If you have to ask the price !

I’ve been a little busy of late.

Painting, paintings to exhibitions, more painting.

The thing that has taken most of my time though is sitting at the computer.

Trying to source reasonable priced printers to print quality prints is like wading through fog.

So many options, variations and of course, prices.

There are a few who have lovely websites and no prices.

Well, like my father used to say

“If you have to ask the price you can’t afford it.”

I did and you know what, he was right.

They don’t advertise the prices for a reason.

Eventually though I have found one. Test prints were gorgeous.

The new prints can be bought through Artfinder but they do charge me a commision.

If you want to grab yourself a bargain I am also selling them through my own website.
Seas of Red (installation by Paul Cummins), 2014 Limited Edition Giclée

Marking one hundred years since the first full day of Britain’s involvement in the First World War.
This is a very poignant reflection on a moment in time.
When this installation is complete in November 2014, the moat of the Tower of London will be filled with 888,246 ceramic poppies.
Each poppy represents a British military fatality during the war.
Keeping in the spirit of the theme of this piece 10% of net from these prints will be donated to The Royal British Legion.

This is a stunning piece of artwork printed on Elegance Velvet Platinum, Fine Art Paper

Seas of red

 

Check it out here

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Tower and the Shard, 2014 Limited Edition Giclée

The Tower and the Shard

 

Florence Biennale

Some of you may have noticed that my last blog was a little early.

Now of course this one is a little late
Don’t panic I’m not going to be publishing more per month.
It was a slip of the finger.
I wrote the blog while I had something to say, with the intention of publishing it with any necessary amendments on the due date.
Unfortunately Preview and Publish sit very close to each other and I pressed the wrong button.
Then I had A MOMENT, you know the one, when you’ve just pressed send after writing a text message and suddenly you realise you didn’t want it to go.

There is NO getting it back. Text, blog, e-mail.
Once it’s gone it’s out there, you can press as many buttons as you want.
It ain’t coming back.

In future, I will be writing my thoughts down in text edit or similar and then transferring to the blog when I’m good and ready.
The down side to this is I have to type it out all again as cut and paste will not function.
Maybe I need to upgrade !

Have any of you heard of Barney Davey ?
I hadn’t until recently and now I’m an avid follower of his blog.

Art print issues

It is actually more interesting than the title might suggest and it doesn’t just cover art prints. If your an artist I suggest you have a look.  You may find out something you didn’t know.

If you only read one then try this Power of the Backstory. I’m pretty sure that this has opened up my saleability. I never really gave it a thought before but it does make sense.

Florence Biennale
The day after my last blog was published there was a email of interest dropped in my box.
Not many people email me directly from my website so that alone caught my attention.

‘The International Biennial of Contemporary Art in Florence has the pleasure to inform you that you have been selected by the International Selections Committee to participate in the X Edition of the Florence Biennale will be held October 17 to 25, 2015 at the historic venue, the Fortezza da Basso in heart of the city.’

It’s a trade show for artists, but by invitation only.

Now what I need to know, is have any of you been to this and what did you think of it. ? More importantly have any of you participated and was it worth the expense. ?

 

Bah humbugs !

If you have been following my blog you will remember that I was trying to sort something out that related to copyright laws.

Well it seems that NBC are either much too busy or just didn’t deem my request worthy of a reply as I’ve heard nothing from them.

The ITV on the other hand were very quick to reply with a negative response.

The first reply went something like this.

‘……but they are also talent which would require a fee to clear their image use for commercial use on top of that ITV would also require a fee for any of their brands used.’

I then realised that I had not mentioned that this was for charity so sent a follow up e-mail explaining it wasn’t for commercial use but for charity.

The reply

‘we still wouldn’t allow for this to go ahead, other than reasons already stated we cannot allow ITV programming to associate to certain charities. ITV obviously has Text Santa charities and other corporate affiliated charities relationships to protect.

Apologies to still say no to this request again.’

You are possibly wondering what this is all about or maybe by now you really don’t care but I am going to telll you anyway.

The idea was to do a series of paintings on TV detectives. these would be auctioned off in aid of Cancer research.

Why Cancer research, well my Great Grandfather, Great Uncle and fathers cousin have died of, or have prostrate cancer. My father died of skin cancer and my mother has been battling for a few years with terminal lung cancer.

One of my daughters is a clinical scientist working in the field of genetics and there has been talk of genetically made drugs to target individuals and their specific cancer instead of the debilitating chemo.

It seemed like a good idea.

The concept being that scientists who are working on trying to bring about cures for cancers especially in the field of genetics are in fact detectives.

Working in the field of science they too have to follow clues and work out strategies to bring the culprit to justice.

