I should imagine lots of artists will be thinking about 2023 now. How things went, what could have gone better, what to do next…

I can honestly say that I’ve had a good year.  I’ve done a lot of travelling, a lot of socialising, read 76 books ( which I log on Goodreads) and had the huge achievement of going to the theatre and ballet on my own !
Workwise, I was halfway through the church commission. It felt like I was working every waking hour making those paper fish – exhausting, beyond tedious. frustrating … but seeing them all spread out in Chester Cathedral was exhilarating.

From the Cathedral, the installation was then displayed in a local church for a while before heading off on its travels.  This should happen early next year sometime.

It was a good experience, great to be paid for it and it certainly kept me going for a while.

I’m keeping an open mind  whether I will do another one. There are lots of plusses and minuses to it all, apart from the enormous amount of work involved.

The end of the year has seen me going in what seems to be a totally different direction, in that I’m painting again.

I’ve always painted, on and off,  so it really isn’t that much of a change. I do it almost as a sideline though as I find it peaceful and relaxing. I don’t always post about it though, which is something I’ll have to rectify next year.
One of the speakers at an a-n seminar I went to once, criticised artists using social media for constantly posting about work. We should show ourselves as more rounded – life alongside our artwork. I’ve pretty much stuck to that rule , though now I’m wondering if I should post at least once a week about my work?

In my last post I mentioned open exhibitions. I hadn’t been a fan of these in the past, but I’m now finding that they help me focus. I’ve produced quite a lot of work in the last few months. Whether its shown or not is another matter, but the work is now there for me to contemplate.

I’ll be showing a small work in the postcard exhibition at Sheffield’s Fronteer Gallery 10 – 20 January, so that’s a good start to the year and great that I’ll be showing work with artists we exhibited with in Athens. ( yes, that was another great experience that shifted my way of thinking over working more with other artists)

So on that note, here is one of my more recent paintings… slightly more ‘traditional’ than others I’ve done, but I see it as a learning curve. This year has  definitely been an education!

Happy New Year everyone !



It’s been a few days now since the exhibition ended and I’d collected my work.

It was, for want of better words – an experience.

Although I did initially disagree with what was exhibited and how things were set out, more than anything it made me realise what an art snob I had become.
I was shot down twice when commenting that I thought it wasn’t professional to have work dated pre 2000 in the exhibition ( there were several from 1989) – ‘Whats wrong with that if the artist liked it?’ ..or that there was too much work overall in the exhibition – ‘More for people to look at!’

Several works were sold ( not mine though ) so I was wrong about the public and what they liked.

My head isn’t in that way of thinking. I’ve never produced work with selling in mind so it’s hard to see things from another point of view.

There will be another one in May and I’ll probably go back … but with a more open mind next time.


That happened quicker that I’d planned…. I saw an open call for an exhibition , so I submitted work on the deadline date.

Its a ‘local’ artist one . held in the visitor centre of a public park. I was accepted straight away, but I suspect everyone that applies is accepted.

There was an admin cost of £12.50 to pay, but you actually get that back if you invigilate .

As it was last minute thing, I didn’t have time to organise framing OR finish new work, so I took a couple of my small studies and framed them up using what I had in.

As they were tiny works though and the hanging method was hooks on display boards, I had to rethink how I would exhibit  the work.

This probably took longer than actually doing the work in the first place, but |I took the glass out of another frame and  stuck the two paintings inside.  It looked secure which is the important thing.

Two tiny framed paintings swinging on cord would  have been a nightmare to hang, would look awful and also could have been just whipped off by a park visitor.

I really felt like I was starting at the bottom again and questioned why I was doing this.

We’ll see. At the end of the exhibition, I’ll evaluate costs, time and outcome.

Tomorrow though, I’ll do my 3 hour shift in the space.