Monday, July 11, 2016

Donation to O'Connor Unit

We have raised enough money again to buy another Dyson fan for the cancer ward in the Royal Shrewsbury Hospital where my son Jim was treated for Hodgkins Lymphona last year..  the chemo can make the patients feel very hot and they don't have enough fans to give one to everyone.. so I have a sealed tin on my stall with a note asking people to put something in if they have enjoyed having a laugh at my funny quote slates... so far in less than a year we have raised enough to buy 3 of these fans for the ward.. We dropped the latest one off recently.   My son Jim is doing well after his stem cell transplant that he had the week before Christmas.. he is back at work part time now..but having regular check ups.. he really has had the best care possible from Dr Nigel O'Connor and his team at Shrewsbury, and also the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham where he had his stem cell transplant.. Thank you everyone..

Bits and Pieces....

I have had to cancel a few workshops of late because of my Polymyalgia having a major flare up...its very upsetting for me to have to do that , but I have no option when I can't lift my arms to paint!

It has been coming and going for a while now but each flare up seems to get worse and there are only so many painkillers I can have,,, it gets better when I rest-but of course it isn't that easy sometimes.
Between that and the discs in my neck degenerating and causing pins and needles in my arms and legs I have been in quite a state at times!

So a big thank you to everyone for being so understanding and moving to other dates..

I have now been put on a very high dose of steroids again, so the pain and stiffness should be gone again very quickly,,

We will be at the Festival At The Edge in Much Wenlock  this Fri,Sat and Sunday.. we will take the caravan, so I will be able to relax and chill if need be... Its a lovely event and the weather forcast looks like its going to be it will do us both good..
I will have a huge display of paintings up--with the awning and the new Gala tent in use.. and lots of my ''Funny Quote'' shabby -chic slates..

We meet up with old friends we only see there, so looking forward to that very much.. some wine will be packed, and maybe some Pimms too...we just need the sun to shine and the pain to stay away and it will the perfect weekend!

Emerald Woods Workshop --Leicester

We were asked by Amanda, who had been to several of my workshops, if we would travel to Leicester to do a workshop there . We are always happy to travel to do workshops, as long as there are enough people and a suitable room to do it in,, There is an extra charge per head to over our travel costs. In this case it was to be the most unusual place I have ever done a workshop-- in a factory! There were 12 people ranging from 9 years up...just Amanda and Ken had painted before and of course the others all thought they wouldn't be able to make much of a job of it,,

apologies to everyone-- my list of names has vanished out of the diary so apart from Amanda, Ken and Barry I have no idea of names! We travelled up to Leicester on the Friday and stayed in the Ibis nearby.. Bill had prepared the canvas before we left home so we just had to get the easels and paint out for everyone when we got there..

everyone started off with just black and white paint..

we had 4 children painting..

as usual, right from the word go-every single painting was completely different from each other..

Miles joined us from time to time-just to check what was going on in there !

lovely results from everyone quite quickly...

Some amazing spooky trees!

Ken has been twice to Ludlow to paint with me,

Barry was quite surprised at how easy it was..

we had a lovely BBQ for lunch... then it was back to the easels to decide if they wanted to add a touch of colour to the many different things can be done to them to change them..

as you can see-some left them monochrome and the others added some colour! They all loved it and we have been asked if we will go back in Sep/Oct to do it again! Will look forward to that very much!

Monday, July 04, 2016

Eaton Manor Workshop

We were asked by Tony who has a company in Leeds if we would do a workshop for his employees when they were staying at Eaton Manor nr Church Stretton as a well earned treat..After a bit of disscussion with him we decided on painting a big acrylic painting and also a small oil one too..We went and had a look at the venue last week to see where we could do the workshop, as there was a choice of rooms.. We were made very welcome by the lovely Laura who showed us all around the options  and we decided that the games room would be best --having a wipeable floor and good lighting--not that we usualy make a mess --but if there are any brushes dropped accidentaly its easily cleaned..
We arrived in good time to get the tables set up,easels and canvas at the ready..the only thing I couldnt prepare was the paint! As we had decided they were going to paint the "Yesterday" picture which has a huge range of colours I had to wait for the students to arrive and choose for themselves which ones they would like to do..but as I had set out some examples of the picture around the room they were able to come to the table where I had the paint and tell me quite quickly what they wanted,,
As usual there was a wide range of colours chosen,,Simon used the browns and creams with a touch of orange..

and everyone soon settled down to paint..

Love the pinks and purples..

bronws and creams were quite popular too..

Its amazing how so many different effects can be achieved using the same colours,,

Mark chose to do the monochrome version but added a touch of orange which worked really well

Luke used a lovely combination of blues and purples..

Steve's is lovely and vibrant in the yellows and oranges..

amazing how quickly everyone found their confidence..

contemplating where to go next,,,

the paintings took shape very quickly...

Tony used the chocolate browns..

More orange went into this one--and what a difference it made--completely different feel to it!

as soon as we start adding the black horizon line they change very quickly..

the sky looks quite dramatic on this one,,

I love the light in Tony's painting,,

love these colours..

looks like a storm may be brewing in the distance..

I have to admit-- I love this colour combination--its never been done in class before-but Kev really made a cracking job of it-very atmospheric!

as you can see in the background the wine and beer were flowing during the workshop--it certainly helps any nerves to disperse !

a lovely calm painting..

lovely warm glow on this one..

Just using the brushes at a different angle really makes a huge difference to the end painting..

that touch of orange is just great!

a good variety of foregrounds were added,,

just a touch of blue on the browns and creams canvas made a huge change...

I love these colours...

This one had us all looking closely--in the background I can see the Sydney Opera House and some dolphins leaping out of the water too!

such calm water here...

End Results---all brilliant-and all so different too...

some trees and bunnies were added to some of them..

well done everyone...

after a few minutes break while we swapped the acrylics for oils and the huge canvas for tiny ones and  we  had a quick oil painting session , painting Poppy Fields.
They soon found that the 2 mediums are completely different to each other..
but everyone seemed to like using it as much.

it only took about 30 mins for us to get these charming little paintings done..

as with the larger paintings-all very different to each other!

all very good! Below are the finished ''Yesterday'' paintings..

some twinkling stars and a shining moon...


love the moon peering out of the clouds at the top..

Tony let me know that they got the acrylic paintings back to Leeds safely-we will pop over to Eaton Manor when the oils are dry and pack and send them to him. Tony said they all loved the day and we will look forward to seeing them again in the future..