• Artist magazine

    As soon as I posted about my article in the Cotswold Life  the post arrived with the May edition of The Artist magazine! In it there is a compilation of excerpts  from my new book ‘Watercolour Workshops’.  This will be followed in the June edition with another article featuring  new paintings  and text but still following some of the themes in the book.




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  • Cotswold Life magazine

    I have written an article for Cotswold Life about myself and my father’s life and paintings. It is in the April edition and now on sale in  newsagents in and around Gloucestershire for those of you who live locally.It’s called ‘Like father like daughter’ and talks about parallels that have happened – in spite of my every attempts to weave my own path!


    April edition Cotswold life- article by Ann Blockley





    There will also be articles in the Artist magazine. One is an excerpt from the new book and another with new content. I have also had an  interview  with Artist and Illustrator magazine , who visited my studio recently. I will add updates about publication dates very soon.




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  • Book Review

    Nice book review – Thanks Henry! Glad you liked it!


    Henry Malt – book review

      Watercolour workshop- Projects and interpretations


    Ann Blockley is one of the most innovative painters around and her work is

    both challenging and inspiring.

    This is one of her most practical books and includes plenty of exercises and

    demonstrations that show you both how she works and how you can get the

    most out of the medium of watercolour. It fully lives up to its subtitle, Projects

    and Interpretations, providing both examples of Ann’s own work and ideas

    for you to work on yourself. Its dedication is to “imagination, integrity and

    interpretation, to being true to yourself”, which I rather like.

    Ann’s style is very much her own and could be difficult to follow if she wasn’t

    so generous with her explanation and instruction. The book is full of advice

    and ideas and really does feel like having her at your side while you work.

    As you would expect, interpretation is the central theme and Ann includes

    photographs of her subjects so that she can show you how ideas develop and

    different approaches can be tried. It’s an illuminating insight into a thoroughly

    creative mind.

    There are four main sections covering Flower and Field, Trees and Hedgerow,

    Landscape Features and, finally, Towards Abstraction. There are six complete

    projects, as well as sidebars, exercises and technical explanations. All the

    main elements of intimate landscape painting are covered.

    This is a beautiful and fascinating book that both stimulates and satisfies the

    creative imagination

    Image from ‘Ann Blockley’s Watercolour Workshop’ book














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  • WORLD BOOK DAY- My new book is now officially published!

    It’s World Book Day – so rather appropriate that my new book Watercolour Workshop has officially been published today! Thank you for all the kind words that  many of you have already sent to me after receiving your early signed copies. I really appreciate it. For those of you who have waited for it to be published- there’s plenty more!

    To celebrate the day I thought I would show you a photo of our village ‘library’. My husband renovated the local phone box and put shelves in it so that people could contribute books of all kinds for everyone to share. It’s been a great success and we have really enjoyed seeing folk from all walks of life borrowing and bringing their books. All to encourage people to read. I have to admit I haven’t put a copy of my ‘Watercolour Workshop’ in yet but maybe I will!


    Our village ‘library’!


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  • Royal Institute of Painters in watercolour (RI)

    I am really pleased that I have had 3 paintings accepted for the annual RI exhibition this year. I have not submitted paintings for a few years due to other commitments so am thrilled to be back! The paintings are all  part of a set of  images that I made as an ongoing project throughout the seasons. I am exploring the ever changing atmosphere and plant life within a  section of ancient hedgerow near my studio. I am enjoying looking at the patterns and textures that the webs and tangles of plant forms make and the abstract shapes made by  light through gaps between these  hedgerow tapestries..  Here is one of my entries  called ‘Teasels in the briar hedge’ .  I have shown some of the stages of its development on the workshop page.  For more details about the RI exhibition please visit my Events page.





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  • Book update

    I have got books!!! Lots of them!! A  Big thankyou  to everyone that has pre-ordered. It has been an overwhelming response so far and the orders are still pouring in.   I am steadily working my way through them. Soon the post man will be busily  trekking up and down garden paths leaving them in sheds , porches and greenhouses as requested! Lots of them will be heading off  to live in far flung corners of the world. So again-  Thankyou! I  really hope you will  enjoy  it.


    Through the old iron gate- from ‘Ann Blockley’s Watercolour workshop’



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  • New Book- March 1st!

    Now the New Year has arrived I am  starting to count down the weeks until the publication of my new book ‘Ann Blockley’s Watercolour workshop’ The formal publication date is March 1st but I have exclusive pre- publication rights and will be able to include the book on my website shop in February!

