Painting Inoils

Iain Vellacott's painting blog

Tag: art

Humans of Toulouse

I feel very honoured to have been included in the “Humans of Toulouse” project, which you can read here.

And do try to have a look at some of the other stories of far more inspirational and deserving people, all told with great journalistic dexterity and some fabulous photography.




Back Home to Revel

Madam Maury is putting on an exhibition of my paintings of Revel in her wonderful antiques shop on the market square starting this weekend.





Cricket Painting

I was delighted to exhibit my paintings of Winchester College at the recent Winchester Match.  The one day exhibition was a great success.



Here my mother (my greatest marketer!) waits to pounce on some unsuspecting Old Wykehamist!


Winchester College on Canvas Exhibition Brochure

The brochure for my forthcoming exhibition at Winchester College is now out and has resulted in the number of pre-sales moving into double figures.


The paintings can be seen on my website at – click on the Win Coll tab at the top.

Le soleil arrive à Revel – enfin!

I have taken a quick time-out from painting Winchester College to celebrate the arrival of the sun here in Revel, which has been conspicuous by its absence recently.Image

New Paintings for Madam Maury’s Christmas Window





Cork Street Pete

My friend Peter Brown (“Pete the Street”) has a new show running from 22nd February to 10th March at Messums gallery in Cork Street.

If you are in central London you really must try to get to see this – Cork Street is only 5 minutes walk from Piccadily or Oxford Street and Messums really is an excellent and very friendly gallery.

You can see the collection of new works that are to be exhibited here – and note the red spots that are not surprisingly already starting to appear!


Winchester College – Back on Canvas

I am flying back to the UK next weekend for the annual Commoners vs OTH Winchester College Football (“Winkies”) match.

This is one of the paintings I did of the match 3 years ago and I am hoping for some sun next weekend as I start to paint pictures for my next Winchester exhibition in March 2013.

La Mesure

Revel Christmas Exhibition

I am delighted that Madame Maury has kindly asked me to exhibit my paintings of Revel in her fabulous antiques shop over Christmas.

Madame Maury’s shop is at the bottom of this arcade on the right.

PS You may be interested to know that I have finally updated my web site at

To Frame or not to Frame

Nowadays I normally feel that my paintings are generally better hung unframed so as to avoid the light and atmosphere that is the main focus of most of my pictures being constrained by a physical border.
However, as part of my current joint exhibition, the Barnes Riverside Gallery has kindly put some of their fabulous frames on a couple of my paintings – and I have to say that I think that they really work!
The exhibition runs until 14th December.

London Exhibition 18th November – 14th December

Beach Painting 2

And following the sketches this is the final painting – 92 by 65cm painted on a light mauve ground.

Beach Paintings

Following my recent trip to Valencia and the beaches around Javea where Sorolla painted, I have been doing some sketches for a new beach painting of my own.

Both of the above sketches have been done on poor quality board – the first is on a mauve ground (ultra plus cad red medium), the second on a yellow ochre/violet ground.

I am currently working the sketches up into a larger painting.

Corrida de Rejon

I am not particularly wild on bullfighting but I wanted to reflect the very real art of a Corrida de Rejon – bullfighting on horseback.

This painting will feature in Revel’s Fiesta d’Esapagne which is being held in mid July.

Exhibition: Galerie Roger Betti, Toulouse

The exhibition is at 9 rue Fermat (near St Etienne) until mid-July.

Le Cafe des Artistes, Toulouse

This is my latest painting for my forthcoming exhibition at Galerie Roger Betti in Toulouse (rue de Fermat – just round the corner from Cathedral St Etienne) which is due to run from 7th June to 12th July.

Le Cafe des Artistes is a wonderful cafe/bar on place de la Daurade overlooking the Garonne and is frequented by many of the artists from the nearby école supérieure des beaux-arts.

Sunflower Painting

On the way to the market

Castres vs Northampton Heineken Cup

Place du Capitole, Toulouse

I have spent quite a bit of time in Toulouse over the past year as I prepare for my exhibition at Galerie Roger Betti in the city in June/July.

