So it’s 2020, the year that sounds far away in the distant future..practically space age.
So much has happened since I last posted. 2019 was a terrible year artistically and personally. The disappearance and murder of my muse and loyal friend #sillyoldwheatley left me a shadow of my former self, plagued with depression and anxiety and I did not produce much work in nine months. We did have a couple of #smartclubs when I did manage to do a couple of small paintings but my inspiration seemed to have fled the building with no sign of returning and I was left honestly wondering if that was it. Was it possible that one day you woke up, and you just weren’t an artist any more? I didn’t know what I was, but felt like a bit of a failure mainly in all departments.
I won’t dwell on that, but it is my reason.
Help arrived in the name of a move. We left Brighton and moved to Faversham, like the countryside in comparison. From party town to sleepy town, and we love it so much. We have a forest in our garden and we are surrounded by nature and generous spirited people. People told me I should love Brighton, and I knew that technically I should. But somehow I never felt it was my home, and bit by bit it crushed my soul and my creativity. I was ready to give up on everything that I had ever been good at, and did not feel I would ever be able to teach or run workshops again. I had no spark, and no self esteem. I could not wait to get away, I felt like I was trapped in hell.
There was another salvation by way of a pen pal. A series of fortunate events.. . its a long but good story and deserves to be recorded and shared. We had a band play at our wedding, and I got in touch with them to see if i could buy a copy of their CD for my Dad. I was so bowled over that Mark (the guitarist and song writer) sent it as a gift that I offered to try and get them some gigs in Brighton by handing out some CDs to local pubs. This was in January. Following on from this we started messaging regularly and found ourselves becoming ‘virtual’ friends. We started swapping life stories and he sent me a copy of the book he had written about the story of his daughter who has cerebral palsy, and also happens to be a very talented artist. I loved the book and looked forward to meeting Sophie one day. I received a beautiful calendar of her work, and followed her on Facebook ( Dreams on paper) and in time we knew so much about each other that we all practically knew each other before we had even met. I was still living in Brighton, and just about to move to Rochester when the house we wanted fell through. Not to be put off, we got straight off to look at another house that a friend had told us about in Faversham which as it happens was a place I had been dreaming of moving to even though in actual fact I knew very little about the place. Just that I had a few friends living there and the people seemed extremely friendly whenever we visited. So we decided to go for a complete change and went ahead with the move. Meanwhile it transpired through our daily messaging that Sophie had also lost her artistic mojo and desperately wanted a new art teacher/mentor. As it turns out they live close to Faversham and so after the chaos of moving and unpacking boxes into our new life I finally met Sophie in September and became her teacher. She has been such an inspiration to me. I think she deserves a separate entry, as I should like to explain exactly how extraordinary and amazing she is.
Since then everything has changed. I started drawing (my stuffed crows mainly) in a large sketchbook and have filled about 50 pages so far. We have set up an instagram account together “sophieandandi’ where we record the work we have done. Suddenly my work features the much avoided and estranged C word… Colour. I have become so addicted to drawing, scribbling and doodling that I cannot quite believe it. It would seem that I’m back!