Friday, 25 November 2011


I am extremely proud to have received a 'Highly Commended' at the RBSA's Open All Media exhibition.

I had a phone call on Tuesday evening to say that I had received a Highly Commended, and could I make it to the open night. I usually shy away from these things, but I made a special effort last night, and I'm glad I did. G went along with me (he was my 'plus one', I don't think I've ever had one of those and I don't think he'd ever been one either) and we walked up through the colourful and buzzing German Market, through the still busy streets of the City to the RBSA gallery. The gallery was buzzing with activity, and there really was a very enthusiastic turn out for the opening and speeches. All exhibitors were given little name badges to wear and the speeches were made to a packed audience. Myself and 5 other artists were awarded our Highly Commendeds by the Chief Executive of the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, and it really gave me a good feeling to go up and receive my certificate.

I'm hoping to go back and see the exhibition again, as the gallery was so crowded last night it was difficult to take a proper look, though first impressions were of an excellent show with many many skillful pieces, some beautiful work of which I'm really proud to be amongst.

As usual my pride and my pleasure were mingled with embarrasment, as I never feel that my work holds its own very well amongst other work of such a high standard. I never feel that my work looks as good as other people's work, but I'm still buzzing with pride at this achievement. I'm really very happy about it indeed.

New work. This is going to be another pure pen and ink piece on watercolour paper this time. Provisional title is Private.

Tuesday, 22 November 2011

Ink and Steel - Exhibition at Wolverhampton Central Library

My exhibition is finally up.

I put my work in the 2 display cases on the first floor of Wolverhampton Central library this morning, and it looks something like this..

The left hand case is my most current work (apart from the small drawing bottom left, which I had to put in here due to there not being enough space in case 2).

The pieces in the right hand case are older work (mainly - again I had to re-jig due to my having miscalculated how many pieces would fit into case 1!).

The very last piece - Frou Frou, is my newest. At this end of the case is also a small display about the Pen Room - the museum of the pen industry. Birmingham was once famous for producing the steel dip pen nibs that I use for my drawings.

Thursday, 17 November 2011

Still Water - Near enough finished

I think I've nearly finished Still Wtaer. I was panicking last week, as I'd worked on it for a couple of evenings when I was far too tired. Consequently I doodled. Thats all. Doodled.

Hopefully I've rescued it now, though it's still far from perfect.

A few things I've learned from this I think though, subtle lessons.

I've an urge now to work on a few small intimate still lives, all moody darkness of worn out subjects. I need to motivate myself and find the time.

Despite this I've been working on a drawing I started earlier in the year (small) and embarked on a large pen and ink drawing of a subject I photographed earlier in the year (large).

Will I ever learn?

Saturday, 5 November 2011

Art Materials Live

I went to the NEC on Thursday to visit Arts Live (also Hobbycrafts and Christmas shows). It was RAMMED, and there seemed to be less room than last year, I don't know if they'd squashed more into less room, but I ended up lunching on a latte and a squishy chocolate muffin on a piece of floor about the size of a hanky, along with about three hundred other hungry and tired people. I've always liked the atmosphere of the NEC shows, but there comes a point when too many people forcing themselves down too narrow an avenue spells total deadlock. Standing still amid hundreds of strangers; on foot, in wheelchairs, elderly ladies pushing shopping trolleys full of crafting buys - jades the enthusiasm somewhat. I wish I had more stamina, but I was shattered by 1 o clock and left not long after.

I managed to buy a new portable daylight lamp though, which was one of the things I went looking for. Plus I got lots of ideas, and saw a few new products which inspired me. The wishlist grows ever longer.

Here's a little more progress on Still Water.

Friday, 4 November 2011


I have a revised date for my exhibition, which is now due to be held at Wolverhampton Central Library from Tuesday 22nd November until Saturday 10th December 2011.

The library has been undergoing extensive refurbishment over the past year, and will have to close on Monday 21 November for electrical tests. Unfortunately for me this is the first day of my exhibition. Hopefully all should be well and I should be putting my exhibition up early on Tuesday morning.

Fingers crossed!