What is your favourite?

Do you have a favourite kind of fruit?

Mine is Clingstone peaches and nectarines, and maybe cherries. I love most fruit actually. Did you know that the vast majority of fruit are pollinated by honey bees? Almost all fruit were flowers at first. It is a bit dreary, grey and damp in my neck of the woods, so I thought I'd create a cheery artwork in praise of the humble honey bee. A daily mini project inspired by flying insects and pollinators will be included in the next Explore Colour onllne course. 

bee small.jpeg

If you would like to get a glimpse of my creative process, and are interested in doing the Creative Leap Course that will start on 1 February, you can follow me on  INSTAGRAM where I will be doing a live demo at 4PM GMT. This can be viewed for 24 hours afterwards

The course consists of 26 daily mini projects that are inspired by the alphabet, letter shapes and individual handwriting. The themes range to cover all sorts of topics and are suitable for all levels of ability. Four bigger weekend projects will focus on using a variety of art materials and techniques. If you would like more info on the course please see the Kickstart blog post of 1 January. Registration is open until 28 January.

Check out my  ETSY shop over the next few days if you are interested in smaller original paintings. I will be adding a fresh collection work that is available for global shipping.

Colourful greetings


Source: https://www.instagram.com/estemacleod/

Creative Kickstart 2018!

Happy New Year!

January is here. One way to kickstart the year with something fun that generates creative energy is to join the next Explore Colour course in February, a brand new Creative Leap that I've been developing over the last twelve months.

creative Leap dark.jpeg

The first Creative Leap was launched in February 2016. It was so successful it was repeated three times as a live course and I'm in the final stages of getting it ready for publication too. 

Creative Leap 2018 is the follow up course: it is based on the same ideas and principles as 2016 with twenty-six brand new projects added and four bonus weekend projects (these are optional for people wanting to explore some of the projects in greater detail using different art materials and techniques).

Here are some Question and Answers with more information on the course:

Q. What is the course about?

A. It is an online art and creativity course, focussing on drawing as basic tool that will lead to an abundance of discoveries and ways to develop art practices, and creativity with explorations of  new ideas, methods techniques and fresh observation techniques.

Q. Drawing, I don't think I am very good at drawing, is this for me?

A. Yes, if you can write you can draw! The course is suitable for all levels of artistic experience, including professional artists, illustrators and designers. In short, as little children we all draw by our own accord. As we grow, we learn how to write by means of letter shapes, the twenty six letters of the alphabet are universally used to create codes in the form of words and sentences. The letters that are universal are written in handwriting which is unique to each of us. In this process most people lose the creative and expressive qualities of drawings we possess as children. By deconstructing the use of letters as fundamental lines, forms and shapes, new ways of drawing,  creating and observing are introduced. The familiarity of our own handwriting is fundamental to the process. Drawing skills will also improve for those who are rusty or novices.

Q. Daily projects: How much time would this require daily?

A. Probably 20-30minutes, but It depends on how much you wish to explore. The nature of the mini projects are to inspire and entice people to want to do more by drawing and discovering new ways to create. Once the basic idea has been grasped, it will open up the way to draw more in this unusual way. The bonus weekend projects will take longer, between 2 and 3 hours.

Q. Drawing is mentioned, what else will be covered?

A. Drawing form the basis of this course, but it is a way to introduce different mediums and techniques: Golden High Flow or other acrylic inks, watercolour paint, pencils, fine liners as well as non regular materials. A variety of unusual surfaces are introduced for the weekend projects but remember, these are optional: the twenty six mini-projects are the focus of this course.

Q. How long will the course material be available for?

A. The course runs from 1st to 28th February. Mini-projects are published daily and the majority will have short video demonstrations as well as instructions and images to explain the process or concept. PDF downloadable documents are available for download in order to do the projects at a later stage. The four weekend art projects will be demonstrated in live sessions in the private Creative Leap group on Facebook with access limited to Creative Leap students. The recorded live sessions will still be viewable after the end of February.

Q. Materials: the list for Creative Leap is quite long, can I use my own mixed media instead?

A. Yes and no. An indirect aim of this course is to show the versatility of acrylic inks as drawing and painting tools, and they'll be used in the course with a dip pen, as watercolour substitute, as acrylic paint, mixed with paint medium. They'll also be used for printing,  tinting substrates and painting in thin layers. Regular acrylics do not offer the same options. If you're unsure, one or two colours of the acrylic ink is sufficient to try it out, 

Q. Why is the course only for a month?

A. One of the purposes of the course is to use the daily mini-projects to gain creative momentum. The course is intended for personal artistic growth and the downloadable projects will offer enough information to do the projects at a later stage. After the course finishes, a further four weeks will be made available to view course material.

Q. I have done the first Creative Leap course, is this a bit of the same?

A. No. Even though the principle is the same, with projects developing mainly from handwriting, there are twenty six different projects, with new topics and creative processes introduced. The course is practical as a follow on from the original course, as well as a stand alone option. Creative Leap is intended for all kinds of artists. NEW: I've included a selection of predicted trending designs and images, in particular aimed at surface pattern designers and illustrators.

