Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Up North.

Thank you for your patience dear reader..I'm going through an interesting...challenging and in many  ways a healing time in my life. I've totally lost the desire for creating my own artwork for the time being. I'm concentrating on looking after my health..my blood pressure has decreased somewhat but is still too high...my medication is increased each time I see my doctor and i'm having regular blood tests to monitor their effect on my kidneys etc...
This weekend saw friends travel up to North Berwick in Scotland to witness and celebrate the marriage of two dear friends. I've never really been a wedding photographer...if i'm honest I'm not that keen on photographing people at events. i prefer to keep those things in my heart as memories. I like landscape photos of the places I've been.
Above and immediately below are two photos I took at sunrise on Sunday morning. I took a walk n my own along the beach and found a deep peace in the solitude.

Very different from the night before when a terrific storm lashed the coast. the photo below shows some fairly substantial boulders which had been picked up by the waves and deposited where you see them.

I'm undergoing a time of renewal...a time of endings...a time of exciting new adventures. Please bear with me..that pen will be attracting my attention once again....!

Monday, December 10, 2012

More on the knitting stuff.

Well...here's a photo of today's progress. I've now finished the rib which although isn't in rib stitch, is the border at the bottom of the sweater. I've since moved onto the main body of the pattern. Below is a picture from the Kaffe Fassett book which shows what the sweater will look like hopefully!

Saturday, December 08, 2012

Knitting progress.

Here's a rather blurry photo of my progress today...it's actually the second attempt as the first one seemed to have gained a stitch and threw all my calculations out...the red is knitted on smaller needles and forms a fold under cuff to the hem..it will be stitched into place after making up the garment. The rows with dots in are the hem of the back and are not ribbed. the pattern will continue in diagonal stripes lie the book illustration my knitting is photographed against.I shall of course be using similar colours to the ones you see knitted here.

Friday, December 07, 2012

Knitting as a lifesaver.

I'm finding it difficult to apply myself to anything at the moment. My blood pressure although decreased is still too high, my doctor has doubled the medication i'm on which has the effect of making me feel drained of energy...tired, needing sleep during the day.

But to the rescue this week has come some lovely very valuable friends who've given me morning coffee...wine ..chats...and along with this has come a renewed desire to return to knitting. Yes, i'm actually quite a good knitter last drawing my pins in anger back in 2004. I love the designs of Kaffe Fassett and have knitted a few of his sweater patterns in the past. So I've chosen one to start. My father in Law gave me a little money for my birthday so today I popped off down town to buy me some yarn. above is an instagram photo I took of the colour choices i made.

I've begun work already and hope to be able to bring you progress over the weekend. I love it..and I hope I'll have something wonderful at the end....see you soon!

Thursday, November 29, 2012

It is finished!

Finally finished this commissioned piece for Big window Theatre Company today. It feels good to finish something. I'm afraid my current health problems have robbed me of motivation. I visited the Doctors again yesterday and after another ridiculously high Blood Pressure reading, I'm now on medication to control it.The main frustration as far as that is concerned is that I've been advised to stop my running for the time being. As you know I'm a regular runner and I love the freedom and challenge of the road...I'm still allowed to walk lots, which is what I am now doing. But I'm not happy.

My current priority is to look after myself and seek happy things! So apologies if my dotting does not occur for a while...when I'm feeling better, I'll be back at it!

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Wot I woz doing today.

Today was another step along the road to producing this publicity material. The play won't be produced for another year, but marketing to theatres begins very soon. after many preparatory sketches, here's the basic inked design for the poster/ leaflet. At time of writing, I've begun the colouring process, then move onto adding text. I'm quite proud of the use of hands to represent the letters 'F' and 'B'...If you don't know by now, the title refers to the children's rhyme of the same name. The production is billed as : " Participatory theatre for the very young". I'm busy tomorrow, but should finish this on Thursday.

Thursday, November 22, 2012


What a week...! Do you ever find that things suddenly sweep past you and you find you're busier than a bee with an itch? Well that'll be me!. a roller coaster ride of dashing about and catching up on things that have been left dormant for too long. the whys will remain unsaid..but the wherefores are many seeing me trying desperately to thrust my work into the sight of those who might give me the benefit of their experience and even possibly a chance to sell.

Galleries, shops, tourist information centre and theatrical companies have had the pleasure of my presence, and in the case of the theatrical company and the Information Centre, I've been on the receiving end of some much needed wages!

the most surprising was The tourist Information Centre who having had a stock of my prints for a few years, came to my attention when a friend saw my work in their window. to cut a long story short I discovered they had sold a good amount of the prints and a nice sum of money was awaiting me. shame they'd never managed to inform me! Still...I have it now!

I've had a birthday...I've had health issues (seeing doctor about those)...and I've discovered that my life is very different than I had originally thought...( good and bad!).

I've taken to enjoying walks in the park..(see above photo)...I love sitting watching the trees...the seagulls ( perhaps that should be Land Gulls?) I'm still running, though I've decided not to push myself to achieve the half marathon I'd planned to do at the end of this month.

Wish i could tell you more...not dotted very much since last week...I need to...I will do....

Bye for now.

Friday, November 16, 2012

Viaducts - 11

Today, I actually did a bit of dotting. I also ran. I have also sent a request to a local organisation who offer coaching and business mentoring to artists. I think i could do with a little professional guidance. I'm also hoping to see a local artist at the suggestion of a friend. Jenny has walked the path I'm starting out on and has formed a successful career with her artwork....I hope to pick her brains!

So long for now :)

Thursday, November 15, 2012

" Pud 'em up...pud 'em up!"

For reasons I'm not going to go into here, I've found myself , although having been producing my Hyperpointillist Artwork for well over 30 years, at the beginning again. Through self confidence issues..poor fitness and ignorance, I drifted away from the path that my talent was leading. Don't get me wrong...I've been as busy as a little bee in a hive dotting away..as you know! But I've become isolated by my own ...erm...isolation.

But in the last 18 months, I've lost weight...become a long distance runner and once again found the desire and the necessity to re-engage the gears for forward motion...( as opposed to standing...or sitting still!) ...the result being that it is true, body and mind are intrinsically related, and neglect of one over the other is bound to cause an imbalance...a dysfunction.

Having established the first tentative steps in selling my work once again, acquiring the abillity to mount and present my work thus saving lots of money I would otherwise have spent at the framers. I have now gone back on the trail to promote myself to Art dealers and Galleries.

today I loaded a bag and a portfolio with prints and a few original pieces and headed down into my own town to find places who would want to sell my work. I visited a Studio that once was a centre for contemporary art only to find the owner had retired some time ago. next I went to visit a fine art gallery and dealer I knew...only to find out they'd closed 3 years ago due to the downturn. The shop that opened in it's place however was now a gift shop and cafe. I spread my incredibly strange pictures on the cafe floor for the owner to see...she loved them but I need to speak to her sister who was the manager. I'd need to come back in an hour or so.

So I took myself off to 'Whitewall' a fine art dealer in the local Westfield mall. Whitewall is a chain of Art outlets specialising in British and European established and upcoming artists. the staff there loved my work and were impressed. But of course I'd have to apply to head office in Litchfield presenting them with jpegs and a resume. (this I did when I eventually got home!)

Next I had to 'waste' some time before returning to the gift shop after midday. I sat in the city's market place and unwrapped a small greaseproof paper parcel of digestive biscuits I'd brought from home and drank from a sports bottle of orange squash. A quizzical pigeon looked me over...hoping for a spare crumb. noticing the Quad Art Centre nearby. I popped in and sat in front of a video installation called 'Semiconductor' which was a 9 minute black and white film of flares on the surface of the sun ( must have been filmed in the 70's! ;) After seeing more wonderful installations and a giant swinging light bulb...I left.

I called in at the local Tourist Information who I noticed still had three of my prints boldly displayed in their window. Remembering that I'd left them for sale or return in 2008. In fact, I'd left quite a stack if I remember rightly! "I like these pictures" I said to the staff...but remarked on the fact that they'd been reduced in price." Aren't they selling very well?" I asked. I was surprised to hear them tell me that they'd once had quite few prints but they'd all been bought! Needless to say I've arranged to meet the manager and claim my earnings back!!!

I next found myself at the gift shop 'Mad Hares' where the manager showed interest in my small Derby Arboretum prints. I left a sample with her at her request and agreed to meet next week to discuss a possible deal for her to stock and sell them!

Next stop was the city museum...I'd exhibited there last in 1987! A new local artist's gallery/shop has opened...Sadly the manager was away today ...but I have her number and I'll be seeing her!

Quite a day you'll agree? I felt tired..achy from carrying all my stuff around but in a way elated and full of satisfaction that I'd taken a step towards doing what I should have done a long time ago. That and the exhibitions I've lined up next year..the appointment with a fine Art dealer/Gallery  later this month and my Face book page sales have brought a renewed sense of purpose and positivity to me.

Today was a good day!

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Viaducts - 10

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Viaducts - 9

Finished the Jeans after long and careful concentration. Added a couple more butterfly's and after this photo was taken, I began work on the bridge which is immediately behind me.

A challenging time for me at the moment. My new Face book page has been running for a couple of weeks featuring an ever growing display or mounted prints which are for sale. So far I've had three customers which is (to me) very humbling and quite moving. Two of the prints were dispatched today to America..the very act of going to the post office , selecting the correct packaging , addressing and then handing them to the Post master felt as if I was setting out on a new journey. Silly I know, because the journey began a while ago...

I have book a couple of weeks exhibition space next year and I'm attempting to arrange a visit to a Gallery here in Derbyshire well known for it's exhibitions of nationally and internationally renowned artists. I really, really need to make some money, we all know that things are difficult for many people and families right now...and mine is no exception. It's time I pulled my finger out and got working!

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Viaducts - 8

Was quite surreal spending so long working on my own butt today! The jeans by the way have been patched up and mended for many many years and date back to the 1980's!

Friday, November 09, 2012

Viaducts - 7

Devil mood was absolutely right in her comment yesterday with her observation about the way cameras interpret colours. Red in abundance always seems to create problems for my little Olympus. If I was clever I'd be able to work out a way to compensate...I think the main problem is the fact that there is so much plain white paper reflecting back to the camera causing it to read contrasts differently...forget it...I'm boring myself reading what I'm writing. I'm sure it'll sort itself out when there's more on the page! you can wake up now...I'm off...see you tomorrow.

Thursday, November 08, 2012

Viaducts - 6

Blimey..the colour reproduction here is garish! I must remember that I need to photograph this in the morning. I'm having to get used to alteration in my working routine. The clocks have gone back and it gets dark early around 5pm. working in colour is always difficult under electric light even though I have a daylight simulation bulb. another complication is I'm still running and training to run a half marathon later this month, I run at night, but it's so much nicer during the day, especially as the autumn colours are so gorgeous at the moment! This means my working time during daylight hours is reduced. So it's a constant balancing act....I'll let you know when and if I get the balance right!

Wednesday, November 07, 2012

Viaducts - 5

The lack of day light means the camera flash was needed, and this has highlighted the blue in the shadows of the waistcoat...they're not all that obvious in the day, it all blends in much better...still, you'll get to see that another time...I've yet to add some more green into the mix.

 I spent the day on the red here, building up layers of red and yellow...The butterfly turned out OK...I'm going to have to get used to them because there will be a lot of 'em!...I think I'll have to throw in a few bees and wasps, also some crows!

Tuesday, November 06, 2012

Viaducts - 4

If you've been paying attention to my work over the past couple of years, you'll know that the Peacock butterfly makes regular appearances...usually at the top of my girls stockings! In this piece I'm going to have them all over the place. Here's the first one.

Today I've worked on the basic layer of red for the waistcoat. I next need to add in yellow ochre and blue/green for the shading.

Monday, November 05, 2012

Viaducts - 3

An incredibly beautiful start to the day...the sun was shining bright setting the Autumnal colours ablaze. So I began my day with my regular 5 mile run. It's amazing how much more friendly people are when the sun shines! The highlight for me was running through a local park and seeing an elderly couple out with a small child...the man who I assume was the grandfather, was gathering fallen leaves into a pile before throwing them into the air to fall all about the small child who appeared rapturous with delight!
Here's a photo of work in progress this afternoon...here I've begun adding yellow and blue to the face with the beginnings of red on the waistcoat. It's odd having to think in colour again after so long...

Sunday, November 04, 2012

Viaducts - 2

I've applied the first series of dots! I had a little practise prior to actually starting this...I've also been over all my previous colour pieces noting the density of and which colours are used for correct flesh tones. I do admit to feeling a little tentative at the beginning of this work.... but if I get a good long period of time tomorrow to work on it, I should be up to speed pretty soon.

Friday, November 02, 2012

Viaducts - 1

Well..here we go again! I've settled on my composition and spent some time today taking photos of myself for inclusion in the picture. You can't really see it here, but I've drawn out the basic geometry comprising of the main viaduct angles...tomorrow I'll pencil myself and hopefully begin dotting. I'm really looking forward to working in colour again!

The meaning behind the subject matter is fairly straight forward this time. I've been at a few cross roads recently regarding my personal and professional life...I do have various pathways which I could choose...it's all rather confusing sometimes...but there is time to stand and stare..the appreciate the view and wonder at the magnificence that which is laid before me...More on that front another time!

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Viaducts - Pick a colour.

I had a meeting this morning with the client for Big Window Theatre...and presented my designs for their publicity material for a production planned for 2014...publicity material is need for funding applications and contacting possible venues during the early part of next year. Thankfully they liked what I'd produced and that now means I can move onto the next stage of the process, that is to make a neat mock up of the composition which if the client is happy with, I'll move onto the final piece.
Today I spent a short time putting together a colourised sketch of the new composition 'viaducts'...I might yet produce alternative versions with the sunlight coming from different directions. but I quite like the red brick colour of the viaduct in full sunlight. I next need to pay attention to what I'm going to fill the bottom half of the picture with. i then need to take some reference photos of myself with sunlight falling on me from the left of the frame.

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Viaducts - Midnight inspiration.

Here are  a series of sketches, the earliest above and the latest at the bottom. I went to bed last night looking forward to a good night's sleep. Sadly this is rarely the case. But no sooner had I turned off the light and relaxed, I started imagining a scene where I was standing on a railway platform wondering which train to catch...but there were viaducts and platforms carrying trains in all manner of directions, and I confused just stood there trying to decide which of the innumerable destinations I would travel to.
So on went the light, and I reached for my sketch pad and pencils...The above sketch came first...then the sketch below followed almost immediately, but in a larger format. Once I'd got this on the paper, I turned out the light and headed for dream land!

The next sketch below I roughed out this morning..almost Escher -like, I imagined impossible viaducts crossing paths...this composition is at an early stage and I'm going to have to put a lot of work in on the perspectives and geometric forms of the arches....

Below I've redrawn some details including the position of the lower viaduct. I intend to add a figure of myself into the picture eventually on the right hand side of the composition. This will be a full scale full colour dot picture...I now have all my pens working and the new inks installed in them!
All in all, a busy day. I'm very happy with the way these ideas are developing. I have also had to work on a commission for a children's theatre company and I've now got my Face book page up and running, selling my first ever on line item this evening! Phew!

