Wales

Helfa Gelf trail welcomes visitors into artists' studios

Ruth Thomas, from Llandyrnog in Denbighshire printing Image copyright Helfa Gelf
Image caption The trail shows off the best of painters, sculptors, printers and makers - like Ruth Thomas, from Llandyrnog in Denbighshire

An innovative trail that welcomes visitors into artists' studios has been an overwhelming success, organisers have said.

The public has one last weekend to experience the Helfa Gelf event, which has hosted its largest ever series of exhibitions.

The festival now covers all but one county in north Wales.

Festival chairman Judith Samuel said it had been an "affirming" experience for the artists taking part.

"The artists get an enormous amount from it. It's a chance to sort out your studio - and then get people to come and see your work," she said.

"All the artists that have had visitors have been very happy."

Image copyright Helfa Gelf
Image caption Verity Pulford specialises in glass art at her studio in Llanerch, Denbighshire
Image copyright Helfa Gelf
Image caption She recently held a solo exhibition of her art
Image copyright Helfa Gelf
Image caption Barry Skinner focuses on mixed media painting and woodwork at his Beddgelert studio in Gwynedd
Image copyright Barry Skinner/Helfa Gelf
Image caption Glaslyn Trees by Barry Skinner
Image copyright Helfa Gelf
Image caption Painter and photographer Dorothy Taylor from Nercwys in Flintshire lets the Welsh landscape inspire her work
Image copyright Helfa Gelf
Image caption It's not all paintings - Ceri Williams at the Ladder Store Studios in Llandudno, Conwy, makes 'Bobl Bach' - 'Little People'

The Helfa Gelf trail started in 2006 in Conwy, and every year has got bigger - now stretching from Dolgellau in south Gwynedd, all the way to Wrexham and across Denbighshire and Flintshire.

It has been backed with funding from the Arts Council of Wales, and has support from the Welsh Government and local councils.

"It is growing and developing every year - and we've had some super exhibitions this year," added the trail's chairman.

"We are attracting visitors from not just north Wales, but from across the north-west of England, Chester and the Welsh borders.

"It has been very affirming for all the artists involved."

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