Spotlight on: Sally Lancaster

by Lisa Doherty 27. April 2018 09:00

Sally Lancaster is a Devon-based artist who specialises in figurative art. She is largely self-taught, and her paintings focus on movement, muscle, motion and tone.

She recently appeared on the global TV show Colour in your Life, which takes an in-depth look at her paintings and shows Sally at work in her studio. The programme also looks at how artists, in general, manage the ongoing process of selling their work.

One thing that’s made clear in the show is that great painting takes time and patience. So, looking at Sally’s art in a bit more detail, we show you what’s involved when artists go through the creative and artistic process.

Figurative work

Having started her career painting pet portraits, Sally moved on to focus on equestrian art - predominantly studies of racing, dressage and polo horses that were captured in motion to highlight muscle tone and light and shade.

In recent years, however, she has moved away from equine art to focus more on figurative studies, which includes dancers. Again, like horses, the human body enables her to capture motion and form, as well as light and shade.

Curvation by the artist Sally Lancaster

Curvation by Sally Lancaster

To enhance the figurative form, Sally captures bodies in ‘stretched’ or elongated poses, which really enhances their build and highlights the detail and honed musculature of the subject’s body. Not only that, but the fact that Sally portrays figures mid-movement really makes the viewer want to imagine what they’re going to do next.

Material Feeling by Sally Lancaster
Material Feeling by Sally Lancaster

In order to capture the movement and muscle of her subjects, Sally holds a photoshoot in a local theatre hall and, through the use of blackout blinds, she puts the space into darkness in order to control the light source and enhance the variations between light and shade.

Sally then directs the model to move into positions and angles that will make for strong and compelling subject matter. Once the shoot is done, she then sorts through the images to create a portfolio, or shortlist, of potential paintings.

Reach by Sally Lancaster
Reach by Sally Lancaster

The creative process

Once Sally has chosen an image from the shoot, she then gets to work on creating her art. As you can imagine, this much detail doesn’t come out on the canvas overnight, so, on average, her paintings take over a month to produce.

The reason for this is because not only does she have to draw and paint the figure, but also work on the intricacies involved in light and shade, which can be very complex. And there’s a lot more to light and shade than black and white.

In fact, there are many shades, well, in shade. For example, if the subject is placed against a blue backdrop, then these colours will manifest themselves in various tones on the figure or surrounding areas.

To help capture this and help her gauge colours, Sally works alongside a large monitor with the photo of the subject on display. This enables her to zoom in and out of detail and clearly pick-up these tonal shades.

You can see this detail in ‘Fragile Transparency’ where the dancer is shrouded by a veil, so not only does Sally have to capture the dancer’s form, but also the light and shade in the folds of the veil. Trust us, this is not an easy task!

Fragile Transparency by Sally Lancaster
Fragile Transparency by Sally Lancaster

Interiors focus

As is common practice with most artists, Sally looks to exhibit her paintings wherever possible. She currently has her work on display at Lympstone Manor, which is owned by Michelin starred chef, Michael Caines.

Sally Lancaster's work on display at Lympstone Manor

A display of Sally Lancaster's work at Lympstone Manor

If you’re thinking of buying one of Sally’s paintings and you’re in the Devon area – or you’re even going to stay at the Manor - then this is a great opportunity to see how her paintings look from an interiors perspective.

As you can see in the photo, the copper tones and creams of the bar area really help make the painting stand out and be a striking focal point in the room. It’s also positioned in a way to make a great talking point while at the bar.

Seeing a painting in real-life, or in situ, can really help with the decision-making process and help you see it from a different perspective as well, so getting to see an artist’s work ‘in the flesh’, or using a room visualiser, can make all the difference.

Price range

With this much detail and skill, Sally’s paintings start from around £2,000 and up into the £5,000 price range. Our premier Artists are carefully selected and are noted for their outstanding work and reputation, so their work is priced accordingly. All Sally’s paintings are sold with frames, which does save on the additional cost of having to go to a framer.

Sally’s reputation is growing year on year, and she is a highly respected and regarded artist. With that in mind, purchasing her work could be viewed as a long-term investment. Not to mention that the subject matter will always be of interest to people and it’s hard to tire of looking at her work.

There are ways you can invest and own one of her paintings, however, such as the Own Art scheme, which can help you make those dream purchases with interest-free monthly instalments.

We are proud to say we are part of the scheme, so if you’re thinking of buying one of Sally’s paintings, then get in contact and let’s see how we can help.

Final note. Calling all male dancers!

