A hobby has turned into a full-time concern for 17 artists from Insight School of Art in Barnet, which holds workshops in St Albans and draws members from across Hertfordshire and north London. The group is now staging an exhibition at ArtVanGo in Knebworth after the success of its debut show in New Barnet last November.

Two artists have recently been shortlisted for the BBC art programme Show Me The Monet and other successes include wins at the Finchley artsdepot Open Exhibition and exhibiting at the Mall Galleries in London.

The Knebworth exhibition, which opens this Saturday, includes portraits, abstracts, conceptual works, subtle flowers, bold landscapes depicting rural and city scenes using oil, acrylic, pastel, watercolour, pen and ink and mixed media. Members of the group hail from St Albans, Hertford, Barnet, Finchley and Muswell Hill.

Having retired from her job as a health visitor in Hatfield, Welwyn artist Fiona Payne has found more time to devote to her craft. Fiona paints in a lively multi-layered abstract style using vibrant acyclic paints and pens, torn paper, text and other found objects.

“I’m influenced by Klimt and by aboriginal art,“ says Fiona. “I like to have a decorative element within my work and use bold colour. I’m greatly influenced and inspired by my local landscape in Sherrards Wood. Several trees have been felled so there’s a lot of logs and cut wood about and there are vibrant colours even at this time of year. The colours can be exaggerated as in certain light there are reddy brown colours from the winter leaves. Our dog is a Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever and has a russet, orange coat that blends beautifully with the woodlands when we go for a walk.“

Other artists exhibiting include Judy Gilley, who creates restful landscapes in gouache and Helen Lee, whose watercolour and pen and ink drawings illustrate popular London scenes such as the Globe Theatre.

The exhibition is at ArtVanGo, Stevenage Road, Knebworth from Saturday, March 10 to Saturday, April 7. Details: 01438 814946, artvango.co.uk