Travels

John Elwyn’s life changed significantly after his marriage to Gillian Butterworth. The couple visited the theatre and concerts regularly, entertained guests, and travelled throughout Europe as well as to Egypt and the USA.

John Elwyn kept holiday sketchbook journals of Spain, Italy and Greece. Alongside watercolour drawings he wrote day-to-day accounts of his activities, observations on the architecture, and peculiarities of the landscape, climate, farm animals, vineyards and olive groves. There are frequent references to the comings and goings of the locals as he watched them about their routine; he recalled his encounters with them and meal-time conversations.

John Elwyn took a genuine interest in everyone he met and could strike up a conversation immediately. The days were occupied with long walks into the countryside and visits to places of interest. Visiting the homes of artists and musicians particularly appealed. Back in Winchester, John Elwyn used his sketchbooks as reference for paintings in acrylic and oil, and for smaller works on paper. 

John Elwyn passport issued July 1968

John Elwyn took his last trip abroad in 1991. He had become physically weakened after major surgery in the previous year when it was discovered he had cancer. He was content to remain at home, painting in the studio, taking short breaks to Wales and accompanying Gillian who regularly travelled around Britain in her role as Associated Board examiner.

1947

Hungary: Prague (with Leslie Harris).

1951

Brittany: Quimper and touring (with David and Vivien Pare).

Quimper, Brittany 1951 (oil on hardboard, 10 x 14 ins) 

1968

France: Paris, Avignon, St Remy, Aix, Arles, Vence …

1969

Greece and Turkey: Rhodes, Crete, Marmaris, Ephesus …

Crete: Heraklion and Agios Nikolas.

1970

Corfu.

1971

Jersey: Gorey.

1972

Portugal: Lisbon, Sintra, Obidos, Nazaré …

1973

Brittany: Cherbourg, Quimper, Douarnanez, Concarnaux, Pont Aven and Vannes.

1974

Wales: Newquay.

France: Paris, Nimes and touring.

Newquay, Pembs 1983 (oil on board, 14 x 18 ins) after a 1974 drawing

1975

Brittany and the Loire: Honfleur, St Nic-Pentrez, Anger, Blois, Ambroise and Chartres.

1976

France: Gascony.

1977

Italy: Umbria, Urbino, Assisi, Arezzo, Urbino and Rimini.

1978

Sicily: Palermo, Monscale, Syracuse and Taormina.

1979

United States of America and Canada: New York State, Saranac Lake, Montreal, Maine, Cranberry Isle and Boston.

1980

Greece: Symi and Rhodes.

1981

Italy: Gardone, Lake Garda and Siena.

Hotel at Gardone, Lake Garda, Italy 1983 (oil on canvas, 30 x 40 ins)

1982

Italy: Verona, Padua, Mantua, Venice and Vicenza.

1983

Italy: Lucca, Pisa, Pistoia, Viareggio and Florence.

1984

Spain: Madrid, Segovia, Salamanca and Toledo.

Dorset: Beer and Thorncombe.

1985

Turkey (A Study Tour): Istanbul, Kusadasi, Ephesus, Izmir, Troy …

Greece: Kos and Patmos.

Patterns on Patmos 1989 (gouache, 15 x 20 ins)

1986

Italy: Naples, Ravello, Amalfi, Positano and Sorrento & France: Rouen, Avignon, Arles and Orange.

1987

Egypt: Cairo then cruise along the Nile to Abu Simbel, Luxor and Karnac.

Italy: Milan, Padua, Verona, Parma and Venice.

Guisti Gardens, Verona, Italy 1987 (oil on paper, 22 x 28 ins)

1988

Italy: Vico, Equense, Naples, Pompeii and Herculaneum.

Italy: Venice, Bologna, Ravenna and Ferrara.

Recollections of a Garden in Torchello, Italy 1989 (watercolour, 21 x 28 ins)

1989

Spain: Cordoba, Seville, Granada and Torremolinos

Spain: Santander, Santiago de Compostela, Leon and Burgos.

1990

Wales: Tenby and Berriew.

East Sussex: Alfriston and Charleston.

1991

Spain: Barcelona.

1992

Ireland (touring).

1993

Manchester and Halifax.

1994

UK Wales: Abergavenny, Aberystwyth, Berriew and Pembroke.

UK: Woodstock and Banbury.

1995

UK: Northumbria, Halifax and tour from Durham to Berwick-on-Tweed.

UK:  Edinburgh and Glasgow.

1996

UK: Aberystwyth.

1997

UK: Cardiff.