More iterations of transition



Once I get an idea….these are photos that I  have manipulated in layout and instagram. The spectra were caused by a peice of crystal I have hanging in the window.

The transitions are colours, shapes and facial ones.

I took the images further in each one, so they transition from something normal to something more obscure and unusual.

Use of colour makes them more interesting I think. I’m not the kind of artist that likes to write a long description next to their work to explain it so I will leave it at that.



We have an art challenge at Spode studios to come up with an art work which follows the theme “transition” or “transitions”.

I would normally come up with a realistic painting but I’m also toying with something more abstract. These are initial digital drawings, working on the transition from grainy to smooth, straight to curvy, and changes of colour.

I might try and turn one of these into a large painting. In a way it’s also making me think about changing my work practice from quite a straightforward way of working into something more involved.

Watch thus space for possible updates….

I might even enter something into the exhibition….



The Sun sets earlier every day now, by 9pm it is dark, the summer sun falls below the horizon, dropping down and bringing shadows.

My head nods with weariness, barely able to keep my eyes open. I long for sleep, ready to rest my weary limbs beneath cool sheets, but sleep sneaks away sometimes, I’m hazy with it one minute then alert and awake the next jerking back into the world with a jump, taken out of sleep by a noise or a pain.

So yes, I do need sleep, but it tends to grab hold of me in the daytime. When I’m not expecting it I fall asleep. Listening to the radio or watching tv. In a meeting. Thankfully never when I am driving. But I could almost fall asleep in a queue in a shop, tonight I was nodding at choir practice… but now at well after midnight, nothing,  no sleep.

Sleep is the soft rest that gently rocks your body into dreams,

Sleep is the midnight air coursing through your veins,

Sleep is looking at your partner as he slumbers,

Sleep hides ills and heals woes,

Sleep shapes wakefulness, giving rest to the weary.

I want sleep in my eyes, sleep in my mind.

I want to be drousy, dreaming of soft down pillows.

I need rest, from fears, from worries.

Give me sleep, now.

Blah blah blah


My head is spinning, I can’t think. Why? Because he keeps talking, on and on and onandonandonand……argh!

He keeps listing things, this and that and the other. ..more and more. Muttering, talking under his breath. It’s not a duolog, it’s a monolog. The pretence of listening  trying to turn a blind ear to it. Please shut up! I scream over and over in my head, my aching ears, every tv programme is spoken over , every speech or argument is submerged by the verbal spewing of the same things, same ideas ad nauseam.

I try not to say anything. I did not want to start an argument. I’m polite, patient, trying to be caring. It makes my mind bend, trying to placate whilst trying to hear my own thoughts.  Misery is close to love, partnered with it, shackled till bedtime brings blessed quiet.

Tinnitus waits when silence decends, whistling, high pitched, fracturing my mind even more, sometimes I switch on the radio, quiet words, only just audible either sooth, or I catch their meaning, and listen into sleep, leaning my thoughts into their soft pillow.

I know in the morning I will start again. I try and stay in the haven of quiet peace in the dawning of day’s, lingering in bed, hiding my thoughts under the duvet. Sometimes I want to escape, to talk to someone who will listen to Me, let Me be, let me be, let me be, my brain stumbles….

Selective hearing is treacherous, what did he say? What meaning did he put in that phrase?  My off switch is too strong now. Like listening to a weather forecast that I never fully hear, only noticing a storm is coming at the end, but not hearing where…

Got to sleep, but the talking mutter is still going on….. no rest for the wicked……

No freedom, till death do we, in sickness, for poorer….where did the positives go? Where is there solace. Why do we change. Why does despair outlast joy?

But there is some joy, as a bird starts to sing into the dawn, as rays of light shine through the window and warm me, I know that I will carry on, calm down, face the future. Buy some ear plugs!

Old cars and engines

Today I had a break from my exhibition for an hour, so I went and sketched a few of the classic cars. I have to say there were a lot of Austin and Morris cars, plus things like the Scimitar car that I drew.

Each sketch took between 10 and 15 minutes. I tried to be accurate, but when you are standing in a field with cars or engines, people have a tendancy to walk in front of you or stand in the way.

Drawing is slow motion photography I guess you could say, you click a camera, but your hand and eyes have the effort of coordinating to get an image. It’s not easy to draw a new subject. Wheels can be too big or small. A bumper might be too high up, and cut across where the radiator grill should go. Also when you use a thin nibbed pen you have the difficulty of getting dark areas without wanting to spend ages cross hatching.

Movement is another problem, while drawing the diesel engine I tried to get a feeling if the spinning motion, but it started to get messy. There are so many pipes and wheels and tubes. I have no idea what bit does which action, its hard to link things up in your head.

Anyway I took photos of the cars for comparison, I may paint some of them.

Canal boats and old lorries.

Etruria is hosting varied events this weekend. There are plenty of wonderfully painted and restored canal boats and barges, and there were also some old and interesting lorries at the site which had hauled static steam engines to Etruria.

I’ve often wondered what it was like to live on a working barge and we recently had the opportunity to see the interior of an old boat that hauled coal, the cabin for a family was only about 6 or 7 foot by 5 ft. There were various adaptations, like having a table that dropped down and boards to put across to make up a bed. But the life was hard and must have been very difficult and dangerous at times.

One man I was chatting to had lived by the canal in the second world war. He said a bomb was dropped on the canal by aircraft trying to hit the local steelworks. It took the roof off  a covered lock and blew down an old wall next to the canal. He also said that there is a lot of subsidence in the area and the land had sunk so much they had to build a new lock. They had dredged the canal then filled in the base. He had helped bring down new lock gates from the countryside down the cauldon canal. But when they got to Etruria the canal was too shallow as they had added too much clay lining to it. With the weight of the lock gate the boat grounded on the bottom and they were stuck on the barge until someone came along with a board to help them get off the boat.

There is so much history that we know so little of in this area.

Tomorrow , well actually later today, there is a classic car show at Etruria. Should be good.