THE YOUNGEST ever participant in Swindon Open Studios will be showing off his art this month.

As a child, 18-year-old Dominic Waddell was always drawing.

Now, the Old Town lad, who graduated from Commonweal School this year clutching a A* pass in A-level art, has dreams of painting professionally.

Later this month he will leave Swindon for Bath Spa University, where he will study art.

But before he leaves home, the teenager will be putting on his first exhibition – alongside artist parents Chris and Lamorna.

The family are opening the doors to their stunning Okus home as part of Swindon Open Studios. It is the first time they have participated in the scheme, which this year sees 60 artists across Swindon exhibiting their work over two weekends.

Dominic said: “I’ve been drawing since I was a toddler, but I only started painting a year ago.

“At the end of Year 12 I thought, ‘I’ve got to do something more than just the pen drawings.”

His first proper painting, a self-portrait, took him the whole of the summer break.

Dominic said: “I would sit down for the whole day and I’d only get a two inch square section of the painting done.”

He’s found that working on two paintings at once helps him work faster – switching between them when his inspiration fails. “Painting is one of those things that takes me ages to get into, but when I start going time goes really quickly.”

One of the few pictures he’ll never throw away is a small portrait of girlfriend Isabelle.

A former sprint champion, Dominic hopes to become a portrait artist when he graduates. “There’s always been an art influence. Whenever we went to London we’d go to art galleries. I think that’s the reason why I grew to love art.”

Parents Chris, 49, and Lamorna, 50, met at art school in Cardiff. Chris currently works as a graphic designer, while mum Lamorna teaches art at Park House School in Newbury. The couple’s 16-year-old son Sam drew as a child, but now prefers playing rugby for Dorset and Wiltshire.

Ceramicist Lamorna said that she was “super excited” for her first-born’s university departure.

“I’m super excited,” she said. “Chris and I met at art college. We both said when we were going round the art colleges with Dom how brilliant it was.”

Working in a house full of artists can have its benefits, she said. “We all like to critique each other’s work.”

Dad Chris, who worked in advertising with leading brands like Vodafone and Twinings, will be exhibiting his stunning images of Britain’s piers.

The photographs, all taken over the last decade, have been published in a new book. “I grew up near piers in Brighton and South Wales. I felt a massive attraction to them,” he said.

“A lot of piers have suffered damage over the years. They are monuments to the perseverance of the people who have brought them back to life.”

The Waddells will be exhibiting their work at 12 Galen View, Okus, on the weekends of September 9-10 and 16-17, and Wednesday September 13, 11am – 5pm. For more, visit:

To see all the Swindon Open Studios artists, visit: