As with so many artists, music is an incredible inspiration. I hadn't listened to This Mortal Coil's 'Song To The Siren' for many years, but one evening it found me again. It's uniquely mesmerising tones returned to haunt me . . . and once more I fell in love; willingly surrendering as if lured by the siren herself, the following painting emerged.
“The sea always filled her with longing, though for what she was never sure.” ― Cornelia Funke, Inkheart
Shimmering and sparkling, the sunlit path on the winter sea is a danger to swimmers. Its alluring fascination pulls you in, deeper and deeper. Lost in its magic our hearts are given-up, our bodies obey; mindlessly we follow the undulating current as if lured by the irresistible song of a siren...
Stay alert! For it is when you feel comfortable and settled in the waters icy grip that the damage is already unfolding, and as hard as it is to pull yourself away...you must!
Beware, the cold winter sea can be the most enticingly beautiful yet punishing lover.
Bracklesham Bay, West Sussex. Winter 2016/2017
Cloud watching along part of the West Sussex South Downs this morning. Constantly changing sky, fresh air and a happy dog. I love West Sussex.
Just downed paintbrushes to take a tea break. I turned to look out of my windows and gasped at how filthy dirty they are! But then out came the sun and my windows revealed a magical message - from one of my children (I'm suspecting it's the eight year old).
I'm not going to clean them, not just yet.
Exhibition runs 27, 28 Feb and 1 Mar 2015
Set-up day at The Foundry, Camden Market. Wrapped artwork arriving and interactive touch screens being installed. All very calm and under control. More photos to follow on Thursday 26 February at the Artists Afternoon and Press Launch.
Can't wait to see my paintings on the wall! www.artfinder.com/popup/camden/
Recently my style of painting has changed for the better. Friends are asking me what's happened; how come I'm suddenly really enjoying this creative process? Furthermore, and perhaps the best bit for me, is that people are paying me for my artwork, even as far away as Australia. Naturally I'm feeling more than a tad chuffed!
So what's happened? Quite simply, I've read a book which has been on my radar for the past 13 years. It's a well known book within creative industries called "The Artist's Way" by Julia Cameron, and boy has made an impact on me.
My whole attitude to painting has improved. In fact my whole attitude to creative writing, taking photographs, even walking the dog has improved. By the end of the first chapter I was selling more paintings. That's right - the first chapter (now I'm sounding like a TV advert)! You have to work through exercises and basically deal with your Sh*t - and then turn all the negative, limiting beliefs ("Blurts" as the author calls them) on their heads. A v.e.r.y s.i.m.p.l.e t.h.i.n.g t.o d.o.
I admit that a I skipped through a couple of the exercises by doing them in my head and not on paper (having children does that to you), but it doesn't seemed to have halted the process.
Good things are starting to happen in my creative career. I'm thrilled that I now have more confidence in my abilities and belief in myself. Two months ago I was struggling, doubting myself and hating every bit of painting. Now I'm enjoying focusing on the doing and not the judging. Art should be fun, and so should life - this book really helps both. I'm off to read it again.
Oh yeah, did I mention that I have also been accepted to exhibit my paintings in Camden, London at the end of this month? Yup - bit excited!
Below I have put a link straight through to the book at Amazon - that's how good I think it is.
Good luck and happy reading!
New paintings for the Autumn window display in Haslemere Health Foods, Surrey. Love the colours of this season.
'Big sky, moon, hills, ruined castle, stone circle whilst peeking through the trees - in blue please.' x
I have been invited to take along some artwork to the Fairy Fayre at Petersfield this Sunday. I didn't know WHAT to take until these butterflies mysteriously appeared in my garden. Magically they then flew onto my canvas and colour blossomed! I think the fairies had something to do with - so I'm just staying schtum and taking them along. Come along too. Pixies, elves and gnomes all invited.
Sunday 4th May 2014
10am to 4pm
Herne Farm Leisure Centre
Commission for lovely Gaynor and her family and their newly made home.
Brief: Reds, oranges, golds and nature.
Art - good for the heart & soul and Haslemere Health Foods on Weyhill, Haslemere, have turned their window display spaces into an art gallery using some of my paintings. Current images represent the fresh, bright burst of Spring, with 3D butterflies made from music sheets. I will create new work throughout the year as the seasons change. Many customers are commenting on how these are bringing them cheer and I'm even more chuffed that 2 paintings sold within the first 24 hours of being installed! Each is £100, all are originals, acrylic on canvas and ready to hang. Would love to know what you think so please leave a comment below. Here's to Spring sunshine and flowers!
Another gathering of very talented local artists and makers showing our creations at the Oxmarket Gallery in Chichester, West Street. Entry is FREE. Please do come along and have a browse - dare I mention that Christmas is just round the next corner!
Am really happy that I will be exhibiting some new work for a second year at the MADhurst Festival 2013 (Music Art and Drama). Its will be on show alongside the talents of internationally renowned Philip Jackson and Andrew Bailey, Michael Chevis, Bronwen Cunnington, Wendy Farlane, Nancy Goodens, Jessica Harriet Howard, Sophie May Lewis, Chloe Dudman and Mervyn Mewis. Entry is FREE to the Jacobean Hall at the Spread Eagle Hotel, West Street in Midhurst, West Sussex.
Madurst is a week long celebration of all the creative, artistic and musical talent that we have in our beautiful town, Midhurst. To read all about it please visit the MADhurst website.
ALSO, I happen to know that there will be an exceptionally good Beer Festival at the Pavilion behind Cowdray Ruins, organised by the Midhurst Sports Association. LIVE music, excellent beer, larger, wine AND food - and for £20 a head it's ALL YOU CAN DRINK! Apart from the live musicians I'm guessing that there'll be some alternative types of artist attending! MADhurst website.
Watch this video. Work inside the box.
My husband has wood! A shed load of it as it happens - literally. I went for a potter (at the bottom of the garden
of course) and discovered our shed full of wood 0ff-cuts - all shapes and sizes. "Treasure!" I gasped. "Something to paint pictures on." And with that I nicked a load, cracked open my acrylics and inks and got experimenting!
This is my book, my new book. Bought for me by my family and chosen for me by my son. I love it. In it I shall write. I shall write about many things, many varied things, but mostly I shall write about stuff.
Recently I have noticed that I think A LOT! To the point that it has become cringingly apparent that I begin many sentences with "I've been thinking..." So I've thought hard about this: I am more of a thinker than a doer - something which is clearly illustrated by looking around my untidy house and empty fridge. But what if this thinking is actually my "thing," my bag, my ultimate talent? What if this thinking is something else; more than just random millings and meanderings from one subject to another? What if there is a reason or a structure or, dare I say, a purpose for these seemingly constant mental conversations? What if I am in fact writing in my head? Ha, now there's a thought!
So, I'm going to write down my thoughts - in my new book of course. This beautiful new book bought for me by my family, chosen for me by my son.
The view from here (over looking Midhurst, West Sussex, early morning)
Girls adding bubbles to the woods
Love-art in the woods
Creative people - sometimes we just feel a bit lost. There are days, even weeks if we're lucky, when our heads are spinning with ideas like a creative kaleidoscope! Then there are times when imagination is so lacking that we can't even face a conversation with ourselves - for fear of it being soooo dull! Torturous times indeed.
I still have way more than my fair share of these "darker days." I'll be honest - I hate them. My family probably hates them more as my mood can be, shall I say, less than my usual positive self! But what I am learning is that these phases (isn't everything just a phase) are often an important step in our creative evolution - the time in between vital breaths, the stillness before dawn, the pregnant pause! They are not the end but in fact the beginning of a whole new and exciting birth of ideas and activity. They mark the calm before the wonderful, whirlwind of a creative storm! Our hearts and minds are resting, getting our subconscious thoughts into order, making sense of them, linking them.....getting ready to blow everything clean out of the water!
So try not to be disheartened, be kind to yourself and recognise that soon you WILL TAKE ACTION - you may even be about to produce your best work to date! It's important to be patient, sit tight but PAY ATTENTION to the gentle whispers of the creative cross winds, and as they get stronger you must set your sails accordingly, catch the breeze and sail out into the seas of opportunity.
Or take flight to the skies as in this fab little video.
There are some simple exercises that really work in getting the creative juices flowing and
I'll share some of these next time.
What are your top tips for coping with a stagnant phase - please share!
Happy Creating! x