I’ve painted and sketched since early childhood and my favourite place was the garden, amongst the old fruit trees and raspberry canes.

Old Fisherman's Dock
Old Fisherman's Dock
I was lucky to grow up near the coast in a family with a long association with the sea, and I am very proud to say that my paternal great-grandfather was a bowman for the RNLI, Poole. I vividly remember spending hours at the Old Fisherman's Dock, watching the fishermen mending their nets whilst my parents got the wooden dinghy ready for a trip to the beach or around the harbour islands.

As a student, I studied for a degree in Visual Arts & Geography at Lancaster University and I worked as an illustrator and graphic designer in studios in London and Dorchester.
I had one of the best-ever placements - illustrating the natural-history information boards which were displayed throughout Dorset. I wasn't allowed to sign these boards, so I used to put a particular little bird into each one - but this idea backfired when I was asked to create a board on the Jurassic Period!

The Juggler
The Juggler
On raising my family, I was inspired to paint my children's portraits and I started painting with a passion. I took jobs which fitted school hours, but I was still driven to paint whenever I could. I'll readily admit it was a constant juggle to fit it in! I voluntarily painted jungle animals on school hall windows, frogs in reception and a beach as a full-sized office mural. I also designed and painted the scenery for several combined school productions. Outside of work, I sold my paintings via galleries and exhibitions and I entered Open Art competitions.
Les Mis
Les Mis
The full list is here: events:awards but two highlights were: Winning the New Forest Art Competition, 2015 (youtube) and being one of just 50 artists in Artists & Illustrators Magazine's 'Artist of the Year 2017' at the Mall Galleries, London. It fulfilled an ambition to have a painting exhibited in this prestigious gallery. It was especially poignant because I'd painted those old fruit trees in my childhood garden.

2018 was a fantastic year for vergeside flowers. They seemed to be everywhere in Dorset. I still never fail to be uplifted when I pass them. I really love painting wildflowers and initially, I used impasto paint applied with a painting knife. It's an exciting way of creating art for the sheer enjoyment of the process. I was delighted to be asked by Jackson's Art to write about my floral art for their blog, which you can read here.

Over time I wanted to see how these joyful impasto paintings would look on fabric. A UK company now makes beautiful, faux-suede cushions from my floral & coastal artwork - exclusively for me. They are stocked by Seasons Green, the stunning seventeenth century gallery & artisan gift shop at Corfe Castle, Dorset.
They also have a selection of my mini framed wildflower paintings, totes and coasters.
My cards are at local Dorset National Trust shops: Corfe Castle; Studland Beach and Kingston Lacy. They have recycled envelopes and bio-degradable (potato starch) cellulose sleeves. All the images are inspired by the wayside flowers and coast close to my Dorset home.

New Beginnings 2020
A Little Jar of Saffron: Sold
A Little Jar of Saffron: Sold
I'm finally painting full-time! I'm now using oil paints applied with brushes on gessobords, cotton canvas panels and stretched canvas. While we were all home-based, I started with a series of home-inspired artworks, including garden views, the contents of my kitchen cupboard and favourite photos from my previous travels.
You can see these paintings in my New Gallery.

I started to receive requests for my paintings - sometimes while they were still in progress - so I've added 'Buy Now' buttons to available paintings across the galleries as they become dry enough to post! These link directly to Paypal, where a purchase can be made by card as well as via an account. A BIG thank you to everyone who has supported me in this way, I am very grateful. Purchases, and social media support, really help me to keep going and they are both very much appreciated!

Through the Square Window - Lockdown Day 20
April: I was really grateful to have my lockdown painting 'Through the Square Window: Lockdown Day 20' selected as the winner of Artists & Illustrators magazine's 'Artwork of the Month'. Pegasus Art asked me to write a blog about this painting and my art (May 2020) which you can read here.

The Flower Stall: NFS
June: I am delighted that my painting 'The Flower Stall' was selected in 'The Artist' category of 'The Artist and Leisure Painter TALP Open 2020'. It's such an honour to have been included in the top 70 works in this professional artist exhibition.

July: More amazing news, I've won Painters-Online's (Leisure Painter and The Artist magazine) ‘Flowers & Grasses’ monthly competition! Big thanks to POL, Art Safari and Winsor & Newton for providing this fantastic opportunity.

August: I'm feeling very privileged that I was invited to submit some of my coastal images to dress an empty shop unit near Poole Quay. Generations of my family, including my great-grandfather, would have known this area so well, as they lived and worked here. I am very grateful to Poole BID, the landlords, local businesses and agents who made this possible.

Doughty's Island, Poole Harbour: £85
Lupins & Clematis: Sold
To date: I'm really enjoying painting the coast and my favourite flowers. I've recently noticed that a lot of my subjects are bathed in sunshine.
I hope this makes them happy and uplifting paintings to look at - all year round.
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The very best of wishes

Andrea :- )
'Sunshine on a Palette'
Dorset Artist - inspired by nature and the beautiful wildflowers & coast of my home county
Oil & acrylic original paintings
All images © Andrea Hook

Winner of the New Forest Open Art 2015
Selected for Artists & Illustrators Magazine's Artist of the Year, Mall Galleries Exhibition 2017
Selected for 'The Artist' category of The Artist and Leisure Painter Magazines' Open Art Competition 2020