloves appearing in a dramatic watercolour

Having just wandered around my garden I am thrilled to see this years foxgloves in bud already. I adore painting Summer flowers but foxgloves always seem the most magical to me. With years of fairy stories as a child, I always imagine tiny beings flitting from flower to flower whilst on the wing. My imagination is possibly at its' best during the Summer months. And they are ahead, something to look forward to. Bright glowing colours and lots of light in all my watercolours. Vety exciting!


Patchings Art Festival 2014 : Demonstrations

St Cuthbert Mill Marquee

I am thrilled to have been invited as a Celebrity Artist for the St Cuthbert Mill main marquee at Patchings Art Festival 2014. I will be demonstrating on the following times and sharing techniques with new subjects daily.

 Thursday 5 June 1.15pm Jean Haines (Festival Marquee)

Friday 6 June 1.15pm Jean Haines (Festival Marquee)
  Saturday 7 June 11am Jean Haines (Festival Marquee)

I will also have my own Jean Haines Watercolour marquee where you can meet me, have books signed, buy cards, paintings, DVDs or my own personalised brushes throughout the festival.

 "Atmospheric Watercolours". 
Have your books personally signed at Patchings Art Festival

Watch me paint,learn my new favourite colours and see my techniques which I will be sharing in my demonstrations  in the St Cuthbert Mill Marquee at Patchings Art Festival 

Full details can be found on the Patchings Art Festival web site  via this link

To book tickets for the festival entrance please see this link

I love Patchings and enjoy my visits each year. Its' a fantastic event that all artists enjoy!

Tuesday, 13 May 2014

Peony in Watercolour 2014

Peony in Watercolour

Whenever I paint peony flowers I always  think of my time studying Asian brushwork in China. However my style has changed so much from when I was studying Chinese brushwork under a Shanghainese master. Now I depend strongly on colour and water flow to create my subjects.

Today I have glorious bright red peony in a vase in my studio. They were knocked down in my garden by Bailey,  my over enthusiastic Bearded Collie. Even so every negative has a positive. As these flowers were on very short stems I placed them in a small vase and realised they could be wonderful to paint. And what an experience today was. Allowing red shades to merge with water on paper, to create fantastic pattern effects. Then merging a few green shades amongst the reds gave an illusion of  foliage. Sheer bliss!

Peony "water marks" on my easel

My main problem is that I am a complete watercolour addict. I have had such a great time experimenting with these flowers as subjects that I now want to take a huge piece of paper and see what happens on that next!

Life is great when you are in love with watercolour.

And I am!


Monday, 12 May 2014

Bluebells in Watercolour 2014

 Bluebell Hues
Original Watercolour 2014

Only a year ago I was recovering from a broken ankle whilst in Australia following my watercolour workshops there. All the while I kept thinking of the bluebell woods in UK. My opportunity to paint them last year was missed completely as I couldn't fly home until I had healed from surgery. This Spring, I was teaching a weeks Watercolour Masterclass in Italy followed by a trip to Florence. Last week I was away, filming for my new book. I realised that unless I was very quick I would miss the opportunity, yet again, to paint these gorgeous flowers from life in my garden.

Today the sun shone as I raced to my studio this morning to grab my brushes and head for a quiet spot in the sunshine to capture the  soft bells. They are draped beautifully along the pathways of the woodland section in our cottage garden. While I painted, I listened to birdsong as the sun fell on my shoulders. I carefully studied the many shades in each sweet bell shape and most of all, realised I wasn't really looking at blue flowers at all as they are more a violet hue.

As a child I always imagined fairies lived in these woodland flowers. Or they would wear the bells as tiny hats. As an artist, I love how the strong blue formations in the foreground seem to automatically push the more blurred less detailed flowers into the distance. Learning how to paint from nature is  to me the best way to study art. If you observe colour and shape you can't go wrong. And even more importantly, your finished compositions when painting from life are unique. Its' so wonderful to see so many paintings of the same subject painted and interpreted in completely different ways. So my artists tip of the day is from my last book

" Don't be a sheep, be unique" with your art!  

Artists tips: 1) Paint from life as often as you can
2) Study colour and form. 
3)Take time to observe as well as paint

Placing my subject next to my painting to check if the colour is accurate
This is a great way to tell if your painting is true to life.

Tuesday, 6 May 2014

Filming my next New Book : Launch 2015

 Atmospheric Watercolours
by Jean Haines

I had no idea how exciting  the launch of my book "Atmospheric Watercolours" was going to be. From the initial launch at the Mall Galleries in London so many wonderful book signing events have taken places all over the world including  Europe, Australia, USA and Mexico. I find it incredible and overwhelming that invitations are still flooding in for me to hold international workshops with bookings now leading me into 2017. 

