West End Girls – SAOS 2020

Angela Chadwick, Monique Fischer-Birley and Tina Collins have been life drawing together for many years.   Monique facilitated the life sessions at a studio in West End Lane, Surrey which is where they all met and found they share a love of pan pastels and large, bold, expressive work.  More recently they have been meeting up en plein air for the shared experience and challenge of capturing the great outdoors.

Monique Fischer-Birley

South African artist Otto Klar saw potential in the big bold drawings coming from this tiny, shy girl and encouraged her to keep drawing, every single day.  She studied fine art at the Technicon Pretoria- specialising in silk screening, etching, life drawing, jewellery and ceramics.

Monique went on to pursue a career as a goldsmith, completing an apprenticeship at Vienna Jewellers. She has been self employed since- taking a break to raise kids, who are all artistic in their own rights.  She started painting after moving to England, inspired by the winter light, and how to capture it in paint. First watercolour, then acrylics.

It began as a love for the countryside, big sky’s, colour, urban and rural shapes, intrigued by nature and confused by people…
After the fine controlled detailed work as a goldsmith, she relished in the loose freedom of expression with paint.

” I try to capture a moment, or a feeling, rather than an identical likeness.
The more I paint, the more I want to paint.”

Angela Chadwick

In the last few years Angela rediscovered her love of Fine Art having spent many years working on a computer as a graphic designer. She started attending Life Drawing classes and explored various mediums but realised she loved the immediacy of messy hands and the appeal of gorgeously crumbly, soft chalk pastels and the unique Pan Pastel which is applied with sponges. Life Drawing offers the challenges of exploring shape, form and shadow to describe the human form which never fails to inspire. As do the natural vibrant beauty of fruit, vegetables, flowers and the wonder of getting out and about to draw and paint.

Tina Collins