Judith Alsop Miles

Watercolour Artist and Plein-air Painting

Saturday15 June 2024

Winter in Lockdown

As reported in previous newsletters last summer, the first lockdown combined with glorious spring weather had rekindled my enthusiasm for sketching and painting the world around me. Whereas my sketchbooks used to be filled with a mix of urban and rural scenes, now the focus was entirely on local views – painted either at home or within a very small radius of home. In October, we were fortunate to be able to get away for a weekend on the Holy Island of Lindisfarne – and it was so great to be able to sketch somewhere not within walking distance of home!    

When I first discovered urban sketching back in 2011, my enthusiasm for art knew no bounds. After years of feeling like I didn’t know what to paint, suddenly everything around me was a potential subject and over the following eight years I filled 18 sketchbooks with watercolour drawings of the world around me. Then last winter I seemed to run out of steam. I was painting in the studio, exploring different media and developing new techniques, but my plein-air practice dwindled to almost nothing. Enter Covid-19. In late March, the UK went into lockdown and everyone had to stay home. My studio, a 15-minute drive away, was suddenly out of bounds. 

My studio is a very special space which brings me so much joy.

Located in a 19th-century cotton mill, it has large windows overlooking the river, high ceilings and lovely worn wooden floors.

There is no better feeling than stepping into the studio on a sunny day into this light, airy open room, furnished with preloved pieces from a local charity store.

The studio is both a workspace and gallery for my artwork.

I will be running workshops here starting Spring 2020.

You are very welcome to visit my studio anytime for a tour and a cup of tea. Just send me a message via email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or phone or text on 07979 603891.

I look forward to seeing you!