Thursday, June 27, 2013

i know the sadness

I don't know what it is about shops at the moment, but they seem to have unintentionally become a theme.

 I ADORE this place; Patricia's. It's in New Mills, our 'local' town. I've been driving and walking past it in awe for some years. And, always, thinking 'I have GOT TO draw it'. I was saying as much when I drove past, a couple of weeks ago, with some friends. They said 'do it, do it now! Or otherwise you'll drive past one day and it'll be gone, boarded up, renovated'. I know it's true. There was another old hair salon in another local town (the town where I drew the flower shop in the last post), very similar to this, called Cynthia's. It had net curtains and polystyrene mannequins wearing bonnets and baskets full of dried flowers and Easter chicks (not, real ones). I almost came to a stop every time I drove past it  - which always pleased everyone else on the roads. Anyway, I drove past one day and it was gone. It had become a shiny new beauticians. I was sad. Very sad.

Anyway, yesterday, I finally stopped outside Patricia's, parked up and got my pens out. There's such a melancholy about these old places. As I was drawing I could hear the ghosts of yesteryear filling the place with chatter and gossip, as it would have been it's heyday. Damn, I'd LOVE to have a look inside.

Since I posted the, above, sketch on Facebook I've been informed that "it  (Patricia's) belonged to the beautiful Patricia Pott, she sadly died in the 80's and her husband, who recently died left it exactly how it was. How romantic is that? Pat was a lifelong member of New Mills Amateur Operatic Society and a lovely lady". That's exactly how I'd imagined Patricia (thanks for confirming it Alison).

A couple of other things about the drawing. People often ask, when looking through my sketchbooks, "what do you do if you go wrong?" Well, two answers; collage or, as in this one, draw over it! You maybe be able to see the ghost of another drawing under Patricia's. Somehow that felt fitting. Also, whilst making this drawing I decided that I was going to buy Patricia's and keep the facade exactly how it is. Behind it I'd have a modern swanky studio and gallery, but up front nothing changes. 'Cos we really need these old places on our High Streets.

Oh, OH! And, when I finished drawing I went to adjust my car seat and saw this piece of paper on the floor. I don't remember writing it, but it is my writing. I am a sucker for a great quote and have to write them down where and whenever I hear one. I'm guessing this was something I heard on the radio. It was just one of those moments though. You know? Just one of those moments.

Plus, it was a ready made title for a blog post.

Sunday, June 23, 2013

have you ever had it blue?

This is Foster's flower shop in the town of Chapel-en-le-Frith. It's another of those places I drive past often and think 'one day I'm going to stop and draw this'. Finally, I did.

Sometimes, actually most of the time, when I see a place like this, I imagine the drawing in my head. It's very brief, it's like I take a mental photograph of it, which I then store until I get around to making the drawing. When I take that 'mental photograph' I can see the colours, I know exactly which pens and what paper I should use.

This flower shop, well, I always saw it in bright primary colours. Just red, blue and yellow. But as I sat, in my car, drawing it I couldn't bring myself to add any other colour. Maybe it was just fear. Or maybe, it was just meant to be blue. Although, I would still like to splatter a load of red and yellow paint over it. Maybe I will. Or maybe I'll just leave it as it is. Or, maybe, perhaps, I'll just go back and draw it again. Who knows?

Friday, June 21, 2013

Sketching Beauty

On Tuesday night I attended our local Dr Sketchy event in Sheffield. This time we had a fairy tale themed evening. I know I bang on about it often, but I really do love Dr Sketchy.
It was such a fun night. For those of you who don't know, Dr Sketchy is an alternative life drawing event. If you enjoy drawing, and music, and drinks, you really must seek out your closest Dr Sketchy branch. Our models on Tuesday were Little Red Riding Hood, the Woodsman and a Wicked Queen. Mwah-ha-ha-haaa.
Anyway, after much drama, down in the wood, the Wicked Queen ended up dead.
 And Little Red Riding Hood lived happily ever after. Phew.

