Friday, July 8, 2016

Photos from the 23 June CANK STREET GALLERY Prize Giving Party!

Wearing the most sequined dress I could find (and leaving the shiny things all over the gallery floor!) the Cank Street Gallery Prize Giving evening on 23 June was a FABULOUS success. OK it was a couple of weeks ago now but better late than never! 
Here are my pics (thanks to Mark for taking photo instruction so well!) and THANKS TO EVERYONE WHO CAME ALONG! Thank you all for your support, now and always!

Summer Open 2016 prize winner,
Christine Johnson-Hume
Lizzy with musician Paddy Hodgkinson

Lizzy Hewitt with local artist Paul Hainsworth
Lizzy with Cank Street Gallery's Stefan
Maryam (L) with Dayle Flude, owner of
Cank Street Gallery, with Lizzy

Maryam, Dayle Flude, Lizzy & artist Jude Morrisroe

With Lizzy are L-R, Mark & Sharon Gooch & Anetha Hunte
Brother Mark took all Lizzy's photos!
(Thank you Tim for taking this pic!)
More family support: Lizzy with mum Christine
& husband John Denoon
Leicester artist Louise Ellerington with Tim Noakes & Lizzy
Cank Street Gallery was FULL for the Prize Giving!
Journalist & drummer, Michele Witthaus, Lizzy Hewitt
& singer Anetha Hunte

Maryam & Stefan announce the prize winners!
Singer Anetha and musician, Calvin
Lizzy with Leicester artist Michelle Harrison
Calvin & Lizzy
Mark Hewitt with laughing Calvin!

Anetha, Calvin, Lizzy Hewitt & Paul with daughter Nicole

Thursday, June 16, 2016

Cank Street Gallery Summer Open Expo & Prize Giving Party, 6 - 8.30pm, Thursday 23 June

It's that time of year again! Summer means gallery exhibitions & competitions and Leicester galleries are no exception!

The Cank Street Gallery has its Summer Open Exhibition from 7 June to 30 July and BIG news, my work's included! In fact (BIGGER news!) my work is featured in the Gallery window!
How cool is that?!
I was SO chuffed that I took a photo... or two...!

But before I show you the photos and my paintings included in the show, I'd also like to tell you about the Invitation Only Prize Giving Party at the gallery, 6 - 8.30pm on Thursday 23 June. So once you've voted (you are going to vote in the referendum, I hope!) come along and meet me and all the other artists featured in this year's expo!

Info about the Summer Open at Cank Street Gallery, 
                      44-46 Cank Street, Leicester LE1 5GW 
is available at

And now here are the promised photos;

Cank Street Gallery, 44-46 Cank Street, Leicester LE1 5GW

Kenny Jackson of Nottingham - & yes, that's MY picture he's looking at!

Here it is again - 'Hot Turkey Night' by Lizzy Hewitt! (If you look
closely you can see the reflection of yours truly taking the photo!)
'Hot Turkey Night', a painting of Leicester's Turkey Cafe by Lizzy Hewitt, 2016. On sale at £195.
Leicester City's Jamie Vardy prominently positioned in the window.
'Turkey a la Art Nuveau' by Lizzy Hewitt, 2016, can be found inside the gallery. £195.

It'll be TERRIFIC to see you at the Summer Exhibition - so DO COME along! All the details you'll need are on the Cank Street Gallery website, which also features a WONDERFUL sketch of Leicester City supporters at the King Power Stadium!
'As Yet Untitled' print by Simon Farrow, 2016. Featured at Cank Street Gallery, Leicester.

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

The Foxes win the League! Leicester City FC team heroes!

The people of Leicester city (which now includes the entirety of Leicestershire, if numbers are are anything to go by) were all out celebrating the AMAZING win by the Foxes of their first top-level football championship, the 2015-2016 Football League! 
It was an historic occasion so I joined the tens of thousands of enthusiastic fans watching the Champions arrive at Leicester's Victoria Park on their open-top bus, League cup, goal-scorers, managers, sponsors and all. Even the sun was suitably impressed and shone throughout a glorious day! 


All photos © Lizzy Hewitt.

Sunday, March 27, 2016

Leicester's Turkey Café - experimentation with paper & paint

Leicester's Turkey Café by Lizzy Hewitt © 2016
For the longest time I've been seeking to develop my watercolour technique. It's possibly the most difficult of mediums to apply well and I've known many artists give up and turn to another!

Practice, using different quantities of water 
on the paper.
When it came to painting one of Leicester's oldest and most historic buildings, the Turkey Café, I decided to treat the subject as a learning exercise. I hope you agree the effort was worthwhile!

I wanted a new painting surface so chose a new paper, an attractively smooth HP (hot pressed) art paper that my dip pen slid around on in a satisfying manner and is ideal for illustration. But a session with YouTube tutorials explained it was the most difficult paper for watercolour work as the paint simply sits on the surface!

What I really needed was a textured NOT or Cold Pressed paper where the paint had something to cling to. Unfortunately I'd already produced an ink drawing and ordered another box of 10 sheets of the HP so I was forced to get to grips with it, no matter what the limitations!

Practice, endless notes on colour matching 
& paint granulation.
Experimenting, I used both sides of every sheet. For my first attempts I did some black and white pre-drawings, glazing with ink to get the tones I wanted, just as one does with watercolour;
'Watercolour is about painting the shadows. The lightest colour in watercolour painting is the light of the paper. The contours are established by your drawing - the glaze is what builds a bridge between the light and the contours'. Felix Scheinberger, Urban Watercolour Sketching.
There are tried & tested watercolour techniques, available nowadays as YouTube videos & tutorials. It's possible to be as traditional or as loose and contemporary as you want, but disregard the basics & you’ll get into a mess (as I did!)

