Thursday, September 27, 2012

Send A Cow's Win A Cow Competition

I was very pleased to be invited to submit a design for this competition and have sent them two. The first one appeared on their website today.
This is a great competition where you pick a name for the cow if you win and then pick from the artists designs how you want your cow painted. Of course this isn't a live cow but a life size fibreglass cow.
When I was invited I was more than happy to get involved as this organisation does fantastic work helping impoverished rural communities get on their feet by helping them be more successful farmers. These aren't big farms but the small pieces of land owned by families to grow and produce food to feed themselves.
Having a cow gifted to them provides not just milk but dung for fertiliser to improve their crop growth.
Please visit their website, Send A Cow, to find out more about their work and how you can help and support them.

Monday, September 10, 2012

Art in Penallt – The Nature of Things

Art exhibition Saturday 6th – Sunday 7th October 2012

Recently I was invited to exhibit work at an exhibition in Penallt,
Monmouthshire; I have not exhibited here before, but after looking at
their website I am very pleased to have been invited and I have
submitted three pieces of work to show there. This event is the
weekend just prior to my Artist in Residence week at Nature in Art so
apart from delivering my work on the Friday I sadly shall not see the
exhibition in its entirety as I shall be busy preparing for the week
ahead at Nature in Art.

The theme of the event is ‘art in nature and nature in art’ this year
and the exhibition is one of three events over the weekend. Please
click here to go to their website for more details.

On the home page if you click on 2012 in the ‘Pages’ box on the left
and then on ‘Artists’ you can see a list of the exhibitors (there are
over 30) and by clicking on each name you get to see an example of
their work with a short profile telling you about them.

This is one of the pieces I have submitted; this is of a bird from Australia called a little pied cormorant. I saw several of these birds in the Botanical Gardens in both Sydney and Brisbane and was struck by their small size and lovely plumage of black and white, with that striking yellow bill.

The other pieces I have entered are of a white rhino and a portrait of Salome and Komale, mother and son Western lowland gorillas, that are part of the family group at Bristol Zoo Gardens.

Sunday, September 09, 2012

Upcoming workshops

I have two workshops coming up, in the next two months, for batik and silk painting.

Batik – painting with wax Two day course - September 29th – 30th at the wonderful venue of
Nature in Art Museum and Art Gallery in Gloucestershire. Click on the link to go to their website.

Course description
Suitable for Beginners & Improvers
Learning to paint with wax and colour is great fun and even the most nervous beginner can
produce lovely designs and images within a very short space of time. Over the two days, after
getting familiar with the medium and equipment, we will be producing beautiful images that can
be hung on the wall or made into cushion covers etc from projects that I set or your own ideas.

Details and booking for this workshop/course can be found on their website; look under the
education tab on their home page and select adult classes from the drop down menu. A full
list of the courses for the year is displayed, simply click on my name, which brings up a pdf file
that has all the details for my course that you can either open or download to view. Alternatively
please call the museum on 01452 733942 or 731422 or ask when you next visit. I believe there
are a few spaces available so please do enquire at the museum if you are interested.

Nature in Art runs approximately 30 classes a year in a variety of subjects and cater to all levels
from beginners to advanced. Most courses are run by artists who have work in the Museum’s
collection and/or have been on their artist in residence programme. The courses are held in
their purpose built education centre and class sizes are kept between 6-12 people to ensure
you receive individual attention from the tutor whilst enjoying a sense of team spirit.

Autumnal silk painting course - One day course - 20th October with the Avon Gorge and
Downs Wildlife Project at Bristol Zoo Gardens. Click on the link to go to the website,

Course description
Suitable for everyone, including the artistically challenged!
Let the colours and shapes of autumn inspire you! In this workshop, Su Lees, Bristol Zoo’s
Wildlife Illustrator, will show you how easy and fun it is to create silk paintings.

Details and booking for this workshop/course can be found on their website; on their home page
click on the ‘What’s on’ tab and then the ‘Events’ tab. Contact details are shown, as is the list
of events for the year, of which my workshop is one. Alternatively please call Mandy Leivers on
0117 9030609 or e-mail for details and booking. I believe there are
a few spaces available so please do enquire at the museum if you are interested.

The Avon Gorge & Downs Wildlife Project was set up to protect the outstanding wildlife interest
of the Avon Gorge and Downs and to raise awareness and understanding about the importance
of this site for people and wildlife.

Saturday, September 08, 2012

September October plans

I have worked part-time at the zoo since 2004 and this is arranged into 3 days a week for 9 months of the year. Up until this year those three months at home were back to back from January to March. This year a different arrangement is being trialed whereby those three months are split in two, so now I have January, September and October off.
These months at home are for me to concentrate on my fine artwork business. This September and October are going to be busy as I have 1 one day workshop, 1 two day workshop, a six day artist in residency and I am exhibiting in an exhibition. On top of the preparations for all those, I have my accounts to finish, updating to be done on my blogs, a number of other bits and pieces as well as lots of painting towards my Botswana exhibition project.

So far I have finished the accounts and delivered the paperwork, visited a gallery-for-hire space to check it out for my Botswana exhibition project, met Joanna from Send A Cow Charity about a project they are doing and that I have been invited to be involved with, worked on a slideshow (Botswana images) to show during my artist in residence week, bought supplies for the first workshop, put together a 2013 calendar to be produced online, started on all my labels and signs for the residency as well as catching up on a load of gardening and paperwork sorting that were both long overdue and lots of other little jobs.

Now that my shoulder is improving I can get on with the work that has had to be put on hold for the last three months. This last week has been mainly spent in front of the computer but I am hoping that now I have the most urgent jobs done or started I can now get down to some painting... again it's been several months since I have been able to do such work because of my frozen shoulder problem. I am looking forward to sploshing some paint ... the elephants I started a while ago are sending out lots of rumbles; calling me to finish them.