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Seasky 2 - Minipix mounted

Here's the second, and the last minipic that I'm going to use my colour pencils on for a while. If I'm to continue with the pencils, I need to scale up a little and add more to the composition.  I also intend to use the new inks I received the other day to complete my selection of pens for use in dotting.
Yesterday I bought one of the Logan Team System Mat (Mount) cutters and some mount boards...this afternoon I set about cutting my first mounts, the results of which you can see below. I mounted the six original colour pencil drawings that I've created this week. the images are also scanned ready to print. I can now mount the prints when a customer orders one.
tomorrow my aim is to set up my Face book Fan Page and begin advertising the work that I have for sale. For readers of this blog who do not use face book, be assured I shall make work available to order here as well!

Friday, October 26, 2012

Seasky 1

When I finished this little piece today, it looked lovely. but once I'd scanned it, the contrast seemed to take over and all the subtlety has gone. Never mind....anyway...it's just another practise, but I shall do at least one more, i love skies.I seem to have gained a little more energy for my work this week. I'm planning to start advertising my work on Face book and sell using Pay Pal Invoices, I also hope to make ordering available via this site too! Some of my good friends on Face book who use this option have given advice and encouragement which is great. So over the weekend, i hope to get that sorted.

Of course one other problem is getting prints and originals mounted properly. So today I invested in a mount cutter. Just a fairly basic one, but one that will do the job. So now I'll be able to mount my work then get it mailed out in next to no time at all!

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Misty Train 4.

The final Misty train in this series. I've really enjoyed getting to know my coloured pencils...working with them 9 at least as far as I've discovered here) is a subtle and careful process building up gentle layers of shade. I like the effect which is quite pointillist in it's texture if you look closely. In fact, Seurat himself produced a great quantity of crayon sketches on rough textured paper.

My inks arrived today ironically just after I'd finished this piece. However, I've started a new sketch with my crayons and will finish it tomorrow. I'm wondering if there is some way i can balance to need to spend lengthy time on my dot pictures whilst also being able to create quick pictures like the one above which I can sell....

Anyway, time for me to be off now...I should also have some good news tomorrow regarding a return to exhibiting, and the availability of my artwork originals and prints on line ( at last!)...

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

I'm taking commissions!

This is a bit of a step into the dark really.I've never advertised myself as willing to do pets, or houses. But financially i need to do it! I have to be realistic, so this is the result. i have no idea where it will take me or what will be required of me. but I'm willing to have a go. I'm going to provide prints of my previous pieces if and will mount them myself! In the meantime, I've asked about availability of exhibition space for next near...I'll get back into the exhibition circuit which I've been absent from for two years.

I know many of my readers are based overseas...I'll try to meet your needs if I can. So it's up to you...

Misty Train 3.

Here's a third piece on the Misty Train theme. This time I've taken much more care over the way I've used the pencils.Again it's only postcard size so was relatively quick to finish...in fact it actually took as long as the last two minipix together.

I've decided to complete one more in this series for now.but if there is interest, I'll make more. I shall also prepare mounted prints which will be for sale. My new inks should arrive by the weekend, so I shall be returning to dotting.But these pencil sketches are rather satisfying, I think I might be persuaded  to make more.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Misty Train Minipix.

Both postcard size at 14.07 x 10.50 cm each, I created these sketches using my coloured pencil crayons. It's quite refreshing to finish two pictures in one afternoon as opposed to one in 4 months!!You' be right in assuming the inks I ordered have still not been delivered. I contacted the supplier who assures me they will arrive before Friday. So in the mean time, I'll sketch up a few of these colour drawings which would have been the subjects had I been dotting. they make quite effective pieces on their own and might look good in a frame at some point.

Monday, October 22, 2012

Pencil crayons...thumbnail sketches...plans..

The inks I ordered did not arrive today as I'd hoped. So I've been mooching about...I've scratched a few little sketches you see here using the same colours I use for dotting only in pencil form. detail and neatness are not priorities in this case, just trying out various colours. For my return to colour I'm intending on producing another collection of 'minipix' the main purpose is to create quick, effective pieces whilst honing my skills with colour use. 'minipix' have been popular in the past , I've sold many many prints over the years of my Arboretum 'minipix'..and sold a series of original railway subjects. It seems people are willing to buy them in multiples for framing and hanging together.

