Just three weeks until I take part in “Out of the Hills” art exhibition

Time flies and I can’t believe it is approaching mid May already!
I have been busy undertaking new artworks for this exciting art exhibition which starts on June 1st for 16 days at Aardvark Books in Brampton Bryan. 

Ivan Jones Art Twitter post for Out of the Hills 2019

This is the pinned post on my Twitter feed

The organisers are Maggie and Kim Davis, who themselves are artists, and it is quite a logistical effort. We have to provide an artists background ( I use my Facebook CV as a basis for that ) as well as the list of artworks, prints and cards. I hope to have 17 pieces of artwork on display, including a number of new ones.

Working on a duckling swimming 2019

At work on my current artwork May 2019

Maggie and Kim are then around for three days before the event to help the 11 artists to set up their displays. It is important that the layout is as attractive as possible for the visitors. In addition to the stunning art, the venue has a cafe, a bookery and stunning views all around…..

Aardvark Books interior

So why not come and visit? The event preview is at 11am on Saturday June 1st and then the exhibition is open every day until Sunday June 16th. I will be there for the preview ( which runs until 2pm ) and then stewarding on the afternoons of Monday June 3rd, Thursday June 6th, Friday June 14th and Saturday June 15th so why not come and see me? It would be great to put a face to the name…

My artwork Out of the Hills 2018

This is me with last years exhibition….

So just three weeks to create at least one more pastel artwork and with a commission in the wings ( more details soon ) and possibly two more to be confirmed it is going to be a busy summer! If I don’t see you in June then catch up soon! 

Sneak a peek at how I created this striking kingfisher in pastel

Now that I have completed this kingfisher ( from a reference photo by Ian Marshall ) I can show you a bit more about how I created it, following on from my previous post…..

After the first wing is completed I started building up the background. I experiment with colours in corner of the paper ( which as usual is Artspectrum Colourfix ) and here I using my fingers to blend the background and make a smooth surface to build up the layers….

Experimenting with colours kingfisher
Experimenting with colours of pastels
Blending background kingfisher

 I alternate between adding details to the kingfisher and adding background….this stops me smudging the work and as you see I also turn the paper around to allow the pastel to drop off safely……you can see this in a short video I have created. You can view this on my Facebook page or my Instagram feed…..I hope you find it interesting! 

These are examples of the polystyrene pencils you can see me using in this video…..and here I am adding layers and detail with a pastel pencil. 

Polystyrene shaped for blending pastel
Examples of polystyrene pencils
Using pastel pencils on kingfisher background

I next start work on the branch and I am very pleased how it turned out. I started simply by adding the outline, then working from left to right, adding layers of pastel using different shades of colour until the branch was complete. 

Adding the branch to the kingfisher painting

The finishing touches are completing the background, signing the painting and framing it – here I am cutting mountboard with a mount cutter to fit into the chosen frame……

Cutting a mount for the kingfisher frame
Cutting a mount

….and here is the completed painting “The next catch”….Have a great day!

The completed kingfisher "The next catch"
The Next Catch – a kingfisher about to dive

A great start to my next exciting artwork….”Lion Lovers”

Now that my current commission work is completed, I can now concentrate on creating artwork for my next exhibition in June. It has been a while since I did a lion and I saw this image on Pinterest that appealed to me.

Lion and lioness reference photo

It is always of concern when I cannot find the photographer who took the reference photo – have searched through 50 or more Pinterest posts and using Google image search without success. If you know of any other way to find the original photograph please contact me!

In the meantime, I have flipped the image and am working on creating something that is unique, even if the reference photo is widely shared.

I have started in the top left hand corner ( to avoid smudging ) and built up from there using soft pastel and a range of pastel pencils on Artspectrum Colourfix paper – you can read more about the materials I use here….

Adding layers to the mane on the lion

As you can see I have laid down a base layer and am now adding layers to the mane with a dark brown Cretacolour pastel pencil. In this next photo I have started adding the details of the mane using Cretacolour white – the best white pastel pencil I have discovered…..

The next photo shows me adding the details of the eye, having built up the layers of the face and mane…..

I hope you have found this of some interest and I will post the completed pastel painting in due course…..Enjoy your day and catch up soon….

New artwork completed for my next exhibition in June 2019

As I continue to actively promote my website and my artwork that is for sale there, I also am working on artworks for my next art exhibition. This exhibition is called “Out of the Hills” and runs between the 1st and 16th of June at Aardvark Books in Brampton Bryan, Shropshire. 

My latest pastel artwork which is  nuthatch clinging to a tree trunk and about to fly off to the next tree. Detailed and realistic art.

Having sold my first nuthatch in 2017 I thought another nuthatch may be a popular choice for my next pastel artwork. I sourced a reference photograph by Erik de Rijk from Dreamstime.com

Nuthatch WIP with reference photo by Erik De Rijk

This is me at work on the nuthatch using a pastel pencil to add texture to the feathers. Such lovely birds that we rarely see here, living as we do with fields all around. They love peanut feeders in wooded gardens…a very special visitor. 

