Monday, 18 June 2018

A Late Night

So I saved the idea I had bubbling in my head in the week to paint on Sunday. I have done one of my usual, 'lets suddenly paint something totally different' turns. I didn't get to bed before midnight last week, on any day (a combination of going out, Amazon Prime, and having no deadline to get up by) And if you have managed to stay up for 4 nights, why not make it a nice full 7 day week.

On one of my late night wandering home walks, I noticed the black silhouetted trees of the Moor, against a graded blue sky and twinkling stars. It was one of those images / feelings, that lodged itself onto my retinas and demanded to be painted.  Who am I to argue?

So here is 'Late Night' which was undoubtedly the theme of last week.


It also gave me an excuse to get my Black Lava Gel out, so the little black dots you can see in the sky, are actually shiny and sparkle when the light hits them. This painting, really does have a few twinkle, twinkle little stars. 

Tuesday, 12 June 2018

A Rocky Road

I seem to have had a bit of a painters block recently. I am not entirely sure why, it is possible Morocco totally blew me away, or I have walked too much, or my feet are still too sore, or maybe I am just generally drained. I equally might just need a bit of a break, as I do seem to every now and again.

I have been feeling like I need to try and do something though, so I made some effort this week, in anticipation of a quiet working week, to clear my diary. It seems to be working. All my work is out at the moment, waiting for client feedback. I have planned no social events until Thursday, cancelled all my meetings and just left in exercise and/or the odd walk which always helps to clear my head.

It appears to have worked, and yesterday evening, I finally felt like getting the paints out and pulling something together. I am still not brave enough to tackle the Atlas Mountains, so I went for painting my recent (ish) trip to Snowdonia instead. So, please welcome below, a view of Snowdonia National Park from the Llanberis Path up to Mount Snowdon. I think it has come out quite well, or at least reminds me of how it felt to be up there, watching the clouds roll in around us.


The interesting thing now is, that I have another image on my mind. It is debatable whether I have the energy to pull that out now, or whether I will save it for tomorrow or possibly the weekend. It feels nice to have finally woken up a bit!



Tuesday, 15 May 2018

Moonwalking

So, the Moonwalk is complete! The bra has been worn, my feet have been bruised and there is something still dubiously wrong with the back of my knees. I can still walk though, admittedly, 50% in the style of a pigeon and 50% in the style of a cowboy but still. Mobility is important.

A big thank you to everyone that sponsored me - I reached my £300 target and my team blew away our £2,000 target to raise £4,300! That is far more than I would ever have imagined us raising. Amazing, and well worth a sleepless night and slightly sore legs.

Good job ladies! And a shiny medal to boot.


Wednesday, 9 May 2018

Bra-vo.

So in a very obscure way, climbing Toubkal was actually training for a charity walk I am doing this weekend in support of Breast Cancer Awareness. The walk is a marathon (literally) 26.2 miles across London in the dead of night, starting around midnight, finishing at about 8am. No wonder it is called a Moonwalk.

I have done it before, with a friend, and vowed never to do it again, but this time there are 15 of us doing it and there is nothing like peer pressure to make you change your mind about a thing.

Part of the charity preparation, other than a lot of walking training is to decorate your bra. This years theme is the Wild West, so I have opted for a Native American inspired bra design. It turns out, Sharpies really will draw on anything!


So my poor feet, only just recovered from Atlas Mountain sized blisters, are at it again, but this time with my own well worn in shoes. If you have a few pennies to spare, you are welcome to sponsor me by clicking here. Every little helps after all! 


Saturday, 28 April 2018

Toubkal

I have returned from my holiday! When, I say 'holiday' it may be an exaggeration, or at least not what you would typically expect from a holiday. I went on a proper intense, inspiration collection trip this time, hiking through the Atlas Mountains for a week;

 Hike 1 involved trekking up to the summit of Mount Toubkal - the highest point in North Africa at 4,167m high. It was much tougher than I was expecting to get to the top. I needed more to eat, and not to be wearing hired boots and crampons. But enormous blisters aside, it felt like a great achievement to beat the snow underfoot, the snow in the air, the biting wind and freezing -15 degrees wind chill factor and reach the top. There may have been a few exalted tears. (But not as many as when I reached the refuge at the bottom - I struggled going down in the snow, and crashed out from a huge sugar low after hours of walking) But what a spectacular sight on the way up, on the way down! It was undoubtedly worth it.

Hike 2 was much easier - not so much stuff needed to be carried as we hired a mule, a chef and a guide to take us from Imlil to Tacchedirt onto Timichi and then onto Setti Fatma followed by a taxi back to Marrakesh. We ate well this time, really well, I had at least 3 plates of food per lunchtime. I wasn't joking when I said I needed to eat more when we climbed Toubkal. The walking was less intense this time although we still hit a mountain peak at 3200m stayed in a Gite in the highest village in North Africa and enjoyed remoteness and views like I have never experienced. I have already noticed that photographs capture nothing of the feeling of where we have been, so my paintings will have a lot to deliver this time.

At the moment though, it is nice to rest my completely split heels, sleep in my own bed, and reminisce. I am looking forward to sharing these paintings with you, when I feel that they are ready to come...



Monday, 16 April 2018

Out of Studio.

I was meant to write a couple of posts before this one, but it is too late - I have run out of time.

So this one it is!

I have escaped the studio until the 27th of April so I apologise that in the meantime I will not be fulfilling any orders! Please feel free to contact me during my time away, I will try to respond but I will be somewhere high up in the Atlas Mountains climbing Mount Toubkal and collecting inspiration, and I'm unlikely to have a mobile signal. Please bear with me and I will answer your request as soon as I return. Have a good couple of weeks!


Monday, 2 April 2018

Notre-Dame

So I have discovered that I can still paint whilst putting up with rather a large wine induced headache, and seemingly still have inspiration through the throbbing temples. I have no idea where the thought to do this came from, but I suddenly had quite a strong urge to paint a washed out background with the Notre-Dame in Paris painted (well, inked) over the top, so this is what I did!

It seems to hit the spot for me so I consider that a success, even-though it did take quite a long time to produce - headaches certainly dampen your ability to concentrate for long periods of time. That and I kept stopping to eat Easter Eggs which I am sure I am not meant to be doing.

Either way it has been nice to manage to find some time to paint - time has been a bit thin on the ground recently and with a few trips coming up in April, I need to get them out whilst I can! I also have another commission to do before the 24th of April so watch this space...