Paintings auctioned at charity event
A client who has bought a few paintings from me in the past asked if I would like to get involved with a fundraising event they were organising in Weybridge. The event was supporting a local disability centre, The White Lodge. The event had a large art auction and 4 artists were invited to participate each displaying four paintings for a silent auction. Throughout the evening guests could bid on the paintings and I was delighted that my originals of Twiggy and the 6 James Bonds sold at the event for a combined £4,000.
Robbie Williams signed portrait for The Children’s Trust
I was delighted to be asked to support The Children’s Trust again this Autumn at their Gala Ball in London. The theme for the evening was Rhythm & Grooves celebrating the benefits music has for the rehabilitation of the children they care for at the Trust. They provide amazing care and support for children and young adults with brain injuries. They also provide excellent support to the children’s families.
I decided to donate my portrait of Robbie Williams as it fitted well with the theme and is very topical with him currently appearing on the X Factor TV show. The Trust approached ie:music who manage Robbie and we were delighted that he agreed to sign the painting! It was a mad rush to get the painting to him the day before the Event as he only returned to the UK a few days before to attend the Royal Wedding of Princess Eugenie!
The portrait was auctioned at The Savoy event and raised a fantastic £1,200 for the Trust on the night. I am pictured handing over the painting to Angie Turner, Head of Philanthropy at The Children’s Trust.
RAF Benevolent Fund Spitfire Painting
Each year I try to create a few paintings which can be auctioned to raise funds for charities. This year I decided to create a piece to support the great work conducted by the RAF Benevolent Fund as my father served in the RAF. This year marks 100 years of the RAF and I wanted to support their RAF 100 Appeal.
I’ve always been fascinated by the WWII aircraft, the Spitfire, and decided this would be the perfect project to paint one of these stunning planes. I approached one of the leading restorers of vintage aircraft, the Aircraft Restoration Company (ARC), to see if they could help with the project by donating any Spitfire parts to paint on. They were really keen to get involved as the RAF Benevolent Fund charity is one they hold dear to their hearts. They invited me up to their impressive hangars based at The Duxford Air Museum near Cambridge. This in itself was a very special treat to have a guided tour around so many incredible iconic planes. There were lots of Spitfires at various stages of restoration. They also had the only flying example of a Bristol Blenheim and a Hispano Buchon which were both fresh from starring in the recent Dunkirk movie.
George Romain, Brand Manager at ARC, then kindly presented me with a complete wing skin section from a Mk IX Spitfire they had restored (SL633). Parts like this are super rare. You just can’t find a complete panel like this and they are extremely valuable so it was very generous of ARC to donate it…. not to mention showing a lot of faith in me! George very kindly let me sit in the only flying example of a Mk I Spitfire… the Spitfire that famously sunk in the sand on the beaches of Dunkirk and was recovered in 1980 for restoration. Incredible privilege to sit in this aircraft and it really brought home how cramped and cacooned the young pilots were in the war – very brave of those young lads to jump into the cockpit and fly off into the unknown not knowing if they would return.
Once back at my Studio I spent some time thinking/planning the painting to make the most of the surface area on the wing panel. I considered a composition of two planes but then settled on one larger one. I wanted to respect the history of the piece but also maximise the impact of the painting. First I cleaned up the panel with fine emery papers and keyed it to enable a few coats of primer paint. I ensured a lot of the patina on the wing was still visible. I then used spray paints to create the land, sky and cloud formations. The plane was painted using acrylic paint.
I contacted the RAF Benevolent Fund to let them know about the project and they were very excited at the possibility of auctioning it at a large fundraising event this year. They provided me with their logo as did ARC and I got some vinyl stickers produced. The painting has been framed by mounting it with a bit of space from the back panel to really show off the wing section. I utilised the existing rivet holes for this!
UPDATE – the piece was auctioned at the RAF Centenary Dinner at the British Museum and raised an excellent £5,000 for the RAF100 Appeal. Here are some photos from the evening:
Paddington Bear for The Children’s Trust
I was delighted to be asked to create a painting for The Children’s Trust charity to be auctioned at a fundraising ball. The Trust provide amazing care and support for children and young adults with brain injuries. They also provide excellent support to the children’s families.
I decided that a special painting of Paddington Bear from the recent films would be very appropriate for them to auction and this proved to be the case on the night as he was very popular with a lot of different bidders competing for him! The painting was titles “Please look after this Bear. Thank you” and was created on an A to Z map of London with Paddington Station prominent in the corner.
I’m delighted to say he raised an amazing £3,000 for the Trust! They have also asked me to create a special painting to be auctioned at their Autumn Fundraising Ball at The Savoy in London… really looking forward to supporting them again.
Liz Johnson, Major Donor Executive at the Trust said “Thank you so much Nick. The wonderful Paddington painting made an incredible £3,000 which will go towards supporting our work with children and young people with brain injury and neurodisability”
Here I am presenting the painting to the Trust and the winning bidder collecting him after the event.
Ballerina painting auctioned for charity
Last weekend I attended the end of year Awards for the Susan Robinson Ballet School in Surrey. This is a very prestigious ballet school that has produced some of the leading ballerinas over the years… it also happens to be my daughter’s ballet school too!
The ballet school are raising funds to buy a bed for the Cancer Unit at the Royal Surrey County Hospital. I was delighted to help in a small way by donating one of my ballerina paintings to be auctioned at the event. This lovely couple bought the painting on the night.
My Paul Weller painting raised £1,250 for Woking & Sam Beare Hospices!
My portrait of Paul Weller was auctioned off last week to raise money for local Woking charity, The Woking and Sam Beare Hospices, at its annual Gala Ball at Wentworth Golf Club.
Paul Weller is one of Woking’s most celebrated sons and has supported this hospice charity himself when he performed a fundraising concert in the town in 2010. I’m proud to say the painting sold for £1,250 at the Ball and the money raised will help the charity towards its new build appeal. Below is a picture of me donating the portrait the hospice’s CEO Nigel Harding. I also received a lovely email from their Community Fundraiser, Wendy Denty:-
“Thank you so much for donating it to us and helping to raise much needed funds for the Hospice.Without people like you we would be unable to care for local people facing life limiting illnesses.”
My David Bowie painting raised £1,700 for the Teenage Cancer Trust!
My painting of David Bowie was auctioned last Saturday at the Teenage Cancer Trust Spring Ball in Guernsey. I’m delighted that the winning bidder paid £1,700 for the painting which is a great amount for the charity.
Louise Scott, Fundraising Manager for the Trust said “We are thrilled. Thank you again for this wonderful gift which will go towards helping us support even more young people with cancer. Your kindness and generosity is greatly appreciated. The winning bidder was VERY excited and whispered that she would have paid £2,000 for the painting”
Around seven young people aged between 13 and 24 are diagnosed with cancer every day in the UK. They need expert treatment and support from the moment they hear the word ‘cancer’. The Teenage Cancer Trust is the only charity dedicated to making this happen which is why I chose to support them with this painting.
I’ve been asked to make a run of prints and embellished canvasses available of this painting. Please contact me for further details.