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A Brief History of Painting With Ray Hewitt


In 2016, I was invited to become a member of the TMPS after winning a section in the Alice Bale Scholarship Award with a portrait.

It has been quite a journey from the late 70’s to this day. First starting classes with Lance McNeil then on to the Victorian Artists Society with Shirley Bourne. This was along with many years in life drawing. I felt that Shirley was a task master with her no nonsense approach, but I knew that was the direction I wanted to go. She insisted that everything should be painted from life and plein air. Everything was done with patches of paint at the correct tone and colour.

Plein air painting is what I really enjoy, I have done two painting trips overseas. Cornwall, one year and France another. That was mainly to enjoy the company of other painters. All the paintings were quite small but there were enough to have two successful exhibitions out of them.

Painting plein air can be quite an experience at times. There have been plenty of strange happenings. One was when we were painting at Daylesford and the farmer pulled up and got stuck into us for painting the view across his farm. He might own the land but not the view, anyway we packed up and left to keep him happy.  Another was when we went to Eildon, getting set up to paint I discovered I had forgotten to pack my easel, luckily my paints and brushes were in another bag. As you can see in the photo below I solved the problem. I’m sure many artists have been in similar situations.

Living in Newport all my life gives me plenty of subjects to paint. From boats to the industrial complexes west of here.

My advice to anyone interested in learning to paint is go to an art class a learn technique and paint as much as you can. It’s a long road but you will enjoy every minute of it.

Problem solved.

En Plein Air.