All material on this website is the copyright of the artist Ann R. Thomas and on no account may the art work be reproduced without her written permission.
I was born in Staffordshire and attended both Plymouth and Cardiff Colleges of Art,
obtaining a National Diploma in Design (painting at Special Level) and my Art Teacher's
I taught in secondary schools in Wales and England before becoming a Lecturer in
Art at the Malayan Teacher's Training College in Liverpool. I was then appointed
Supervisor in Art and Crafts for the Stoke-on-Trent Education Authority and continued
this work until marrying Pat Thomas, an engineer for the Forestry Commission, and
came to Tarbert in 1966.
I have exhibited in various galleries in England and Wales and owned my own gallery
and printing business in Tarbert for over 25 years. My paintings and prints are
in private collections all over the world, especially in North America.
I have specialised in watercolour, acrylic, oil and pen and ink drawings covering
Scottish Wildlife, landscapes and architecture. This has involved various commissions
covering many of the great buildings in Scotland such as Hollyrood, Glamis, Castles
and Houses on the Grand Tour, the National Trust for Scotland, Scottish Natural Heritage,
Tourist Boards and the Forestry Commission.
I have a keen eye for perspective, detail and composition and see fine draughtsmanship
as an important aspect of my work. The effects of changing light and wind to the
sky, sea and landscape fascinate me and, because of the transient nature of the weather,
I absorb myself in capturing the movement, colour changes and quality of light, which
lend themselves to watercolour painting.
My compositions are strong and my use of colour is powerful or muted, depending on
the mood of the subject. Every land and seascape painting is a statement of the
ephemeral nature of the moment. Because I usually paint in situ my work has a strong
feeling of place and atmosphere, which I believe I can convey more powerfully when
battling with the elements whilst I work!
However, I do work from photographs and for some commissions, animal portraits, etc
it is essential. Because I have an extensive knowledge of sailing and the sea, my
marine subjects - such as yachts - are accurate and yet full of life.
A pure watercolour depends on the transparent and translucent nature of good quality
watercolour paints used in conjunction with whitish paper. Depending upon requirements,
papers manufactured for watercolour painting have a variety of surfaces designed
to work with the artist. It is possible to paint on other papers and boards but
many effects are impossible on unsympathetic surfaces.
Using the paper the artist has to decide where ‘white’ and ‘light’ areas are to be
developed before adding darker tones, making the technique more or less opposite
to oil or gouache painting where the lighter tones contain opaque white and can be
over painted later. It is possible to ‘scrub’ a watercolour, on suitable paper,
to lighten areas and achieve different textures.
I rarely rework my pictures but achieve the statement I require by painting directly
on the paper and controlling the paint as is flows. This gives my paintings a freshness,
movement and uniqueness nearly impossible to copy.