Two Swindon artists have battled the elements, painting in all weathers and environments as part of the art movement called en plein air.

This month the Richard Jefferies Museum at Coate Water in Swindon is hosting an exhibition of their work entitled Painting Impressions of Swindon. Susan Carr and Terry Humphries were the artists in residence at this year's Swindon Festival of Literature and some of the artwork in the exhibition was inspired by the event. The display is a mix of drawings and oil paintings including scenes of Swindon's Town Gardens and The Richard Jefferies Museum.

Susan said: “I have recently developed a love for painting en plein air! I enjoy the challenge of being in the environment of the painting, capturing the scene and my relationship to it. This is much more spontaneous than painting in the studio and the paintings retain a freshness.”

The artist has had her work on show in the Norfolk plein air painting competition, A Brush With The Broads, as well as in the Royal West of England Academy of Art open exhibition, The Pintar Rapido Competition and the Buxton Spa Prize.

Painting for the love of it is only half the story with Susan. She gained a BA Hons degree in Design and Illustration at Swindon School of Art during the 1990s and became an advocate for art therapy.

She worked with pupils of the Exclusion Unit at Hreod Parkway Secondary School and spent 12 years as an art therapist in the Prospect Hospice, before studying for a PhD in developing an intervention called Portrait Therapy.

Susan said: "This is used as a way to help people who experience life threatening or chronic illnesses or other trauma as a disruption to their sense of self-identity. ''

She has now written a book on the subject which will be published in September by Jessica Kingsley. Illustrations from the book will be on show in an exhibition entitled Paint Me This Way, at the Swindon Museum and Art Gallery from Wednesday, July 12 to September 9.

Terry also studied at the Swindon School of Art during the 1990s, and he too gained a BA Hons for Design and Illustration. His work is inspired by the French impressionist painters and he can often be seen in and around Swindon painting in situ.

Jaime Bullock, manager and curator of Richard Jefferies Museum gallery, said: "Terry is a ‘colourist’ who uses colour rather than tone to express a sense of light and form in his paintings, over the years he has developed a gestural technique to express his personal voice through the paintings. Terry enjoys painting all subjects, with a particular focus on changing seasons, weather or light. He draws every day in pencil, graphite and charcoal, and never leaves home without his sketchbook! ''

There will be a workshop by the artists on Monday, July 17 from 1pm till 3.30pm at the gallery and tickets are £10.

The exhibition runs till Wednesday, June 28 during gallery opening hours on Monday, Thursday and Friday from10.30 till 3pm and Sunday 10.30 till 5pm. - Flicky Harrison