IMG_7744

are we walking away or towards the light

I just dont know what to think  at this very moment, the world is in so nuch pain and distress and feel so helpless to bring  any kind of relief except run away from it, but where, the world now seems so small.  This Vaughan Williams piece of music is helping me through ( clip below) and the need to escape to somewhere green is ever present

So yesterday I had a splendid afternoon wandering the Cass Sculpture foundation’s 26 acres of forest.  Some pieces did not touch me in anyway, just passed me by without any real dialogue, some spoke to me, lured my thoughts and feelings into unexplored territories, some lifted my spirits to a higher plane and one piece in particular mesmerised me totally.

Looking at all the figures staring at me in the woods made me think.  The faint watery sunshine was glinting though the trees, it looked as if  this gathering of people had marched away from the light, given up on what life used to be, they looked sad and I began to ponder of what life was like looking through they eyes of a child.  Now past my prime and sullied by the toxic life we have slowly inhaled these past decades, that light of innocence seems so far away.  I walked through the gathering of these eerie metallic shadows and felt the alienation they all felt, severed from their roots, walking aimlessly and then I glanced back and in an instant hope returned.   The view had a different energy a real strength and I realised why, we were all walking towards the light, all of us together as a tribe, a community.  Together we can change the world, one step at a time and we must not give up hope.

I realised I do not want to feed or support the corporations anymore, enough is enough, I don’t want to give my power away anymore.  I am streamlining my life.  Why do I have “stuff”   I thought I was already doing this, but it’s not enough, I need to do more……………………………  it’s all go to go

Let our  dream for the world he big

IMG_7752

 

 

the morning ritual

watercolourwaking when the sun stirs is a beautiful gift, hearing the birds sing, seeing daylight slowly come to fruition through my curtainless windows.

Slow has to be the way I describe this time, slow and gentle, writing my thoughts, cleansing my head in readiness for the day as well as the body with long glass of warm water and fresh lemon………….  tranquil time before the demands and rigours of my interior design practice try and pull me this way and that.

I couldnt do it any other way

 

an opportunity to write

May 24th saw my month in the greek sunshine.  Four weeks of quiet and solitude amongst the ancient olive groves of Northern Kefalonia.  My aim here was to write my story as explained in my last post and what a setting I had to write all this.  An old farmhouse, lovingly restored, plenty of land , fantastic views and my own chickens

IMG_7509IMG_7506

IMG_7513IMG_7512

IMG_7586

IMG_7505

Screen Shot 2016-06-11 at 09.30.54 IMG_7543

I write “morning” pages and have done so for nearly a decade, so used to expressing what is going on for me, so I thought writing a book about my life would be easy.

Fist I went headlong in, typing in word on my laptop, the words and memories just flooded page after page.  Exciting or what, as one memory  was written down another came to the for and after writing almost  daily for a couple of hours I had written 35,000 words and still only reached ten years old.  Since my return I am still writing, trying to put my life in its historical setting and the whole process now seems one of “layering”, going back over and adding life’s memories from all vantage points.  I am now nearing 60,000 words an 13 years old, its 1962 and threw myself headlong into the 60’s lifestyle when every social norm was challenged, clothing, music, drugs, sexuality, formalities, schooling and dress. The rigid culture of the past decades could no longer be contained, and the call for greater individual freedom broke free. Youth found a voice and every social constraint was there to be broken from Racism to Sexism. Everything was turned on its head, thrown up in the air, and the repercussions of this are still being felt today

Without setting out any real structure before I began only the need to express all this right now , I am finding it rather unwieldy, trawling all these words, to check continuity, tracking my revisions is not easy and perhaps in hindsight I should have done some research on “how” to write a book first.  My personality is such, that when the passion comes to give birth to a creation I have to make a start right then and there.

 

IMG_7358

Reliving the past

My love affair with jewellery making seems to have lost the lead at the moment !  As usual I have many projects on the go.  I see them like horses in a race, all jockeying for first position and for now writing has taken first place.

