110413 spring clean

There must be a blue moon somewhere because I’ve just vacuumed under the bed. I found a long lost tin of vaseline and plenty of naval fluff but you really didn’t want to know that. Spring is in the air and with it comes the desire to clear the decks and scrub the scullery cupboard. My studio is next on the agenda so I shall take a deep breath and go in there armed with a dozen bin bags and be ruthless. I feel a minimalist moment coming on so watch this space. In reality I shall of course get side tracked and start reading every darn piece of paper in piles on the floor and set up elaborate filing systems instead of adopting the digger approach and  just chucking it. When I was a student they called me Tuesday Hayward, now they could very well call me Hoarder Hayward and I would understand why. I blame my mother for instilling the Waste not Want not idealogy in to me and starting every sentence with ” in the war you know…”

sketch book study in medical dictionary: Comrie, J.D 1931 News Chronicle Home Doctor Morrison and Gibb Ltd., London

110410 Worcestershire Arts Trail

The Worcestershire Arts Trail was launched today with website and brochure now available. What is it exactly? Well, 25 Worcestershire artists and craftsmen are opening their studios to demonstrate what they do for 4 days at the end of May 2011. It has backing from the Lottery and Arts Council England and will be a showcase of makers’ talent. We too will be participating so look forward to welcoming visitors to our studios in Battenhall, Worcester. My goodness, what with the Three Choirs Festival at Worcester Cathedral, an inaugural Worcestershire Literary Festival AND the Arts Trail Worcester is really putting itself on the cultural map this summer. And not before time.

sketch book study in medical dictionary: Comrie, J.D 1931 News Chronicle Home Doctor Morrison and Gibb Ltd., London

pheasant 10929

When I walked in to the studio yesterday I was greeted by a pheasant lying lifeless on the table. Nice. Always the opportunist I quickly devised a lesson plan that gave the impression this session had been long planned and was very much a special treat.

My students drew the dead bird all day long and by home time had also designed a pub sign for a hostelry called, yep, you’ve guessed it, “The Pheasant”. Staring at the thing all day I noticed the colours of the feathers were stunningly beautiful- from ginger through deep chocolate to magenta, with splashes of irridescent turquoise: gorgeous. I loved the  graphic quality of the red, black and white feathers around its head, not to mention the elegant long tweed inspired tail feathers draping so gracefully; the designer was clearly on good form that day. At the end of the session one student removed a speckled tail feather as a souvenir and exclaimed, “Oh! It’s got blood on the end.” “What did you expect?” I quipped and he promptly tried to push the thing back.

So, the pheasant shooting season begins tomorrow, lasting until February 1st and I can feel a winter stew coming on. When I told my students about the various cooking options for a brace of pheasants: pheasant in cider, pheasant pate, pheasant in milk, pheasant stuffed with mushrooms, Lincoln pheasant, and how the Italians cook it with pancetta, plenty of white wine and brandy, they were listening intently; drooling even.

That is, of course until I advised them to watch out for the shot.

studio silence (haiku 10427)

outside hear rain drop;

quiet studio silence –

inside hear pin drop