Roll up! Roll up!
Well I am pleased to say the free illustrated lunchtime lecture this Thursday (1.30-2.30pm) at Winterbourne (13/2/14) is nearly finished; I have been tweaking it all day and I think there will be 150 images that I will run through in an hour so it certainly won’t be boring! I am a visual learner and really appreciate images and I think you will enjoy the drawings, illustrations and photographs saved from my year at Winterbourne. If you’re free pop along and gain an insight into the sketch book studies behind the paintings, the imagery behind the film. I really hope to see you there. Come along – all welcome – even if you can only stay for a short while.
i am rooting though my plan chest drawers looking for paintings of pots and gardens in my archive that are relevant to be current exhibition at winterbourne. i shall pop them into a browser and they’ll be available unframed. i watched a programme late last night about exercise and it said for general well being to keep moving so that is what i am trying to do. this update will therefore be short as in order to write it i have to sit very still and that is just about the worst thing for the human body. i have pilates this evening so there is some slow movement in that and on a wednesday evenings i’ve joined a life drawing class so i shall have to use my imagination to work out how i can move about in that one; maybe i’ll strap my board around my neck and move around like an ice cream seller. this is one of my favourite portraits of the nettlefold children as i can just imagine evie running up and stopping still for just a second to have her photograph taken before dashing off to get on with what she really wants to do. most probably buy an ice cream.
today i have been deciphering the handwriting of all the souls who visited my studio at winterbourne last year and kindly left their email to be reminded of the exhibition. it wasn’t easy; did they mean to write the whole thing in capitals, is that a hyphen or an underscore etc etc. still, i am hoping that those get through will then be forwarded to their friends so ensuring the power of the online jungle drums. we had a load of logs delivered yesterday and i helped paul with the last couple of barrow loads before they get rained upon; the wood store now looks like they do in a magazine and a cosy log fire every evening is a real joy and jut about makes january and february bearable. i suppose they had coal fires at winterbourne at the turn of the century. the winterbourne portrait trail is now up and running and valerie here is upstairs on a corridor; she does look rather aloof, perhaps even a little startled.
Well, today is the first day of my exhibition and it has rained and rained and rained. If we still lived in London we would have spent the day wondering around the V & A and the dog would have crossed his legs. I really like the new boy’s bedroom they have created at Winterbourne with its male atmosphere and masculine furnishings. This portrait study of Ken hangs very well in there an it is uncanny how the colours work so well together as it hadn’t been created when I painted this. Strange to think this room was my original studio exactly one year ago until I moved to the hay Loft studio in June. You can just about make out the use of varnish in an Edwardian tulip motif across his face. I like the look of youthful apprehension in his face. We were all there once.
tonight is the eve of my exhibition opening; fingers and toes crossed a few people pop by tomorrow to see a year’s painting finally in situ! there’s lots to see; eight portraits, eight semi abstract large scale paintings, three small oils and one short film. Plus a great cafe for a coffee at half time. Yes, I have surprised myself, yes, I have found a new language, and yes, I believe it is worth a train ticket to see. On for ten weeks until april 9th let me know what you think if you’re in the university of birmingham neighbourhood.