Monday, 13 June 2011


The teen grows ever more intelligent and literate, having now mastered sarcasm, snide and presently studying irony. However, sometimes she just gets words wrong, usually during dinner time conversations, to hilarious effect. I couldn't let the following go unpublished:

The teen on ancient history:

" know, in Egypt, during the time of the fairies..."

On her desire to receive regular copies of her favourite science magazine:

"When are you going to get me a prescription to that magazine??"

And finally a surreal one: When being handed her dinner of fried rice and vegetables:

"Aaw, not casserole AGAIN" (followed quick as a flash by boyfriend "Aaw not Duck a L'orange' AGAIN...)

It is remarks like this keep us all laughing during dinner.

Back with work, I have had my first success during the summer round of exhibiting: the first sale of one of my set of Pied Wagtail Monoprints. Stupidly and rarely for me, I forgot to photograph the one that sold, something I am normally quite obsessive about, but this one is similar, the sold one had a background of yellow netting if I recall. The sale came from the Rotary Club exhibition in St Peters church in the centre of Sudbury, and the commission will go towards charities supported by the Rotarians. I made 19 of these, each slightly different so lets hope for more sales another before the summer is out!

 On the illustrating front I am just waiting to see the finished product for the Cardiff Illustrations I produced; it has to be approved by the Welsh Tourist Board first! Meantime I am gearing up for the next one; Milan is heading my way shortly... perhaps a little more glamorous than Cardiff, but since I have never visited either I couldn't say for sure, hmm.

I guess the Cardiff Opera is quite glam, here was my take on it:

It will be interesting to see what comes my way for Milan, I am betting I will have to do a footie fan, I they seem to be a requirement, and Milan seems to be football mad...

Wednesday, 1 June 2011

People in glass houses should probably wear contact lenses...

Now friends and relatives will not know me as a risk taker, but it has been bought to my attention recently that I am being irresponsible and endangering my health. This revelation came about on a trip to a local optician. Needing a spare pair of specs, and not liking any of the frames in my regular place I defected to the premises down the road. I chose a pair of frames and went to select the lenses, and that's when the trouble started. "Right," I said "I don't want plastic, I want glass." 

Now plastic is more usual these days as it is cheaper, lightweight and easier to glaze, particularly with the high density lenses I am forced to have in order not to look like I am peering through pint glass bottoms.  But the problem is, that on the one occasion I had plastic lenses they gave me all sorts of trouble. Unlike glass you cannot bung them under the tap and clean them with a bit of kitchen paper (this scratches them to bits), you need a special cloth, which has to be carried everywhere, and hairspray and perfume stick to plastic and can't be polished out. So back to glass I went.

"We don't recommend glass" said the assistant, attempting to scare me with stories involving (mainly) me crashing my car and all the glass going in my eyes. "I don't know why people want glass lenses, its soo dangerous" said the receptionist to a colleague behind the screen next to me, knowing I could hear her. Next time she walked past I glared at her, thinking uncharitable thoughts like 'I bet she smokes 40 a day.'
In the end I explained that as a non-smoking tee-total vegetarian who did no contact sports and hated roller coasters I doubted wearing glasses made of glass (as I have since age 12) was overly dangerous. They tutted and I left the shop.

Back home I planned to start a large still life with a starfish and glass jars, but sadly found all my big boards had been used and I didn't have any more paper stretched. So grabbing the only (small) board I had available, I started a painting of some purple Irises that flowered in my garden a few weeks ago. I never do flowers from photos, but as I had an unusually clear picture, I gave it a go, and was quite pleased with the results.

May ended with one little sale, a mosaic I completed a few months ago, and put into a gallery in Bury. When I dropped it off the owner said "That will sell"  so obviously knows her customers well!

Finally this week the teen has started 'Study Leave'. This basically means they kick them out until 6th form in September, they just go in for GCSE's.  Its a mad policy, as the teen will work diligently at school, but once home can barely be bothered to leave the bed and feed herself toast. Just to exercise her I dragged her into town for a walk. We went back to my original opticians who had some new styles in, chose a couple and arranged for glass lenses to be fitted.  In the opticians the lady apologised as there was no chair for the teen. "Are you joking?" I said, "she has been horizontal for 3 days, I am just getting her used to standing up..."