I'm having an 'open house' art sale on Sunday from 11 till 4pm- lots of inexpensive little paintings will be available, as well as some larger pieces for as much as half price. I'll be baking mince pies (yum!) and making a batch of mulled wine to warm everyone up. Here's directions via mapquest.
So I've been 'tagged' by two artists, Nathalie Davis and Carolyn Finnell. Here's how it works: I tell 7 interesting things about myself and tag 7 other people, linking to their blog and tagging them in a comment. I've been racking my brains for days trying to think of anything anyone else might find interesting about me, and I can't so I'm just going to wing it and see what comes out.
Here's to navel gazing (clink glasses with imaginary reader..)
1. Lots of people know that I packed up and left my life - within a month - in the UK in 2005, but only a few know that I made myself a kind of tick list of things to learn on my travels. Surfing was on there, which I tried, and failed at. Turns out I'm much more terrified of the sea than I thought. I still haven't learnt to play the guitar - so if anyone in Tahoe wants to trade skills, I'd be well up for it.
2. I'm not shy. People think I am because I'm quiet, and I used to be when I was young so perhaps I do a good impression. I am often intimidated by loud people, and abhor being shouted at. I won't tolerate bullies and liars. A story I told my younger sister when she was being bullied at school: There was a girl who used to bully me and try to make me feel small and worthless all the time. One day she pushed me too far and I just saw red. I didn't hit her, but I grabbed her by the hair and held her down until the mist cleared. I let go when I saw the horrified face of her cousin. I didn't hurt her, but she was pretty terrified I think. None of the girls spoke to me for a while but the boys thought it was great. I never got bullied again. Moral: If you demonstrate your strength just once, most times you won't have to do it again.
3. Until recently I didn't like the colour green. It was a colour I didn't like to wear, and I wouldn't paint with unless I had to (i.e grass, trees etc) Even now, I tend to lean my greens heavily toward brown, yellow or blue, otherwise I think they look cheesy and obvious. Wales is incredibly green, with all the rain, so landscape painting can fall into a very 'postcardy' trap if you're not careful - and never was one for the 'pretty landscape'. I think my shift in attitude has to do with Taylor, whose favourite colour is green. He's a redhead, so certain greens are delicious on him.
4. I knew Taylor was 'the one' the moment I saw him. That sounds like a lie, but it's true. He was slacklining in a park in Squamish with his Scottish friend Craig, and I just went up to him and asked if I could have a go (told you I wasn't shy!) That's never happened to me before, so I knew it was true. We've been together pretty much constantly since that day in 2005.
5. For years I shunned colour. The majority for my work for my degree was in black and white, and for a couple of years after I graduated, I worked solely in black, white and gray. I just didn't feel like I could express myself in colour, it was a language I wasn't fluent enough in. Even now, when I allow myself the indulgence of monotone, I think my work speaks more directly to the emotions.
6. I'm a chameleon. For someone so fiercely independant this surprises me about myself constantly. I pick up accents, painting styles, mannerisms and fashions faster than I can check myself. When I realise what I'm doing, I tend to re-establish my own personality and absorb these things into myself, with a subtler influence of the new (if I like it).
7. I love learning new things, and this is why I think I'm a chameleon. I like trying on new images and ideas, to see if they mean anything to me, and whether I can use them to understand more, or create better art. I'm also an avid reader - I love words, verbal imagery and recollections of a person's life. I'm curious by nature, and value openness in others - partly because I'm very open myself, and it makes me feel more comfortable to be with my own kind.
I'm a British artist, and I now live with my husband in the USA. I made a career in the UK painting rock climbers, and had my own gallery in Wales until 2005. I sold up to travel, went on a climbing/painting road trip through Canada and America, met Taylor and decided to stay. I have a studio in Tahoe, and I sell my art through galleries. I paint bold, expressive oils on canvas and wood. My subjects are figures, nature still life and landscape.