|Annie Williams demonstrating a still life in watercolour - developed in the Mall Galleries|
Annie Williams RWS RE RBA is one of my very favourite contemporary artists. She works in watercolour and also creates etchings. Her works to my mind are a masterclass in draughtsmanship, design and colour balance. She mixes a realistic approach to her still life objects with an appreciation of more abstracted shapes and forms which she creates from a collage of torn paper and cuttings which create a backdrop to her objects.
She told me her use of colour is intuitive, she doesn't plan it. In which case, in my view her intuition is very sophisticated and impeccable!
Below are photographs of Annie Williams at work on the still life she was using for her demonstration. The painting was developed between 11am and 3pm - and these photos were taken at 1.45pm.
At home she has a shelf in front of where she sits, which is higher than in the photograph, on which the still life is arranged. She also has a window off to the left and her work is normally completed in natural light.
Below you can see her palette. Annie uses Winsor and Newton watercolour paints and for this painting was using the RWS Bicentenary 300gsm Hotpress handmade paper which is made by John Purcell Paper. The typical size of her paintings is 40 x 50cm.
She's applying a very washy wash over the areas she has blocked in - from top to bottom of the page and around the still life objects. This serves to knock back the background.
|Note the large wells to provide a wash and the type of brush used|
Note the still life setup and how she creates a collage of paper for a background. Note also that her paper is not taped down.
|Annie Williams - at work on the detail|
Annie told me that she normally does not do a preliminary sketch. I'm guessing that as an extremely experienced artist she knows what works - although she confessed she had her fair share of paintings which hasn't! It's always nice to know what even very good artists have paintings which don't work.
However she does do sketchbook studies for her etchings. I was able to view a sketchbook which was simply stunning. Amazing pencil drawings which were works of art on their own.
These are her works in the show
|Works by Annie Williams - larger works are watercolours, smaller works are etchings|
copyright the artist
- Watercolours (40 x 50cm) £700: Red Still Life; Still Life with a Present from Shirley; Pots and Doodles (Sold)
- Etchings: Impromptu; Variation on a Theme (Sold); There's Another in the Shed Somewhere (Sold). Her etchings are also available unframed
The exhibition continues until 1pm on Saturday 10th March.