Last week was the Search Press Demo Day at Mall Galleries, where hundreds of visitors came to watch their favourite artist-authors painting in the gallery. Search Press are an international art and craft book publisher, who print instructional texts for artists and crafters of all skill levels.


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Matthew Palmer demonstrating landscape painting in watercolours at the Search Press Demo Day

We were fortunate enough to have artists Hashim Akib, Matthew Palmer, Carole Massey, Julie King, Peter Cronin ARSMA and Billy Showell all painting in the main gallery, with colour experts from Winsor & Newton in the Threadneedle space, teaching visitors how to create their own watercolours, and talking them through the history of watercolour, using artefacts from the Winsor & Newton archive.

Many guests were artists themselves, and painted prolifically throughout the day. To capitalise on this creativity, we held a postcard painting competition, the winner of which received £50 worth of art materials from Winsor & Newton. “It’s always a pleasure to take part in events at Mall Galleries” said a representative from Winsor & Newton, “because the visitors are so passionate about art”. Winsor & Newton often sponsor Mall Galleries art workshops, such as our regular ‘Coffee Morning for Art Lovers with Sketching’, where they supply free art materials.

Billy Showell demonstrating floral painting at the Search Press Demo Day

Whether you were in the mood to learn about landscape painting, portraiture, floral, wildlife or marine art, there was something for you at the Search Press Demo Day. “The best thing about the event is the variety” remarked one guest, “and the price of the ticket makes it really accessible!” For one visitor, it was not only their first trip to Mall Galleries, but their first trip to London, and one made specifically to come to the Demo Day. “I’ve had a great day” she told Mall Galleries’ Digital Coordinator Beatrice Bowles-Bray. “I work in pencils, so I’ve learnt lots from Carole Massey.”

Representatives from Winsor & Newton teaching visitors how to make and use their own watercolour

Events like these are a regular feature of life at Mall Galleries, and they can be as valuable for the artists as they are for the visitors. “It’s great for an artist to get positive feedback about their work, so it’s been a really good day”, said Hashim Akib, who painted to a packed-out audience for the entire duration of the event – five hours straight, kudos to Hashim!

Hashim Akib demonstrating at the Search Press Demo Day

Find out about Upcoming Events at Mall Galleries