Testimonials

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"Annie Gardner’s “Snow, Upstream” is one of the first images that greets me at home after a day at work. It’s a view from a bridge outside her own home. An oblique glance along the Loire on a January morning. But no matter how hard my day or how gruelling its work, the picture still prompts me to stop and wonder. What lies beyond that horizon? Who might be just waking up under that snow-topped roof on the left? Does the towpath border the river to its very end, or deviate to a home, a field, a warm watering-hole?

To own one of Ann Gardner’s paintings is not just to enjoy what it portrays there and then, but to constantly, joyously ponder on what lies beyond."

Andrew Jolliffe
"If you are thinking about engaging Ann as a teacher, my only advice would be – do it!

If you are serious about taking your art to the next level, Ann is absolutely the perfect instructor. In less than a year I am delighted to say that I have gone from ‘promising amateur’ to ‘competent artist’ under her tutelage – to the extent that I am now taking commissions.

I am sure I wouldn’t have done this without her help. I took some time to think about what makes her so effective before writing this recommendation, and I think it breaks down into 3 main areas:

1. She teaches how to paint ‘properly’
Ann’s training at the Slade under Euan Uglow and Lucian Freud means she teaches a ‘pure’ method of painting which very few people do these days. Whilst you may not adopt the approach 100%, I found it taught me any number of invaluable ‘foundational’ techniques, which have resulted in fresher, brighter, more sensitive, and ultimately more ‘painterly’ paintings. I think this is something every painter aspires to.

2. She has an extraordinary eye
I am constantly amazed at how quickly Ann will spot the issues in a painting and how she seems able to give really actionable, practical advice which invariably solves the problem. Compositionally she is very strong and has introduced me to new ways of thinking about organising a painting which has yielded tremendous results.

3. She is exceptionally generous
With her time, with her guidance, with her praise when something has been done well. For me, this is the hallmark of a great teacher, she really holds nothing back.

I am aware that this recommendation reads like a hagiography! I really can’t sing Ann’s praises highly enough. A fantastic artist and teacher that anyone who is serious about developing their painting practice can learn immeasurably from."

Leigh Brownlee
"The improvement in my work has been remarkable since Ann Gardner has been giving me tuition. I am naturally edgy about criticism even when I am looking for advice and Ann makes taking advice easy with her very sympathetic way of guidance. She has given me much more confidence than I had before and has helped me improve my technique no end."

Gerald Stubbs
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"The view from La Foce is a view I know well, so the painting has particular significance for me. But “View from La Foce” would be an enriching and delightful work of art with which to live even if I were not familiar with the area of Italy it depicts. It hangs above the fireplace at one end of a long room in an Islington terraced house, and it lights up the whole space with its verdant slopes, deeper areas of foliage, long slanting shadows, mysterious falling-down hilltop cottage, and single corner of brilliant blue Tuscan sky. In daylight it opens a permanent window on to a different, warmer, brighter part of Europe; but as dusk falls and the light trained on it comes on, it increases in exoticism and luminosity.

I’ve had the painting for over 6 months now, and still often spend time gazing at it and allowing it to evoke the early morning birdsong or the shimmer of midday. Living with one of Annie’s paintings is a genuine joy."

Linden Ife
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