An artist’s love affair with the rugged Swaledale breed of sheep – country life

RACE HARDY: One of Sandra Parker’s many striking images of Swaledale sheep – a breed that fascinates her and her clients.

Sandra Parker opened her Barnard Castle high street gallery selling her sheep paintings in the spring of 2017. The business has grown steadily. Journalist Wendy Short went to meet him

SANDRA Parker’s works hang on the walls of countless homes in many countries around the world, and she has been surprised at the diversity of customers who visit the gallery and those who purchase original paintings and prints through her online store.

Ms Parker specializes in paintings of sheep, particularly the Swaledale breed, but over time she has added local landscapes to the background.

“When I started, I imagined that I would sell my paintings exclusively to people with a special interest in sheep,” Ms. Parker explains. “However, the Swaledale sheep is an iconic image and many people who visit the area like to have something to remind them of a memorable vacation. The popularity of the breed is amazing and some of my clients just find their appearance very attractive.

“I have also increased the number of commissions I have taken in recent years and have painted several pictures of herds in their native hill environment.

“A painting I recently completed was requested as a gift from a breeder who has a long established Swaledale line and the farm was used as a backdrop.”

A self-taught artist, Ms. Parker has always loved to paint and has worked with oil paints for nearly two decades. She has her own large library of photographs to work with because she says “sheep don’t stay still long enough”.

She adds, “I booked a formal art class, but the tutor took the brush from me and painted over my work, which I found very off-putting. Therefore, I only attended three sessions and then gave up. My solution was to keep practicing until I found a technique that suited me.

“I usually use an oil canvas paper, but I will prepare my own boards when the weather permits. Acrylic paint is interesting, but the oils give my work depth and richness of color. But they’re not used in the traditional way, as I prefer a much thinner consistency. I use Griffin brand oil paints, which dry quickly.

“Some artists will work on more than one oil painting at a time, but I can’t work this way because I find that I can only focus on one image at a time. I usually go about my household chores while I wait for each diaper to dry.

Ms Parker moved to Teesdale after operating at a gallery in Kirkby Stephen.

Born on a farm in Nidderdale, she was involved in managing the family’s Swaledale herd when she was growing up. After trying a number of different jobs, she recently worked as a civilian in the North Yorkshire Police Department.

Although she does not have her own herd, she has always loved sheep.

“The Swaledale is the breed I knew best from my childhood and it has always appealed to me. I love its character – there is a particular challenge to its appearance and the wool and the markings are very attractive. Swaledales are interesting to paint and interesting to grow and they also fit well into the local landscape.

“When I started to paint in earnest, I experimented with a range of subjects. Sheep were usually featured, but I also took pictures of landscapes and wildflowers.

“However, when I took examples of my work to a gallery in Muker, the owner said he could see the potential in the paintings of sheep and asked me to bring half a dozen of them. he would exhibit. They sold out quickly and I decided to focus on the sheep – I very rarely paint anything else these days. I also painted Rough Fells, Texels and Herdwicks to order.

Her husband, retired Metropolitan Police Officer Phil Appleby, is the face behind the counter at Sandra Parker Studio, as she works from home in her studio near Greta Bridge.

Over time, she expanded the studio’s product line and included work by Judith Walker, Steff Ottevanger, and Jason Lowes, among others.

His latest project is the writing of a hardback tabletop book, which will feature a number of his paintings, as well as details of his journey from amateur artist to professional artist. Two important new figures who have been the subject of recent paintings will also appear in the book, titled “Sit Theesen Down”. They are Dot and Betty, a pair of Swaledale sheep named after Mrs. Parker’s mother and aunt.

“I’ve always wanted to write a book and I had a little printed flyer that people could pick up from the gallery,” she says. “It was very popular and several clients suggested that I take a more formal approach and write a book about my work, so I took up the challenge.

“I made public that I will be launching the new book at my painting exhibition at Richmond Station in October, which prompted me to finish it before then.” fast drying.

“Some artists will work on more than one oil painting at a time, but I can’t work this way because I find that I can only focus on one image at a time. I usually go about my household chores while I wait for each diaper to dry.

Ms Parker moved to Teesdale after operating at a gallery in Kirkby Stephen.

Born on a farm in Nidderdale, she was involved in managing the family’s Swaledale herd when she was growing up. After trying a number of different jobs, she recently worked for the North Yorkshire Police Department as a civilian.

Although she does not have her own herd, she has always loved sheep.

“The Swaledale is the breed I knew best from my childhood and it has always appealed to me. I love its character – there is a particular challenge to its appearance and the wool and the markings are very attractive. Swaledales are interesting to paint and interesting to grow and they also fit well into the local landscape.

“When I started to paint in earnest, I experimented with a range of subjects. Sheep were usually featured, but I also took pictures of landscapes and wildflowers.

“However, when I took examples of my work to a gallery in Muker, the owner said he could see the potential in the paintings of sheep and asked me to bring half a dozen of them. he would exhibit. They sold out quickly and I decided to focus on the sheep – I very rarely paint anything else these days. I also painted Rough Fells, Texels and Herdwicks to order.

Her husband, retired Metropolitan Police Officer Phil Appleby, is the face behind the counter at Sandra Parker Studio, as she works from home in her studio near Greta Bridge.

Over time, she expanded the product line in the Horsemarket studio and included work by Judith Walker, Steff Ottevanger, and Jason Lowes, among others.

His latest project is the writing of a hardback tabletop book, which will feature a number of his paintings, as well as details of his journey from amateur artist to professional artist. Two important new figures who have been the subject of recent paintings will also appear in the book, titled “Sit Theesen Down”. They are Dot and Betty, a pair of Swaledale sheep named after Mrs. Parker’s mother and aunt.

“I’ve always wanted to write a book and I had a little printed flyer that people could pick up from the gallery,” she says. “It was very popular and several clients suggested that I take a more formal approach and write a book about my work, so I took up the challenge. I made public that I will be launching the new book at my painting exhibition at Richmond Station in October, which prompted me to finish it before then.


Source link

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *