Read new customer reviews

This whole art business thing is one of the biggest learning curves – every tiny step brings a new insight but what has struck a chord with me most of all is how customers like to engage with the artists they buy from. Investing in artwork is a more emotional purchase than say buying a new coat or a washing machine for example and it pretty much equates with the pleasure you get from booking a holiday. Almost.

Artwork lasts. It doesn’t break down, wear out and become unfashionable.

If you have been thinking about buying a print or an original to add to your collection you may be interested to read reviews from some of my recent customers.

I contacted a few customers who had bought paintings and prints over the previous three months and asked for some feedback. I told them that I wanted to post their responses semi anonymously and I was pleasantly reassured at the positivity and willingness of everyone I emailed.

The page is looking great – even if I do say so myself. I feel proud that customers value the care I put into ensuring great quality prints and finished originals. I use Royal Mail tracking so that I can see when the customer receives their print. It is more expensive but I think most people prefer to have the reassurance of tracked delivery. I loved all of the reviews but this one from Alex, a customer who lives in Bristol, just bowled me over.

“Having a painting of Mary’s on my wall at home brings me daily joy. Her work is stunning. I was lucky enough to be invited into her studio after contacting her to say how much I admired her work. It was such a pleasure to go and see where these beautiful paintings are created. A tremendously difficult decision choosing but I fell in love with The Madonna.

“Mary was also kind enough to let me pay for the painting in instalments which we agreed upfront with a contract. The communication was frequent and friendly and Mary even went out of her way to bring the painting to its new home. I will be forever grateful for giving me this opportunity, it helped me afford a piece of unique art that produces so much happiness and inspiration in our home. It is beautiful, thank you Mary.”

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Madonna and Child – available as an open edition print – Original Sold.

Online shop update

My online shop has been updated to make it easier for customers to buy. I have introduced links on the website from each print currently available in the on-line print shop so that each print can be viewed and then followed up with a simple click through to the shopping trolley in my Etsy shop.

New prints will be added shortly as the product range expands. I will also soon be adding cards and small originals to the range.

Have a look at the newly updated print shop here.

Customer feedback has been amazing and when I asked a few people if they would be happy to give reviews – everyone I asked came back with comments that have overwhelmed me with their positivity and evident happiness with the prints, originals and my delivery service. These reviews are now posted in the ‘What customers say’ section.

Here are a few snippets from the comment section:

‘Having a painting of Mary’s on my wall at home brings me daily joy. Her work is stunning.’ Alex – Bristol

It took less than 2 weeks from the time I paid for it until it arrived at my door. (Considering it came across the Atlantic, I think that’s exceptional!). Suzannah – Arkansas, USA.

I want people to be confident when they buy that I really do care about delivering quality reproductions and originals and ensure that work is posted securely and within time scales promised using tracked delivery.

Here is my latest print that will be added to the shop later today. ‘Love is in the air’. The original is currently gracing the window of Room 212 Gallery in my home town of Bristol but prints are available for £45.00 plus postage and packing.

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All rights reserved and ©Mary Price 2017

Online shop up and running

I’m very excited to announce that my online shop is now open for business on Etsy. There are prints, 13 of them – unlucky for some maybe but they are up and out there so its official – I’m in business.

Soon I will also be listing small originals and for those who follow me on Instagram where I am posting process, progress and finished work almost daily you will know that I have recently been working on a series of circles and mini floral paintings. These will also go into the shop as and when I am able to sort the photography.

Etsy is a huge marketplace so I will be promoting slightly more than usual over the next week or so during the Christmas and festival season to ensure that those who would like to buy get to know that the work is out there.

Each print is produced by a local printer in Bristol who specialises in Giclée art reproductions. These prints are beautifully made and unlike cheaper methods they are designed to last without fading and each is very carefully colour matched to the original painting.

The word Giclée (“g-clay”), is derived from the French verb gicler meaning “to squirt or spray”, Giclée, is used to describe a fine art digital printing process combining pigment based inks with high quality archival quality paper to achieve Giclée prints of superior archival quality, light fastness and stability.

The print below – one of my favourites is included in the new product range.

Visit my Etsy shop surprisingly named artistintheshed by clicking here

Flowers for an angel ©Mary Price 2016

Flowers for an angel
©Mary Price 2016

My Frida Kahlo

 

Frida Kahlo is an inspiration to so many and she has been having more than a moment in popularity just lately. Wherever you look right now her unique and distinctive monobrow seems to be displayed on anything from shopping bags to aprons and magnets to mugs in some of the trendiest gift shops in my home town, Bristol.

But her ubiquitous image appearing on all kinds of gift items is not the reason that I felt compelled to tackle her beauty albeit these may have had some responsibility in raising my awareness.

I noticed on my Instagram feed that people were using quotes by Frida to inspire and this led me to want to get to know more about her. She has, I learned, become something of a feminist icon and it is this primarily that peeked my interest.

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Frida Kahlo and flowers (detail – earlier in painting progress) ©Mary Price 2016

Her tenacious approach to a life marred by physical disability and disappointment is famously and beautifully reflected in the wonderful paintings she made where she pours emotion and her own life story through self portraiture and symbolism.

Frida said, “I don’t paint dreams or nightmares, I paint my own reality.” To follow Frida’s paintings chronologically throughout is to follow her life. She lost herself in the very act of painting and found herself reflected back onto the canvas. Despite being unable to move for much of her life she found freedom through her art. She famously said, “Feet , what do I need them for when I have wings to fly.”

