Monday, 21 September 2015

The Japanese House

Sometimes being me is annoying. I did a new painting at the weekend which I decided I would put online tonight after I went to yoga.

I came in from yoga.

I watched TV.

Felt tired.

Decided I would put it up tomorrow.

Watched more TV and then decided I really should put it online tonight. It would have been better if I had just stuck to my guns and put it up when I intended as then now I would be in bed.

On the plus side, staying up late, doing this, listening to the radio means I can listen to a special by The Japanese House. I absolutely love this song at the moment....

Tuesday, 15 September 2015


I had a day off today. A day in which I chose to explore London with one of my friends. I say explore, it was more of a case of go shopping and have lunch and maybe a cocktail and then one of the best hot chocolates I have ever had, but explore sounds better.

I did chance upon some art as well. Currently in the glazed atrium of Covent Garden is an artwork 'invasion' entitled Heartbeat. It consists of 100, 000 (really that many?) balloons, pulsating with light, at a heartbeat rate. Apparently they are a metaphor to represent the fact that the building is the beating heart of the Covent Garden area. The installation has been designed by Charles Pétillon and is his first public work of art, and first live work outside of France. It certainly changed the character of the space, and is very eye catching but whether it achieves its purpose is difficult to say. It made the space seem a little oppressive as it has dramatically lowered the implied ceiling level, but no one expects being sat with a heart to be an airy occurrence. It is always interesting to see a space you know so well with a different face though so I am all for it (but possibly glad it is temporary).

Today also had the added reward of being a painting SOLD day. There is nothing quite like checking your emails on the train home and seeing a 'congratulations you just sold a painting' heading pop up. I don't know why, but quite often when I have a random day off in London I seem to sell something. I don't know whether this is because my friend is a lucky charm or whether I just need to have more days off. I will take either of those options.

Repeat ad infinitum.

Monday, 14 September 2015


I am having courier problems at the moment, which is a shame as up until now I have had no problems at all and I have been really impressed with the service I have received. I am not really sure where this leaves me now. Should I just assume the last few issues have been an unlucky spell or should I look at using a different firm? Your guess is as good as mine; Maybe I will give my usual firm one last try, but keep my eye out for any other recommended couriers along the way. I tend to cheat anyway as I use a website that compares various services and prices for me and then pick whichever one suits me best. There are a few websites that offer this service so maybe I should try out a few different ones and see what happens.

I just need to wait now, for someone to buy another painting....

Sunday, 6 September 2015



I greatly enjoy this painting, and seemingly so does everyone else. I painted it after a trip down to East Sussex to visit the Castle one empty weekend. It is a pretty spectacular Castle and one to set the imagine running. I am pretty sure Robin Hood could have rescued Maid Marion from one of the towers. The painting above is a pretty good representation of how the place felt to me. Bold, strong, iconic, romantic, a beacon in history, a 'does what it says on the tin' moated castle. (Whether it did in fact do what a castle does is another matter, the jury is out on whether it was built for defence or for show).

The painting has already had acclaim. It was acknowledged by some of the workers from the National Trust who run the castle (although unfortunately nothing came of it) and it was awarded a Daily Deviation on Deviant Art, which is my second, unexpected piece of recognition from the US site. It still surprises me that i have this painting on the wall and it hasn't sold. I thought this one might be a hot cake but as yet has proved not be so. So if you like it, get a move on as I am sure it won't be for sale for much longer.    

Friday, 4 September 2015


'Teatime' was actually my first commission of 2015 (yes, I know that shows how late this post is!!!)

It was an interesting one to do as I could find very few resources on the place in question, so few that I considered visiting it as it is only up the road from me in Aldermaston (any excuse for a cream tea). Unfortunately time pressures indicated otherwise so I just had to go with the 3 or 4 pictures I found online and make the rest up. There wasn't much in the picture to play with (for me) - a small simple cottage and not much else. It is difficult to put movement in such a small scene, especially when you refuse to put people in (usually, a few have squeezed in some paintings latterly.)

The above is how it turned out - considerable richer in colour than I expected, and possibly not as neat as I intended, but then almost every painting I do is not as neat as I intended. I was pretty pleased with the eventual result - it has my stamp firmly upon it, and as the other day I received positive feedback from the eventual owner, I think it was a success all round.

Wednesday, 2 September 2015

Indian Summer

Well, my blog stats have just vastly improved for August after I received 200 hits yesterday. I don't know either but every little (or large) helps.

I am having slight issues settling at the moment, so, as I have a ridiculous amount of 'Birth Certificates' outstanding I may as well sit here for a while and schedule some in. I am so used to being rushed off my feet that when I have nothing to do I am a bit like a lost sheep.


Hmm, I might have actually left these for long enough that I can't remember why I did them..... awkward! Anyway.... Indian Summer:

I have decided I don't want to write these under the headings - 'The Reason' 'The Setting' 'The Inspiration' any more as they are basically tantamount to the same thing. So I shall just write whatever comes to mind in whatever order seems fit. Having said that, I really don't know where this came from. I think it was a combination of wanting to do something bright and colourful, with a sun, slightly more detailed and neater than my previous painting and a little different. I periodically get fed up of painting in the same 'style' so I needed a break and to do something similar but with a twist. Quite often when this happens I rely on what I have painted recently - colours, shapes, patterns and amalgamate them all together to be something different. I guess, in that respect, Indian Summer is a bit like a synopsis of the last 10 or 20 paintings. We all need a break from what we know occasionally.


Monday, 31 August 2015

Art Time

My blog stats this month are not very good which is a shame. Possibly not overly surprising though as it is traditionally holiday season and I have only written 3 posts this month. It was obviously holiday season for me as well, not that it feels like it was but never mind!

I have had a super productive Bank Holiday weekend these last few days, and an art focused one for once. I have managed to finally put all my outstanding new photographs and paintings online EVERYWHERE, two paintings are packaged and ready and waiting to be sent, I have ordered a new chair to try and stop me turning into a hunchback, my spreadsheets are up to date, my finances also, and my to-do list is the smallest it has been all year. I should feel better than I do right now, but I guess there is always more to do. It has been good to have a solid block of art time though, I miss it, and would quite like it to carry on for a few more days but I already know there is a potential mountain of architecture work on its way. That is fine too though, a bit of art, a bit of money - not a bad mix. Now if I can just manage to squeeze in a painting either tonight or tomorrow night then we are sorted.

Oh, and prep/schedule a few blog posts - that might be a good idea too.

(Definitely ALWAYS more to do......)