Tv detectives seemed to me an obvious choice. Unfortunately it is not to be.

Maybe they just didn’t like my example.

PoirotI am still awaiting a reply from the BBC but that could be a while coming as I had to resort to snail mail.

They only provide e-mail forms of 350 characters which you can access after going through various other stages and when I contacted them by phone they explained they do this because they don’t want spam. !

Of course of all the tv detective series three quarters of the ones we remember were on the ITV channels.

Oh well, onward and upward.

 

A few weeks ago I uncovered an old portable sketching easel.

I was looking for some supports to use for an exhibition and wanted to test some things out.
This easel turned out to have the double ended bolt and turn screws missing so was in fact pretty useless.
I did contemplate going down to the local DIY store to look for something to fit, but then looking on the internet I discovered that Winsor and Newton still produced the very same easel.
I sent off an email explaining what I needed and asked how much a replacement part would cost.
They asked for a photo of the easel and a postal address.
Two days later with no monies changing hands I was in possession of the very part I needed to make the easel a functional piece of equipment.
Kudos to Winsor and Newton

Ssh…… Top secret

I seem to have spent a greater part of last week trawling the internet and trying to find out information.

I have been in contact with both the BBC and ITV and am waiting for an email from NBC Universal (USA).
Copyright laws and all that jazz.
Isn’t it annoying to have a great idea only to be bogged down by red tape.

I like to do things by the book, so if anything comes of it I will let you know. Until then I’m afraid I will have to keep the idea under wraps.

I have been visiting a few galleries in the locality.
Most seem to be dominated by prints these days.
Ok, so they are limited editions, but they all come from 2 publishers.
It’s a bit like in the days of the Athena poster shops.
Is there a franchise going on that a lot of galleries are part of.
If your not affiliated to one publisher you certainly are to the other. In Nottingham the opposing publishers have galleries virtually facing each other.
This unfortunately means that if your not on the books of the publisher your not going to be hanging in the gallery.

What happened to the independants ?
I am either looking in the wrong place or they have hung their last and closed their doors.

By the way, Thanks George, Now he does have his own gallery and does like my work and when he has an opening for a new artist…..

I also found a new online Gallery.

Artfinder

I say new. That is not strictly true, I have known of the site for quite a long time I just wasn’t sure that it was right for me.

How wrong can someone be.

Yesterday I uploaded 6 images and was accepted to the site.

This morning before I had to go out I completed the information on four paintings and they went ‘live’.

This afternoon I arrived home and went to start putting the info on more paintings to find one painting had already sold.

Needless to say I will be uploading a few more to this site and filling in the relevant information as soon as I can.

Follow me on Artfinder

Too much, too late

I’ve been a little lax and I really do need to commit to this and post at least once a fortnight.

So much happens in a month, at least in the summer, that it’s impossible to get it all down and do you really want it all in one go.

I think not.

Besides that it makes it difficult for me to know where to start.

So I’ll start with Patchings Art Festival.

If you’ve only just heard about this then I’m afraid you’ve already missed it.

It was a four day event from the 5th – 8th June.

You may want to make a note of it for next year as it tends to be on the same weekend every year.

This was their 21st year.

I remember going to the first one and it has GROWN since then.

A regular feature of the festival is The Artist and Leisure Painter 2014 Patchings Open Art Competition Exhibition140 selected paintings from this year’s competition are shown in two of Patchings galleries. My painting is in The Barn Gallery with work from The Artists category, with the Leisure Painter section on show in the Pavilion Gallery.

This exhibition runs on until July 20th so there is still time to catch it.

If you would like to vote for my painting you can do so Here

There were over 200 artists and makers at this year’s Festival. Many were demonstrating their craft.
In one marquee all the various painting mediums were represented including works on paper, printing and calligraphy. Glass and mosiacs were also represented in this marquee.

The other exhibitor marquee housed creators of items using textiles, jewellery made from metals, stones and beads, and work in wood and metal. The ceramics and sculpture section was also located in this area.

They had a new area this year at the Festival which was dedicated to ‘the art of photography’. The additional large marquee included photographic exhibitors, workshops, and a seated arena for presentations by well known photographers and trade stands.

I have to admit by being disappointed by the Artists Materials marquee.

This was the only area that has not grown, which for me at least was a shame as I was hoping to stock up on supplies.

If you like to see artists working, talk to them about their work or take part in workshops this is the place for you.

Maybe your an artist and are thinking of participating next year. All I will say is, it was heaving.

My Birthday

It’s a busy weekend as it was the 55th Dukeries Rally through Sherwood forest and local woods on the Saturday and my birthday on the Sunday.