If you live in, or near, Sheffield and would like to attend, get in contact. You can also join our Facebook group HERE. And follow us on Twitter HERE. And stay tuned for some exciting news about Dr Sketchy Sheffield. Well, I think it's exciting, anyway. Tra for now.

Monday, June 17, 2013

may i introduce to you

Hello folks, look who have just flown into my Etsy shop. Meet Eric Pickles and his ex wife Gertrude Grub - the not-so Love Birds (it's complicated).

Yep, these are my new cut-out-and-make Dickie Birds. This divorced couple haven't been in the same room, as one another, for at least a year... getting them in the same envelope, to send to you,  was a real struggle.

In fact, getting them in the same photo was a real struggle. The one below is the best I could do. And, even then, they couldn't look each other in the eye.

So, if you'd like to read more about and own your very own quarrelling couple of Dickie Birds check out my Etsy shop HERE.

(Rainbow not included)

Sunday, June 16, 2013

why i went missing

A sneaky peak at a drawing that has taken over my life or the last couple of weeks. Recently, I've hopped, skipped and jumped from one deadline to another. I'm not sure what or where I'm supposed to be next and I never know what day it is. This drawing is for the Derbyshire Open Art competition. I've been meaning to enter this competition, and exhibition, for the last few years but never got around to it. As always with these things, you feel like there's loads of time between you and the submission day and next thing you know it's tomorrow.

The only theme for this competition is that the work has some Derbyshire connection. So, I drew this gorgeous shop in Buxton. I don't want to share the whole thing quite yet as a) it's a bit of a surprise for the girls at the shop and b) I have to work out how to resize the drawing so that it's not robbable (that is an actual word, I've just checked it out, I was convinced I'd made it up) as, if you follow me on Facebook you'll know, there's a lot of that been going on recently.

So, yesterday, I found myself, in the car, outside the gallery attaching mirror plates to the back of the frame with a screwdriver I won in a Christmas cracker. It's true. Still, I made the submission day and can relax until the next thing. Can anyone tell me what that is?

Saturday, June 08, 2013

are we coming across clear?

Here's a few little drawings I got to make at our little exhibition last weekend. I've been meaning to post them ever since, but I've not even had the time to scan, upload and blog the drawings. I'm that busy.

It seems that I get busier and busier these days. In fact, I was discussing this with a friend the other day. He asked how the exhibition had gone, and I said "it went great. Very busy and lots of interest in my work."

"So, are you any nearer to giving up the day job?" he asked. "Nope" I said, "I don't understand it, I work more and more but earn less and less". Then, I probably, maybe, moaned for a while longer about how difficult it was to make a living and how skint I was (am).

"You know what you need?" he said. "Nope" I said "well apart from more money coming in". "What you need" he said "is a louder trumpet". "You need a louder trumpet".
It summed it up. It made so much sense. And ever since I've been pondering what the trumpet might look like, what it might sound like and how I acquire that louder trumpet.

Saturday, June 01, 2013

if you go down to the woods tonight....

Knocked up this promo drawing for our next Dr Sketchy Sheffield event in a couple of weeks time. I'm meant to be doing something else. I have a publishing deadline looming, which is why I am a) making posters for Dr Sketchy events and b) pissing around on the internet.

There's one thing that's really annoying me about this drawing, now that I see it on a screen, and that is the dark green bit at the top of the picture really needs straightening. Is there a straightening tool in Photoshop? I've looked for it. In fact, I wasted at least an hour looking for it, but couldn't find anything.

Anyway, if you are in Sheffield, or anywhere nearby, on the 18th of June, come and join us at the Greystones pub. I can guarantee a night of fabulous girls, great music and drawing. What more do you want on a Tuesday evening? The theme this time (just in case you haven't worked it out, and quite frankly, if you haven't a) I've failed miserably and b) you might be a little bit slow. Just saying) is fairy tale.

Now, I'm off to clean the bath or alphabeticise my DVDs or make up some new words (like alphabeticise) or....