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Sardines & Beer

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The last two weeks have been unbelievably hectic and I'm only now finding the space to sit down and actually relax. Hence being a bit slow to blog about it.

On Wednesday, I decided I'd been big and brave enough by myself and met up with Nicola, my art mentor for some gentle hand holding and reassurance. I'm glad I did. She reminded me of how far I've come, complimented me on the quality of the work, its presentation and my preparation. Perhaps more importantly, we talked about my scheme of work next week and for the next month. It was crucial for me not to get to this weekend and fall flat after the event. It seems I worry and stress unnecessarily. The self-inflicted pressure is counter-productive. May's objective is to lighten up a bit. To take more breaks. To breathe more deeply. 

That probably tells you my state of mind Thursday morning. Poor Dave, I volunteered him to babysit me as I waited for the gallery to open. Happily, I was not first in the queue, I was thi…

Waiting for Paint to Dry

It's true, I am. I've got a canvas on the go and a board I finished prepping about forty-five minutes ago and I can't go any further with either of them until they dry off a bit. It's okay, I decided to have a break and blog. My blogging habit still hasn't returned and I confess it's making me sad. I miss being here. I'm hoping that the fact I sat down this afternoon is a shift in the words.

This week I've been pretty much flat out. I was so busy I didn't even have time to write a To Do List! Unfortunately while I was busy, it wasn't with art per se. I was trying to get some marketing done. I write that and I feel myself groan and want to slide off the chair. As you know, marketing was how I paid bills until recently. I've always considered myself to be reasonably competent, able to negotiate website creation and updates, e-newsletters, business cards and social media without any issues. 

Yeah right. 

Let me tell you, doing this stuff for mysel…

I am an artist

As I'm still struggling with words, let's do this bullet blogging style. I don't know why the words haven't come back I feel fine in myself, it's simply that I can't write a coherent sentence on here at the moment. I've been deleting drafts all month. Pfft. Whatever. Here's my world in all it's glory.
I am an artist. It does not feel at all real. I announce: "I'm off to my studio" on Facebook and fall about laughing. Yet, here I am arting away. Artist are as artists do.The session with Nicola, my mentor focused my work for the month. I had suggestions of activities I could try, as well as artists to look at.Nicola has got me rethinking artists materials and surfaces. I've put away my usual drawing pens and am now using a dip pen and drawing ink. Given my cartridge pen was taken away from me at school because I covered everything except my paper with ink, it's been a challenge.One of the suggestions was covering a 10m roll of wal…

Spring has Sprung Round 'ere

Darlings, thank you so much for your support in my last post, I have news about the mentor, that's coming below. Again, thank you for your kind words and virtual hugs, they were so appreciated.

Z and LT have left me in charge of the Rampaging Rabble, which meant this afternoon I took the bins out for bin collection day tomorrow. As I walked to and fro I was struck by a sense of deep gratitude and appreciation to be trusted to be here. The Zedary is so beautiful and has healed so many of the broken parts of my soul, in so many tender moments, it held me in the moments of my deepest fear. Being here has meant more to me than I have words to express. And it's spring.

Darlings, there are so many snowdrops. I didn't realise a single place could have so many. Dotted around and in clumps. The narcissi have popped up, egging their later flowering cousins on, some of whom have risen to the challenge and refuse to be out done. 

My chooks are laying again. They started last weekend and …

Situation Vacant: Art Mentor

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I'm stuck and I need help here. I've gone as far as I can with what I've got and I am in need of some informed artistic input.

I'm looking for an Art Mentor, someone who is used to working with art students at a degree plus level and who would be prepared to mentor me as I work through my various artistic obsessions. Someone who thinks The Box is a waste of time, never mind thinking outside of it. Someone who will provide constructive critique of my work and who will help me explore both context and push me both technically and creatively. 

This is where I started off in April 2016.

Oil on board 3ft x 2ft
Detail And this is where I was December 2016.
Pen and gouache on paper 8in x 5in But this isn't all I'm interested in. I'm in the planning stages of a joint exhibition for next year with a friend of mine and I also have an idea for an installation based on thought processes. And that doesn't even describe my thing for sunflowers...
I am doing a handful of hobb…

Chicken Shenanigans

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The morning of the 6th December 2016, I was tucked up in bed, considering the day ahead, when I got a text from Dave. Before I could formulate a coherent reply (remember mornings are not my strength), he rang me with worrying news.
DEFRA (the Department of the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs) issued a declaration, effective immediately regarding the outbreak of a strain of avian flu (H5N8) on the continent. In order to protect poultry flocks in the UK from the virus, everyone with poultry, whatever the size of flock, were advised to keep their birds indoors or take measures to cover their outdoor enclosures to limit their contact with any wild birds that may be carrying or infected. The original housing order was well-worded and encouraged poultry owners to be sensible about their flocks' housing arrangement. 
Z immediately suggested I move my velociraptors into her greenhouse that's standing empty until seed planting time. This I did. My flock had been in for a couple of da…

Slamming the Door

The weeks since the end of October have been "interesting" as the fear and grief of the past year took their toll. It wasn't quite depression, but there were a couple of days when I was definitely skating around it. 

I didn't think it would be like this. I thought I should be filled with energy and enthusiasm and able to crack on with my life with vim, vigour and a renewed sense of optimism. It's not been like that at all. I've had days where doing the immediately necessary was my only priority. I did tomorrow, that which did not incur charges today. All the while struggling with this enormous sense of frustration at myself. 

My To Do List darlings, is ginormous. I have Things to do, people to See and a sense of a ticking clock. I've been drifting along; although I am deeply grateful to be here - at this point in my Life - I'm also aware that drifting isn't enough. I know I can drift, endure, survive etc etc but enough is enough. It's time to Li…