I have amassed so many components, tools, different clays, inks, beads, findings etc etc plus all the beads and items made carefully sorted and now stored away in a mass of boxes.   They were all crowding in on me and felt quite suffocated by the process and the obsession to keep making that I feel quite relieved that all the “stuff” is now housed along with many other obsessive months of work.  Its strange I have made hundreds of bracelets and necklaces, most I have given away because when it comes down to it I don’t like wearing jewellery unless it feel it is part of me, difficult to explain really, I don’t like ” decoration ”  pretty girly things, I am earthy and so the items I have made in the last months only 4 items remain in my wardrobe, large faux pebble necklace and three large faux ivory bangles .  Oh yes, and a necklace that looks like broken eggs

So how did the writing start?  a friend wrote his memoirs, after reading the  seed had been set.  It’s been percolating for a while and all the recent deaths in the media and then attending my stepfathers funeral, the seed sprouted and  has now grown into a book for my children, I wanted them to know the complex character called Mum is a woman shaped by many life’s experiences both good and not so good, it may help them to see what shaped me and what makes me tick …….  It is amazing that once  the memories begin to flow, the more memories begin to surface, it’s also interesting researching the 50 and 60s and plotting “my story” in their correct social and political context

So looking forward to my holiday in Greece in a couple of weeks time, I can then write to my heart’s content without  any work demands which have been full on demanding these past 6 weeks.

 

Image is a recent visit to Birmingham, New Street Station roof !  and me waiting for the meeting in Birmingham Art Gallery which is just a stone’s throw from the station.

IMG_7354

 

 

IMG_7324

Sunset Song

Screen Shot 2016-04-03 at 18.25.43

watched a beautiful film last night, Sunset song directed by Terence Davies.  Beautiful imagery, a story that resonated with me and my scots roots, my father’s description of his family, his brute of a father, and his mother dying when he was young………  see trailer below

Took my back to when I was a child and to escape from the mayhem around when my father was finding life difficult to cope with, I would cuddle up with my family of little white mice, real wriggly, smooth and warm pink nosed ones !  oh how I loved them.  I do not have any now but what I do have is my memories and a little family of felted ones !

IMG_7313

Relaxing end to busy week

So busy this week, meetings, site visits, trying to resolve difficult issues, wallpaper gone missing, chandelier chains to short, data box to plug in bespoke desk that cost a bomb and has all technical bells and whistles, its not there, first told its under the carpet and is to be revealed, then told forgotten, very irksome.  All in a days work I guess, just deal with each issue as it arises and stay calm………

So today after a bit of “tending to my veg plant pots” I came in and had a go at making my all time favourites, old antique Coral and Turquoise,  Polymer clay for both, coral mixed into a reddish orange colour then after forming into shape, baked, cooled and  polished with wet and dry.  Then coated with Cranberry and espresso alcohol inks, buffed with a dremel kindly loaned to me by Lesley and the a layer of RENAISANCE wax and buffed again.

Turquoise I mixed the blue, then chopped up in small pieces and mixed black acrylic ink and charcoal embossing powder, scrunched the pieces up together and formed shapes.  Baked and polished as above.  Strung on red leather !   Oh and bracelets, well that was a much longer procedure !

IMG_7319 IMG_7318 IMG_7317 IMG_7316 IMG_7315 IMG_7314 IMG_7313 IMG_7312

 

Screen Shot 2016-04-01 at 09.06.39

do we have to fight, should we have to fight, NO

Zaha Hadid, my hero has died………….  her hunger for life, extinguished.  I recently listened to her interview on Desert Island Discs and came away with a heaviness in my heart about her struggle being a woman in the male dominated architectural world was obvious, her hunger in pursuit of a creative life leaves behind an amazing legacy, she definitely thought outside of the box and used the natural world around her to inform  the incredible buildings that now appear around the world.  A true visionary.

Reading all the architectural greats expressing their sadness of Zaha’s death, one stood out from Richard Rogers, especially the word “fought”

“She was a great architect, a wonderful woman and wonderful person,” Lord Rogers said. “Among architects emerging in the last few decades, no one had any more impact than she did. She fought her way through as a woman. She was the first woman to win the Pritzker prize.

This quote brings up so many emotions about equality of the sexes, about how its not enough to be as good as the male counterpart but as a woman one has to be 100% greater to be considered equal………….  One has to “fight” just as mr rogers expressed.  Did the fighting takes its toll on her?  Yes, I believe it did it someway, She was a strong and powerful and visionary woman, its so obvious, was fighting to achieve this necessary?  uncomfortable feeling keep arising, letting them in ……………