Currently, Sally uses a female dancer for her paintings, but she is also keen to focus on figurative studies of the male form. If anybody knows a male dancer that would be happy to pose, then get in contact. They will be captured permanently on canvas and become a work of art, an amazing opportunity!


Art Galleries | Artists | Artists Corner | Buying Art | The Art World

Diane Griffiths

by Gordon Smith 20. November 2017 15:47

Essentially a landscape artist, abstracts, flora and animals also feature in my work. During my early schooldays I was encouraged to develop a perceived talent in art, a subject I then studied throughout GCSE and A-levels.

However at university I had to consider my career and studied Media and Business, then moving to London to work within the Media Industry. Now based in Kent and whilst holding down a full-time job in London, my world of art has exploded after having many exhibitions in Kent and East Sussex over 2008 and now in 2009 continues to grow strongly.

My Painting: The landscapes I paint are based on places I have been; I use experience and memories as my starting point, however I am fascinated by pushing the contours of a beautiful landscape into the whimsical and the truly magical.

I don't try to re-create images, photography is more than apt at doing that, but push the scene a little further with the imagination. Although I like to try many different styles I feel that Impressionism has always been the strongest influence in my work.

I am a very visual person; nothing gives me more satisfaction than colour, shape, texture and light. I am constantly amazed by the power of colour, how different it can look depending light and adjacent colours. It isn't about representation; it's about so much more.

To me painting is escapism; it allows real thinking time away from the grindstone. I will finish some paintings faster than others when my thoughts are racing, my brush keeps pace. Alternatively it can be a time to let my brain slow down, my focus can turn fully to the painting and I will shut everything else out.

I couldn't say if one state of mind achieves better than the other, it's all emotion and it's all part of life. Once I have signed the painting, I know I am not allowed to touch it with a paintbrush again. The perfectionist inside me would quite simply never want to stop.

My Art: I aim to inspire the resources of your mind and achieve a genuine moment of 100% attention. If you find that I have interrupted your world, even if only for that single moment, then I will be satisfied. To me art is about giving something magical to the viewer; shapes, colours and textures all spark off the imagination, the brain and senses are stimulated, prompting emotions way beyond the visual representation.

It's about appetite, stimulation, fascination, and infatuation. No two brush strokes can ever be the same, no two paintings will ever match, and that is my inspiration."

Go icon Diane Griffiths's gallery »


Artists Corner | Being an Artist

Humph Hack's Love Of Buildings

by Aileen Mitchell 4. January 2017 10:44

When I was studying "A" level art, part of the course was the history of architecture. I had never really thought much about buildings before that. They provided shelter, warmth; a living space and in most cases that was all there was to it.

My mind was changed and my eyes were opened by the works of architects like Gaudi, Frank Lloyd Wright and Le Corbusier. In each case it was the exterior of the buildings which excited me. I determined to study architecture and spent many hours sketching the exterior of fantastic houses – many split-level in construction.

The Cathedral - Opus 2 by Humph Hack
The Cathedral - Opus 2 by Humph Hack

My parents were delighted with my career plans. I did a week of work experience in an architects’ office – and hated it. Most people spent all their time deciding on which side the doors should hinge or how deep to make the skirting boards; and everybody talked “cost reduction” all day long. The day I applied to college of art in Birmingham, my parents thought I was going to an interview at the local Architecture college but I was headed for the Fine Art Department of the College of Art. On my return in the evening, the answer to my parents’ questions about how I got on was...“There’s good news and bad news!!”

I successfully completed my degree in Fine Art and a further year to train to teach but maintained my interest in the outward appearance of buildings. After I retired from teaching I decided to use my new found freedom to travel and collect ideas for paintings of interesting architecture.

Malvern Priory From the Hills by Humph Hack
Malvern Priory From the Hills by Humph Hack

I have visited many European countries seeking out buildings which excite me. I take multiple photographs and on returning to my studio seek out those which express the nature of a particular building best and amalgamate several to form the basis of my painted composition. I hope to emphasise aspects of the texture, colour and scale of a building – ignoring or reducing the impact of irrelevant detail and concentrating on those elements which make the building unique.

I have little or no idea of how a painting will look when finished, as I attack the bare canvas! I have found that the technique works as well for domestic architecture as it does for the grand public edifice –as long as the subject matter excites me in some tangible way. I have sold steadily on the internet and through exhibitions. My work is held by collectors throughout the UK and Europe.

Little Malvern Court - Worcestershire by Humph Hack
Little Malvern Court - Worcestershire by Humph Hack

I have been particularly pleased with the website which gives me a chance to exhibit my work to a wide audience – and how rewarding it is when you get the sort of response that I received from a very satisfied customer whose feedback is the latest to be posted on the testimonial page.

