Emsworth Arts Trail promises record numbers of artists for 2019

Lizzie Cornelius
Lizzie Cornelius

Lizzie Cornelius will be among the artists at the Tuppenny Barn, Main Road, Southbourne this year as she makes her debut at the Emsworth Arts Trail.

This year the trail offers a record-breaking number of artists and groups taking part. Venues throughout the town will see a total of 107 participants exhibit during the last weekend in April and the first weekend in May.

Among them will be Hayling Island-based Lizzie who has done Hayling’s art trail around ten times and is now branching out.

“I just thought I should try to do Emsworth as well. They have got a good vibe and it is always popular. I just wanted to expand my horizons and I wanted to reach more people. And it is good when you do a trail because it gives you a deadline, but it can be a nightmare! It is all a little bit stressful at the moment!

“But not being in my own studio space for the trail makes it all a little bit more difficult. I will be at Tuppenny Barn and I won’t be able to be painting, but art trails are always so busy anyway.

“I have done Hayling for about ten years and I just enjoy connecting with new people. You always get new people coming through. And I just enjoy explaining about my work and about my practice, just talking to people. I am a bit of a people person. My pieces look very simple and fairly easy, but it is all a little bit more complex than that, so it is nice to be able to explain… but I don’t give everything away!

“I am a painter. I generally start with a photograph. I will go and photograph certain areas and take the photographs back to my studio and study them and think about what I want to put where.”

As she says, she deconstructs the photographic image with a pencil sketch in her sketch book: “I work with acrylic and oil pen but always dampen the vibrant acrylic colours using a white acrylic mix.

“It is not always geographically correct, but it is recognisable. It is places around here, and a few years back I did a little tour around, so I have got a bank of work that I want to do, but I also get a lot of commissions which keeps me away from the work that I would like to paint.

“Generally, I paint the coast, but not exclusively. I have painted a still life this year, a seagull and a fruit bowl, but a deconstructed fruit bowl. I like painting quirky things generally – that always feature a seagull.

“Pink seagulls are in every painting. I have humanised them. I suppose it is the expression on their faces. They are very simplistic images. They are not like real life. I supposed it has softened them.”

The pink seagulls began with a painting she was doing, sand, groynes and sky, and the idea was that the bird was the last piece in the jigsaw. But with the colours she had already painted, it just didn’t feel right to add in a seagull with grey wings.

“So I thought I would do them pink! The colours are a huge part of the overall thing. You have got to be able to choose the colour that you want to use!”

Lizzie will be showing her work on the first weekend of April 27 and 28 and the second weekend May 4, 5, and 6, from 10am-5pm.

Arts trail chairman Carol Price said: “The Emsworth Arts Trail has certainly put the town on the map as a destination for art. Now in our 19th year, we have seen visitor numbers grow year on year and art lovers arriving from far and wide – so much so, last year’s event saw more than 87,000 visits recorded over the five days at 99 venues – an impressive increase from the 8,000 who went to 26 venues when records began in 2012. We like to think of ourselves as a community of artists, with new exhibitors always welcome, so we are delighted to have 26 talented new artists join us. It means there is always something new to surprise and fascinate - from both the new and established participants.”

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