One of Toulouse’s best kept secrets is the fabulous 19th century paintings that hang in “La Salle des Illustres” on the first floor of the Capitole building – there are no signs (or at least none that I could understand!) and the place was totally empty when I last went.

Revisiting the Meet

I don’t usually “revisit” paintings but I did a painting of a Hunt Meet about 18 months ago that has been bothering me ever since.

Last week I finally plucked up the courage to change a number of aspects of the original, including putting more colour into the picture and changing what I felt was a far too sombre sky.

Here is the earlier picture –

Prussian Geese

I am in the process of changing a number of colours on my palette and have added Prussian Blue, a strong staining colour that Sorolla used to great effect in many of his beach scenes.

This painting, which is called “Geese with Attitude”, uses quite a bit of Prussian Blue in the cool shadows.

PS I notice that several search queries which are coming to this post are for “Sorolla’s Geese with Attitude”. Whilst I am obviously most flattered by this I must make clear that this is a painting that I did rather than Sorolla – his would have been 10 times better …… and 100 times more expensive! Apologies for any misunderstanding. Iain

Riverside Gallery Barnes

I am delighted to have been asked to exhibit at the Riverside Gallery in Barnes, London.

The gallery enjoys a wonderful position on the mini-roundabout by the Thames at the end of Barnes High Street and has some great artists including Rod Pearce, Tony Merrick, Colin Orchard, Gillian Furlong and Valerie Davide.

I happened to drive past the gallery a few weeks ago and was so taken by the paintings in the window that I felt that I had to stop to take a better look.

And I was so taken by the gallery and its fabulous manager, Kat, that I had no hesitation in accepting their kind invitation to exhibit with them.


This is one of 4 paintings that I shall be exhibiting at the CHASE Contemporary Art Exhibition being held at the Royal College of Art in central London on the evening of Thursday 4th November.

CHASE hospice care for children provides nursing, practical and emotional support to families with children who are not expected to reach their 19th birthday

Over the past 10 years the annual art exhibition has raised in excess of £1m towards the work of this excellent charity.

Tickets for the evening, which will be attended by HRH the Countess of Wessex and a number of celebrities, cost £65 each and can be bought here.

Sarah Drake’s “Perceptions”

I was so pleased to receive an invitation today to Sarah Drake’s first group exhibition which is coming up in London.

Sarah, my wife’s first cousin, has been studying portrait painting at Heatherleys School of Fine Art in Chelsea and I am really impressed by the quality of her new “perceptions” series.

Sarah’s work can be seen on her web site here

The exhibition is at the Lennox Gallery in Fulham from 2nd – 7th November (11am – 6pm).

Pete Brown at Messum’s

And talking about exhibitions, Peter Brown also has one on at Messum’s at the moment.

I first met Pete over 5 years ago when I was walking over Hungerford Bridge in London and he was just starting a painting looking down into Northumberland Avenue.

Pete not only has incredible talent (surely an RA in-waiting) but he keeps challenging himself with new and often difficult subjects – to set up one’s canvas on a London street and paint totally from life is impressive enough but he can also find light and atmosphere in the rain and even at night.

To me, what is great about this exhibition is the way that, having thought he couldn’t get much better, there seems to be even more atmosphere, sparkle and fun in his new work.

Pete’s exhibition, which is at Messum’s in Cork Street, Mayfair until 23rd October, can be seen here

Aldo at the Catto

My good friend Aldo Balding, one of the UK’s leading figurative and portrait painters, currently has an exhibition at London’s Catto Gallery of some of his stunning pictures.

The exhibition, which is open until 15th October, can be viewed here

I met Aldo on a plane traveling back to the UK about 5 years ago when we discovered that we lived only about 15km from each other here in South West France.

Since then Aldo has given me a significant amount of help and guidance with my painting (he is a really great teacher) and I continue to be in awe of his mastery of his art and the power of his work.

A couple of weeks ago Aldo and I spent an afternoon painting a lock-keeper’s house on the Canal du Midi. Despite the wind (which almost blew my easel into the canal) Aldo still managed to produce a fabulous painting, as below.