So, where to next on my travels – well, I know little of Germany apart from Berlin and my visits to Italy are limited to Rome and Venice. There is much of Europe and Eastern Europe in particular which remains to be explored. And the UK always has surprises round the corner. I shall not run out of exciting subject matter. My wife with whom I travel shares my excitement in buildings and miraculously we are lucky enough to live in a split-level house which could have been the subject of my adolescent dreams.

Humph Hack

Humph Hack's art gallery »


Artists | Artists Corner | Being an Artist


by Aileen Mitchell 15. August 2016 09:00

An interview with Andrew Reid Wildman

Photography of urban scenes draws me. I am attracted by its realism, its resonance with everyday life in all its shades. When I see a photograph of a rundown shop or a derelict building, it sets off a chorus of emotion in me; sadness, recognition, familiarity, nostalgia, mystery, danger even. However I need to be able to engage with the photograph and this is why I use a technique I describe as “photofusionism.”

Andrew Reid Wildman

In photofusionism, I use the photograph as a starting point, the core of reality that cannot be changed. I am fascinated by the borders of reality, the point at which it blurs into perception. For me the work really starts to come alive at the edges of the photograph. I seek to fuse the painting and photograph in nearly every work I do, in order to create unity of reality and perception.

When I choose my scenes, I look for an underlying sense of nostalgia. On a deep level, I identify with my buildings; their loneliness (I never paint people in my urban work), the feeling of gradual decay and ageing, their world weariness, their emptiness and sadness but also their solidity, their resilience and timelessness.

I see great beauty in urban scenes; the glory of red brick Victoriana, the solid ochre and limestone colour of stone, the corrugated iron and rusting metal of windows. I love the peeling plaster work of stucco and the black, inky texture of hot tar. My works tend to focus on places of great personal significance to me. For instance many of my photofusionist works depict Yorkshire. As a young child I remember the thrill of visiting Hull with its endless streets of tatty Victorian terraces, many of them already condemned and empty. I also remember the joy of York’s medieval buildings and the promise of cakes and toys.

In London, I constantly return to Maison Berteux, an old fashioned Soho cake shop with striking stucco that makes me want to paint it again and again. Other favourites are Edinburgh and Glasgow and London’s Brick Lane, all with their fair share of urban danger.

I very often add collage to my photofusionist works as I find this makes the work really come alive. I choose collage materials from lost decades, the 50s, 60’s and 70’s. This material connects me to the building and gives the work a soul. The cheery idealism of advertising draws me and cheers me, softening the sharpness of time lost with its eternal simplicity.


Artists | Artists Corner | Being an Artist

Using Art to Transform Small Spaces

by Aileen Mitchell 15. January 2016 12:02

Interview with artist Diana Shaul

As an artist, I love to create pictures that tell a story, and the greatest compliment I ever receive is when someone tells me that my art has moved them in some way. That is the magic of art: it can capture a moment that instantly transports you to another world, right where you stand - and even in a small space, the right artwork can give you a little of that magic.

Big paintings work well as centrepieces in big spaces - in a lobby or over a fireplace or a sofa - and they can instantly give a room personality and set the mood.

But smaller works can transform a small space - whether a single small drawing that hangs over a reading nook or desk and inspires, or a collection of works that line a hall or stairwell and together tell a story or lend warmth and colour to a den or snug. I cherish this idea, and as a result I often choose to create smaller works of art - whether little cartoons that might make a visitor to the downstairs cloakroom smile, or beautiful paintings to transform a dark little cranny and fill it with colour.

One of the best displays of art I have seen in a small place was in a hallway of a small flat, where a collection of small, colourful watercolours had been displayed at an upward angle leading from the entrance door to the flat. They were framed in simple wooden frames that did not distract from their impact, and they lent a sense of space, brightness and colour to a previously uninteresting and poorly lit space. Although the artworks did not share a subject, they all expressed a sense of freedom, in a brilliant reflection of their owner's personality. (I must admit here that my family and I liked this idea so much that we have shamelessly copied it in our own home!)

If you only have a small space, it's more important than ever to choose the right artwork for you. There are no rules - only that you find something that you love!

Go icon Diana Shaul's gallery »


Artists Corner | Buying Art

Interview with Photographer Andrew Fyfe

by Aileen Mitchell 2. February 2014 09:00

Andrew, could you tell us a little about how you got interested in photography?

