Please Note

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Wednesday, 15 December 2010

Sadly this won't save the right way up!

A few more sketches

hopefully i'll have time to turn these into finished pieces ready for our May showing.

If you are interested in taking part please let me know ....

Tuesday, 14 December 2010

Prompt: Appreciate (Reverb 10)

P: Appreciate. What's the one thing you have come to appreciate most in the past year? How do you express gratitude for it?

The answer to this undoubtedly has to be family and friends. 
I could prattle on for an age about how and why but i won't. I shall simply say that i express my gratitude in giving back as much as i can and more importantly, by never taking them for granted.
There's truth in the saying that anything worth having is worth working for.

Monday, 13 December 2010

P.s Whatever the aspiration ...

... I believe you should get there in a fabulous pair of shoes

Prompt: Action (Reverb 10)

P: Action. When it comes to aspirations it's not about the ideas, it's about making ideas happen. What's your next step.

This prompt resonated quite deeply with me. Having spent the last 12 months knowing I had to make a change (or sacrifice all aspiration) it was finally forced upon me.

Procrastination and self doubt are saboteurs of great ideas and in my experience stronger than any physical bonds.

My next step is to be true to my passions, to accept that it may come at a cost but to realise it's a cost that can and must be borne if i am ever to move beyond imagining to achieving.

Saturday, 11 December 2010


From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

twig is a small thin terminal branch of a woody plant.
Twigs are critically important in identification 
of treesshrubs and vines, especially in wintertime.[1]
The buds on the twig are an important diagnostic characteristic,
 as are the abscission scars where the leaves have fallen away.
The color, texture, and patterning of the twig bark are
 also important, in addition to the thickness and nature
of any pith of the twig.
There are two types of twig, vegetative twigs and fruiting spurs.
Fruiting spurs are specialized twigs that generally branch off
the sides of branches and leading twigs, and
are stubby and slow-growing, with many annular ring 
markings from seasons past.
The age and rate of growth of a twig can be determined by counting
the winter terminal bud scale scars, or annular ring marking,
down the length of the twig. Are also these are as the many
 resources for utility or useful to others.

Prompt: 11 Things (Reverb 10)

Prompt: 11 Things. What are 11 things your life doesn't need in 2011? How will you go about eliminating them? How will getting rid of these 11 things change your life?
11 things my life doesn’t need in 2011. In no particular order I guess it would be:
1)   ‘Should's’
2)   ‘Should Not's’
3)   A lack of cash
4)   Illness
5)   Sadness
6)   A crappy car
7)   14 hour work days
8)   Sarcastic know it alls
9)   Predictability
10) Monotony
11) Singledome
How will I eliminate all of these things? Good question, I think for most of us that’s a life project rather than one to be undertaken in a year.
New Year’s resolutions won’t cut it they always get forgotten two weeks in. I guess it will have to come down to a promise to myself that i will:
Take positive action
Have faith (and hope)
Fill my life with only positive, good people
Say ‘No’ and establish boundaries that work for me
Say ‘Yes’ to adventure and new experiences
Stick to a budget (Lord help me)
Winning the lottery 
Eating some vegetables (just enough to keep scurvy at bay)

Sticking to it will be difficult as there's always a default way of thinking, routine and of course all those expectations from the people and structures around us. Maybe that's the real challenge, to step outside and stay outside the climbing frame.

My friend Penny and her crafts

Check out the beautiful crafts my friend Penny has been working on. I think they are simply gorgeous and you can choose to have a name sewn on the hearts/ stars which will make it extra special.

Keep an eye out for Penny's 'Folksy' link which i will be posting soon.

Thursday, 9 December 2010

Prompt: Beautifully Different (Reverb 10)

Q: Beautifully Different. Think about what makes you different and what you do that lights people up. Reflect on all the things that make you different - you'll find they're what make you beautiful.

Where do you start with a prompt like this? My sister sent me her thoughts on what makes me different (in the beautiful sense of course). One sentence that really stood out was "the fact that you’ve ALWAYS danced to the tune of your own beat". This stood out because as soon as i read it my first thought was whether i had danced myself out of the party.

I would guess the biggest thing that makes me different to most people is the way i think. A university lecturer once commented that he liked the way I thought. I didn't really understand it at the time but i have come to over the years as more and more people have commented on it.

The best way to describe it is to say i have a butterfly brain. Most people think in straight lines whereas my thoughts are more like a constellation than a constant line of consciousness.

I am also a contradiction to many people because of the choices i make. This is based on nothing more than  refusing to subscribe to the school of 'cool' or the strangle hold of 'shoulds' (well OK the 'shoulds are a little more difficult to rebel against but you get the picture). I would rather have a love of many things than be restricted by someone else's ideal of what a person like me 'should' be in to. There are too many 'shoulds' and 'should nots' in this life. Being the only white kid in school with an Afro set the tone on that one (a home perm that went bad).

In many ways i am every bit the same as the person next to me. A lot of bones and consciousness in a skin bag that gets kicked around from time to time but somehow manages to bounce back and occasionally score an own goal.