Q. Can I post course material and project outcomes on my blog, website or social media or use it in my own workshops or demos?

A. Creative Leap is intended to develop artistic practices in quite precise ways as developed by myself. Outcomes done as direct results from the projects are not to be shared online please, and Creative Leap concepts are not to be used for individual workshops or demos.

Register for Creative Leap, the Early Bird registration is £85, and available until 3 January. Registration after 3 January is £125 and closes on 31 January. Registration is via the Paypal button on the website. An email will be sent out on the 7th of January to give instructions to join the course starting on the 1st of February. Please check if the email address used for registration is the one to be used for course communication. If not, email me an alternative one. 


In December I launched a giveaway for one free place for the Creative Leap Course on Instagram and Facebook 

The winner is Fran Gracieotropp.

live demo!

Find out more! On Friday at 12PM GMT (London time) I will be giving a live demo in Instagram to explain one of the projects of Creative Leap in more detail. 

Wishing everyone good health, happy times and much creativity in 2018.


Happy Holidays!

christmas 2017.png


Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays! 

This year has flown: 2017 is nearly done and I would like to wish everyone who follows my work and does my courses a merry Christmas and all the best for 2018.

The next Explore Colour online course, Creative Leap starts on 1 February. Treat yourself, or give an alternative gift that will inspire in numerous ways and will last for a long time. Creative Leap is a newly developed course of twenty-six mini projects and four more in depth bonus weekend art projects to nurture individual creativity. I will be giving away one place in this course to someone who tags a friend or shares the Winter Landscape video that can be seen on my Instagram and Facebook pages on 24 December. A winner will be picked on 1 January. 

Make use of the Early bird offer valid until 3 January 2018, £85 instead of £125. Sign up on Explore Colour


Many thanks to everyone who bought prints on my Etsy shop this month. 10% of all sales will be donated to Sightsavers, In the UK the government is matching any donations made in December and so far, the money raised has been enough for several cataract operations. See the wonderful work this organisation does. If you would still like to buy a last minute gift, here is the link to my Etsy shop.

Colourful greetings,


Source: www.explorecolour.com

Spread some joy!


It's the last month of 2017! The world is in turmoil and at times a bit overwhelming. For me personally 2017 was a rather tricky one, with house renovation dramas and an eye illness, but it was also a very good and eventful year and I am feeling grateful for many good things that happened along the way.

I feel thankful for continued support from my family and friends, the galleries representing me in the UK and abroad, as well as people following my processes on social media and collecting my work. I love being an artist and creating paintings a bring me a lot joy!

A Special Project!

Raising funds for good causes.

The 1st December is World AIDS day. This disease affect many people worldwide, in South Africa still more than 7 million people live with AIDS. I was born and raised in South Africa and support a number of charities who do valuable work there.

Winter Morning, the painting in this post, is a special one: all proceeds from its sale will be shared between two charities working to better the lives of children in South Africa. Starfish is focussed on helping AIDS orphans and Kungweni is an organisation close to Pretoria that supports people with mental illness and runs a separate orphanage.

The painting is in acrylic on fine linen canvas. the size is 20"x24" (50x60cm) The gallery price for this size painting is £850. If you are interested in buying it, please contact me with offers above £650. The painting will go to he highest offer received by 18 December.

Please contact me at este@estemacleod.com if you are interested. You can see the creation process of the painting here on Instagram. I will be giving away one print of Winter Morning to a social media follower, see Instagram link for info.

There's more

As mentioned earlier, this year I had a serious eye illness. It made me realise again how dependent I am on my sight and how it can be taken for granted. As the third charity that I would like to support in December, 10% of all limited print sales in my ETSY store will be donated to Sightsavers this month. See the link for more information about the work they do.

A newsletter will go out on 12 December with information on enrolling for 2018 EXPLORE COLOUR online painting and creativity courses.

Colourful greetings!

Black Friday!

For me? A still life painting in acrylic on linen canvas. 90x70cm.

New work


This is just a quick post about the Black Friday special offer I will be running this weekend.
I sell limited edition Giclee and prints as well as some smaller original paintings and silk screen prints in my ETSY shop. There are new small and medium paintings available for global shipping if you are thinking about getting someone a special Christmas gift.

From 24 to 26 November everything in my store will be discounted by 24% for orders over £90.

In December I will release the dates for the next two Explore Colour Courses. After running Creative Leap three times as month long courses, I have now created a new course that will run next February.
More information in the next newsletter.


Twenty four of my paintings are currently exhibited in a number of Christmas shows in the UK, information on these can be seen in my previous Blogpost. For information on shows and new work you can see daily updates on my INSTAGRAM and FACEBOOK pages. I also occasionally do Live Demos on these platforms.

Enjoy the weekend!