Nuthatch pastel artwork in progress Ivan Jones

This pastel painting will be for sale at Out of the Hills so see you there in June! 

I have been invited to exhibit at “Out of the Hills”

I was delighted to be contacted by Maggie Davis, a mixed media artist, who is organising the second annual “Out of the Hills” art exhibition at Aardvark Books, Brampton Bryan, between the 1st and 16th of June 2019

I was privileged to be involved in the first exhibition in June and sold three of my detailed pastel paintings during the two week exhibition.

Out of the Hills art exhibition June 2018

Although I am busy with commissions at the moment ( one for Christmas completed, one a work in progress ) plus three for in the New Year, I will get a number of new artworks completed for the exhibition in June…..

I have yet to decide about whether to open my house for H-art ( Herefordshire Art Week ) in September but hope to be able to exhibit new work at the Lion Gallery in Leominster during 2019.

So an interesting year ahead – and hopefully more commissions can be undertaken too…..you know where I am!

My “Just Real Art” exhibition is all ready for the punters…..

Poster LTIC 2018 Ivan Jones

It has been a last minute flurry to get all the paintings ready for hanging but we have made it. The paintings have been cleaned, some reframed, some relabelled but all now are reasonably presentable.


My wife Cath has had cards printed, done some giclee prints on using high quality paper and ink, has sorted out painting descriptions and price lists, and so on. We are a good team. She has also promoted it locally using social media…..



We spend yesterday afternoon and this afternoon displaying my work in the best way possible, which is using frame colour. I hope visitors like how it looks as an exhibition – we have done our best so all we can do now is wait and see the reaction.


Excited about my “Just Real Art” exhibition starting soon….

It is just over two weeks until my next exhibition starts at the lovely Old Stables Gallery in the Leominster Tourist Office in Corn Square, Leominster, Herefordshire.

Poster LTIC 2018 Ivan Jones

I am getting my artwork and artist limited edition giclee prints together, my wife Cath is printing off flyers and posters, we have had greeting cards done by  Truprint…it is all happening!

Dining room H art 2018


Come and see the results of all our hard work from December 1st through to the New Year…..the venue is a hidden gem and well worth a visit at anytime. Enjoy your day and thanks for all your support this year…..

Banner 2018 Ivan Jones

This stunning kingfisher painting finds a special home

At last I get to post this beautiful kingfisher completed. I have been away for a few weeks getting a bit of sun in Cyprus. Hope you all are doing well. I was very pleased to sell this striking pastel painting to Geoff and Beverley @gmcotterill during my open house in September. It great addition to the other paintings of mine they already own. Champion!

2018-09-18 09.47.43

I enjoy posting these sort of collages ( the colours of this bird are striking ) and I hope you find them of interest. The pastel pencils are an assortment of Derwent, Conte & Cretacolour and the paper is Artspectrum Colourfix. Enjoy your day!

KIngfisher collage 2018

My pastel art exhibition at home has positive response

Every year when Herefordshire Art week approaches ( this year it was between the 8th and 16th of September ) we have a last minute scramble to find 40 paintings to display on the walls of my home. I work to have as much new work as possible for those visitors who have seen my work in previous years…..

H-art invite 2018

As you can see we had an attractive and wide range of different subject matter and prices, including framed prints which we first displayed at the Wigmore Show…..

Prints framed

Although it was much quieter than in previous years I sold three paintings ( seen below wrapped and ready for collection ) two framed prints and a number of unframed prints, plus lots of cards.


Thank you everyone for your support both here and during the exhibition – it is much appreciated. Enjoy your day, take good care and catch up soon!

Selling high quality prints at the Wigmore Show was encouraging

I was asked to support our local show in Wigmore a few months ago and, having had a stall last year, I agreed. This year the show was based around the Wigmore Village Hall so I had space to have two tables to sell cards and show examples of my work, as last year.

2017-09-23 13.17.42

However this year my wife Cathy suggested we consider selling prints. We had not had success in the past with prints ordered from professional printers ( colours were wrong and they were too expensive ). But after some trial and error Cath has been able to find affordable high quality A3 fine art velvet paper and this allows us to experiment more to get the colours perfect, at a lower cost, on our Canon PRO-100s A3 printer.


Once Cath had found the perfect setting for the printer and corresponding software, we were able to print off two copies of 10 different artworks in two different sizes. We have decided to keep the numbers we print to 25 per artwork so we can sell them a limited editions. I also framed three to demonstrate how the prints look when mounted.



I was very pleased with how the stall looked and was encouraged by the response from the people attending the show. I was also happy that I sold one of the larger prints of a running hare as well as a number of greetings cards. I will now invest in a print stand, pre-cut mounts as well as carrier bags for the prints in preparation for my open house exhibition during H-art week in less than two weeks……