Rosalie Watkins

I have had opportunities I would never otherwise have had with Fine Art Commissions, and find it inspiring seeing the variety of styles they represent as it reminds me to keep exploring.

Rosalie Watkins

The majority of my work is done from life at my studio in London where there is good controlled north light, although I can travel to sitters when needed. For a head and shoulders portrait I allow three sessions of around three hours with regular breaks, and for fuller pieces as much time as the sitter can give beyond that.

I find it important to have an initial meeting before starting to explore pose and composition ideas, and find out any ideas the client may have for the painting. I then do some sketches to show the client, and hopefully find a set up and composition that is fitting for the sitter, before beginning painting at the next session.

The first session tends to be finding shapes in transparent paint, with some initial colour, this is then developed and more information added in the following sittings. I like to work with the paint still wet, so get the sittings as close together as possible.

Rosalie Watkins


Rosalie Watkins

Rosalie Watkins

About Rosalie Watkins

Rosalie spent five years studying Fine Art at the Lavender Hill Studios in Battersea.  After her first year, Rosalie was then invited to teach at the school as well as continue developing her own work.  She continues to teach the school’s foundation course and figure drawing classes.

In 2009 she visited Israel and the West Bank, creating a body of work exhibited at an event held by the Welfare Association in 2010. She has maintained her association with charitable organisations and collaborated with the Human Trafficking Foundation for their exhibition on Modern Day Slavery, producing a series of portraits depicting victims of human trafficking which were exhibited at the House of Lords in 2011. Other recent projects include painting former Poet Laureate for Canterbury Patience Agbabi in a collaboration between the Poet in the City and Lavender Hill Studios, which is currently hanging in the Seamus Heaney Library in the Bloomsbury Hotel, and being resident artist with the Saxony State Ballet in Dresden studying anatomy.

In June 2013 Rosalie was one of three finalists in the London heat of the Sky Arts Portrait Artist of The Year Competition. Out of 2,000 applicants, Rosalie was one of twenty artists invited for the second round of the competition, which was to paint a portrait during a live, public sitting in Trafalgar Square. The live sitting was filmed and broadcasted on the programme ‘Sky Arts Portrait Artist of The Year’ throughout November 2013.  The competitors were asked to paint a famous personality in only a few hours, in Rosalie’s case, the model was Gavin and Stacey actress Alison Steadman, who chose to keep her portrait.  The portrait earned high praise from the judges on the programme, renowned portrait painter Thai Shan Schierenberg commented "The likeness is extraordinary…she knows what she’s doing". She has subsequently received multiple commissions, including one from a collector in Australia.

On the back of the Sky Arts Awards, Rosalie has since been commissioned by an Australian collector to paint a portrait of her son.

In December 2014 Rosalie was selected for the Royal Institute of Oil Painters’ Annual Exhibition and was awarded the L. Cornelissen & Son as well as third prize for the Winsor and Newton Young Artist Award. She was also first prize winner of the Art Event Evening.


Rosalie Watkins

Rosalie Watkins

Selected Collections and Commissions