Catching up with our Competition Prize Winner
A Week in Cornwall [well] out of my Comfort Zone
“I never win anything so, when in March a ‘Congratulations!’ banner dropped into my email, I assumed spam; my finger hovered over the delete button. I spotted the GreatArt logo in time – I’m a regular of their monthly newsletter – so I realised it was ‘legit’. A 5-day painting course in Cornwall with Ashley Hanson PLUS £150 to spend on art materials. What a prize!
‘Freedom in Painting’ was full on from the outset. After initial introductions and a wake-up coffee, we began drawing in and around the stunning Trebarwith Strand, where Ashley encouraged us to draw from different locations, clambering over rocks, up hills and across the beach. Successive marks were drawn over previous images, the mark-making becoming more free and expansive. And if we weren’t happy with areas on our paper we could tear parts away, or add pieces of black card. No boundaries, no rules.
We continued our drawing exercises through the afternoon in beautiful Bude, and then again the next morning in various locations around Port Isaac. By now we, or at least I, had amassed a series of messy, sometimes incomprehensible but happy drawings. We were all set to begin painting on Tuesday afternoon. I should say at this point that painting isn’t my normal practice – I’m a printmaker – so the challenge felt like a mountain to climb.
The temporary studio was in Port Isaac village hall, a lovely space with views over the fishing port and its two protective barriers. Work began in earnest all around me while I fumbled with brushes, palette knives and unfamiliar tubes of acrylics. Ashley was on hand and extremely patient, giving regular mini tutorials. From time to time we would gather around examples of his paintings or discuss images of other artists’ work. Gradually the fear subsided; I realised that if you’re not happy with what you’ve painted, simply reapply more paint! The was a liberation, and freedom in painting began to emerge!
Ashley Hanson is the best tutor you could wish for and I plan to go again next year. Many thanks GreatArt for the opportunity to try something I otherwise wouldn’t have had the courage for.”
Ashley is a renowned colourist and landscape artist, and member of the Newly Society of Artists with an extensive national exhibition record, including exhibiting at the RA Summer Exhibition and National Open Art Exhibition. If you would like to enhance your creativity and work with Ashley, he runs popular painting courses each year in Cornwall and Kent under the banner ‘Freedom in Painting’. Courses for 2019 are now available to book at www.ashleyhanson.co.uk