New…new…new

New easel (thanks to some birthday money) …tis now in my studio!

 New brushes, and a couple of tubes of paint too…

New painting – just finished today and as yet untitled. I seem to have alot going on at the moment with 2 upcoming exhibitions, an upcoming craft fair, 2 painting commissions and work to complete for a gallery and a new shop and sometimes it is hard to know what to tackle first. All of this is happening in the next month and I am just trying to relax and work on what feels good on any given day.

Thank-you so much for your opinions on the studio photo’s! I have decided on the colour one, although it was close. As it is for an online venture though, I felt it had more impact. I was hoping to reveal what it is all for today but as I still have some tweeking to do it will later on Monday once everything is in place.

Hoping you are having a good week

xxx

Advertisements

This one or that one……

Wednesday…. Wednesday already, how the days and weeks race by! Today I have multiple tasks to complete before settling down to some luxurious  studio time. One of the things I had to do today though was take some ‘studio shots’ for an upcoming venture. A photo of me at work….. a lesson in torture for me as I am so camera shy that it is painful. However it had to be done, so I tidied my worktable (only a teeny bit as the idea is that I am amongst my work), put some make-up on – more than usual and certainly more than usual for a studio day, but hey ho, if a bit of red lipstick was going to help reduce the usual pastiness then it had to be done!

The idea is to see the real person behind the work but I can’t decide between colour or black and white! Black and white is possibly more forgiving but I would love your feedback – which is your preference?

Mosaic Monday 21st June 2011

Mosaic Monday 21st June 2011, originally uploaded by gilfling.

1. chillingworth , 2. A Well Respected Man, 3. WDS Front, 4. Ursula, 5. The Crown, 6. wait station 011, 7. This Boy Inside, 8. ready to bud, 9. Summer pins, 10. The Garden Gate, 11. disciple, 12. as blogged at http://mynameisfinch.blogspot.com/

Another late mosaic – I just don’t know where the time goes! Please click through to individual pages to see more.

I had an exciting delivery yesterday – my brand new easel and I can’t wait to put it to good use! It is huge and touches the low ceiling of my top floor studio but I will, in time, be able to work larger so I am looking forward to that. I am having that fluttery feeling in the pit of my stomach where I know that I have alot to do over the next few weeks and not as much time as I would like…so best get on!

Thank you so much to those who commented on my print for charity and also for sharing it on your facebook pages and blogs – It is so very much appreciated..

xxx

A moment in time….a gift

So the last couple of days I have been telling you of our amazing trip to London – today I wanted to tell you about the reason we were there…

As many of you know, I was diagnosed with breast cancer last year and although I have made a good recovery, it was a rollercoaster few months. During my radiotherapy treatment, the hospital handed me a form for The Willow Foundation – a charity that I had not previously heard of. This amazing organisation plans and gifts special days out to seriously ill people  16 – 40 years of age. I took the form reluctantly (indeed I took everything to do with my diagnosis reluctantly) and put it away in a desk drawer. I didn’t feel ill enough to be applying for such a gift – indeed I felt embarrassed to be offered it in the first place, I didn’t deserve such a treat when there are so many people who do.

However, my daily visits to the hospital meant that the radiographers had plenty of opportunities to badger me about the form which had to be submitted whilst I was still undergoing active treatment and filled out by the health professionals. Friends and family also had a part to play and eventually on the last day of my treatment I handed the form in (reluctantly…) As I had left it so late I did not expect it to go through or be accepted. So to cut a long story short, our weekend away was a memorable gift from The Willow Foundation and it was lovely to time it with my birthday too. They organised everything, from our train journey to London, to a car which took us from station to hotel, hotel to theatre, hotel to station again on the Sunday. They booked us into the most amazing hotel on the Embankment of the Thames – so central that we could walk everywhere. They booked us the tickets to Warhorse which will be a memory that will stay with me….such a beautiful show.

This is not something that we could have afforded to do ourselves as our income would never make it possible. The only way that I could accept such a gift was with the knowledge that I could hopefully give something back in some small way. There are so many charities that have helped me along the way in this journey – Cancer Care UK, Macmillan Cancer and Breast Cancer Care and in time I want to release other prints with a portion given to those but I wanted to begin with this wonderful Charity which takes creating ‘A Moment in time…’ as their gift to those suffering the stresses and strains of life-threatening illnesses. I am so grateful to them for the memories that were created on our trip to London.

This painting was created at a time when I was still really feeling the effects of my treatment but had also made the decision to get serious about my art and make the most of my abilities and the opportunities I have to create – it is one of my favourite images of mine and means an incredible amount to me!

So there are 2 sizes of this print available which for now will only be available on-line and from me in person. 50% of the price of each print will go to the Willow Foundation (the rest will enable me to always have ink and  paper on hand!) and I hope to keep a running total of donations somewhere in my side-bar if I can work out how to do it. My initial aim is to raise £500 but as this print will be available for as long as I am able to make prints (I aim to never retire!) then who knows!

The medium version of this print is here and the large here.

I don’t usually ask this, but if you did know anyone who may like to purchase a copy of this print, or if you wanted to blog about it, or share this post in any way, I would be ever so grateful. As I have made this print an un-limited edition I would love to sell as many as possible and be able to support this charity in my own small way.

xxx

Warhorse….

