ANY art lover will be familiar with landscapes, seascapes and townscapes, but in Bingley one well-known artist has declared her love for her home town in her own brand of painting.

Jane Fielder, who runs the popular Bingley Gallery captures local scenes in what have been dubbed locally as ‘Janescapes’. From the towering chimneys of the town’s former textile mills, to the colourful boats on the Leeds and Liverpool Canal, Shipley Glen and neighbouring Bradford and Iklley, her panoramas are both quirky and captivating.

Christened Janescapes by her husband Rob, the fascinating scenes in her distinctive style have become her trademark and the works - which can be up to 12 feet long - are a permanent fixture in the Park Road gallery alongside other artists exhibiting in the creative space.

She makes the most of the landscapes around her Bingley home. “Wherever I go I see beautiful urban scenes - this area is so rich in wonderfully laid out patterns all just waiting to be captured. My eyes constantly search for repeating patterns that can span the pages,” she says.

When Bingley bypass was being built Jane incorporated the construction scenes into her paintings. “It was heaven. The red and white cones brought life to the grey buildings around Bingley and they began appearing in my work.”

Jane grew up in Cheltenham, until, aged 16, her family moved to Ireland. “I was desperate to go to art college and while still at school I went to night classes including life drawing,” she says.

Her parents were keen on her pursuing “something that led to a proper career”, so she embarked upon a teacher training course in Dublin, specialising in art.

“The art teacher was amazing and really inspired me,” she recalls, “My art teacher in Cheltenham, at Pate’s Grammar School, was also brilliant.”

Jane’s first teaching post was back in England, at a prep school in Kent where art and craft was at the heart of her work. Later moving to a special needs school in Surrey, she began to consider her future.

Aged 27 she enrolled on an art foundation course at Farnham College. “It was brilliant, they encouraged me to do non-representational work which was much freer, as well as patterns. We also did a lot of life drawing. It was a great grounding.”

She planned to take a degree in art, but after meeting Rob, a computer consultant with a scientific and mathematical background, she went on to have three sons David, Chris and Marcus.

Living in Woking, she had a yearning to paint and joined a craft group. “I designed knitwear while the children were in a playpen,” she recalls. “Whatever people brought to design I would do it. I knitted jumpers for my children - my eldest liked to help use the machine.”

A move with Rob’s job took the family to West Yorkshire, where Rob had grown up. “That was very exciting - I had only been north once and arrived in a totally unknown place. I saw mill chimneys in Hebden Bridge and thought that was amazing.

“Hewdenden viaduct was in front of our rented house – it was all so beautiful, I loved the mills and the ruggedness.”

As her sons grew older Jane was determined to get back to painting. Aged 40, she enrolled at Bradford and Ilkley Community College, now Bradford College, taking a course in textiles.

During her time there she did a lot of painting but did not show her work in public. “It did not occur to me,” she says. She later taught art and craft to young people with physical disabilities.

Her life changed when she spotted an advert in the Keighley News for ‘Adventurous Artists’.

Two artists had placed and advert for like-minded, creative people to form a group to support each other and hold occasional exhibitions.

By then Jane had a great volume of work including flowers and landscapes. “They said ‘You have to show them, but I said I couldn’t. Then, before I knew it, I was showing my paintings to a gallery owner in Ilkley.

“He dismissed a lot of it but accepted a series of long flower paintings and asked for more. They quickly sold.”

A second gallery in Ilkley also liked her work. “The owner, Geoff Benson asked for more local scenes,” she says. “And that is how I came to paint my quirky urban landscapes. I’d put in landmarks and shops and people scurrying about and put them all together.”

From there, things took off. “I started showing in other places around Yorkshire. It was very exciting. Artists tend to not be lacking in confidence and I had never thought of showing my pictures.”

In 2007 Jane and Rob opened a small gallery in a “tiny room” in Bingley where they invited artists to show their work. They later moved to a larger property where the gallery has been for seven years.

“Rob helps so much - I could not do it without him,” she says.

Over the years Jane’s work has graced local venues including Bingley Pool, where her large paintings look down upon the swimmers. She has also exhibited in Shanghai, while on a three-week artist’s residency, and also in Dublin and Germany.

She does not limit herself to watercolour, painting in mediums including acrylic, pen and crayon, on surfaces varying from canvas to silk, cardboard and glass.

Now Jane is retiring and passing the gallery into the capable hands of a friend. She has organised a final show, including a special ‘cutting event’. “It’s an experiment I’ve wanted to do for years,” she says. “Three huge paintings will be hung one on top of the other and visitors will be invited to cut into them revealing the layers below.”

She does not intend to hang up her brushes, however, and is carrying on painting the landscape she loves and selling her creations at galleries, through exhibitions and online. “People can also contact me directly from my website,” she adds.

“I will miss the gallery so much, especially the people who come in and exhibit.”

*The Bingley Gallery, 29 Park Road, Bingley BD16 4BQ W: T: 01274 552143

*Jane’s final show from Feb 14 to March 10, with a preview and ‘cutting event’ on Wednesday February 13 from 7pm to 10pm.

Jane offers tips to would-be painters:

*Paint, paint, paint from your heart, not thinking of selling - that is the most important thing.

*Join an art club or class to meet like-minded people, this will lead you to exhibitions and competitions to enter.

*Exhibit anywhere they’ll have you, coffee shops, churches, charity events and so on.

*Be brave and don’t be put off by rejections. They happen all the time. I know artists who have won certain competitions in previous years yet subsequently had no pictures accepted.

*Put together a small collection of your best work and approach galleries, but remember they get many, many requests, so again don’t be put off by rejection

*Most vitally, NEVER GIVE UP and keep painting.