The little pencil sketch of a Cello Girl sits rather out of place in the middle...but eventually you'll see me working up to large scale works like my black and white pieces, and before long you'll have full colour Cello Girls all over the place!...

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Hit the shops...then hit the on line shops.

I think I might have mentioned yesterday the frustration of finding that I had run out of a certain colour ink, and therefore was unable to proceed with my return to colour work. I therefore planned to make a trip into town today to buy the required ink from an art supply shop...however on reaching the shop, I was disappointed to discover that despite being the biggest stockist of art materials in the city, they did not in fact stock the type of ink i required! No worry, I would go to the next art supplier and try there. however, it was the same result.The third shop had potential but las not open at the weekends! (uh?) a

It's incredible in these very difficult times for high street shops to succeed against the vast offers available on line. It's a real shame, because I still like to visit small shops and find what I need there, but it's becoming increasingly difficult. Once home I hit the Google search and within a few clicks found a web site offering the exact items I wanted at over £1 cheaper than high street prices!...also because I was a new customer to the site, they did not charge me any postage and packing!

The down side of course is that I shall have to await delivery. That should be on Monday!But it's a small price to pay to get the correct items. I could bore you further with my thoughts and choices on the inks I have chosen and my surprise to find shades of blue available that I had not known about before...but I won't...I'll let the results do all the talking. Till then...

Friday, October 19, 2012

Return to colour.

My 'new era'  got off to an unremarkable start today. I set about charging my new pen nibs with ink in anticipation of beginning work on a picture this afternoon..... (eight brand new Isograph nibs sitting in their boxes!) this was frustrating because I have only one pipette which I had to wash out between filling each pen...this took ages, much too'ing and fro'ing to the bathroom sink. Then when it came to filling the blue pen, I discovered that the amount left in the bottle was almost non existent, and what was left was thick and gooey...I can only imagine that over the years I'd used the ink the sediment had been left behind had accumulated only for me to try and load it into one of the pen cartridges. It didn't work. This was not good because it's the most used colour if the palette I use....so my work for the day ground to a halt requiring me to make a trip into town to buy new ink.

Ho hum!

Will try tomorrow!

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Sinodd - Finished

Sinodd (2012)
46 x 33.5 cm.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Sinodd - 43

You won't have to put up with this for much longer you'll be happy to know. All being well, I shall finish tomorrow! Work yet to do is to the seating...the boy's legs, and development of the shadows and creases in the standing Vicar...and that will be just about it!

Monday, October 15, 2012

Sinodd - 42

Apologies for delayed posting ... Finally entering the final stages. I will finish this week! Filling in the area at the bottom of the picture and working on the girl are occupying my time. I also have to darken the pew (you can see the progression in the photo below. I also have to pay attention to the robes of the Vicars, the boys legs and any other details that present themselves.

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Sketchbook - Peaks

Work on Sinodd continues apace...progress is good...i'll show you very soon. But here are some doodlings...there are so many ideas...so many buzzing around my imagination in anticipation of my return to full colour work....I've developed this chap who seems to be hailing the orb in front of himself...a glowing orb....jolly good...i like this...remember...you saw it here first!

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Sinodd - 40

Wednesday, October 10, 2012


Tuesday, October 09, 2012


Monday, October 08, 2012

Sinodd - 38

At all times...whether we like it or not..we carry with us our mortality. In walking across the road..in taking a flight..even (we're told ) every time we sneeze our heart stops. Whether you bring your mortality before the object of your faith, or confront it in your daily activity, it does not alter the very cold reality that we are all going to die.

Thursday, October 04, 2012

Sinodd - 37

 One day, I might get around to having my own life models to work from apart from myself, but in the meantime I use my imagination and resource photos.  Thankfully the many years I spent during my youth drawing Marvel Comic Super Heroes has not gone to waste...my ability to draw figures is a result of that time and funnily enough the years I spent training as a nurse.....knowledge of anatomy and physiology is certainly helpful!