In 2004, good quality digital pocket cameras became reasonably affordable and being without a camera to take family shots, I bought a small Minolta. While on a walk taking pictures of the family and the lovely countryside I live in, I discovered I really liked taking outdoor shots. At this point, I bought a copy of Practical Photography as it contained an article on one hundred tips to better photography, so I bought a copy and purchased the prosumer digital camera they recommended at the time, namely a 6MP Fuji Finepix S7000. After about six months of learning the ropes of landscape photography, mainly by experience, I began to get results as you see them on I now use a digital SLR camera to capture the scenes.

What are your favourite subjects?

Water and Skies have to be the number one elements in many of the scenes I capture, I really think the UK is amazing in its diversity as far as subjects for landscape photography are concerned and there are mountains, rivers, forests, castles, brides, ancient monuments and any number of other great subjects to choose from.

You seem to relish the light of early morning and late evening – how do you ensure you capture the right moments?

There is only one answer to this and it is to find a location that has all the elements you want to photograph in it, water, sand, pebbles and then to determine whether it is more likely to be a morning or an evening shot. Once you have done this, you simply turn up at the right time, set up and wait to see what unfolds before you. It could take as long as a week to get an image that you are happy with and reflects the true potential of a location. You really must enjoy the experience for its own sake and be prepared to walk away from a scene with no pictures taken. I may only press the shutter release once to capture a scene. Planning and patience I think.

Your photographs on are of superb quality – what’s the secret?

It’s taken a long time to work out how to translate an image held on a computer to one that looks lovely as prints. To select the fine art paper that I currently use, I had to print an image on around thirty different papers to judge which one I personally preferred most. The James Cropper paper isn’t fully textured, but isn’t perfectly smooth either and the photographs look absolutely superb on it. I also use other papers and mediums also, from photographic paper, Cibachrome prints to Canvas and people even have my work as wallpaper covering a full wall in their homes.

Have you any plans to produce larger versions of your photos for those who would like to make a real centerpiece of your work?

At present, I offer my work immediately as fine art prints on the fine art paper, as larger prints on photographic paper and as Cibachrome prints and also as larger canvas blocks. These are only examples of mediums and sizes that I am happy to work with and if someone would like a print that is for example 60"x40" on fine art paper or canvas or any other printable medium, I can do this as I have through the time learnt who to work within the printing industry and who can translate my vision of a final piece into reality.

How does photography sit alongside original paintings and sculptures as “art”?

My own personal view is that a photograph as seen in for example my own work takes a great deal of artistic and technical thought and a great deal of perseverance to create even a single example and then that work can never be replicated exactly so is totally unique to that moment. The great difficulty and joy of photography is that you can’t just make it up; the scene actually has to exist in reality even if only for a few seconds for it to become a great piece of art. I think educated collectors understand this and treat really great photography as first class art, which can fetch five figure sums for work like you see on as limited editions. I cite the current lovely work of Elizabeth Carmel, whose limited edition prints go for up to £4000 each. Poor landscape photography isn’t art, it produces pictures not artwork.

Why did you choose to exhibit your works on the website?

It’s great to find an online art gallery that feels like a bricks and mortar gallery, with real people that don’t hide behind the scenes, but who take the time to interact with artists and collectors alike, I simply say look at our conversation here as proof of that. I've never had this level of attention from an online gallery before. It’s great to be able to show my UK scenes on a British website. and being technical about it, it currently lists in the top ten under Google for an "Art" search worldwide.'s relationship with its clients and the trust built up over the last few years will mean that that my work will be purchased with absolute confidence, not to mention great value.

Finally, what subjects are you planning to photograph over the next few weeks?

Given what I have said already, I plan my photography over years as a single year can yield fewer images than fit on a traditional roll of film, from even fewer locations. My aim over the next ten years is to continue to capture the beauty of the UK landscape which is more than a lifetime’s ambition, extending the subjects and locations – I’ve barely started.

Andrew Fyfe, photographer of Essex talking about his love of photography to


Artists Corner | Being an Artist

Martin Rolt - The ONE Show

by Aileen Mitchell 1. January 2014 09:00

As an Artist, we are continually searching for the opportunity to display and exhibit (and maybe sell) the work of which we are most proud, in the anticipation that this will be the show that makes the difference.

The show that sets us on the path to recognition and greater future success. Constantly searching for new openings. The galleries......the rejections. “Am I not good enough.......what are they looking for, what do they want?" Swiftly followed by hours (sometimes days) of rejection flashbacks and despondency. And then the recovery....."what do they know anyway, do they not recognize borderline genius when they see it?" kicks in......and on to the next. Because the next could be 'THE one'.

