Wednesday, 16 December 2009

Self Portrait with a Man

Lots of thoughts going through my head at the moment - not surprising I suppose. So as I was thinking of Spain I put in a photo which i took on my last trip. It's nice and arty and also shows you some of the impossibly steep and narrow streets that we have in Alhaurin. Streets that necessitate many of these funny little convex mirrors all over the place.

I am packing today - well I have more or less finished now actually, which is why I am sitting at my computer. As you know it is not in my nature to procrastinate. If a job needs doing then spit spot I do it! Of course my tongue is well and truly in my cheek!

But seriously I have finished my packing organisation. There was still quite a lot to organise even though we have already shipped out a lot of stuff (that is my stuff carried out in 20kg quotas by my poor long suffering Victor). I still had my watercolours, pencils, various bits and all my electronic stuff to sort through and decide what needs keeping and what I can let go. To be honest most of that stuff has to come with me, it was really only papers and things that have been jettisoned.

I am amazed at the amount of paper one little household can generate. Even though I have got really good at throwing out - or recycling - paper and storing things electronically rather than in hard copy I still find myself drowning beneath printouts and documents from time to time. In fact I am trying to remember how many reams of paper I have bought since being here. i think i am on my third - admittedly that is quite new, so still mainly full, but still it does give you pause for thought. But then I am an artist and there is no point keeping all those images just on the computer - they do not make sense the same way.

However, i am pretty good at recycling. When I am finished with any printouts they are turned over and put into a scratch pile. This is great for thinking with a pen and doing sketches or when you suddenly get an idea that you want to jot down. Some of the sheets are also torn into four pieces and recycled as shopping lists. And of course once the sheet of paper has been printed and/or drawn on both sides it is either used to light the fire or sent to the paper recycle bin to be turned into something else.

I do try to do my little bit for the planet!

So, Christmas is on my mind too of course - Turkey and Mistletoe, Panto and Sleighs. I do like all the blitz and bling. Here I really like the decorations to be honest - they are very low key compared to Ireland and England, but the simple stars and wreaths hung in the windows entice you to look into the cosy little houses and imagine the smell of cinnamon and apples and woodsmoke. Mmmmmm!

Things on my mind then are, in no particular order: Christmas, moving, Spain, England, Ireland, On-line check-in, paper, packing, socks, Snow, bare trees, the smell of winter, old friends, christmas cards getting places, candles, houses, tapas, children, dogs with wet noses (but i think about them all of the time) and so on and so forth.

Right now though I must nip out to the shops to get a few little bits that need to be got to keep the wheels of this household moving on!

Hope you like the photo

Friday, 11 December 2009

Getting back on the Horse and a Happy Christmas

Well, lots of things have been achieved and lots of things have been wrapped up in the past few weeks.

Unfortunately my head has gone into a complete spin since my exhibition and actually doing anything has been rather difficult. Add to that 'Party Season' and hardly a night goes by that we are not celebrating something or other - this of course involves copious amounts of wine and food! Nothing wrong with the food, but the wine does tend to take its toll.

The exhibition went very well I thought. Perhaps not in terms of sale, although there are still a couple of promises which may or may not come in over the next week, but in terms of putting myself out there and actually organising the event it was excellent. In the end it was not so difficult to do everything. I could have pushed it a little bit more by putting an announcement into the local paper but I really wanted to keep it a bit low key. I felt it was more of a practice for when we move to Spain, there I can set up a small gallery at home and have a steady stream of exhibitions throughout the year with a constantly changing display. A lot of work I know, but if I wish to sell ....

On the day all the visitors were friends and neighbours so it turned into a very nice party, both to celebrate my exhibition, but also as a sort of going away party also. I liked that, because it was much more relaxing than having to deal with strangers and massive crowds! Although I know there was never much hope of the crowds - the arts are typically low key unless you are Damien Hirst or someone like that.

So, I now need to get back on the horse. I have been a bit lazy and a bit anticlimaxed and a bit preoccupied with other things that needed to be done as we wind up our time here in Stavanger. But now I am somewhat organised I must try to write my blog again every day. It is a shame to let it lapse, but as I have tried to explain it is part of how I operate creatively too.

Therefore, I will now raise a toast to a Happy Christmas, a new start in the New Year, an intention to write my blog regularly and the start of a new body of work from my Studio also in the New Year.

And I also raise a toast to all readers of my blog and wish all of you the best for Christmas and the New Year!

P.S. by the way really Vic and myself are blissfully happy together still. I swear the above photo was staged!!