Jane is an Oxford based artist. She did not do any formal training in Art, but has painted all her life from an early age. She grew up in Wiltshire surrounded by apple trees, and was encouraged by her mother who shared her love of art. Together they sat on beaches and hillsides and painted on family holidays. After school Jane went to Nottingham University and obtained a BA in Theology and Philosophy, and an MA in Theology. She worked as a neighbourhood Community Worker in Coventry, A Development Worker for Oxfordshire Mind, and brought up two sons, while painting in the evenings and on holiday. Eventually she was able to build a studio at the bottom of the garden and devote more time to painting.
I have painted all my life, and mainly work in oil or pastel. When painting in oil I use either brushes or palette knives and enjoy experiencing the different effects that media and methods can bring. It is exciting to follow the ways the medium takes me and I enjoy changing from one to the other. My work is therefore quite varied, depending on the medium I am using. Pastels can produce wonderful lacy and delicate patterns of branches and the spaces in between, or the broken colour on the surface of pears and onions. A palette knife can be more dramatic, producing strong clear shapes and colour.
The subjects I paint always come from the things I see around me. Every day I see objects and vistas that make pictures; cycling from place to place in Oxford, walking by the river and in the fields, or working at the allotment, or when I am on holiday. Constant themes for me are winter light in Oxford streets, patterns made by winter trees or wires, and the happy juxtaposition of shapes, spaces, light, and colour. I also paint fruit and vegetables and enjoy the discipline of working on a still life.
My working method is usually to do sketches when something appeals to me, and to remember the impact and the picture in my head. I sometimes take reference photos too, usually for architecture, but it is the picture in my head that matters. I then work on it in the studio. However, persuaded by my son (artist Benjamin Hope
) I have also dipped my toe into plein air painting, which is quite a challenge.