Saturday, 24 December 2011

A donkey, a tree ... and a Christmas Star

Ok, I know it's not a donkey ... but the message is the same. Louie just wanted to say Merry Christmas to you all and to say thankyou too to this lovely creature for helping out on that journey many years ago! Merry Christmas to you all, wherever you may be :)

Tuesday, 20 December 2011

A change of Heart

Ok, ok, ok ... I hear you all LOL! You're all so very special you know ... thank you so much for your thoughts on my decision.

I'm back ... but it will be a while before I can get my head around painting and drawing again. If you're happy to wait, then I'm more than happy to continue to share the journey with you :)

Just to show you how I've progressed over the years, this is a coloured pencil and watercolour sketch I did on location in the moors above my old home in Keighley, West Yorkshire. I have so many happy memories of that place, locked in my memory for a quarter of a century ... three jobs, a redundancy, a daughter, a son, two step daughters, two dogs, five cats, one rabbit, a few hamsters, guinea pigs, gerbils and fish, two houses, a county, a lost mother, father and brother and an ex-wife ago! Ah, to be 20/30 something again  :).

Critical comments on a postcard to .....LOL.

And here it is in real life ... the actual location of one of my first plein air experiences! Isn't the internet wonderful ? But hang on, who put those speed signs there ... 50 MPH, who are they kidding .. this is a 1 in 4 hill with severe corners and you're approaching a junction ???

Hope you're all enjoying the run-up to Christmas. It's almost time to crack open the Bailey's Irish Cream and grab a handful of Roses. Mmmm, life is good  ;). Happy painting and drawing !

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Monday, 19 December 2011

Follow you, follow me

I have to admit it ... I absolutely adore Blogger ... it's been great to be able to get feedback on my own work and to see the wonderful inspiring work from extremely talented fellow artists ... and that means all of you! I have learned so much and have developed as an artist in both a physical and emotional sense. Blogland is also a place to meet and make friends with so many people, both near and far, and I have certainly been blessed to have built up so many faithful followers and friends over the last eight months :)

But it is has become a bit of an obsession of late with me and I don't handle obsession very well LOL. It has started to pervade both my personal and working life and I have had to think very carefully about how to deal with this.The Charles Dickens story 'A Christmas Carol' has a clear message for all of us and I have been a little bit like Old Scrooge myself recently, locked up in my own world with no consideration for those around me. Art will always be one of my greatest passions, but I have to control that longing to allow me to give time to those that I love and that love me back. I am their rock and they are mine too

It is then with a heavy heart that I have to say au revoir to you all and I wish you all a Merry Christmas, a Happy New Year and best wishes for the future in all your artistic ventures :) I leave you with this final offering. This is a pen drawing I did on layout paper, way back in 1994, shortly after I started my artistic journey, and so I think it is a fitting farewell gift. I will leave my blog up and open for comment for a while ... and please remember, I do love to get comments :) I will certainly try to visit all your blogs too, but please do not think I am being rude by my lack of comments or equally by my lack of replies to your comments. I'll still be lurking around here in Blogland from time to time ... but only when I get the time :)

Thank you all! Good luck to each and every one of you on YOUR journey.
Michael xox

'We Walk The Same Line', pen and ink on layout paper

Thursday, 15 December 2011

The Versatile Blogger Award

Yay, I've won an award !!! My blogger friend Sandra has just recently awarded me with the Versatile Blogger Award. Without Sandra's encouragement I would probably still be lurking around as a blog reader or remaining relatively unnoticed somewhere in darkest deepest Flickr-land. Thank you very much Sandra, I'm chuffed to bits!

I now have to pass the award on to fifteen other deserving bloggers.

Well, it was a tough process I can tell you  .. I almost needed to take it to the public vote .... but here are my choices for the fifteen fellow bloggers on to whom I would like to pass The Versatile Blogger Award ... so, in no particular order .... tick, tock, tick, tock, tick ....

I also have to give seven facts about me.

Ok ... Ahem ....

  1. I was born on the exact same day that JFK was inaugurated ... go on, google it ... what do you mean old git LOL .. .so  that makes me a Capriquarian ... born on the cusp between Capricorn and Aquarius.
  2. I was born in Cheshire in North West England but have spent a bigger part of my life elsewhere ... first Yorkshire and now Cambridgeshire.
  3. I married for the second time nine years ago and have a daughter and son of my own biological means and two step-daughters of someone else's :) They range in age from 19 to 23.
  4. I originally studied to become an electronics engineer but I have been employed as a software engineer for almost 25 years now. If I hadn't become an engineer I would have liked to have become a hair dresser. Go on mock all you like!
  5. I was told to give up art by my art teacher at school when I was about fifteen. I'll show him :)
  6. I started painting in watercolours about eighteen years ago but then stopped for ages and only started again about two years ago.
  7. I have quite a high IQ but still can't open any type of packaged food without either stabbing or cutting myself,  inadvertently feeding the eagerly awaiting dog, or just generally making a mess everywhere !