Paintings in Oils and Pastel

Antique Lace depicted in oils
portraits on commission
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I am a Dutch-born artist, art tutor, writer and art historian, based in the UK. I find much of my inspiration in art history, especially the Dutch and English 16th and 17th century. I try to find a dynamic between the past and the present in my painterly depictions of lace, silk, and velvet as well as my portraiture. My portrait work has been exhibited at the Royal Society of Portrait Painters, the BP Portrait Award and elsewhere. I paint in oils and pastel and am available for commissions. 

Beautiful galleries show portraiture, fabrics and lace, pastel and drawings as well as recent work. With links to current exhibition listings, how to buy a painting and more. 

One-day workshops in small groups and with lots of personal help. Sophie teaches painting and drawing in intensive but informal workshops in South Gloucestershire.

A large resource of articles on art history, pastel and oil painting tips and techniques, exhibition reviews, musings and inspiration.

Short videos, tutorials and peeks in the studio on Sophie’s Youtube channel

Discover the Blog

Sophie Ploeg Blank Canvas

How to Beat the Empty White Canvas

How do we get over the fear of the Great White? The big empty space? That white paper or white canvas that is staring at us, blinding us into submission and freezing us to the spot. Unable to move we have no idea how to…

Sophie Ploeg pastels

Best Pastel Brands

After another lovely day of teaching students the dusty joys of pastel I thought it might be useful to write a blog post about all the different pastel brands available. Well,  I have not tried them all. But I can share my experiences with the…

Jan Steen, The merry family,

Dogs in Dutch Genre Painting

18 sharesShare14Share +10Tweet0Pin4Share0 Dutch 17th century art is full of dogs. The highly popular (then and now) and numerous genre paintings feature our furry friends so often, they seem part of the furniture. Not only were dogs useful, loved and popular companions, they also made…

Judith Leyster, Self Portrait, National Gallery of Art Washington

Bitesize Blog: Judith Leyster

Judith Leyster, Self Portrait, oil on canvas, 74.6×65.1cm, c. 1630. National Gallery of Art, Washington Judith Leyster Self Portrait Oil on canvas, 74.6 x 65.1 cm, c. 1630 One of the most well known female painters from the Dutch Golden Age, Judith Leyster (1609-1660) hailed…

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