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Apollo at the Ashmolean, Oxford

by Katherine Shock

I paint both in watercolour and ink in situ, attempting to capture the atmosphere and colour of the moment in Oxford, Paris and whenever I travel elsewhere.

Travelling in beautiful towns or landscape always makes me want to stop to try to capture what is so evocative about each individual place; the colour of the light reflected on mellow stone or off the sparkling water from the river, the narrow alleys that break through to magnificent set-pieces of architecture. Often I will introduce pen and ink or charcoal into a picture to add definition. I always paint the watercolours from life as it keeps the pictures fresh and vivid. By combining the gentle flow of watercolour and the quick energy of pen and ink I can try to get down on paper the way the light blends the colours or the way the quirky architectural details stand against a skyline.

I also paint in oils and acrylics in my studio, with inspiration towards more abstract work based on different themes each year.  I love this period of slower exploration of the media, finding new possibilities at every turn. 

Ipad drawings that can be produced as prints are also a direction that appeals greatly to me. They allow both for the spontaneous capturing of a moment and for the further development of ideas.


Following Art A level at school in London Katherine continued with Art evening classes in London at the Camden Institute.  She studied History of Art in Italy in Perugia in 1974 and at every subsequent opportunity in London and Oxford.
Whilst following a career as a Garden Designer she has constantly sketched and painted, taking practical classes with Steve Empsom, an Oxford artist, and selling her work first at Art Weeks venues and then at one-woman exhibitions at various Oxford sites including Sanders Print Shop in the High Street, The Vaults Café and The Feathers Hotel, Woodstock as part of Art in Woodstock 2009. She has been selling original paintings and prints of Oxford at The Oxford University Shop  for many years and hasmany greetings cards and products based on her paintings for sale in multiple venues.
In 2006/7 she took a part-time Foundation Course in Fine Art at Banbury at the Oxford and Cherwell Valley College to broaden her perspective and widen her range of tools and since then has also been experimenting with Ipad images.

I will be at two sites during Oxfordshire Artweeks:

Site 66 will be at Blackwell Cafe Nero with
The Seven Ages of Oxford from a book to be published on 1st May 'That Sweet City - Vision of Oxford' with my illustrations for the poetry of John Elinger  about Oxford, with maps to follow the sets of sites described. Throughout May.

Site 154 is in Woodstock Road and will show more paintings from the book and also oils and watercolours on the theme of 'The Jet Set' - images from the sky based on Ipad drawings done in flight. Open each day from 4-12 May.

Paintings and prints of Oxford are always available from The University of Oxford Shop in Oxford High Street.

Small watercolours of Paris can be seen at The Piano Gallery in Faringdon, Oxfordshire.