Pomegranates Acrylic on linen canvas 70x90cm

November News


A lot is happening this busy month in the run up to Christmas. This weekend, from 9 to 11 November I will be the artist in residence at the Windsor Contemporary Art Fair that will take place on the grounds of the Windsor Race course. Over three days I will guide the creation of an interactive art project, inviting visitors contribute their marks to an artwork on a large canvas. The theme is Numbers. The canvas will be covered by numbers and shapes, created by visitors. Once covered with numbers, it will be turned into a colourful painting, using the many marks and shapes as guide for the creation of the final painting. I will be posting updates on the progress on  Instagram 

New paintings can be seen in exhibitions across the UK in the coming weeks. The first group exhibition I'm taking part in will open this Saturday at Gallery Top in Matlock, Derbyshire.

Towards the end of November, my work will be in a show at Iona House Gallery in Oxford and D'art Gallery in Dartmouth, Devon. In December paintings will also be exhibited at Byard Gallery in Cambridge.

Work can be seen at Red Rag Gallery in Bath and Stow in the Cotswolds, the Tiny Art Gallery in Henley-on-Thames in Oxfordshire, Golden Hare Gallery as well as Wills Art Warehouse in London where you normally can find an assortment of my still life and floral paintings.

Other News

Botanica This beautiful book is the creation of Janine Vangool and forms part of the Encyclopedia of Inspiration Range. I am honoured to be featured in this colourful publication along with forty five other inspiring artists. It is published by Uppercase

The television program DIY SOS is a BBC production about home improvement for special circumstances. Earlier this year I was contacted by the producers and asked if I would like to be involved in the current series called Veteran Street. Eight of my images were used as prints by the interior designers to brighten a property redesigned for an army veteran.

In this program, the presenter Nick Knowles quoted Ronald Reagan saying We cannot help everyone, but everyone can help someone. In that light, I'd like to thank you for the continuing support received for the causes I support.  Over the last month funds were raised to buy much needed mattresses for a stimulation centre for disabled children in Shoshanguve South Africa. Another organisation I support is Starfish Greathearts an AIDS charity. One of my paintings is currently being raffled for this very worthy cause on Justgiving 

A selection of my paintings are available as limited edition prints as well on ETSY for international shipping. Look out for original paintings as well, occasionally one or two are available in my ETSY shop. At the end of the month on 24 November a Black Friday sale will contain some special offers in my ETSY shop. I will send a newsletter out closer to the time.


Ever so often there are giveaways on my Instagram and Facebook page. Recently one of my prints, as well as two sets of greeting cards were up for grabs on social media. 

The winners are:
  • Meredith Anne: one limited edition print of Alfie and Rufus
  • Daniela Glassop and Nada Delore each with a set of four greeting cards.
Follow me on social media for daily updates, occasional live demo sessions and giveaways.

Colourful greetings,

Este MacLeod



The school holidays have just began in the UK. I do enjoy the longer summer days and in the last few weeks I have been inspired to create new floral and bird artworks as well as bold colourful still life paintings.

Some of these images are now available on products such as dresses, cushions and scarves on Redbubble. Orders are shipped worldwide, look out for Monday special discount offers.

For those who follow me on Instagram! I will be giving away a personalised watercolour artwork created from a name. This is to be given to someone nominated by a friend. The winner will be picked on Sunday 24 July. To enter the draw find the round painting post of 8 July for details.

Hummingbirds 50x50cm acrylic on linen canvas, available as original painting, limited edition print, and on a selection of printed products on Redbubble.
A selection of new paintings are also available as prints in my Etsy shop. As a special summer offer, everything in my Etsy shop is discounted by 20% until 26 July. Use the COUPON CODE 'SUMMERDAYS20'

In September, new ranges of my greeting cards and notebooks will be available in Etsy as well.

I am currently working on a new body of work for two Affordable Art Fair events coming up  in September and October.  Bristol Affordable Art Fair will take place from 8 to 10 September followed by the Stockholm Affordable Art Fair from 12 to 15 October.

Summer joy 100x100cm, acrylic on linen canvas. Available from Red Rag Gallery in Bath. Also available as limited edition print and on products on the Redbubble site. 
In addition to the two Affordable Art Fairs where I am represented by Wills Art Warehouse, I will be exhibiting paintings in gallery shows in London, Oxford, Dartmouth, Bath and Stow. More information to follow in August.

Apart from making paintings, I am currently working on completing a book based on my Creative Leap Art Course, as well as a brand new Explore Colour painting course, to be released early 2018.

With colourful greetings,

Open Studios 2017

It's that time of year again. The Henley Arts Trail takes place this Bank Holiday weekend, we have just moved back to our home and I am opening my doors to the public over the next three days.

It's been a very busy time and I have been hard at work creating a selection of new still life, landscape and floral paintings in a variety of sizes.

Opening times: 10am-5pm Saturday 29 April until Monday 1 May. If you cannot make this time I will be open by appointment until 3 May. Contact me on via email.

New prints available on ETSY:
From 29 April to 1 May there will be a discount of 15% off everything in my ETSY store.

A bit of fun. I'm having a giveaway on my Facebook and Instagram pages. To win a print of 'Merry May' follow the Facebook link.

The will be exhibitions in London, Henley, Goring and Derbyshire in the next two months - more information on this coming up shortly.