Then there are the endless hours spent at the solo and collective exhibitions. Very occasionally bringing great financial reward, sometimes small reward and sometimes/often no reward at all. But always rewarding at a human level, with plentiful and interesting conversation with admirers, fellow artists and 'would be' customers. Contacts abound and friendships are made and renewed. This may sound familiar to other artists...."few or no sales at all, just about covered my costs or maybe I didn't quite manage that either"......but hey, I met some great people. And next time could be 'THE one'.

The Art competitions. Why did my work not get chosen as a finalist?.......and THAT did? Aaaaaarrrgghhhhh......on to the next.

Splashing out on Prints, Cards, T.Shirts and other great ideas to promote my work. Someone is bound to recognize the potential genius in me....aren't they?

Websites. I have my own, haven't we all. But is anyone looking? And why should they? I guess not too many potential art lovers and buyers are sitting at their PC or laptop right now and thinking to themselves "I need to search for art.... I know, I'll randomly search under Martin Rolt Brighton Artist'. You get my drift?

And then there is this alleged credit crunch, sent to test our resolve................Aaaaarrrggghhhhh.!

Technology, not my strongest point, but I make an effort.

Some of these on-line galleries and sites look pretty cool. Do they work though? Do people really invest in paintings they have never seen before other than on a 12 inch PC monitor ? Are they 'Artist friendly'?

Some of these sites appear to be a short cut to the promised land. Fantastic!! Offering much to the artist and for just a 'relatively' small fee you too can join in and be part of the fun. Future riches, recognition and fame awaits. Sounds good, I'll give it a try. sales, no interest, no enquiries. So, the site has my 'relatively' small fee up front, now, why on earth do they need to promote my work. Hmmmmm.....never thought of that.

Do they not realize that we humble artists, walking the financial tight-rope without a safety net, need a bit of a leg up now and again. It would appear not.

And then I happened upon the website. Nice presentation, all UK artists and custom, fancy tools to enable customers to visualise the painting on the wall at home or in the office. This looks more like it...!! and even better, other than some time and effort in producing good quality photographs of your work, showing it at it's best, with varying angles, close ups and in situ, uploading onto the site, it's totally free to the artist. No up front costs. That's what I'm looking for, someone sympathetic to the artist, yet presenting great and affordable work to all art lovers out there in a secure and trustworthy environment. Benefiting all, from the artist to the art collector to the occasional and even the new art enthusiast.

The site has fantastic artwork from very talented UK artists, covering the whole artistic spectrum of style, colour and size. All of the artwork can be viewed online, each artist having his or her own individual page where the paintings can be seen in situ from photographs at differing angles and close ups where you can see the paint and media textures. Or using the clever website tool which allows the viewer to see the painting and how it would look in the home or office. You can even change the colour of the walls to match your own, to see the full impact that the soon to be acquired masterpiece will have and how it will enhance the ambience of the room in which it will hang.

For me, and call it beginners luck if you will, within a few weeks of submitting my work and being accepted as a worthy 'site' artist I had countless hits (and continue to do so) plus two sales to my name. One of my buyers I had the pleasure of meeting at the point of sale also. So taken was he with my painting 'Rise and Shine' on the website that he made special arrangements with the site owner and made the extra effort to travel, see and collect the painting from myself. It is always rewarding to see and hear a persons reaction and pleasure at first viewing of a painting. Something that has been a labour of love to yourself, these reactions are the antidote to any pain previously felt, and previously mentioned. In this case, my second sale was to the actor Adrian Lester who starred in 'Hustle', 'Bonekickers', 'Primary Colours and 'The Day after Tomorrow' to name a few. So as you can imagine, this came as something of a pleasant surprise when I eventually realized who I had met and who had bought my painting.

Adrian kindly penned a few lines for me to use on my page on the website :

Hello Martin, I wasn't sure I wanted to buy a painting until I saw Rise and Shine on the web. I checked the picture over using the Artgallery testing website and really liked what I saw. The picture as shown on the web is vibrant. But, In reality it is even more so. It seems to pull the viewer in. I'm very happy with it and every intention of picking up some more in future. Yours, Adrian Lester

So you see, for me, this really could be 'THE one' show. The show that makes the difference. 'The future is unwritten'......Joe Strummer once said. But you have to make your own future through time and effort (maybe a hint of self belief and borderline genius), in order to steer a course and path that someone may happen upon, who really can help along the way, to finally make that difference. So, watch this space......and watch this site.

Martin Rolt's art gallery »


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