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Inspired by the masters

Daisy Sims Hilditch, whose paintings are rich, soft and full of character, talks to Susie Hodge about her preference for a traditional approach to portraiture, inspired by Velázquez and John Singer Sargent

IN CONVERSATION

Lorenzo, oil on canvas, 211⁄2×271⁄2in (55×70cm). ‘This is a charismatic Italian friend who I have painted on a number of occasions. I particularly like his high cheekbones, unruly hair and wonderful Etruscan nose. I enjoyed adding his ruched blouse and playing with the effects of impasto paint to capture this.’

Daisy Sims Hilditch comes from a line of extremely skilful artists and designers, including her great-greatgrandfather who was a Royal Academician and her mother who is an acclaimed interior designer. Initially after leaving school Daisy read French at university, but soon realised it wasn’t for her. ‘I had always dreamt of being an artist, but to follow that route takes courage. My parents have always been very supportive and although at first encouraged me to try university, they understood when I decided to change track.’

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About The Artist

Welcome to our February issue with our extra 16-page guide to art courses and holidays for 2018, including Kevin Scully's article on what to take into consideration and what to pack to make the most of the opportunities offered by a structured course away from home. Our artists also offer plenty of ideas and inspiration for painting a variety of subjects in a broad range of media, including pastel pencil animals, a horse in watercolour, trees and an orchard in pastels, mixed-media collages inspired by old buildings, a photorealist self-portrait in oils and more. In addition, Hazel Soan starts her new three-part series on light and shade in watercolour by explaining how to train your eye to see and interpret tone, Judi Whitton demonstrates how to mix and exploit a wide range of lively greys in your watercolour paintings, while Paul Gadenne shows why and how acrylics can be the key to achieving greater spontaneity in your work. Be inspired and enjoy trying some new ideas under the guidance of our fantastic team of contributing artists!