Enjoy the weekend!

February Fun

“Creativity is inventing, experimenting, growing, taking risks, breaking rules, making mistakes and having fun”                        -  Mary Lou Cook

Here in England it is wintery and grey with a frosty February still on the doorstep, but this one is going to be a fun one. Why? It's a month filled with little creative projects to inspire and enthuse!
The course starts on 1 February and is the only Creative Leap course offered in 2017 before it will become a publication later in the year.

Interested? Here's some more information:

Welcome to Creative Leap. 

This alternative art course consists of twenty six mini projects and four bigger art projects designed to kickstart creativity and promote original thinking.

For the month of February, creative projects linked to a wide selection of themes connected to the letters of the alphabet will be shared on the Explore Colour course page daily. Familiar symbols and shapes are the links to promote out of the box thinking and enticing ideas to expand your creative practice.

Key elements in this course are observing and drawing. The course is designed to expand concepts of thinking and observing by means of bite size daily exercises.
Over the weekends Este will also be offering live demonstrations of the bigger art projects explaining different art techniques. These are linked to the precious week's mini projects and are an optional addition to the basic course.
The live demos will happen every Saturday during February for an hour, within a Facebook private group exclusively for Creative Leap participants.

This course is suitable for artists and designers of all levels and experience.
The course is created to promote individual development and experimentation, useful as a daily exercise or to be done in more depth over a longer periods.
PDF documents can be downloaded to do the projects at a later stage.
Creative Leap costs £95 and registration closes on 31 January.
Sign up: http://www.explorecolour.com/course-info
If you have any questions about the course please email me at creativeleap@estemacleod.com

Other February news:

Over the last few months I have been working on new paintings for exhibitions and events coming up. 

In February my work can be seen at the Brussels Affordable Art Fair from 17-20 February where I will be represented by Will's Art  I am also taking part in the Winter exhibition at Iona House Gallery 
Other galleries where my work can be seen at the moment include Red Rag Gallery, Golden Hare Gallery, Gallery Top and The Biscuit Factory.

Prints are regularly added to my Etsy page, and cushions are available from Wraptious. I am doing a year long creative challenge, posting daily drawings on Instagram along with new projects and paintings.

With colourful greetings

Welcome to 2017!

Hope smiles from the threshold of the year to come, whispering, 'It will be happier.'  - Alfred Lord Tennyson

Wishing everyone a Healthy and Happy 2017!

(Here's a video of the creating process made from the words 'Love, Peace and Joy')

The Year Ahead

2016 was a very productive year, and 2017 will probably be similar: apart from several gallery exhibitions and fairs in Europe and the UK where I will be represented by Wills Art Warehouse, I am having my annual Open Studio event over the last weekend of April (the Bank Holiday weekend in England). I am very excited about the hand painted needlepoint designs from a selection of my images that now available from Melissa Shirley.
Wraptious will shortly be releasing their new catalogue where six of my paintings will be available as cushions. There are a few more collaborations in the pipeline, including wrapping paper, textiles, kitchenware and a book publication... more on this later. 
Apart from bigger projects I will also be doing daily postings on my Instagram account of little drawing based on random facts, notable dates, people and other things that take my fancy.

Explore Colour Art Courses

Always be open to inspiration. You never know where it may come from. Begin with an open mind, end with an inspired heart. - Sheri Fink

Creative Leap and Explore Colour: The Still Life Course can now be booked with an early bird offer until 3 January 2017. I am also working on a new course to focus on new art techniques and different acrylic mediums using Golden's A-Z paint sets. Dates for this course will be released in coming months. 

Creative Leap is a month long course suitable for anyone regardless of artistic ability. The course can be done in a sketchbook with pencil, pen, watercolour or ink, but it can be done more intensely as well using materials demonstrated in artworks. The course will make you explore alternative ways to observe and create. You will develop your drawing ability and artistic vigour. In addition to the twenty six daily mini projects I will be giving live demonstrations on the weekends within the exclusivity of the Facebook closed group. 
Booking via Explore Colour
Comments from two previous students:
Este, thank you ! Your course is wonderfully balanced and productive, and exactly what I needed right now. I am especially grateful to you for reawakening my joy in drawing, plus so much else. Many ideas to pursue... -  A HThank you Este for creating a wonderful course. I have enjoyed every day. It has certainly given me food for thought, lots of new techniques and inspiration for my stained glass painting. Its also been fun being part of the Creative Leap Facebook community and sharing and seeing all the work. - J L


On Christmas day I created a prize draw on my Facebook page - I invited people to comment on the video post of the day and have drawn the two winners. Congratulations to Debbie Carter who said she'd like to do the course with Carolyn McGill. Both win a place on the upcoming Creative Leap course.
I will be giving away another place on my Instagram account. Follow #estemacleod for daily updates.
Colourful greetings,


Happy Holidays!

Christmas 2016!
It's this crazy time of year again, and  I would like to take a moment to wish everyone a Merry Christmas. I hope you have a jolly time with family, friends, or a relaxing break, or just some down time if that is the way you choose to spend the holidays.
I'd also like to say a very big thank you to everyone who has supported me throughout 2016. It's been an eventful one, with more to come in 2017.

