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Life at Bicester Heritage 'Whale Bones to Engines'

I am a Reportage Artist with a particular interest in documenting people, working environments, history and heritage. I prefer to work directly from life capturing ‘behind the scenes’ stories through drawing and painting. The creative process of ‘visual story telling’ results in unique pieces of art that reflect the energy and atmosphere of an event, time and place.

My connection with Bicester Heritage started with a 25.2-metre-long Blue whale skeleton called ‘Hope’ which is now suspended from the ceiling in Hintze Hall at the Natural History Museum.

What a lot of people don't know is that the Blue whale skeleton was fabricated at Bicester Heritage over a 5 month period in one of their historic hangars before it was transported to London.

I was commissioned by Research Casting International (RCI), Canada, to document and record the fabrication and installation process in one of the Hangars on site. Little did I know that it was also the beginning of a wonderful opportunity to sketch in the workshops on this beautiful heritage site.

After a happy productive 5-month period as artist in residence with RCI, I was absolutely delighted to be invited to stay on and sketch. I enjoy being in a busy workshop soaking up the atmosphere and sketching people as they work. I have spent a good deal of time in the workshop of Classic Performance Engineering.

Above:SOLD Pastel painting created in the workshop of Classic Performance Engineering. Available as a limited edition print

I am particularly interested in recording the behind the scenes stories of what goes into the Restoration, preservation and maintenance of vintage and classic vehicles as well as daily life on site, especially as it has such an interesting and captivating history.

Below is a pastel painting looking down on the workshop of Classic Performance Engineering. The artwork was created over several weeks and the original is available to purchase

SOLD Above: Sketched in the engine room of Classic Performance Engineering

As well as enjoying sketching whale bones I’ve discovered I love sketching engines! and I am captivated by the beautiful surroundings of this historic setting.

SOLD Autumn Colours created in situ at Bicester Heritage.

I am always happy to work to commission and have been lucky enough to have received a diverse range of commissions since sketching on site. Make sure you visit Bicester Heritage on Jan 5th 2020 for their iconic Sunday Scramble to find out more about why they are known as 'a hub for historic motoring excellence'.

SOLD Watercolour and pastel painting 1910 Overland. Go and see Harry Frazer's amazing workshop

SOLD Fitting the Jaguar D-type Engine. Created in the workshop of CPE.


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