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Barbara Thaxter

I spent the first adult years of my life as a cartographer, followed by forty years as a nursery/ infant teacher while raising a family. It is only since retiring I have had time to follow my love of drawing, and cautiously to venture into painting. It was a natural progression to move into pastels, inspired by painting our home-bred foal. I was then requested by friends to paint their animals.

Workshops with Trevor Waugh developed an awareness of the vibrancy that can be created in a painting by the selective use of colour. My early animals involved painting black horses, grey horses, white and so on. These days they involve a multitude of colours, but rarely black! I am very aware of the importance of tonal values, getting great pleasure from producing a painting with strong lights and darks. I love to paint sunlight and shadow, and try to create a ‘feel good factor’ in my paintings.

I also love achieving individual personalities in the eyes of both animals and human portraits. I greatly enjoy the challenge of creating a painting from several sources. These days, I work mostly in oil, pastel or acrylic.