See the creation process of 'Let it Snow' on my Facebook page with instructions on how to win a place in the Creative Leap course, and a print from my Etsy shop.

Explore Colour Courses
I have now released two 2017 dates for my Explore Colour online courses. There is an Early Bird offer until 3 January for both the Creative Leap, and Still life Course
The online courses have limited places, so book early. They also make ideal gifts for the creative one in you life, or treat yourself and start 2017 on an energetic and creative note.
All the online courses now also include exclusive live demonstrations every weekend during the course via Facebook Live. 

I will be launching new prints and products in my ETSY store in the next month. If you are still looking for a last minute Christmas gift have a look here. These limited edition prints are shipped all over the world.

With kind regards

November News

Starfish Greathearts Art Auction 

Every year I donate some paintings to fundraise for causes close to my heart. Starfish Greathearts is a wonderful charity working in Southern Africa with children affected by AIDS.
Oleander is a 30x30cm original painting on canvas. During the annual London wine tasting event on Thursday 3 November, this painting will be auctioned, bidding starts at £280. All proceeds will go towards the charity. If interested please contact Starfish directly. 

Explore Colour: The Still Life Course

After spending more time this year doing experimentations with painting techniques and mediums, I launched the new Explore Colour Still Life Course in September. This five week course was focussed on exploring different paint techniques, compositions, colour and new ideas to be applied to four still life painting projects and future art projects.

I really enjoyed seeing what the students created in response to the projects, tutorials and guidelines.
This course will be repeated in 2017 with dates announced in December.

November is going to be a busy month with Winter and Christmas exhibitions starting, as well as the Windsor Contemporary Art Fair from 12-13 November where I will be artist in residence. I will guide an interactive art project over the weekend. Art fair visitors are invited to create colourful mini mandalas on a large canvas by means of drawing, printing and painting.

New work will be available at several galleries, including The Biscuit Factory the UK's largest independent contemporary art, craft and design gallery.  Red Rag Gallery, Wills Art Warehouse  Byard Gallery, Gallery Top and Golden Hare Gallery will be showing new still life, landscape and floral paintings.

Christmas 2016 - looking for something special? Limited edition prints are available in my ETSY store. New greeting cards and notebooks will be added to the site in November. 

For daily updates, follow my Facebook page and Instagram account.

September news!

Summer Projects

It's been a busy summer and I've been working on a few projects. The new Explore Colour Still Life course that is about to start, new work for exhibitions and art fairs, and work licensed for products.

The Still Life Course

A brand new four week course starts on 5 September. This course explores alternative ways to create expressive paintings with an emphasis on developing individual styles and develop colour sense through different painting techniques. Even though the course's projects are still life focussed, projects can be applied to a variety of painting themes, illustrations and design styles.

In essence the course comprises of what would normally be a course of four weekend live workshops. Tutorial summaries can be downloaded in PDF, and there are videos to demonstrate processes and techniques. The course material will be available until 31 December 2016.

See link for a glimpse into one of the projects https://instagram.com/p/BJ27zshB46V/

Registration closes on 4 September and one place will be given away for the course on Saturday 3 September on a Periscope live session at 2 PM BST. #estemacleod

To enter the draw see this Instagram link https://instagram.com/p/BJUpHqEBY4o/

Please note: Due to a very busy schedule ahead until June 2017, no further dates are set for this course to run again at this time, register via www.explorecolour.com

New things

On the top of the page is an image of Summertime. This commissioned painting is one of my images that has been licensed by Amber Lotus for calendars to be published in 2018.

Creative Leap - Book!

After running two online Creative leap courses, I am now in the process of turning the course material into a publication. I am currently working on a book to be used as a creative guide with a month of projects designed to kickstart creativity! The online course can still be done as a self paced option.

Needlepoint Designs

Look closely at the image above, Sunny is in fact a needlepoint canvas. A small selection of my paintings will be available as hand painted needlepoint designs in the US and Canada later this month from Melissa Shirley. More on this in the next newsletter.

Art Fairs and Exhibitions 

It's been an amazing year with regards to sales of paintings, I am very grateful for the wonderful galleries that represent me, and for people collecting my work globally via those galleries, ETSY and my studio.

I'm represented by Wills Art Warehouse at three art fairs this month. New large paintings can be seen at the Bristol Affordable Art Fair from 9-11 September, Decorex in London 18-21 September, and the Cambridge Art Fair 29 September to 2 October.

I will have more information on Christmas exhibitions in the next newsletter. 

If you are in the Northern hemisphere, enjoy the last days of summer, if you are in the Southern hemisphere enjoy the first signs of Spring!

With colourful greetings

PS. Find me on Instagram and Facebook for daily updates on new work and online demos.

Explore more!

A new online painting course this Autumn.

As a GOLDEN artist educator I enjoyed experimenting more with painting and layering techniques in order to developed a new painting course. The online course is extended to four weeks in order to fit in more content, it replaces the sell out Chaos to Calm course of 2015.