This is the weekend when the family gets together and this year was no exception.

Unfortunately Saturday was mainly wet, at least until the late afternoon but Fliss, Jay and the boys battled the weather and went out in the storm to watch the Rally cars compete.

Nat, Will and I weren’t that brave so stayed home.

Sunday turned out to be lovely, sunny and warm and yet again for my birthday out came the barbeque.

It was looking decidedly dodgy but the weather came through and we all had a great day.

 

P1080891

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

P1080893

 

 

 

 

 

 

Website Revamp

That aside, I took a break from painting to update my website. It took me a week and I was really pleased with how it looked until the family came.

It was at this point that I casually mentioned how good the site was looking and could they check it out.

Disaster. How technology moves on. I had been happily plodding on totally oblivious to the fact that in this day and age everyone (bar me and a few other dinosaurs) use their mobiles for browsing the internet. As well as buying from the internet.

The galleries were totally disfunctional and the shopping cart was ….

well, lost ?. Where had my cart gone along with my paypal buttons. That was a really good question. Lost in the virtual world, never it seems to be seen again.

Another week passes and finally I have an up to date website.

As far as I know fully functional with tablets, pc’s and mobiles.

Thanks to my daughters for their long distance aid and assistance.

It’s been a hard long slog and now all I want to do is get down to doing some painting.

And on it goes !

Just when you thought it really couldn’t get any worse.

I must have p….d someone off big time
If anyone knows which gypsy it was that I crossed please step forward now.

Yesterday I went into town (yes, Debenhams accepted the jeans were faulty and reimbursed me.) and went into Beales (formerly Co op) for a drink and a bite to eat. There I got served a luke warm cup of coffee which I had to take back. Then when they brought the panini to the table after warming it up I could have used as a weapon.
When i told him it was rock hard he said I wasn’t the first person to mention it.
He gave me a credit note for coffee and panini next time I go in, then mentioned they will be closing for six weeks for refurbishment.
He needn’t think I’d have been rushing back anyway.

This morning I put out the washing, turned round and the line had dumped all my clothes on the lawn.

Left it until 4..pm to take the dogs to the woods. A car parked behind me on the narrow road. Other cars parked in the designated parking spaces either side of me.
The garage had turned off my warning beeper and I reversed into the side of the car behind.
Left my details and the guy has phoned me.
Now just have to wait to see what the damage is.
The people who were parked at the right hand side of me gave me their name and addy as witnesses. I had to wait for them to leave before I could actually manouvre my car out it was so tight.

I got an e mail from the National Lottery to say there was news about my ticket.

Great, I’ve won £2.90 on the Euro millions.

I didn’t even realise you could win so little.

Better not spend THAT all at once as I’m going to need it.

I really think staying in bed is going to be a better option for rest of month.

Oh and I forgot to mention the dog lost his ball in the woods.

He was spooked by Friar Tuck and his Merry men as they appeared from out of the trees.  I kid you not !  I don’t know if Robin Hood was with them but Eric was legging it down the path as fast as he could. Jake on the other hand strolled nonchalantly on. He, of course, sees men wearing ‘long dresses’ everyday.

One of those months

Have you ever had one of those days or one of those weeks, when if you didn’t laugh you’d be banging your head on the wall in a corner somewhere. !!!

I’m having a bit of bad luck with a large dose of stupidity thrown in just for good measure.

It all started on the first of this month.

I had bought a second hand scooter for the grandsons for xmas.

Image

It worked in a fashion but I thought someone said the drive belt keeps coming off. It was too cold for me to venture outside at the time but I looked out the window and DID SEE a belt being fixed back in place a number of times.

I hadn’t looked at the bike all these months and while my back had been playing up it was too heavy for me to lift into the back of the car to take it to be fixed.

Well the boys were coming for the bank holiday and it would have been a shame if they couldn’t play on it so I took out the 2 large batteries to make it lighter and hauled it into the back of the car and off I went to Halfords.

I waited around to ask for someone to come outside and check the size of the drive belt so I bought the right size. After what seemed like an age a guy was free. I explained my predicament and he gave me a look like I was a complete idiot. He said with as much disdain as he could muster that they don’t sell drive belts there. I retorted with a quip about I was sure cars still needed them. To which he informed me that that they hadn’t stocked such things for at least 12 months and directed me to the local automotive store.

I went through the same again and the chap followed me outside to look at the scooter in the boot of my car. As he looked at the black belt hanging loosely near the wheel he said nonchalantly ” I thought all these things were electric”.

Well of course they’re electric and if they are electric why would it have a drive belt. Red faced I slunk away and went off to buy some rubber mastic to stick the rubber back on the wheel that is there for extra traction.

