May 03, 2018

Becoming a self employed artist - This time ten years ago

So much to tell!
I've been away from blogging for far too long and missed it so much! But finding the time to write my lovely long posts like I used to is proving difficult with life being so very busy just now, so I am changing the way I post, smaller snippets of news more often me thinks, we shall see how it goes.

I just realised today that this time ten years ago, being a full time artist and working for myself was just a dream!  It was such a scary thing to take that first step, but I'm so very glad I did and I've never looked back. 


Feeling blessed to be doing a job I love.
Be brave my lovelies and take that small first step, you just never know where it might lead.

February 15, 2018

A blessing tree and a special place

At last I can share with you some very special news! 

Late Summer I was approached by the design team for the spiritual care section in the new Dumfries and Galloway hospital, who were looking for work by local artists that would fit their vision.


I am very honored to say that my blessing tree 'May you have' was chosen to hang at the entrance of the palliative care unit.

You may remember that early last year our precious Dad passed away, he had been cared for in the wonderful Alexandria palliative care unit at the old hospital. The care and support he received there was outstanding, and we could never thank them enough. 




For me the fact that my painting now sits in the new palliative care unit is so very poignant. I hope that whoever takes a moment to read the Blessing it carries may find a small measure of comfort.



May You Have 

May you have walls for the wind
and a roof for the rain
and drinks beside the fire
laughter to cheer you
and those you love near you
and all that your heart may desire.

A Celtic Blessing.
Dear Dad you are always near us x x x 

July 24, 2017

Telling the Bees, a foggie toddler

I am loving spending time in our garden just now and try to find some time each day for pottering and planting and pruning, there is always so much to keep me busy.
After two years tending what began as a wild patch, the garden is  finally coming in to it's own and each nook and cranny holds delicious splashes of colour and tucked away gems. I find gardening such a peaceful and healing pastime, the growing of things, fingers buried in the soil, listening to the bird chirruping in the bushes. (This year our blackbird is feeding three babies!)
 We have so many more bees now too, humming among the blooms and I find myself talking to them as I work, calling them by the Scottish name - Foggie-toddle, a name used in Deeside - ‘Fog’ meaning moss or grass, and ‘toddling’ is meandering with a gentle sound. It suits them so well!

In Celtic folklore bees were thought to be the wisest of creatures, messengers between worlds. There is an old Scots saying 'Ask the wild bee for what the druid knew'. The old highlanders believed that the soul of a person left the body in the form of a bee once a person had died or whilst they were in a trance.
I had the perfect excuse to study my wee bees up close for a new commission that came my way earlier this year. A lovely customer of mine all the way from the USA asked for a painting for a dear friend, a glass artist who makes bee & honeycomb necklaces,  isn't this stunning!

The painting was to include bees, honeycomb and daisies, so I took lots of photos first to inspire me, then began sketching and very soon an idea bee-gan ( sorry couldn't resist) to form. 
I wanted to capture the bee close up and have a hint of the honeycomb behind filled with a delicate blend of honey colours and lots of splashes of gold ink to highlight.

I am rather pleased with the final result and love the way the gold catches the light. I'm also happy to report that my lovely customer liked it too when it arrived safe and sound over seas.


I have just added 'Foggie Toddler' to my Etsy store as a limited edition print.  Each print is hand finished in gold ink - you can follow the link here.

Well I'm off into the studio to carry on working on a new exciting project which I will share very soon.

Oops I nearly forgot to mention  - the winner of the Butterfly bunting giveaway was KJ Sutcliffe from the sweetest blog 'I live, I love, I craft, I am me', congratulations!

July 21, 2017

It's Friday!

Yay, it's Friday, it's been a long and busy week in the studio working on some new creations I am excited to share very soon.

 I wonder what adventures the weekend will bring - a visit to see Whithorn Art trail, doing some work on our 'in progress' Summer House and hopefully a long soak in a bubbly bath with my newest book!

I wonder what does the weekend bring for you?

July 12, 2017

WASPS Open Studio Event

We at WASPS  Studios in Kirkcudbright are having an 'Open Studios' event

On various days throughout this period I will be working away in my studio and very happy to welcome visitors, you will find me in studio 11! 
It's a fantastic chance to meet the makers in their creative spaces.

On Friday 11th August I will be running workshops too - details to be revealed shortly!

July 10, 2017

Butterflies, bunting kits and a Give Away!

An abundance of butterflies have been flitting into my garden lately, such a lovely reward for all the planting of shrubs and flowers I have been doing in an attempt to attract more of these beauties!
They have some wonderful names for the butterfly here in Scotland: in the North East they are called 'Butterflee' or 'Buttery' , whilst elsewhere a chrysalis is a 'Tammie-Nid-Nod' or a 'Tammie-noddie-heid' (heid meaning head), isn't that just lovely!  

 The many photographs i have taken of my garden visitors have inspired me to include butterflies in a new creation! So I have designed my 'Colour your own Butterfly Bunting kits'! The kit contains 12 butterflies and 10 flowers for you to colour, all in assorted sizes, enough to make 1.5 meters of bunting and you can choose from a selection of 4 colours of organza ribbon to thread them on to.

I had great fun choosing my colours had a very relaxing afternoon filling them in! I love that the collective noun for butterflies is a' Kaleidoscope', I think it perfectly suits this riot of colour.


 You can find these bunting kits in my Etsy store here , alongside some birdy bunting I created too!

I would love you to send me photographs of your finished bunting, so that I can share them here, it will be fascinating to see how different they all turn out! Each one will be quite unique I'm sure x

and last but not least!

A GIVE AWAY! 
I enjoyed making my bunting so much that I thought I would give away a Butterfly Bunting kit!
So if you would like a chance to win a bunting kit just leave a message below and tell me what your favourite colour is and why! The winner will be picked from the hat on Monday 17th July.

May 18, 2017

Remembering . . .

I have been so thankful for this beautiful month of May, it has always been one of my favourite months and even more so this year with the glorious weather we are having,  the bluest of skies stretching away into the distance, the clouds of delicate blossoms filling hedgerows and new life springing up all around - the lambs and young birds. This month of May has been like a gentle, healing balm and how I need that just now.
My days have been painted with sadness this past while, for we said goodbye to our dear, precious Dad in March. It wasn't expected and we didn't have much time but we were so very blessed to be under the care of the amazing nurses at the Alexandra palliative care unit at our local hospital. They ensured both Dads last days and our days with him were peaceful and gentle as could be and for that we are ever grateful.
When you loose a loved one, suddenly there is a before and an after and life takes on a very different shape. It's as if the  breathe has been knocked right out of you.  It's the kind of heartache you feel in your bones.  This loss is not something you get over, instead it becomes part of who you are and so I am making time; time to recognize this new me, time for quiet moments, time for stillness,  time to remember  and time to treasure the memories.

 I heard this on the radio a while ago: 'When we die, we die twice, once when our last breath leaves our body and again when our name is mentioned for the very last time by the last person to remember us.' 


Well my dear Dad you were so loved by your big, widespread family that your memory will live on for many years to come. You are in every beat of our hearts Dad and you will always be in our memories. We will never be without you.