Tuesday, 15 December 2015

Review and Revive

Lately I have been in a somewhat reflective mood. This year has seen many ups and downs and some things have taken a back seat while other priorities have been dealt with. As with many busy lives, those projects are often forgotten about and in some cases, never get realised.


"If there is no struggle, there is no progress."


Frederick Douglass



Time to see everything as a potential window of opportunity



The Folder of Doom

Where all the unfinished and unloved go to pass their time

Some may find their way back into favour, but only if they excite me.

Perhaps I should see this more as a 'window of opportunity'  


It's a tricky thing to get the balance right. As a teacher my days were not my own, and ruled by bells. Now, as I work from home, the days are nothing but my own and I still feel ruled by bells. Too much to do and what seems like so little time. Time to get the balance right and manage my time in a much more effective way. Time to remember my own advice to students about management, and how to juggle the many demands life throws at you.

With that in mind I have rediscovered the blog. With all the whistles and bells of glitzy social media, my constant, steady blog has been treated shabbily and a little like the Cinderella of my online profiles. Always there, always behaving and always loyal, but a little neglected. Not any more. I'm determined to get the blog back to it's glittering best, with more step-by-step projects, studio work, sketchbook pages and updates from Squirrel HQ.


Wishing everyone a Very Happy Christmas


A very big thank you to everyone who has supported the blog by taking time to come along, and for all the lovely messages and comments.

Wishing you all a

Very Happy Christmas

and here's to 

a Wonderful 2016 




The new sketchbook project for 2016, The Botanical Year' is part of the initiative to get back to regular blogging. Each month will see a new page and update, and with the dedicated page, you will be able to see the all the pages together. I'm really looking forward to this one and hopefully I will be able to discover some hidden gems for future paintings.


This one was on a tight deadline, but I got it finished in time.

Now off to the SBA for their 2016 exhibition, (hopefully)  
Sometimes a painting can come from nothing.

Worked quickly and initially intended as a sketchbook piece for practice,
 this one came out quite well

Another possible for the SBA exhibition in 2016


More paintings. Now that really is something I want to get done too. Well, I guess I will have to do at least six new ones, as I will be pressing myself to get the RHS series underway and finished. Of course, with the launch of the new tutorials website there will be monthly updates with new projects and sketchbook ideas to keep me busy too. A busy year ahead, but I'm all for a challenge.


Here's a hint of one the video tutorials I am currently working on. For exclusive stills and further info you'll have to sign up for the newsletter.


Early origins.

My first Chili with colour chart

Worked with Cadmium Red and Cadmium Yellow

How times have changed

'Little Green Chili'

The first demonstration piece I ever did with my first students

I guess there's a bit of nostalgia there with the choice for my first online tutorial 


A busy year ahead
but time to stop and enjoy the pleasures of Christmas


"Sometimes it's the smallest decisions that can change your life forever."


Keri Russell

The artist, discovering new possibilities


See you all soon 

                             J x