One of the main reason’s for our trip to London last weekend was to go and see Warhorse at the New London Theatre and really it was the highlight of our trip, for both of us. I have had the book by Michael Morpurgo for a wee while, but as the only occassions I seem to have time to read at the moment is in the doctors surgery waiting room, I still have not finished it as I keep having to pause to stop myself from crying… it is an incredibly heart-wrenching story. However I had seen the documentary on the Making of Warhorse and just knew it was something I would love to see…

I had fully intended on really trying to describe this wonderful stage play and my response to it but in truth I don’t think it is possible to put into words how incredible it was. Set in the First World War and focussing on the story of a farm-lad and his horse, it really is an  unforgettable story.

The horses are life size puppets, each requiring 2 or three people to work the mechanics of the animal. The most incredible thing is that after a short time, even although you know the actors are there, you forget that they are working the puppets and instead begin to believe that it is a living, breathing horse with a distinct character. I think I must have looked like a child with that expression of wonder and awe on my face throughout the performance, so breathtaking and heartwrenching.

I don’t know if the show is touring atall but if you are not able to see it you can get a wee taste of the show here on the website – I know there is an up-and-coming film directed by Stephen Speilberg, but really it is the puppets that are the stars of the stage show. Although for some reason calling them ‘puppets’ really doesn’t come close to describing the wonder of them. The music too has stayed with me I have been constantly humming singing the bits that I remember of the folk tunes from the play.  I have ordered the soundtrack with some birthday money so I know that it is going to be played frequently on my studio days – as I get older, my love of folk music grows and it suits the mood and atmosphere of my studio when I am working.

 It is an occassion that I will always remember and there is a very special reason that I was able to go which I would like to tell you about, but for now I have an appointment and then my studio is calling, so I shall leave that for tomorrow….

Thank you for reading and sharing this with me..I truly hope it is something you have the opportunity to see!

xxx

The Big City………

 

So highlights of London were …..

… walking along the embankment with the sight of the incredible architecture of the houses of parliament – a stunning view even after seeing it many times …

…. we missed the Trooping the Colour but saw some of the spectacular fly-past of the Royal Air Force overhead and in a clear blue sky…

………a bit of window shopping on Regent Street, popping into Anthropologie (nil purchases) and the amazing and huge National Geographic shop (a wee treat in the form of a years subscription to the publication which I have coveted for years!)…..

…delighted to find wildlife even in the heart of London via a walk through St James Park where we saw black swan’s, a beautiful, majestic heron and the most precocious squirrels you are ever likely to meet…..

….discovering my dream house and garden, again right in the heart of London – ‘A cottage for a birdkeeper’ – like something from a fairy tale (images of this are sure to appear in my artwork in the near future)…

…. looking around, looking up, gasping at the wonderful and historical architecture that fills Londons street..you can only wonder at how many hands and years it took to build such delicate details that reach for the sky…..

… and so to the theatre in the evening to see Warhorse (more about this tomorrow)…

…. a more tired version of ourselves from all the walking the previous day, on Sunday we tucked into a hearty breakfast before taking the bus through London’s rainy street’s to visit one of my favourite places in London with all it’s memories of childhood days out with my dad… The Natural History Museum with wonders of the feather, scaley and furry kind, its’s tales of earth and ocean’s and planets, far too much to see in a day although we did try….

…. and so home again. Tired and happy to have spent a lovely weekend together as fleeting as it was….there is just too much to see!..

So till tomorrow

xxx

Mosaic Monday 13th June 2011

Mosaic Monday 13th June 2011, originally uploaded by gilfling.

1. reverie, 2. Untitled, 3. Orchid Thief, 4. magpie cup, 5. Untitled, 6. Visionary., 7. treehouse tower, 8. Three books & their pages, 9. crofters handbook , 10. City trip – art doll by Anna Zueva, 11. WIP: Peacock Stumpwork – Final stages, 12. Fossil Strata

Another week and I am a year older after my birthday on Saturday – only one year to the big ‘4-0’ now – gosh how can that be??? We had the most wonderful weekend in London and I still have to upload my photographs – there is also a wee tale to tell related to our weekend away but I shall save that for tomorrow as it deserves a post all of it’s own.

I did have a horrible moment of dread on friday when I somehow managed to drop a marble slab (that I use when carving leather – so it is the size of a chopping board) – anyway I managed to drop it right at the base of my big toe and believe me, I was hopping around like a cartoon character, whilst sobbing trying to continue breathing all at the same time. It was not a pretty sight and when the bruising and swelling started I was scared I had broken it – which would have made for a bit of a rotten weekend in London!! Anyway – someone up there was being good to me as by Saturday morning I was only hobbling a little and walking was not too bad atall. Thank goodness!

So tales of London tomorrow!

PS – lots of amazing work via my flickr favourites again, please click on the links above to see more.

PPS – I felt rather unwell for much of last week (overtired) and am so behind on replying to, and thanking you for your lovely, thoughtful comments here on my blog and on facebook – also for the overwhelming amount of birthday wishes. Please know that I feel a very lucky girl indeed to have you all visiting here and really appreciate your interest in what I am up to – thank you so very much!

xxx