This sense of how painting can give wings to fly to an imaginary freedom resonates with me entirely. Painting, I find, is an escape route into another place, another universe where when lost in the act, time stands still and reality is for the moment suspended in a creative dream.

My Frida is relaxed with her eyes closed and surrounded with a meadow of imaginary flowers symbolising her beauty and reflecting her enigmatic passionate energy. She also once said, “I paint flowers so they will not die” so I wanted my Frida to be almost floating or bathing in flowers.The bath of flowers is also an important analogy in respect of her famous painting,’What the water gave me’.

Her palm tree earrings are where I have chosen to connect us both. Palm trees are my symbol reflecting my love of travel, natural beauty and by their swaying loveliness growing best in warmer climates a sense of eternal optimism and hope.

 

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Frida Kahlo and flowers ©Mary Price 2016

 

Painting ‘Afternoon Tea’ at the Hotel du Vin, Bristol

Bristol is my home town and a uniquely inspiring place for artists. From wide open vistas enjoyed from many city viewpoints such as the iconic Suspension Bridge to dockland walks and city cafés there’s plenty here to get those creative juices flowing.

It’s the go to city for arty people with a plethora of festivals, art trails, world famous street art, galleries, eclectic museums, great local pubs and unspoiled parks. You can find out more about what Bristol has to offer visitors here

Walking up and down Bristol’s hilly terrain you will inevitably work up an appetite so what could possibly be nicer than a special treat of Afternoon Tea at the conveniently located Bristol Hotel du Vin. I went along with a group of Bristol bloggers to savour, review and more unusually amongst our group, to paint the afternoon tea – painting food is a new but thoroughly enjoyable departure.

Afternoon tea – the savoury treats

Like all good things its the little details that count and this afternoon tea has been designed to impress. It’s a delicious treat served with style and panache and it delivers on flavour. There is the perfect balance of savoury and sweet choices complemented by specially blended Twinings tea or coffee.

If you want to push the boat out you can go to town with champagne or a wonderful choice of in house gin cocktails.

You can opt for a cream tea priced at £8.50 or go for the big treat afternoon tea at £20. Take your time. You don’t get rushed here. Soak up the ambiance, the candle light and admire the comfortable surroundings and friendly unobtrusive staff who are happy to answer your questions or leave you to enjoy your tea as you wish.

The afternoon tea includes five savoury and five sweet treats presented on a beautiful silver tiered platter finished off with sticks of pale pink candy floss adding a fun flourish to an already mouth watering assortment.

Candles create that special ambiance

Candles create that special ambiance

It was fun drawing the candy floss, not what you automatically expect for afternoon tea but a brilliant finishing touch adding colour and a party feel to the occasion. We were served in a long board room with curved windows, exposed brickwork echoing the building’s past, and furnished in highly polished dark wood and sparkling Venetian mirrors that twinkled in the candlelight creating a relaxed and cosy ambiance.

Arched windows and sparkling mirrors provide a historic setting

Arched windows and sparkling mirrors provide a historic setting

The savoury offerings include Severn and Wye smoked salmon and cream cheese bagel, egg and cress mayonnaise brioche sub, ham with Gruyere cheese croissant, heritage tomato and tapenade galette and  a goats cheese and spinach quiche.

This was followed with warm scones with a mixture of Bonne Maman jams, clotted cream and Lescure butter

The sweet course was a delectable assortment featuring lemon meringue pie, a knickerbocker glory, raspberry and dark chocolate tea cakes and custard donuts. All this finished with home made apple candy floss and a choice of teas.

I visited Hotel du Vin along with 25 Bristol based travel, lifestyle and food bloggers. The hotel hosted the occasion and we were treated to talks from the general manager and hotel tea sommelier who described to us some of the finer points of Twinings tea blends.

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Blogger enjoying the champagne bubbles with Hotel du Vin Afternoon Tea

Nick, COO at Hotel du Vin, “Everyone loves the traditional Afternoon Tea, we believe it is one of the finest meals, a perfect combination of sweet and savoury. We wanted to update this favourite to reflect the increasingly adventurous nature of British consumers that are seeking more unique food pairing experiences. We’re really excited about this offer, bringing together two of 2016s biggest trends, with the quality that Hotel du Vin is known for.”

Hotel du Vin, Bristol, is right in the centre of the city but tucked away into a quiet courtyard setting near the historic and quirky Christmas Steps that leads to Park Row, an interesting street with several contemporary art galleries. The hotel is also within an easy 10 minute walk of the City Museum and Art Gallery, the Royal West of England Academy and the Arnolfini.

The Bristol Hotel du Vin is a peaceful oasis high end in comfort and design, yet an affordable hotel to choose if you are celebrating a special occasion or simply want to treat yourself to some well deserved luxury.

Based in an old sugar refinery the hotel designers have been meticulous in ensuring that some of the unique features of the original building have been retained.

Standard rooms sell anywhere from £115 on a room only basis or £140 inclusive of breakfast for two people and for a special treat the highest standard of suite (such as Veuve Clicquot) sells from £229 on a room only basis or £255 inclusive of breakfast for two people.

Book your stay at Hotel du Vin Bristol

Hotel du Vin Afternoon tea Photo courtesy of Hotel du Vin

Hotel du Vin Afternoon tea
Photo courtesy of Hotel du Vin