Creative Fen Group artists

Creative Fen Group

Gillian Crossley-HollandGillian Crossley-Holland lives on the border between Norfolk and Suffolk; close to the fens of Lopham, Redgrave and Thelnetham and an easy drive to the seas and salt marshes of the North, Norfolk coast.

It is these land and seascapes, these crossing places between sky and earth and water that provide the major inspiration for her work. 'They are places', she says 'where sometimes, the earth is no more than a mirror to the sky.' A concept she explores by playing with composition, light and reflections.

Gillian's work has been exhibited in galleries in England and America and she is a founder member of Artworks in Suffolk and Tideliners in Norfolk.

Sue DownieSue Downie’s love of dog walking and painting lead her to the depths of the Norfolk countryside. Inspiration comes from the sparkle of light on water, glimpses of sky through leaves and shadows playing on the earth.

She works in a variety of media including watercolour, sumi nagashi (floating ink) and most recently she has fallen in love with pastels. She is a member of the Society of East Anglian Watercolourists.

You can see more of her work at




Martin PhillipsMartin Phillips aims to create original images sometimes abstract, sometimes representational, using a variety of mediums including photography, print and paint. 

Expolring the fen, its environment and rich history sets boundaries and is the inspiration for new ideas. 

A graphic designer fo over 30 years he also designed and compiled the Birder's Pocket Logbook and Walker's Pocket Logbooks. More of Martins work can be found at 

Mary Anne Kenyon-SutherlandMary Anne Kenyon-Sutherland A newcomer to Norfolk, I am beginning to appreciate the quality of light on the fens, changing with the weather and the seasons. The reeds rustle and move, creating a soundscape as well as a landscape, giving a particular atmosphere to the fens.  The changing landscape created by the work of LOHP and the projects we do as a group and in association with LOHP provide inspiration and motivation.






Sally MillsSally Mills is a patchworker and embroiderer, dyeing most of her fabrics and threads. She usually uses either woad or indigo, using shibori techniques to pattern the fabric, mainly using stitch resist. Her work is mainly based on the fen.





Frances BeasleyFrances Beasley works with a variety of media, including oil, acrylic and water colour. She also enjoys lino printing and some textile work. Her subject matter is based on her observation of the natural world and reflects her love of abstract pattern coupled with bright colours and sometimes the written word. Her sketchbooks and the photographs she takes are the foundations of her finished pieces. Before retirement she taught in secondary schools and she continues her link with teaching by running the Art Group for Diss U3A.





Jean MarshallJean Marshall has always loved exploring, especially the natural world and trying to interpret and record what she sees and how she feels. She finds the detail in natural things fascinating. Having worked for many years in a field study centre, hopefully inspiring children to discover these wonders.

Now retired and living next to the River Waveney with its ever changing moods, photography captures this habitat and others that she comes across in the wider countryside.

She enjoys weaving and textural crafts using different materials including natural objects to create an image of what is around her.

Philip and Mary ThompsonPhilip and Mary Thompson are retired optometrists, having run their own businesses for most of their working lives. They have always been keen photographers, with an interest in the natural world and a concern for the way that issues such as climate change and wildlife conservation are being handled, both nationally and word-wide. They feel that the LOHP in particular and conservation bodies in general are making an enormous contribution to increasing understanding of the pressing issues which confront us all. Belonging to the LOHP Art Group and the LOHP itself enables has enabled them to learn about and appreciate the rare environment of the valley fens. The Art group tries to meet monthly on the Thelnetham fens and this has enabled them to record, over the seasons, the beauty and variety of the landscape and its inhabitants in a way that they would not have done acting by ourselves. It has been and remains a rewarding and enlightening experience. The attached photograph shows their experiment with tapping of birch sap. This doesn't damage the tree in any way. The drink is reputed to contain many healthy minerals and vitamins, is drunk extensively in Eastern Europe and frequently distilled into a highly alcoholic liqueur.

Philip and Mary ThompsonGill Thornton At school the only subject I enjoyed was art, but it took another 40 years for me to rediscover that joy. A few years ago, I started messing about with some basic water colours and realised that drawing and painting were something I still love. This then led me to discover a fascination in botanical art – something I never thought I would have the patience for. What I enjoy most about botanical illustration is getting deeply engrossed in studying a subject and then transferring it to paper.

When I unexpectedly received a basic lino cut kit from my son-in-law for Christmas 2013, I started using this interest in botanical art in my lino prints. Since then I have continued to experiment with creating images from nature and places I have lived and visited.

In 2018 I moved to the village of Garboldisham in Norfolk and for the first time I was able to have my own dedicated studio at home.