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Featured Artists

Julian Merrow Smith
Julian Merrow Smith
Figs Blue
W&N materials used
Artists' Oil Colour, Griffin Fast Drying Oil Colour, Artists’ Acrylic

About Julian Merrow Smith

Julian was born in Buckinghamshire in 1959 and gained his Bachelor of Arts degree in Fine Art from Wolverhampton Polytechnic in 1982.

Shortly after moving to the South of France in 1998, his self portrait, 'Cap', was selected for the BP Portrait Award exhibition at the National Portrait Gallery in London, and in 2004 his work appeared at the Royal Society Portrait Painters' annual show at the Mall Galleries. In the same year he was commissioned by Cunard to paint eight still life and landscape paintings for the Queen Mary II, the largest cruise ship ever built.

In 2005, Julian started the project that has gone on to receive international acclaim, Postcard from Provence.

Julian Merrow Smith's Work

The inspiration for Postcard from Provence came in 2004 with the arrival at the foot of the Mont Ventoux of a high-speed internet connection, and at about the same time Duane Keiser launched his pioneering 'A Painting A Day' blog. It was then that Julian decided that a diary in paint of the changing seasons in his adopted home in the Vaucluse might prove popular and he started painting a postcard size painting every day. Each postcard consisted of landscapes painted within a couple of hundred yards of his home and still life paintings of objets trouvés and fruit from nearby markets. The paintings were then posted on a website that Julian designed himself.

The project was, however, soon noticed by the New York Times who did a feature in February 2006. The London Times, USA Today, The Sunday Telegraph and The Guardian soon followed on.

Five years and more than a thousand paintings later, Postcard from Provence has a mailing list of 4300 artists and art lovers all around the world, and a book of the work with 140 full colour plates, was by Red Ochre Press in 2010: http://shiftinglight.com/book/index.html

The paintings are usually completed alla prima on gessoed card in a couple of hours - on site or in the studio. Because Merrow-Smith often works plein air, and the paintings are done in one session, he likes to use Winsor & Newton Griffin Alkyd oil paints.