Painting has a name as arts festival looms

A seascape painted by a north Northumberland artist during a session with local schoolchildren is nameless no more.

As reported in the Gazette, the painting was produced by Hipsburn’s Francesca Simpson, last year’s Alnmouth Arts Festival poster artist, who used it to demonstrate to pupils at Hipsburn First School how to use certain techniques.

After the day in school, it was completed by Francesca and bought by an Alnmouth resident - but it didn’t have a name, so it was up to the Hipsburn youngsters to think of one.

Their response was first class . More than 30 names were suggested and now the winner has been chosen by Francesca.

She said: “There were some excellent names put forward and it was very difficult to select just one.

“I eventually narrowed it down to two and after much thought chose The Big Blue Crashing Waves, which was Milly Breese’s suggestion.

“A very close second, The Frantic Waters, came from Teddy Cuthbert, but there were so many others which I could have chosen.”

Francesca presented Millie and Teddy with a signed print each as a thank-you.

Their class teacher, Miss Richardson, said: “The children have thoroughly enjoyed working with Francesca.

“They have learned new skills and techniques and would love her to come back.

“It was a great opportunity to develop their creativity when they were further challenged to name the painting.”

You can see more of Francesca’s work and that of the children from the first schools at Hipsburn, Shilbottle and Warkworth at this year’s Alnmouth Arts Festival, which takes place on Saturday and Sunday.

Earlier this year, the Alnmouth Arts Festival Committee donated £250 to each of the three first schools at Hipsburn, Shilbottle and Warkworth to help them develop budding young artists.

In 2012, the children from the three schools produced artwork to decorate the portable booths which are used to sell Festival Trail Guides and this year they will have their own exhibitions at the event.

This year’s poster artist, who takes on the torch from Francesca, is Jane Jackson, who has also recently shared her expertise with children, demonstrating rag-rugging at Warkworth Cof E First School.