I am almost two weeks into a two month break from work. I decided I needed to stop and do some thinking. So here I am, in the fortunate position of having time. The plan is to not be distracted by my job and attempt to focus on remembering what it is I like to do outside of it.
One of the things high up on the list is putting into practice some of my ideas. I have lists of them but I rarely sit down and do anything to make them happen. I want it to be part of my everyday, so that it doesn’t feel so daunting/out of reach. I found a list of questions that I had prepared when I was organising the Art Works page in LeftLion and I hope, by the end of the two months to be able to answer the questions on it. At the moment, my mind is like scrambled eggs.
Last week, I went to Bishopston in Wales, with my parents. It was a last minute decision to tag along and they were super lovely to let me. It was just want I needed to clear away the cobwebs and start to think about what I want to do with the luxury that is time. One of the biggest things is to give myself a break and try not to give myself a hard time. When in wales, we went on a daily walk and it made me think how good it is for you, not only for the exercise but also for the change of scenery.
Here are a few photos taken:
My Mum, Ali and I sat in the garden and painted the garden. I have no technique at all, but it was so relaxing. These were my Nan’s watercolour paints and below is my painting.
It was my Nan’s birthday on the 18th February and a friend of hers bought her a tin opener, with a note that said ‘Hope you don’t already have one of these.’ We found it quite funny as you would hope that someone would own a tin opener as it isn’t exactly cutting edge technology. My Nan confessed that she actually had three and this new one would mean she was the proud owner of 4 tin openers. We laughed at the thought of using them all at the same time. We decided after some discussion you would need 8 arms and that an octopus would be able operate 4 tin openers. I decided to draw and paint it.
It was my wonderful Mum, Ali’s birthday last weekend and I decided instead of just making a card, that I would make an animation of the making of the card. It took a long time and my camera kept saying it was exhausted but it felt like such an achievement.
I would like to play around with this idea more and work with watercolours again.
Today I got up early to spend a few hours in the snow. Years ago I used food colouring to created lines in the snow and decided, today was the day to get the snow colourful once again. I mixed watercolour paints with water, got wrapped up warm and got my wellies on. Al was my chief documenter and together we took huge amounts of photos.
I was aware after creating the initial splatter paintings that I didn’t want to stain the concrete below, so decided the only option was to make a huge colourful snowball. It was labour intensive and I soon warmed up. I enjoyed my only tools being a black glove (couldn’t find the other one) and a shovel. I used the shovel to cut it in half at the end to reveal the rainbow.
I think the final sculpture has turned out a treat! I had no idea what it would look like, but the mottled colour reminds me of rainbow sponge cake. It was great fun too, especially as a fun activity before having to go to work for a few hours through the slush filled streets.
For my lovely Mum’s birthday, I decided to paint some watercolour butterflies. I had painted backgrounds but decided that I liked the idea of suspending them in glass so they looked like specimens.
I don’t think I’ll ever get bored of butterflies. I think they are so elegant and beautiful. I have become a slight butterfly addict and unlike drug addiction, or an over zealous attitude to booze, my friends and family completely support it. I would go as far to say that they encourage it entirely by buying me anything butterfly related they see.
Below: I bought these hand painted butterflies from the history museum in Birmingham. £1 each! Absolute bargain.