    This is my most ‘ hands on ‘, practical art book to date. It is full of information in both text and pictures on building up the stages of a painting. I hesitate to use the words ‘step by step’ because this is not a term that I agree with. I don’t believe in the idea that you can create art using a strict formula. The loose, impressionistic (and sometimes unpredictable) way in which I use watercolour means that each and every interpretation can be unique. Therefore I have called the demonstrations ‘Projects‘  instead. The photographer took close up pictures as I painted so that you can see in detail how an image might develop.  Where these are different to the usual step by step demonstrations is that I offer alternative technique suggestions, at different stages to suit   individual preferences and abilities. You can immerse yourself in the different themes and adapt them to you own choices and make your own decisions.  As well as these practical elements there are also plenty of interpretations following the subjects and themes to give you lots of ideas and inspiration.

    My last book ‘Experimental Landscapes’ was   very popular and I have had some amazing feedback from many of you- for which I’m extremely grateful.   Listening to you at art festivals and workshops however I have realised that that not everyone has the time ( or finances) to do lots of experimenting. So although I still thoroughly endorse the idea that an experimental approach to painting is vital to all artists at times in their development, my attitude in this book  has been to share more of the  technical tips  that I have discovered through my own years of experimenting with watercolour. I really do hope that you will love it.


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  • The magic apple tree

    Overnight the apple tree seems to have bloomed with a froth of wintry frozen blossom.  Clusters and clots of white snow cling to each frail twig. A blackbird hops among these crystalline bouquets hoping to find  frosted fruit. Earlier the sun was a mere pale milky glimmer in a sullen sky but as the day lowers itself into the evening it begins to gleam in a last bid for attention. A sharp light, brittle and bright pinpoints itself into laser beams, picking out individual glittering snowflakes in the snow flowers of the snow tree.  The cold cumulus flowers are edged with light as this low sun caresses the whimsical chimerical shimmering shapes. Underneath each sugary clump the melting has begun and slow trickling drips have formed tiny icicles in a myriad silky glass blown shapes of the strangest beasts and wild imaginings.  The sun notices these icy confections and concentrates its alchemy into each misshapen glassy bauble, so that each one sparkles with  nuggets of a priceless gold . I am lost in the magic apple tree, drawn into this other world. I watch the frosty whites turn to blue shadow as the sun fades away and the snow blossom transforms into the dark silhouettes of the strangest fruits. It is too cold for the bats to fly from the watching steeple and the circling rooks have gathered in the safety of the wood.  It is just I that  sees the apple tree disappear into the  silent blackbird night.




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  • Facebook and feedback

    I have been on my own in my studio  doing lots of painting for several weeks now. I don’t know about you but I find it hard  working in a kind of vacuum,  painting  away but not having any feedback. I do ask my husband sometimes for his opinion ( when I’m desperate!)   but he is not in the least arty so if he approves (or not) I am still in the dark as to the merit of my work (or not!). The strange thing  is that I think I am actually rather good at looking at other people’s paintings and knowing instantly and instinctively  their strengths and weaknesses. When I teach at  workshops it is easy for  me to  watch a student’s painting develop  and advise about what to add, take away or when I think that they  should stop.

    I find Facebook  very good in times of self doubt. You can post a picture and instantly have lots of positive reaction which is a lovely boost to the confidence. If you feel on your own with your painting or any other form of art social media  could be a really useful form of communicating with other like minded people- everywhere! I have noticed that  people only seem to leave positive  feedback and I mean in general, not just with regard to my posts. It would be dangerous to suggest that  it might be more useful if people  sometimes offered constructive criticism because not everybody is nice ( or so I have heard)  and we are all so very vulnerable. Nasty negative comments have the potential to shatter one’s confidence and  so it is probably easier to play safe and  just pay compliments.

    On my workshops  I  sincerely find there is always something good to say about every piece.( Although it has to be said that sometimes it is harder than others!) I usually try to suggest ways in which the artwork or a follow up interpretation of it could be improved.  On one occasion a student once asked me to stop my pleasant comments and really give a  full on serious critique- warts and all. I  began tentatively suggesting that perhaps the composition  could be improved upon  and she was immediately upset as  she had thought that was the best bit!  Being a teacher is  a minefield especially when you have large feet and are not a trained psychologist!

    On the subject of workshops- I  had promised myself not to tell you again  until next year the fact that I have a new book coming  out on March 1st called Ann Blockley’s Watercolour Workshop’.  And so I won’t mention it , or maybe I will ,but only quietly, because I’m excited about it and I haven’t got anyone else to confide in….!

    If you would like to  join me  on Facebook  my page is Ann Blockley Artist  and I am also there as Ann Blockley.


    Blackberry and sloe hedgerow- unfinished(?)




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  • Next year’s events

    I have just updated my website Events page with lots of exciting happenings for 2018. These are just some of the activities and events planned- there is more to come later in the year-so keep watching this space!

    I am off to the woods tomorrow  to participate in a woodland project with the Arborealists- and the sun is  promising to shine. Really looking forward to doing some Autumnal drawing and poetry.


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