Henry Sandon MBE portrait unveiled

Henry Sandon final

Henry Sandon MBE by Sara Hayward MA(RCA) , oil on canvas, 60″ x 40″, Museum of Royal Worcester 

“I think it’s fabulous. It makes me look happy which is what I always am. I’m delighted with it,” said Henry, 29th August 2014. 

Visitors to the Museum of Royal Worcester can now see my portrait of Henry Sandon hanging upstairs near the twentieth century gallery. BBC Midlands Today recorded the occasion as the portrait was officially unveiled with plenty of style and ceremony by Cynthia Crawford MBE in the museum last Friday. Painted between March and June this year it is is the first to be completed of two portraits I started of Henry. I am hoping – if Henry is willing – to complete the second portrait of Henry holding a Royal Worcester pot- in the autumn, with a view to showing it elsewhere.

Henry is not only a great character but also an affable raconteur and it was wonderful to hear tales of his growing up in London and his career at Worcester Porcelain. Outside builders and cranes on Severn Street kept us entertained as did visitors to the museum coming into our temporary studio who were clearly very excited to have stumbled across their Antiques Road Show hero. Henry is a national treasure, giving generously of his time to charities and institutions; multi talented, larger than life, a gentleman to the core, he is joyous; I wanted to capture something of his great integrity and also sense of humour. A friend said to me, “Make sure you capture the twinkle in his eye!” and I hope I have. Notice the distinctive teapot tie and his laughter lines. My inspiration for the painting were paintings by Bonnard; inspired by his use of  heightened colour and vibrant mark making. 

My thanks go to to the museum for the commission; I hope it does Henry justice. Henry likes the portrait, his family like it, the museum like it and so far so do the visitors. I hope you like it too. Pop in and see it if you can! It’s a gem of a museum and well worth visiting.

Museum of Royal Worcester, Severn Street, Worcester Open Monday to Saturday, March to October 10am – 5pm November to February 10am – 4pm  


High winds & blades Day 18


water colour study from my sketch book

water colour study from my sketch book

Wednesday 17th April.

My how the year is skidding past. High winds meant that on arrival one of the volunteers who had been helping the staff put up a large marquee was very nearly badly hurt when a sudden gust meant the whole thing buckled; needless to say it was taken down immediately. Working on the process today cutting stencils and trying not to cut my fingers off. I was taking a section form a painting and putting it into another – like a transplant – or inlay. Popping out the stencils reminded me of those found at the bottom of the cereal packet. The plastic I am using is very strong consequently very difficult to cut. Forgot the plasters but didn’t need them. Realise I was working with stencils at the Museum of Royal Worcester. Forgot my camera. Went for a walk after lunch and saw these enormous yellow “crocae” which are called swamp lanterns (or skunk cabbage). Chatted to volunteer Hugh who was digging the anthemis border which was decimated by last year’s wet summer; also Berry who was tidying up the sunken garden and asked me if her eye looked sore; fortunately not.Yesterday I wrote a review of the Lucy Tomlins sound installation at Worcester Cathedral which I will upload plus my review of Dan Roach’s exhibition. Chatted to folk from Canada and southern India. Of course today was the day of Margaret Thatcher’s funeral so Winterbourne was very quiet. Arrived home at six thirty and slept for over an hour.