In the early weeks I experienced many problems with my new HP paper, particularly when excess water spread into thicker paint, creating an unattractive cauliflower effect! Another of my initial problems was over-wetting the paper so that I wasn't able to control the paint. It's all trial & error and one leans from one's mistakes.

Practice, using water to obtain the paint 
coverage & hue needed.
The paint quality also needs to be considered. In the past I used Winsor & Newton's Cotman affordable (student) paints but more recently I've invested in professional quality watercolours. You have to know what you want; I went into an art supplies shop for ultramarine paint only a month or two ago and was surprised to see three different professional versions on the shelf! All contained the same PB 29 pigment but because of the range of hue, it's possible to purchase 'deep', 'red', 'green' or 'French'! Totally confusing unless one knows exactly what one wants!

In the end making a painting is a series of decisions; there's much to think about yet one is always trying to be spontaneous. This isn't always easy. For me, one of the most troublesome considerations is deciding on focal points, how best to lead the viewer’s eye around the picture and then linking colour within the image. It takes practice to do this well and the only way to achieve consistently good results is to practice, practice & practice!
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

"Unlike almost every other city in the UK, Leicester has retained a remarkable record of its past in buildings that still stand today" BBC News, Jan 2011.
Leicester's Turkey Café - night version
by Lizzy Hewitt 
© 2016
One such is the Turkey Café. Situated in Leicester's Granby Street, the Turkey Café was built in 1900. Set over three floors its façade puns both Turkey, the country, & turkey birds, with a stunning Art Nouveau frontage of Eastern-styled architecture plus three large & prominent turkeys, one set to either side of the lower shop front & a third clothed in colourful Royal Doulton tiles at the mid-point of the roof.

Art Nouveau was hugely popular at the time the Turkey Café was built. The façade was constructed using tiles, hollow blocks & a type of terracotta called carraraware, a matt-glazed stoneware developed in 1888 by the Royal Doulton Company. 

Stability was visually implied by arches, the number decreasing floor by floor, from seven on the first to three on the upper, surmounted by the third, final, lone turkey. The building was coloured blue, green & buff, to maximise the appreciation of all design elements.

Opened as a café in 1901, in the years since the building has undergone upgrades and renovations and housed various commercial premises. It is now Grade ll listed, once again a café & bar, with friendly staff & fabulous cocktails! I wholeheartedly recommend a visit!

Leicester's Granby Street & the Turkey Café - early evening
by Lizzy Hewitt 
© 2016

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

RIP David Bowie

RIP David Bowie, the Spider from Mars aka The Man Who Fell to Earth.
My beloved Ziggy Stardust left this life from New York City on 10 January.
A talent beyond reckoning, a creative genius whose music changed lives for the better.
Rest in peace, my Prince.
David Bowie performing in Hartford, Conn., in 1995. Bowie died Sunday after battling cancer for 18 months.
Bob Child/AP

Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Wishing you a happy sketching New Year!

Like many of you, I've been rushed off my feet in the run-up to the festive season. Now that's over and done with I have a lousy cold that's preventing me from getting on with ideas for new commissions. Honestly! (It's true I tell you!)

I've managed to do a bit of reading while resting and so recommend two books from the Apple Press urban sketching series, Sketch Your World by James Hobbs and Archisketcher by Simone Ridyard. Great reading, some fabulous pictures & even more terrific ideas for anyone wishing to improve their sketching skills in the urban environment.

Published by Apple Press, UK, 2014
Pub. Apple Press,UK,2014  ISBN 978-1-84543-514-1

Working tangentially, as I invariably do, I followed my reading by checking author websites. James Hobbs' online presence is particularly impressive, being both educational and entertaining as befits a former editor of Artists & Illustrators magazine & a founder member of London Urban Sketchers. His work has inspired me to get out and do more sketching, just as soon as I come out from under my duvet!

Happy urban sketching 
& all best wishes for 2016! 

Thursday, October 22, 2015

Successful Special View at Leicester's Cank Street Gallery

What a fantastic evening we had at Cank Street Gallery on 15th of this month! The special view of the gallery's Open Exhibition for 2015 was wonderful and very different, with a wide variety of artworks by artists, sculptors & craftspeople from the Leicestershire area.

The range of work was genuinely fascinating, from tiny sculptures to large scale multi-media installations, still life, portraits, landscapes and abstracts available to purchase.

The evening was thoroughly enjoyed by the many people who attended, the friends, family & admirers of exhibitors, art buyers, local curators and the occasional celebrity.

Dayle Flude, the Gallery owner, was delighted with the turnout and with the friendly, positive atmosphere, which continued all evening. It was one of those parties where everyone was happy to be in attendance :)

Leicester's Cank Street Gallery's Open Exhibition remains open until the end of October.

A gratifying crowd at Cank Street Gallery special view on 15 October
Artist Lizzy Hewitt with gallery owner Dayle Flude 
With well known Leicester artist, Peter Welton
Lizzy with members of Cank Street Gallery staff
Lizzy Hewitt with fellow Leicester artist Louise Ellerington (2R)& friends

Lizzy and Max
Family resemblance? Lizzy Hewitt with mum
Christine Denoon

Lizzy's brother Mark & local jazz musician
Andrew Wood
Leicester hairdresser & art collector,
Indy, with Anetha & Lizzy Hewitt
Always admiring of Lizzy's artwork,
Glen & Jacqui Tillyard
Lizzy's friends Tim & Calvin demonstrate their support