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About Lucy swinburne

My Story

'Painting for me is all about switching off and going to my happy place. I'm never happier than when I am totally absorbed with a new creation or teaching an inspiring workshop'

I have been drawing for as long as I can remember, and by the time I was 11 years old it was very apparent to my teachers and family that I had a skill.  Back then my favourite subjects to draw were the current pop stars and actors of that time and everything was created using a graphite pencil, probably a 2B!

I don’t remember harbouring any particular aspirations to become an artist at that age, as I was lacking in confidence but by my late teens I had decided that an artist was what I wanted to be and so I studied Graphic Design.  When I left college, I was still unsure which direction to take. Luckily, I got the opportunity to start my journey within the print industry, so I jumped at the chance starting as a press operator and moving on to be a print estimator and sales executive during the following decade.

It wasn’t until 1999, that my mother-in-law, who was also an artist encouraged me to start drawing again.  It was over 10 years since I had picked up a graphite pencil and as I gained in confidence, I decided I’d like to learn how to add some colour and began using coloured pencils.  

I dabbled for a while with water colour and oils, but I was too impatient to wait for things to dry, so I returned to my pencils. Irene (my mum-in-law) introduced me to soft pastel sticks and from then on, everything I produced was in pastels.   I loved the immediacy of the medium, there was no drying time and no set up required.  I was hooked.  I especially loved that I could blend the colours together with my finger and create really, smooth tones.  After experimenting with different textured cards and papers, I settled on a smooth card that gave my pastel paintings the photo-realistic finish I wanted to achieve.

However, I was still looking to add even finer detail to my paintings and that is when Colin Bradley one of my art hero’s, made me aware of pastel pencils.  The rest as they say is history!

Wolves are my absolute favourite animal. There is something so special about their stare that reaches into my soul and instantly connects me to them.


Take a look at some of my work

Choose from 5 different beautiful animal subjects to tackle! Within the book we also have 6 close ups to start if you aren’t confidnet

The Books Reviews


"A Fantastic Pastel Pencil Book"

I have just received a copy of this wonderful new book ,’Taming Wildlife with pastel pencils’, via Amazon. WOW what a fantastic, beautiful book, well laid out and with some fantastic subjects to paint/draw. But not only that, there are video instructions to follow along with, on Lucy's website, now surely that’s a first.This book is just what I have been looking for, as there aren’t many books that I know of that deal just with pastel pencils...


Absolutely love this book. Clear step by step instructions to produce stunning animal portraits. Just what I needed to extend and deepen my knowledge of work with pastels. Superb on line tutorials are a really helpful bonus. The author kindly followed up my purchase with a personal Christmas card, customer care can’t be faulted and neither can the book. Highly recommend.

"What a book, pure genius."

This is without doubt the most inspiring book on pastel pencils I have ever read. Clear concise and written in such a charming way. I find it difficult to put this book down. I am so so pleased I purchased taming wildlife, it has made a huge difference to my artwork. Many many thanks for this wonderful publication.

"An amazing book, a must have for anyone working with pastel pencils on animal realism art."

An amazing book, it takes you along every step on creating an animal with pastel pencil. With clear pictures so you can see every step in detail. Extra focus on difficult parts of the animal body, like the paws and the eyes. Recommend it for the beginner, novice and the more experienced artist.

"Really well thought out book."

I haven't come across a book examining the medium of pastel pencils before, so it's a first for me. The artwork is stunning and the projects are interesting whether you are a novice or a more experienced artist. If you enjoy painting wildlife in pastel pencils, or indeed in any medium, you will love this book. Lucy shares her experience in a most generous fashion, you can't fail to learn from her. I shall enjoy working my way through it.

"Well worth buying"

This book is really well written. Fantastic easy to follow, step by step instructions. Also very well backed up by the website and the online videos. I've have found my calling with pastel pencils. So I say, thanks to the author, Lucy

"lovely book, incredible value"

I was so impressed with this book, the quality and value for money are equal to other well known artists' online tutorials such as Jason Morgan and you actually get a printed book too. Thank you Lucy!

"What a beautiful and informative book"

I was interested in Lucy’s taming wildlife book prior to its release as I own her book on drawing wildlife which is also extremely informative but is in black and white. From opening the first page of her new book I was completely blown away by the beautiful coloured artwork. The first section of the book is very detailed explaining the materials required and addition helpful informatio...


Based on 65+ ratings

Stay Updated with our latest Blogs

Take a look at our most recent posts on the blog. Here we have many valuable resources you don’t want to miss like extra tutorials and more!
NEW! Cougar cub digital step by step book!
The Artist Wild Dog step-by-step article
Painting white whiskers on a big cat

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