French Cafe Painting 2

I am so fortunate to have Revel market only 150 metres down the road – every Saturday I spend 2 to 3 hours doing our weekly vegetable shop, wandering among the cafes and canopies and just enjoying the ambiance of what must be France’s most friendly market.

Toulouse Exhibition 2011

I am delighted to have been asked to put on a one-man exhibition in June and early July 2011 at Galerie Roger Betti in the Saint Etienne district of central Toulouse.

Although not all the oil paintings will be of the city, I am intending to include quite a few – and I have just finished this one of a lunchtime restaurant in Place Saint Georges.

English Artist in Revel

I just bumped into Gary Imlach, the presenter of ITV4’s Tour de France programme, in the market and he and his team took some film of my paintings of Revel which are currently in the window of Madam Maury’s antiques shop.

I understand that they are hoping to mention my paintings in their programme on the Tour de France’s arrival here this afternoon – as a short English Artist in Revel item.

Madam Maury also told me that she had sold a couple of my paintings yesterday and has interest in a couple of others – so all in all a pretty good start to the day for this Revel artiste!

Royal Ascot Painting

This is a bit stronger than my usual approach in terms of colours and contrast but I wanted to capture this wonderful natural composition and the atmosphere of Royal Ascot which I attended for my first time last month.

The working title of the 100cm by 50cm painting is “Shooting Sticks”.

As I write this I can hear the fireworks going off in Revel in celebration of tomorrow’s arrival of the Tour de France – I am just praying for some sun!

Tour de France Revel Painting

Everyone here in Revel is getting very excited as this Saturday’s Stage 13 of the Tour de France finishes here – and then Stage 14 starts from here on Sunday morning!

This is not only a great honour for this small market town (population about 9,000) but also a major boost to the “Bio Valley Lauragais” project which designates Revel as the centre of an area focusing on biological and natural food products.

And with 50,000 visitors expected it should be quite a weekend!

You can see more details of Revel on the Tour’s official web site here and there is a short video showing the market square (which features in many of my paintings) here

I am delighted to have been invited to sit in the VIP stand adjacent to the finish from where I am hoping to take photos on which to base a large painting of this historic event.

I also have an exhibition of paintings of Revel in Madam Maury’s fabulous antiques shop in the market square, including the above painting of some cyclists I spotted a couple of weeks ago.

My only worry is how Contador is going to carry a large painting on his bike, particularly with the tricky Pyrenees sections ahead!

Early Morning Market

The Golden Arches, Revel

But apparently we are getting a real MacDonalds soon – how France is changing!

The Art of French Boules

I have just completed this painting of an evening game of Pétanque in the Avenue Charles de Gaulle here in Revel.

Pétanque is a form of boules in which the player whose boule lies furthest from the cochonnet (literally “piglet”) throws next.

Pétanque is apparently played by 17 million people in France.

Revel – Champions of the Pyrennes!

I painted this picture to celebrate Revel’s historic victory over St Lys in last Sunday’s Final of the Rugby Championship of the Pyrenees.

It is currently in the window of the Madame Maury’s wonderful antique shop in the Market Square – and seemed to be quite a talking point in this morning’s market!


I have just finished this new painting of a “hot” (similar to a rugby scrum) in a game of Winchester Football.

I have painted this one quite large (4ft by 2ft) as I wanted to focus in on the energy and atmosphere of the 16-person hot.

Family Paintings

I have posted below a couple of new paintings – the first is a further painting of my nephew playing in the waves in the early evening light of Brittany; the second my two youngest boys trying to make a fire when we were camping in the Cotswolds last year.

I love early evening light – one of my favourite paintings is John Singer Sergent’s “Carnation, Lily, Lily, Rose” which I went to see at the Tate when I was last in London.

Winchester Paintings

Following the success of my recent “Winchester College On Canvas” exhibition I have decided to make this a continuing project and will be posting new paintings on my web site ( as I complete them.

This is a new painting of Kingsgate Street that I have just finished.

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