I have always wanted to write a book to share my passion for watercolour and my first  cautious dip into being an author was a comission by Winsor and Newtion to write  " How to Paint Colour and Light in Watercolour" . Following the interest in this first book and my loose style, my dream of writing a hard back book came true but my expectations on whether or not it would be enjoyed were really taken aback, by the way it  became a best seller. I am really the most passionate  person when it comes to working in watercolour and to be openly honest, all I wanted to achieve was for others to love painting as much as I do.

A dream come true. Holding a copy of my book "Atmospheric Watercolours" at the Mall Galleries in London,  where a book signing event took place to celebrate its' launch

Following the launch of " Atmospheric Watercolours" I have been invited to tour USA and have held sold out book signing events there. My first trip was to New York and Texas. Last year I returned to USA to hold further workshops in New York , then I held workshops for two art societies in Texas followed by a workshop in Mexico. I also  held a book signing workshop in Brisbane , Australia which will be followed by an Australian tour this year which includes destinations of  Adelaide, Sydney, Tasmania and Brisbane again.  All sessions are fully booked.  Each international workshop has been sold out twelve months in advance and my own workshops in UK are also booked up within weeks of each years dates being released. My new book signing ,2015 tour of USA includes California, St Louis, West Virginia, New York and Washington DC. These dates will be released later this year.

 Signing books at the Art League of Long Island, New York

Recently my book "Atmospheric Watercolours"  was translated into Italian which led to my watercolour masterclass taking place in Italy this year at Arte Umbria.

 Italian tranlsation of "Atmospheric Watercolours"

So after a whilrwind of events all over the world , I have been quietly writing a third book on watercolour which is full of tips, techniques, demonstrations and many new subjects. I can't believe it is the time when I have to leave home yet again to film the step by steps already.  Today I am really excited.  I meet with my publishers in the morning and it will be a full week ahead of  discussions, design layout meetings and my painting under the camera recording each brushstroke to be shared in my new book. I already have a tour planned in USA next year and a wonderful launch arranged in UK. As soon as information is available on how to pre order a copy I will be sharing the news here.

For now though, I owe the biggest thank you to everyone who has bought a copy of my books. I had no idea if they would sell, and had my fingers crossed that they would. I think the latest figures were up to 20,000 sales internationally for " Atmospheric Watercolours" but I will check tomorrow. 

Thank you and I am trying really hard to make my new book, one full of surprises and information, plus tempting things to paint!

The launch will be in 2015.

 With the filming team for "Atmospheric Watercolours" 
Its a wrap!


Florence: Italy 2014

Florence 2014

Following teaching my weeks  Watercolour Masterclass course  in Umbria, I visited Florence. As our Wedding Anniversary was last week , my husband and I decided to add a few extra days to our time in Italy to enable a dream of seeing Florence to coem true and it was beautiful. We spent last years anniversary with me in hospital in Australia, as I had broken my ankle whilst teaching workshops there.

I am happy to share the news that this years anniversray was a great success as we dined in a gorgeous restaurant in the heart of Florence, after a fanastic visit to hear Gregorian chants,following  a roof top view of Florence and a tour around the many wonderful sights.

My blog has been very quiet as I  was soaking in the inspirational atmosphere.

All I want to do on my return home is paint but I have even more excitement to look forward to this week. Filming of my next book starts tomorrow!


Arte Umbria : April 2014

Group Photo
With artists on my Watercolour Masterclass in Italy 
 Artists came from USA, Norway, Ireland, UK and Italy.

April 2014

What a fantastic  time I had teaching my Watercolour Masterclass in Italy. I arrived to glorious sunshine and was warmly welcomed by Sarah and David who run Arte Umbria. Set in a delightful rural location this art retreat is surrounded by incredible scenery. My first sight was the gorgeous wisteria outside my room, which was so tempting to paint and it quickly became a subject for one of my many demonstrations.

The group attending were fabulous and a really special time was had by all.  The enthusiasm throughout the whole week was extremely high and it was so brilliant to see artists rising early and finishing late to work on new techniques and subjects from the course.  I started each day with demonstrations then worked closely with each artist on a one to one basis.  It was for me really rewarding to hear such glowing feedback about the course, especially from artists who initially felt they may never get the hang on working in my style. I loved how minds changed as confidence grew every day. I honestly believe with the right guidance everyone can paint, and more importantly, enjoy creating. It effects not just how we see things but also how we feel. My teaching philosophy is always based on positive thinking. 

We enjoyed  superb lunches and the evenings were filled with great company and laughter as we all relaxed after very full days. To everyone who attended, I genuinely felt very sad saying goodbye on the last day of the course. The warmth within this group was exceptional as each person added to the  memories that will never be forgotten. Its wonderful to know that my paintings have also left to homes all over the world from this course.

A week I will treasure in my art career.