Here be Midnight

Sunday, 27 May 2012

Peculiarities Welcome

An early morning doodle and ponder.........

The human complexion is full of beautiful quirks and traits; each one marks us as unique. But would it not be fun to share them, borrow them, exchange them? To walk in another's shoes truly in earnest; in fun. To hold less tightly to our idiosyncrasies, especially those we disfavour. To play with them and recognise them as beautiful garments that we will one day shed. If we trade peculiarities, you and I, would we not find our underneaths are all the same.

In a cobbled street in my imagination there is a pleasantly musty smelling shop that trades in Peculiarities.
Its dust covered shelves are laden with a jumble of old wooden boxes. Hand written labels mark the contents within: 'Twitching eyes', 'Tangled beards', 'A fondness for cardigans with pockets'. 'A fanatical collector', 'an Exotic-weed detestor', 'a tendency toward madness' or 'pious prayer'. Upstairs and down a myriad of mysterious surprises.  Wall to wall idiosyncrasies.  Eccentric treasures wrapped and packaged.  Traits of all shapes and sizes.  A little temple celebrating human habit and fancy. 

Behind the counter sits a wizened creature of Goblin proportions - beguiling and smiling he points to a sign on the wall;

The Old Burrow will be opening up an Etsy shop soon.........

Thursday, 17 May 2012

Telling Tales

As old as the sea and as universal as the stars.
We tell fairy stories to cast out demons
And plunge into the subconscious realms of our nights
We tell them, these tall tales and lies
In order to better see the light
And we tell them to map out the terrain
Of all that is hidden and unknown
So that in our waking hours
We might continue to dream

This beautiful piece of writing, I saw painted on an ageing wall in the historic Mottisfont AbbeyIt was authorless and unattributed.  That such beauty should remain anonymous only amplifies its wonderfulness and my gratitude.
True story telling is an art that if done well can carry us into to a timeless space, where transcendence of the logical mind is possible. There are those who believe that stories speak to our subconscious through archetypes and symbols. The Mythic Imagination Institute believes so intensely in the power of stories that their mission is "... to reunite people to the accumulated wisdom of humankind that lives in stories and mythology..."
For my own part I only know the mesmerising beauty of being held and carried by the voice of the storyteller to wonderous places that are at once fantastic and familiar, healing and whole-ing.

Here is a link to Education Scotland where they have some wonderful story telling videos. This first little one is told by David Campbell....... ( Click on the picture below to listen to the story)

A tale which holdeth children from play and old men from the chimney corner.
Sir Philip Sidney

Saturday, 5 May 2012

Hatfield Living Crafts Festival, Roll Up Roll Up Prints For Sale

At last the scans have been done, the proofs approved and the eagerly awaited prints have arrived by special delivery.  All just in time to go to the framers for mounting and wrapping before the big event next week. It will be my first time at the Hatfield Living Crafts Fair and its all very exciting.
 I'm dusting off my tent and loading myself up with prints, sleeping bag and a variety of teas (absolutely essential) for a new adventure into what I feel will be an inspiring four days. Literally hundreds of artists and craftspeople gathered in one space can create a beautiful atmosphere. So if you are in the area, come in and see what we are up to. 
I am there assisting Cliff Wright with his wonderful 'Nature of Seeing' workshops, they are always a joy to be involved in. Children and adults are welcomed alike as are those with no drawing experience and those with many years of drawing behind them. Inevitably all leave feeling not only more confident in their creative ability but also enriched having accessed something deeper in themselves. The process is truly remarkable.
In the near future, I will begin teaching classes ( individuals and groups ) in and around Hampshire where I live. Using a combination of Cliff's methods and more traditional techniques I hope to share techniques that can guide you to enhanced seeing, effortless drawing and true creativity. A process that allows the drawings to draw themselves. 

Below are some of the pictures that are now available as limited edition prints. The prints are of the highest quality. ART4SITE are a Fine Art Guild registered printer in Kent and their workmanship is unsurpassed.  Michael has gained a well deserved reputation for excellence. 
The prints are in limited editions runs of only 125. Prices are £45 each, beautifully mounted and wrapped plus postage. If you would like to own one you can drop me a line at or leave a message on the blog. Or if you're coming to the Hatfield Living Crafts Fair you can drop by and pick one up.

Midnight magic

The Story Keepers

Nearly Knight Time

A Nose For Trouble

The Old Burrow

Troll Song

Wait For Me!

Custodian of the Spectacles

Baba Yaga