I am an artist and designer living and working in York, UK.

My paintings and drawings explore the natural environment and the human form, and are often elemental, instinctive and textural. Inspired by movement, shifting light and changing weather conditions, I aim to capture the character and uniqueness of people and place. I work in acrylic, oils, graphite, charcoal, ink and watercolour.

Plein air work requires some creative storage solutions!

My landscape painting process typically begins with en plein air studies on paper, and sketches. I often spend many days exploring and studying a place in order to observe its unique qualities of light, colour, texture and atmosphere, at all times of day and in different weather conditions. These works on paper and sketches are direct and instinctive responses to the environment and have a loose and immediate quality to them. When back at the easel, I use them to trigger memories and emotions and to inspire my studio paintings.

Working plein air on Garrowby Hill

Sketching from Ynys Gifftan, North Wales

Sketching from Ynys Gifftan, North Wales

I also love to paint and draw the human form. My figurative paintings and drawings explore the character of the models (clothes or nude) through expressive line and tone. I attend regular life sessions and sometimes invite models to the studio for longer studies. Longer studies and portraits may take place over a number of sittings.

In September 2019, I moved from my studio in Castlegate, York, to ‘Gallery Studio’, Arnup Studios – a newly-opened complex of purpose-built work spaces for artists and makers. It is an exciting time for my art practice.

I am a member of York Artworkers’ Association, SAA, AN, CuratorSpace and the Chartered Society of Designers.

Please contact me if you would like to arrange a visit to the studio.

Find out how to purchase, exhibit or commission my work

...and here's me in the studio!

In my old studio in Castlegate – happy in my work!  (pic © Olivia Brabbs)


(Page header photo © Olivia Brabbs)