Why do I teach art in this way?

Online courses offer a very different way of learning, with time being the biggest advantage. I am able to fit much more content in an e-course than in a weekend long painting workshop. People can view the tutorials and do the projects in their own time within the four week long course. The option to revisit projects afterwards for another eight weeks is an added bonus, allowing more time to repeat projects or use techniques for different art projects. To aid with communication and feedback, there is a dedicated Facebook closed group, acting as a virtual classroom. Students from all over the world do the course, and this is yet another added element to the course. People can post work in the group page, ask questions, and see what their fellow students do in response to the different projects.
A live element is now added with two live periscope sessions being offered where I will also demonstrate techniques used in the projects. 

See below more information on the upcoming course.
Here's the link for materials
and the link for registration on Explore Colour (please use a laptop for registration)

Explore Colour: The Still Life Course.

This four week long art course consists of a collection of still life themed projects. There is a strong focus on using drawings created in alternative ways, for inspiration and combining them with a variety of painting techniques to create expressive paintings. Colour is also a vital component of this course, used within the theme of still life painting in order to push boundaries and explore creative possibilities.

How does the course work?
Over the four weeks, students will explored painting and creating techniques within the different projects linked to a still life theme. Developing of individual artistic styles are important, with colour exploring and a range of painting techniques explained in various demos. The limited selection of GOLDEN fluid paint, as found in the principal set of 10 colours, is used in all the projects. Este will demonstrate how she uses it in her own paintings to obtain ‘visual texture’, paint in layers, do printing and stamping techniques as well as drawing, collaging and mixed media projects. Video painting demonstrations are used to explain techniques and ideas.  

Alternative drawing projects are used to discover or develop creativity in new ways. 

New projects added to this course explore composition and colour moods, different painting styles and additional applications of layering and techniques including acrylic skins.

‘The Still Live Course” sticks to a general still life theme in order to keep the focus on developing painting techniques and the basics of colour theory to discover possibilities that will be useful for individual artists; practices, regardless of their style of subject matter.

Artists of all descriptions will benefit from this course, regardless of ability and experience. 
If you love colour, want to develop your range of abilities, from colour sense to painting techniques, this month long course might just be for you.

A class portal on www.explorecolour.com will be accessible with a password. Video demos and instructions will be posted from this page.

A Facebook closed group page will be available to act as a virtual classroom where work can be shared, for questions and general communication.

Basic Course Schedule
5 September:  Course starts with a first week dedicated to exploring alternative drawing exercises to create reference materials. Mark making with the different paint brushes and materials will be demonstrated.

12 September: Colour and Composition. Week two, The limited colour range of the principal FLUID set will be used to create a wide spectrum of colours. A new way of exploring different compositions is introduced in this course with added projects, using elements of collage.

17 September: Let’s paint! 
Project one: Painting and colour moods.  
Project two: Paint it your way, using techniques to develop your style.

25 September: Do more with paint!  
Project three: Printing  and scraffito techniques using acrylic gel and medium.
Project four: Layering and mixed media, new ideas to be more free.

Make your own magic!

Wow, we are already halfway through 2016! This is the last call for the Creative Leap course starting this weekend. Join in this month long course to recharge your creativity and find ways to make your own magic...

Creative Leap Online Course

If you can write, you can draw! 
The course is suitable for all kinds of artists and designers with any age or experience. I'm currently working on the creation of a Creative Leap publication, a workbook or creative guide of sorts, so this is the last time the course will be run with video demonstrations and a closed classroom group on Facebook.

So join in; escape some of the madness of this world and make your own magic! 

Register now and receive a £20 discount to spend on a brand new sketchbook or treat yourself to some art materials. 

Not sure if it is for you? Here's some feedback from members of the February group:

'I’ve loved every project in Creative Leap. You’ve encouraged us to observe, manipulate shapes, think about colour and texture and see endless possibilities in familiar objects. I now realise it’s good to experiment and make mistakes as negatives can so often become positives.'
Wendy Phillips

'This course is wonderfully balanced and productive..... and exactly what I needed right now. I am especially grateful to you for reawakening my joy in drawing, plus so much else. Many ideas to pursue.'
-Anne Howard 

Course fee now £75 including the £20 discount.

More information and registration here.
A list of materials can be seen here

Art in Action

This wonderful event happens again from 14-17 July at Waterperry Gardens close to Oxford. Come along to this unique and vast art fair, a wonderful day out for anyone interested in art, craft and creativity in the wider sense. Over the four days I will be one of the artists in residence, demonstrating techniques and materials I use in my practice as painter. I am really looking forward to be part of this energetic, vibrant event.

More information on new Explore Colour Courses

Explore Colour - The Still Life Course

In September 2015 Chaos to Calm was launched as an alternative still life painting course with a strong emphasis on colour and painting techniques. This online painting course is available again in a new format, altered slightly to offer more time for different projects, and more emphasis on developing individual styles. 
Explore Colour - The Still Life course will run from 5 to 26 September.
Cost for this course is £185 and an early bird discount of £25 off will apply until 9 July.

