“Life isn’t static, you can’t help but enjoy the energy, feeling and atmosphere of beautiful places when you are outside walking, sketching and experiencing the outdoors. It is a reflective activity where we are able to think freely without distractions, which in turn creates a joyful experience which uplifts the soul and heart. Nature is captivating and awe inspiring. It provides us with endless dynamic views which adjust every second with fleeting changes in the landscape due to the weather, sunlight or season. As an artist the coast, landscape and forest are places to observe and take in the mood, to identify shapes and forms through spontaneous mark making in my sketchbook. Combining these images with reference photographs and my own memories, they become inspiration for my paintings back in the studio.
I work experimentally with mixed media depending on the mood of a painting. Sometimes I have to let the paint flow and mingle, other times I may use bold energetic marks or concentrate on delicately capturing the contrast in light and tone. If things get too static, I sometimes have to throw out the worries about precision and just play with the paint using unusual tools and media combinations on paper or canvas. The paint often does its own thing, just like nature! Trying new approaches creates a thrilling and occasionally terrifying experience, but in the end you find the work is expressive and evokes atmosphere. Life is meant to be fun, and the artistic process and final result to be enjoyed.”
Kate Marr is a professional mixed media artist from Bournemouth, UK and is best known for her lively and atmospheric paintings based on locations from the Dorset coastline and the New Forest. She aims to paint “seascapes, landscapes and trees which bring joy to the soul and heart.” Kate loves to create pieces in an intuitive way, focusing on evoking the mood and feeling of a place by using expressive marks. These works are created imaginatively, inspired by sketches, photos and memories of walks in these areas. Kate uses high quality art materials in a variety of mixed media and technique. Her work has been featured in nationwide magazines including the Leisure Painter. She is a member of Artists in Dorset, Paint Dorset and Cad Arts collectives, and exhibits with these groups and also arranges her own solo shows. Kate has recently opened her own gallery in Christchurch where she sells her paintings. Her work can be found in private art collections around the world.
Kate grew up in Surrey and having a creative spirit, was always painting, drawing and excelling in art at school. Pursuing this passion she completed a Foundation Course in Art and Design in 2005 at the Surrey Institute of Art and Design. In 2008 Kate completed a Fine Art BA (Hons) degree at Plymouth University. After this she had a few exhibitions, then whilst working in Oxford Street, London in retail management, she worked part time as a portrait artist taking commissions. By 2016 Kate had decided to become a full time professional artist. Initially she was living in London, and then the opportunity came to move to Bournemouth and paint the beautiful scenery there. She then focused her attention on seascapes and landscapes painted in oils. Kate started teaching art classes in 2019 and found this to be a delight, and also inspired her to expand her range of media in her work including watercolours and acrylic. She then learned of a more experimental approach to painting nature and embraced this. You can view beautiful collections of Kate’s paintings which are based on colour palette, season and mood.
Over the years I have collected many useful ideas and techniques regarding composition, form, outline, colour, and learned to use all varieties of media and surfaces properly so that they last and stay beautiful for years to come. What I enjoy doing now is, to draw on all this knowledge and paint freely in ways that are still durable and lasting. I start the painting process by walking in beautiful inspiring places, usually near to where I live. I take a sketchbook with me, find a spot in which to sit or stand, and outline the composition using fine liner pen. Then I make marks and complete the sketch with watercolour. Sketches are done fairly quickly, they are not finished pieces. I take photos of my walks and use these beside my sketches to make the finished paintings.
You can follow me to see my working process day to day, how I sketch and then create work in the studio, plus all the other things that go along with being a full time artist!
I use high artist quality materials. Here is a selection of one from each media I tend to use. The list keeps growing! Left to right: drawing pencil, inktense stick, watercolour pencil, watercolour, gouache, brusho, wax resist crayon, pastel pencil, soft pastel, oil pastel, acrylic ink, acrylic paint and oil paint.
I use artist quality mediums including sasador, linseed oil, poppy oil, damar medium, brusho thickener, masking fluid, filtered tap water, matt medium, pva, to name a few.
I use many varieties of brushes, palette knives, and other tools. Here is a small selection of some of my tools. Left to right: knife, roller, ruling pen, bamboo dip pen, toothbrush, hake brush, flat brushes, fan stippler brush, hog hair brush, fan brush, pipette, spritz bottles and clay tool. I also like to create texture mark making in imaginative ways by recycling things like plastic wrap, netting etc.
I work on high artist quality surfaces including watercolour paper and deep edge box canvas or canvas board. I sometimes add textures to the surfaces by using gesso, tissue paper, canvas string and modelling paste.