There's no doubt about it , summer has well and truly departed for another year.. While I adore the heat, yes even in Northern Ireland it warms up between the rain showers, I look forward to Mother Nature's bounty forthcoming in Autumn.
Living so close to the sea and also on a farm, the seasons are very much intertwined with pastimes and just how much time I have to paint, and carry out my hobbies. Speaking of hobbies , I took the plunge so to speak, and have dipped my toe into the world of sea swimming. I live a stones throw from the beautiful harbour of Portmuck. Since Covid there have been a number of local ladies who have taken up this delightful , if a little scary, hobby. I am really enjoying it, in between avoiding the waves and the jellyfish.
I have been enjoying running watercolour workshops since May . It was great to be able to use the outdoor space kindly part funded by the Arts Council of Northern Ireland . Its been fun to meet so many new people over the summer months and make new friends. Like handwriting , everyones painting looks different at the end of the workshop and I love seeing the happy faces of the customers and their pride at being able to paint a happy piece of art.
As usual my animal friends like to join in the fun. This is Timothy cat who turned up without even booking his place and expected to join in!
3 EXHIBITIONS ON THE WAY......
The paintbrushes have not been getting much of a rest lately . I am working hard to produce a new body of work for an exhibition which is taking place in November. None of the new work will be posted on line until the exhibition has launched . I decided to call it ' A Coastal Peninsula.'. Where I live is a little jut of land which is just seven miles long by approx 4 miles wide . It is connected to the mainland by a small causeway . I love to paint what I am passionate about and often think this is what puts life and energy into my work, so really what better subject than beautiful Islandmagee for this exhibition. I hope you are able to come along and view the work if you live in the area. I will post all the pieces on line once the exhibition has opened and as always , if you see something you like please don't hesitate to contact me to enquire about it .
And just like buses, three come along at once. I have the opportunity of taking the lovely local community space in my nearby victorian town of Whitehead by the sea. My work will be displayed there for 3 weeks and that also takes in a splendid fair day . The town embraces Victoriana in all its beauty and for one day ( 26 November 2022) there is a Victorian Street Fair.
Entering into the spirit of the proceedings, I will dress up in Victorian garb. I will have cards, prints, some special baubles , originals and etchings all available. The town comes alive with traders and art and crafty folk. There are chestnuts roasting on the corner, hog roasts outside butchers, victorian sideshows and amusements. Previous years have seen flashmob's of local singers and other cultural acts. The day ends with a carol service around the Christmas tree, followed by a firework display on the promenade which is truly spectacular. For my family, this marks the official start of Christmas . I really can't wait for it . The local rail network will have extra trains laid on as the streets are not accessible to cars that day . If you want a splendid day out you couldn't go too wrong coming to Whitehead for the day on 26th November! If you do , please call and say hello to me and have a little browse.
This exhibition will be bright, cheery and incorporate activities and things which make me smile. I love outdoors, nature and the sea so I hope anyone who visits will get a sense of joy from their viewing
OTHER EXCITING NEWS.....
I was absolutely thrilled to bits to have one of my artworks selected for the Royal Ulster Academy's 141st Exhibition which takes place in Belfast at the Ulster Museum from 14 October until 3 January 2023.
Also, I now have a presence in a brand spanking new gallery which has recently opened in Whitehead , Co Antrim . It is simply called The Gallery, and is ran by a delightful human being called Cynthia. She is also an artist and paints bright bold figures . The space is inviting , full of natural light and local artwork.
Lastly, I'm running a few workshops in December where customers get to paint a design for a Christmas card. Dates still available are 11th and 18th December and you can contact me if you fancy a little bit of relaxing and creative time in the studio...goes without saying there will be mulled wine and mince pies sitting on the top of the woodturner.! As always my studio gallery will be open by appointment in December.
So .......wishing you all a fabulous Autumn, I hope the sun shines and the weather is kind to us outside types.