A-Z Explore more!

This brand new course has been designed for artists and designers who are interested in the creative possibilities of modern acrylic mediums and paints. There is so much to explore with Golden's Professional paints. The A-Z full set of 30 paints and mediums in generous sample sizes will be used to create a variety of creative combinations  and brand new techniques to explore and enhance  artistic expression. This course is happening early 2017 and more details will be available by September on www.explorecolour.com
You can register interest here, to be added to a dedicated mailing list.

A new online Workshop and art courses!

New work

Over the last five months I have been focussing my attention on the creation of a large body of work for still life paintings for spring and summer exhibitions.
New pieces can be seen on http://www.wills-art.com/artist/este+macleod
and https://gallerytop.co.uk/product-category/painting/este-macleod/

I am now happy to announce dates for an online workshop and Art courses coming up in the next few months. 

Art Career Paths

Cassie Boorn, the founder of Modern Thrive invited me to present a live online workshop Career Paths for Artists. This three day long workshop will take place for an hour every day from 21 to 23 June.
If you are a painter, designer, illustrator, maker or another kind of artist, this course might appeal to you.  The workshop is about new and exciting directions you like to do more with your creative abilities, explore new possibilities and options to achieve a fulfilling and lucrative artistically inspired career? 

Book is open until 20 June, receive a $20 discount. Coupon code: EsteVIP
More information on 

Creative leap

This popular month long course that was introduced in February will run again this July. 
Creative leap consists of 26 mini projects to get your creative juices flowing.
Register here: 
Please note, a £20 discount will apply to anyone signing up for the 'Career Paths for Artists' workshop in June.

Explore colour - The Still life Course

In September 2015 Chaos to Calm was launched. An alternative still life painting course with an emphasis on colour and painting techniques. This course is available again in a new format, altered slightly to offer more time for the different projects.
This course will run from 5 to 26 September, registration is now open.
This course cost £185 and an early bird discount of £25 off will apply until 9 July.
Register here:
Sign up for updates here:

A-Z Explore more!

This brand new course has been designed for artists and designers who are interested in the creative possibilities of modern acrylic mediums and paints. There is so much to explore with Golden's Professional paints. The A-Z full set of 30 paints and mediums in generous sample sizes will be used to create a variety of creative combinations  and brand new techniques to explore and enhance  artistic expression. This course is happening in October and more details will be available soon on www.Explorecolour.com
You can register interest here, and information will be sent to you in August.

Sent from my iPhone

Open studios and art auction

Henley Arts Trail

I take part in one Open studio event every year, as part of the Henley Arts Trail, which takes place over three days during the first bank holiday weekend in May. It is the one time per year where my studio doors are open to the public, there is always a selection of new paintings, work in progress, as well as prints and cards. Visitors are welcome to browse and buy or discuss commissions or specific requirements.

This year is proving to be a bit tricky, our house is undergoing a major building renovation. My studio at the back is not accessible because of the current building work. The plan was to have it watertight and suitable for an open studio with a difference. It was going to be housed in a space with a slightly industrial feel, consisting of the newly built shell.
As it turns out, Open studio 2016 will be in an industrial setting, but with the house built a bit behind schedule, one of the two remaining rooms in the house will be turned into a space to house new work. So, with the house being a building site, I am using one room that will be filled with fresh new colourful work.

So,  I would like to welcome visitors from Berkshire and beyond over the coming weekend,between 11am and 6pm and apologise in advance. Open studios 2017 should be back to normal.

Retro mug 40x50cm (16x20) acrylic in canvas. Available.

Pink room 40x50cm 16x20" acrylic on canvas.
Summer storm 70c70cm (30x30") acrylic on linen. Available.

Sight is priceless

Along with my open studio event, I am once again auctioning an original painting for a wonderful sight restoring. £2 buys a virtual raffle ticket via Justgiving No limit on individual raffle tickets bought. 100% of the proceeds go to Sightsavers. The winner of the painting will be drawn once the target amount has been reached. The raffle is open worldwide and the painting will be shipped at no cost to the winner regardless of location.

Bright morning 12x12" (30x30cm) acrylic on canvas. 

A busy start to 2016.

This year has had a busy start. 

Creative Leap: 
A new online month long course started on 1 February. 
An alternative mini projects based program linked to the alphabet where letters are used as the inspiration for a wide range of subjects. Creative leap developed from mini projects and exercises I've used in different workshops to stimulate creativity. The course is mainly drawing focussed and the daily mini projects and It is suitable for all levels of art experience and disciplines.
Have a look at these time lapse videos to get an idea of the process. 

I really enjoyed putting this course itogether and seeing the creativity flow from reaction to the prompts was a thrill.
Based on the positive responses I will be offering another course in June.

Art Fairs:
A large body of work, mainly still life and floral paintings were created for the Affordable art fairs In February and March I was represented by Will's Art.at AAF Brussels and AAF Battersea

Artist of the year contest:
In February Summer's Eve was exhibited at the  Mall galleries along with 49 other paintings shortlisted for the Artist and Illustrator magazine's artist of the year contest. I was awarded the Great Art prize of £500's worth of art materials, what a treat!