I use words and baking to express what i can not say and i have seen those words and sweet treats light people up at the rarest of moments. I like to think that's because they see or at least sense the sincerity that sits behind them. I believe in simple gestures as well as the grand ones and a confidence spoken is a confidence kept. 

All of these things make me different and many more besides. Do they make me beautiful? To some yes, to others no. As long as those i love can love me back by some small degree it doesn't really matter.

Wednesday, 8 December 2010

Prompt: Community. (10/12/2010)

Q: Where have you discovered community, online or otherwise, in 2010? What community would you like to join, create or more deeply connect with in 2011?

The first community that comes to mind has to be the 'blogging' community. I had been reading about different blogs for a couple of years but had never got round to really checking any out until my sister set up her own ( I have really enjoyed her posts and finally got sucked in a few weeks ago.

Having finally set my blog up i'm still in the very early stages of creating the identity and in cultivating a following. I have to say though, i am surprised at how much i enjoy posting even without a legion of followers.

During 2011 i hope to connect with other bloggers through developing my own pages and stumbling across theirs. I have already discovered a number of blogs that i find inspiring, fascinating and beautiful all in different measure and as my confidence grows i look forward to engaging with the 'blog' community more and more over the coming year.

Monday, 6 December 2010

Well worth checking out......

Reverb 10

At the end of 2009, Gwen Bell launched a creative end of year project and invited a few bloggers to join.
The Best of 2009 Blog Challenge (#best09)encouraged online creators, through daily prompts, to dive into the past year and reflect on it to understand ourselves. Last year was the first year of the challenge. Around a thousand people participated (online), and by all accounts had a blast.
So with that kind of hook (straight from their blog pages) i'm going to give it a go.....

Sunday, 5 December 2010

Winter Walks

Henry and I ventured out this morning for a quick gander around the woods. Luckily i remembered to take my camera....

Tuesday, 30 November 2010

Some preliminary sketches

I look forward to seeing where these ink sketches from today will take me.

It's been quite a while since i've done this type of figure sketch so i have no idea how the finished versions will look....

The Christmas Tree

Every year i have an internal battle. Real tree, fake tree, twig tree..... This year the twig tree has won out.

I can remember the day i departed from a big thick traditional fir tree, it was around this time of year and I was up on the Ridgeway walking Henry when i saw a very large branch on the side of the track. The thought of getting our age old 6ft fake tree out of the loft had left me feeling down in the mouth and less than enthused about decorating the house for Christmas. When i saw that branch it just struck me as the ideal solution. No need for the endless head scratching trying to push in colour coded branches. No cursing at the endless strings of knotted lights and, at the end of Christmas it could be left to happily rot away at the end of the garden.

So Henry and I wrestled the branch into my car (Henry trying to eat it, me trying to wedge it in without taking our eyes out) and drove it home. One can of gold spray paint and some red lights later and it looked great (well i thought so at the time and everybody else was too polite to say anything different).

This year I'm using my 'craft' tree but it brings back happy memories of that first 'alternative' Christmas tree adventure with Henry.

Merry Christmas!

Thursday, 25 November 2010

A life long crush

Yes it's true, i will forever be in love with Chanel, it's really not hard to see why


but as the pennies don't stretch to the real thing here's my idea of a perfect Christmas outfit. Part vintage store find, part high street. Love it!

One last word, bare feet in winter is obviously a no go unless you're standing on a sheepskin rug in front of an open fire so killer heels are recommended......

Sketch Book..... some progress

Some ideas are definitely working better than others....

The way we were

Few things give me greater pleasure than finding old photographs of times forgotten,

Monday, 22 November 2010

Getting Motivated

Tomorrow's lesson - how to set up a gallery.  Please don't hold back if you can share an experience!

Tomorrow's activity - Art Journal. 2 pages down, 100 to go.

Sunday, 21 November 2010

Check out the latest exhibition at my favourite museum. A fabulous place that needs support so if you get a chance please go and take a look. You'll also see some of my work on display.

Saturday, 13 November 2010

To the friend

To the friend that fed me when I didn't have the strength to feed myself, thank you.

To the friend who warmly embraced me when I wore a jacket of barbed wire, thank you.

To the friend who accepted a cup of tea as my gift when I had nothing else to give, thank you.

To the friend who knew my silence spoke a thousand words and spoke back in conversation, thank you.

To the friend that forgave my failures and celebrated the triumphs, thank you.

To the friend I could not save, thank you for the echo you leave behind.

Thursday, 11 November 2010

For my sister

A favourite outfit

What score (out of 10) would you give this outfit?

I'm always curious about the ingredients of a perfect outfit.

If work is a problem

Try this link to register for free advice.

It doesn't have to be employment related, the service covers all kinds of legal issues so it's worth taking a look and registering if you can make the time.

Sunday, 7 November 2010

First time

I have been nagged half to death by many people in my life to get  a finger out and start a Blog. Here goes.

On the right you will see a link to my Flickr photo stream to give you a snapshot of some of the art work that i do (or have done) albeit not very well photographed! I haven't been very good at keeping a portfolio so guess what my New Years resolution will be. New and improved images will be posted once i get the hang of this thing.

Expect weekly comments on everything from people watching, fashion, diet (or lack off), art, photography and general navel gazing.........