Here to Ignite, Encourage and Inspire your Creative Flame

‘All dreams are within reach, all you have to do is keep moving towards them.’ Viola Davis

Please note: some items are repeated for the benefit of new subscribers. Thank you 😊

Life seems so colourful when working with acrylics…

Hey there my friends I hope you’re all keeping well, I’m not sure how much time I’ll get to spend at my easel this week as we have family staying, a busy fun-filled house to say the least, but I thought I’d just jump onto my pc and give you all a quick update whilst grabbing a quick coffee 😊

My next wildlife-based workshop due to run on Saturday 25th June at Martin Mere Wetland Centre will be a pastel workshop and the subject is going to be a Fallow Deer. The lighting and mood of the reference image I’ve selected is gorgeous, can’t wait to show you and I really hope to see some of you there. Many beginners to the art world often reach for watercolours as their starting medium, or a dry medium such as pastel or coloured pencil. However, very few reach for acrylics to begin their art journey with, and this had me wondering why❔

In many ways acrylic can be easier to learn than watercolours, here are a few examples:

  • A complete background can be applied in acrylic then the subject painted on top, unlike watercolour where a subject has to be painted around or masked out.
  • Acrylics dry quickly and because of their opaqueness mistakes can be easily covered over with additional layers. Watercolours also dry quickly but mistakes are not so easily rectified for beginners.
  • A good quality acrylic can be used like a watercolour, thinning with water or an acrylic medium, or can be used straight out of the tube like an oil, and every consistency between.
  • Liquitex acrylics are the ones that I recommend beginners to purchase. They are inexpensive but have professional artist qualities such as lightfastness, and their quality of pigmentation allows for the application of multiple layers of glazing if needed. They are manufactured by Winsor & Newton.

So without filling this newsletter with an essay style piece of writing encouraging beginners to have a go with acrylics, I hope that the above examples will give you food for thought. If you have any questions then please feel free to ask 😊

Wildlife Art Workshops New for 2022

January 22ndWatercolourEuropean Robin
February 26th Acrylicpostponed due to Covid
March 26thPastelRed Squirrel
April 30thWatercolourKingfisher
May 28thAcrylicPuffin
June 25thPastelFallow Deer
More dates to be confirmed…

Six dates have now been confirmed over at Martin Mere Wetland Centre. One running each month until, and including, June. The mediums alternate between Watercolour, Acrylic and Pastel, and all workshops are suitable for beginners. More information can be found over on our exclusive Art Workshop page on the Martin Mere website as well as on the Workshop page of my website. If participants would like further mediums added then extra dates can be slotted in to suit. So if your passion is coloured pencil or you love oil painting then just let me know.

Diary Dates

Patching’s Art Festival14th – 17th July 2022
Exhibition of Wildlife Art29th – 31st July 2022
Art Safari in Uganda15th – 30th September 2022
North West Birdwatching Festival15th & 16th October 2022
Art Safari in Uganda 16th February – 3rd March 2023

Patching’s Art Festival – an international four day art event celebrating the best in art & craft. Open to all there’s something for everyone, the chance to meet over 250 artists, a lot of which will be demonstrating (including me demonstrating for Caran d’Ache). Plus ‘hands-on’ workshops and art material offers all set in 60 acres of beautiful Nottinghamshire countryside.

Exhibition of Wildlife Art – ‘an exciting three day show featuring the work of some of the world’s most talented wildlife artists. The biggest and most successful, open selling, exhibition of Wildlife Art outside of London. All exhibited work is for sale and many artist demonstrate whilst there.’ I’ll be demonstrating whilst exhibiting there this year and would love for you to drop by and say hello.

Art Safari in Uganda – a two week tour taking in some of Uganda’s best national parks, optional gorilla and chimpanzee tracking, visiting a rhino sanctuary and so much more. With a maximum of 6 participants this art based safari ensures you’ll have all the natural world of Uganda has to offer, plus plenty of 1 to 1 guidance from me when you need it to enable you to capture all that you want on paper or canvas. More information below.

North West Birdwatching Festival – Open at 8am, start your day by watching the spectacle of thousands of wild geese leave the roost before heading for breakfast in the Martin Mere restaurant. Over the two day there will be an array of guest speakers and exhibitors, artists and photographers including photography workshops, guided reserve walks, and more. I’ll be exhibiting and demonstrating throughout the weekend and would love you to drop by and say hello.

Latest News

Filter over an existing photo on my phone, be artistic everywhere!

Art comes in all shapes and sizes, from the font design on restaurant menus to downloadable apps on your phone, and a charming little app on my phone has been amusing me with filters for my existing photos. Little things in life are sometimes the most freeing, and the more you exercise your creative muscles the more you’ll feel inspired and want to create even more. Who would have thought that playing on my phone for a few minutes would give me numerous ideas I now have for a self-portrait… more on this later in the year.

Following on from last week’s newsletter – my contract from Derwent has arrived! 😃 I’m just double checking that the contract will work well for me, pretty sure it will, before I sign it and then I’ll be an official Derwent Ambassador, and I’ll be able to share the benefits with you all. More news on this as it develops.

Also following on from last week – I now have a new Canon camera body, after having to retire my old one last week. Just need a little spare time now to get out and about and put it through it’s paces lol.

On My Easel

Lemur in acrylics

The Ring-tailed Lemur study in acrylic is finally on my easel, although may not be worked on for the rest of this week. Will keep you updated as this painting evolves 😊

For the love of Uganda

Calling all artists, would you like to take your love for art and wildlife one step further? Then why not join me on safari in Uganda this coming September? There’s so much to see and do on this adventure of a lifetime; safari drives, boat cruises, gorilla tracking, chimpanzee tracking so much more… Any questions? Then contact Lesley who’s looking forward to hearing from you.

‘Capture some of Africa’s finest wildlife in art that will help your memories last forever. We are very excited about our new partnership with wildlife artist Kerry Newell and hope this art safari – based on one of our classic wildlife safaris – will become an annual feature in our tour calendar.’

Ugandan Art-based Safaris

15th – 30th September 2022


16th February – 3rd March 2023

Limited Places

Amazing price of £4,775

For more information please contact Lesley Harris

WhatsApp: +256 782 735 309

Lesley Harris, owner of Venture Uganda, is more than happy to answer any questions you may have regarding this adventure. Please take a few minutes to read the amazing itinerary Lesley and her team, over in Uganda, have put together (you wont be disappointed). Lesley is currently building a new and exclusive page to add to her, already wonderful, website. I’ll be sure to let you all know when that goes live, but for now sit back and enjoy all the amazing details of this new and exciting diary of events planned for 15th – 30th September 2022!

Subscriber Question

Q. Can you suggest a simple watercolour background for beginners to wildlife art please?

A. Keeping your watercolours loose and working wet into wet can provide your project with a fresh and interesting look, that is both quick and simple enough for even a complete beginner to accomplish. Try practising with a few colours on a spare sheet of paper and in no time at all you’ll be ready to apply it to your chosen painting. The following video Robin in Watercolour will give you a glimpse into how simple this technique is. Have fun exploring different colours and paper textures.

I may not always have a video on my YouTube channel to go alongside a subscriber’s question, but when I do I’ll be sure to add it.

Well it’s that time again as my coffee cup is now empty. Family time is calling so I’ll sign off for now.

Thank you once again as always my friends for spending some time with me today, and please feel free to leave a question or suggestion in the contact form below.

Wishing you all the best, until next time, as always, stay safe and stay creative, Kerry xXx

white coffee mug on brown surface

Questions & Suggestions welcomed

© Kerry Newell ⭐ ⭐ All rights reserved