Upcoming events:
On 23-24 April I will be artist in residence at the Reading Contemporary art fair an interactive art project linked to Queen Elizabeth's 90th birthday, consisting of 90 individual star shapes will be created by visitors. 

Open Studios:
In April it is time for the Henley arts trail again. This annual open studio event is the only one I participate in, and it offers a rare chance to see work in progress as well as buy directly from the studio or discuss commissioning pieces. 30 April to 2 May.

Periscope a social media platform that I enjoy doing live demos or painting sessions on. If you would like to receive notification of these broadcasts, download the app, my tag is #estemacleod

Follow my Facebook art page and Instagram for regular updates, news on events and giveaways.

2015 - The year thats been

"You can't use up creativity, the more you use, the more you have" - Oscar Wilde

This inspiring quote proved true in this amazing year that has just been. At the end of 2015 I have to say that it has been one of the most incredible years, jam packed with opportunities and I am grateful for the wonderful new creative experiences that came my way.

My New Year's resolution on 1 January 2015 was to STAY OPEN. Open to new ideas and opportunities and developments. I knew it was going to be a busy, special year with new challenges, to include a New York licensing fair and giving a presentation at an art conference as well as a whole new direction for my practice: online teaching.

After much thinking, and with the encouragement of my fellow artists and designers, in February I finally decided to offer an online art course. I developed a still life course, and over the next 7 months I worked on, and reworked and recorded video tutorials for the first  Explore Colour course. The courses sold out within days and I will be offering more options in 2016.

The Affordable Art Fair in Battersea is where I have an exhibition every March, represented by Will's Art Warehouse. The gallery also represented me at the Hong Kong AAF and Hampstead Heath AAF later in 2015.
In April I was artist in residence at the Reading Contemporary Art Fair where I guided visitors in the creation of an interactive painting.

Open studios: I have only one event per year when my studio at home is open for three days to visitors. During the first long weekend of May I take part in the Henley Arts Trail. New paintings, work in progress, and items such as my glass casts are available directly from my studio.

In May I also travelled to New York for SURTEX, the licensing fair. It was a new experience to me, and new directions  and licensing outcomes will be realised in 2016.

Work further afield: Adairs, a department store in Australia licensed three of my images and these are now available as  limited edition prints in their stores.

There are two new UK galleries now representing me as well, information on exhibitions with them to follow in the coming months.

Last summer I was a demonstrating artist at Art in Action, a wonderful four day long creative event promoting all kinds of art disciplines. I demonstrated alternative acrylic painting techniques and visitors were involved in creating interactive paintings. A very energetic and enjoyable event and I loved being part of it. I will be demonstrating again in 2016.

Once again I did a community project involving children and adults for BIG DRAW 2016, the theme was Every drawing tells a story. I used letters as inspiration for a large greeting card drawing project called #lettergardens. Around 1000 people participated in this project, including local schools, visitors to the Windsor Contemporary Art Fair, and art clubs and schools in America and Argentina. Wonderful and original artworks were created using the same template, see blogpost below.

The highlight of this year for me has to be the GOLDEN Gathering, a conference for GOLDEN artists-educators in Fort Lauderdale in early December. As an Artist Educator for this outstanding professional artists' material, I did a presentation about interactive art projects. There were over eighty artists from around the world, a fantastic and unique event and I learned much from it as well.After the conference we attended Art Miami and Art Basel over four days. I exhibited in the Square Foot exhibition with Projects Gallery. Thisvisual overdose was followed by a trip I took down the Florida Keys ending in Key West. I have an inkling that my impromptu visit to the Audubon Museum will result in an interesting body of work based on his inspiring copper engravings of American birds.

As the new year is just starting out, I am looking forward to another busy and eventful year. The last surprise of 2015 was the nomination of my painting Summer's Eve for  Artists and Illustrator's: Artist of the Year contest. It made the shortlist of 50, and here is the link for voting online. http://www.artistsandillustrators.co.uk/MacLeod2015
The paintings will be exhibited at The Mall Galleries in London in February when the winner will be announced. I say this is a surprise, as I have no idea who nominated me and only learnt of the contest when I was told I had made it to the shortlist.

I supported two charities with three small paintings being auctioned and raffled this year, and thanks to the support from many they raised over £1000 for Starfish Greathearts and Sightsavers.
Kicking off 2016 I created another #drawwithletters painting. 
A timelapse video of the creating process HAPPY NEW YEAR!
The end result is Tom cat. This 30x30cm acrylic on canvas painting is now available with all proceeds going to an animal charity in Cape Town South Africa. (Offers over £200)

Some news about to happen in the next few months: In February my work will be exhibited at the Brussels Affordable Art Fair through Will's Art Warehouse. I've worked on a brand new month long e-course Creative Leap, this will start in February. More exhibition dates will be announced in January.

I look forward to see what 2016 will bring and I wish everyone a colourful and happy new year.

Warm regards,