‘Go With The Flow’, Plein air, ‘challenge’ update and Zoom tuition



‘Go With The Flow’ – a watercolour conversation

For a little bit of light relief, in case you might need it….

This coming Saturday there’s a 24 hour YouTube live broadcast conversation, which along with over 100 painters I’ll be taking part in.  Including many of the world’s best known watercolour artists, it’s on June 6th starting at 11am, New Zealand time.  THE UK CONTINGENT FEATURES 8 ARTISTS AND BEGINS AT 3PM, UK TIME.  I will be chatting begin 4 & 5pm.

Here is the LIVE LINK! : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hkDrlX1c-vw&fbclid=IwAR3tZWsAcgxXNJ3KFWYw6MPAIF0F2Lbq39gE-NpytsWDvDAt4rwsgD-kXoA


The whole conversation will focus around how Covid19 has influenced watercolour artists’ practice worldwide, with personal perspectives, probably views of recent work, and maybe studio glimpses and even brief demos.  I expect I’ll just be chatting and may show some recent work, but I’m not sure yet.  It’s quite an ambitious thing, and the first time I’ve heard of such a long youtube broadcast. Should be interesting!

Some of the world’s most highly regarded watercolour artists – BIG names – are taking part in this.  Yes, I’m not sure why I was invited either.  It’s an honour to be involved alongside such brilliant painters.

If you’re unable to tune in live I believe the intention is to post a recording of the whole event to Youtube after it’s done.  Meantime, here’s a link to the youtube channel where various Intro vids are being uploaded. This one is by grandfather of world watercolour, Robert Wade:  GO WITH THE FLOW PROMO – ROBERT WADE INTRO


Recent plein Air ventures

I’ve been delayed in finishing my own new Plein Air video by things relating to the virus lockdown.  Also, now we are allowed back outdoors I’ve been thinking maybe I can record another demo to make the whole thing better, so I might wait for that opportunity; my apologies if this is annoying.

The first few paintings outdoors always require some ‘getting the eye back in’.  Here are the results of a couple of recent ventures to the outside, since we’ve been allowed.  Locations chosen because I knew I’d not be near another person.

Spring above the Chew Valley, en plein air




Oak on a byeway near Newton St Loe



And I hope to return before long to Uphill church, high on a cliff top looking over Weston-Super-Mare and the Somerset levels.  If I get the timing right to arrive with the sun in the correct place it makes a fantastic subject from various viewpoints, as well as a lovely place to be.


There were also some cows up by the church, seemingly enjoying the view.


Lockdown Challenge – Update

Thank you for sending me your versions of the challenge so far, which I will post here on a later blog as promised.  I’ve decided on a cut off date of END OF JUNE for the challenge, so you still have plenty of time.  I’ve received some really good paintings so far, including from a top artist, which was a lovely surprise.

Instead of a Youtube Livestream for my promised challenge demo I will now be recording another demo and will put it on Youtube, available to subscribers.  Many of you will know I did a recording of the boat scene in the end (available to view HERE), so this will be of the path/country scene.  Unfortunately my broadband connection is not reliable enough to guarantee a consistent, quality live stream, and I don’t want to risk people’s time tuning in only for myself to drop out! (it’s different to how the Flow thing is being done)  Since I therefore can’t take live questions I’m more than happy to take any here on my blog afterwards – should people have any.  Well, I always am!

Zoom private (one to one) tuition – now live

I’ve now started teaching one-to-one by Zoom and I’m pleased to say it works well!  Please get in touch if you’d like to book a session or see my Tuition page for more info.
Here’s a bit of feedback I’ve received:-

“Hi Jem,
Thank you so much for our watercolour session last week, I really enjoyed it and learned a lot!!
For a first session I thought it was perfect, in length and substance!  It was so useful to see the materials you use and why you use them and to have the time to ask questions etc.
The camera and sound all worked really well and I loved being able to see ‘over your shoulder’ to see what you were doing and how you made marks etc.  The techniques you showed me have already made a BIG difference to my watercolour and feeling more confident and in control of colour and mark making. As I mentioned, I’ve mainly been doing tutorials copying images in Leisure Painter etc. A few months back I discovered one of your articles. I tried to copy an image you’d painted and my attempt was AWFUL. I couldn’t find a way to build colour well. Anyway, I attempted it again after our session and there’s a significant improvement!!! Plus, I enjoyed doing it way more. It felt much more expressive. I’m yet to put this to practice in an image of my own but will do soon.”


That’s all for this time, except for another recent painting (below), this a studio painting.
I hope you’re staying well, and finding some time to enjoy painting.

All the best, Jem

Skylark.  (a studio painting)


Comments On This Post

Julian Jones 1 year ago. Reply

Hi Jem,

Thanks so much for including the, “Go with the Flow” event link. It is wonderful to see Robert Wade still going at his age. God bless him, he is a master artist. Good to hear the Zoom lessons are going well, I can see myself taking a lesson or two from you in the future when I’ve progressed somewhat more.

Take care and stay safe.

    Jem Bowden 1 year ago. Reply

    Hi Julian.
    Thanks for your comment. I hope you enjoy the event if you’re able to tune in.
    I’m looking forward to seeing some of those who come before me – but not in the middle of the night!
    Yes, Robert (or ‘BOB’ as he calls himself) is a bit of legend, isn’t he?
    Let me know if you’d like more details re. the Zoom tuition. Stay safe and all the best, Jem

Olga 1 year ago. Reply

Hi Jem,

Sorry for being stuped but how do I post my attempt at one of your lockdown challenges? I have painted the country lane twice!

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