Last year I bought a pair of Jasper Conran jeans. It was an extravagance I know, but they fitted perfectly and were a really nice shape. Besides it’s getting harder to find a good pair of jeans in the charity shops. (read that as Thrift for you across the water) Anyway I saw a few weeks later the same style were in the late summer sale, this now being September. So not wanting to miss a bargain and running out of decent, non paint splattered, jeans I took the plunge and ordered two pairs to be delivered to the local Debenhams store.

Bare with me you will see the relevance to this month shortly.

Jeans arrived, great. There were oohs and aahs from the seamstress on what good quality they were as she proceeded to shorten them.

Wore them for maybe a couple of months before the weather turned too cold. They were denim but of the lighter variety so they went away for the colder months.

Fast forward and the weather is getting warmer so out came the jeans. My Aunt noticed a split near the back pocket seam in one pair. Then I noticed a split in another pair. These being the sale items. The original pair still being intact. I tried ironing tape to them but on washing the tape came off and the split got bigger. Dilemma, what to do, is it too late to return them. After another split appeared I decided they had to be returned but before I washed and ironed the second of the split pair I wore them for one last time.

Mistake…. I work a couple of shifts a week in a charity shop so I have a least a bit of contact with the outside world. This was the day I wore the jeans.

We’d had a bamboo suite delivered which would have looked better in the local tip than in our shop but hey, that’s the nature of things. I had been tidying up the book shelves and as I walked past the sofa I heard what was unmistakeably a rip…. A hole had been torn in the side of the jeans by a small nail protruding from the offending piece of furniture.

I can’t claim from work as the jeans are already split and now I can’t take them back because I have a tear in them.  Grrrrrrrrr……..

I will be now trying to take one pair back in the next few days. Wish me luck.

A few more minor things happened in between but nothing worth noting.

Move on to Sunday.

I was tired but had a few jobs to do. Mum’s birthday was the next day so I wanted to go to the garden centre and get a hanging basket and a card. Needed to go to the supermarket and the DIY shop. As I set off down the road I noticed the fuel was very low. Lower than I would have liked so I decided I had better call in the Esso garage on the way. I congratulated myself as I pulled up onto the forecourt that I had just timed it right to secure the last free pump.

It was busy and I wanted to get on. I kept squeezing the handle of the pump to alert the cashier that someone was waiting and they needed to reset the pump. As I was standing their I was idly reading the information. Unleaded, unleaded premium. Why do they now need premium ??? How long have they had premium ?. (Yes I know, they’ve had premium unleaded petrol for years, but at the time the penny didn’t drop) I then went into pay and because it is also a little supermarket it seems everyone and their brother was doing their shopping in there. Frustration mounting.

Sat waiting for the car in front to move and I was at last on my way. Decided B and Q (diy store) would be my first port of call while I decided which supermarket to lay siege to.

It’s only a couple of miles down the road from the fuel station. That would be two sets of traffic lights and a right turn.

As I pulled out of the second set of lights and made a right turn the car juddered a little. Taking my foot off the accelerator and making sure I was in first and not third gear I continued round the corner and pulled into B and Q car park. By this time the car was doing a very good impersonation of a kangaroo. My grey cells were whirring madly. What the heck is wrong with it ? I’ve definately not run out of petrol, I’ve just filled it up.

OMG….. I’ve just filled up my diesel engine with petrol.

I had the dog with me but no phone and the chap who got out of the car next to me was less than happy when I dived out of my car when I spotted he had a mobile in his hand. Luckily his wife was more forthcoming when I related my predicament, so I could call for assistance.

I got nothing done and the car was eventually towed to the garage who were very busy but did fix it Tuesday morning.

Luckily no lasting damage done and only needed a new filter, flushing through and filling with the right fuel.

Ordered some vinyl for the stencils. Phone message next day. Sorry out of stock and will not be getting a delivery until sometime in June. Please advise if you want the other type. ……  Mmmmmm….. give me a few minutes. The other type is only 3 times more expensive. I think NOT. Had enough expense so far.

This morning was another shift at the shop day so I had a reasonably decent pair of jeans on. I should know better but I never learn and wandered into the studio looking for a small container. Container found, with lid on. That should have alerted me to the fact that there was probably something inside it but no. Even the fact that the top seemed to be stuck didn’t warn me. I gave it a good yank… Jeans, jumper, shoes, floor and wall equally doused in a thick coat of varnish.

And on it goes.

At least the paintings are going well. Hey ho, you can’t have everything

Borough Market - Friday Morning

 

 

 

 

 

 

Borough Market - The Bread Merchant.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tower Bridge

 

 

 

 

Borough Market - The Meat Merchant.