Friday, September 29, 2023

Capture the light

Morning Sun 1952 - painting Edward Hopper
I am stuck here wordless. 

I was videoless this week as well. 

After last week's activity comes this week's pause, this week's work, and this week's riding of the wave.

But there is a beam of sunshine on my hands and there is music in the air. I had a nice lunch and good snacks. I am wearing a new (to me) crisp white oversized button-up shirt from a charity shop. I can see clouds moving quickly from my window. I have packages coming my way and a stray cat who visits me. 

It's not bad or good - it's just life

When we look at a painting by Hopper we don't feel too bad about things. We don't judge the space in the room or the lone woman. We like the feeling. We celebrate it. Perhaps we can celebrate those days in real life too. Or just soak up the space, the light, the feeling. Celebrate is too strong. We can just be in the space without judgment and without wanting to move on too fast. 

Autumn is good for this, the need for hibernation is starting to filter in around the edges. It's okay to put on your shoes and go for a walk or just sit still and capture the light. 

Until next week, keep fighting and then take a nap. And if you live in Scotland sign this petition.
Thank you.  

Friday, September 22, 2023

Autumn is for dancing

A Closer Look: September 2023
Well hello, my beautiful readers,

It's Friday and I have had two cups of coffee and the sky is featureless and grey. I am listening to a fantastic old song on repeat (but of course). Later, I will walk over to the studio and hang out with my fellow artists in our exhibition, A Closer Look. You will know from previous blogs and social media posts that our show is ending on Saturday the 23rd at 5 p.m. So if you are a local reading this and even thinking about how you might like to see it in person - just get up and go (my blog can wait).

Oh, Autumn, I am mostly enjoying your rain, wind, grey, your dappled light through leaves still green but also turning yellow and falling. I am still jazzed about your autumn energy and of course the return to my beloved real coffee. It just tastes better in the fall.

I am not painting right now but I am working, learning, and dancing. Loads of dancing to the fantastic old songs. 

Autumn is for returning to our homes within.

I dreamt of a painting last night, a new painting that I might paint. A whole idea for a series in a dream. I love that when it happens - it is a rare gift.

So on that note, I will share one more promo video of the exhibition and get ready to go. Thank you for being here and for your support. Keep fighting.

Friday, September 15, 2023

A Closer Look Continues

A selection of my small framed works on canvas as part of A Closer Look

The exhibition was installed on Tuesday and is always the case - the artwork of the resident and affiliated artists of the drill hall clicked into place like a puzzle. With over 16 participating artists, there is a great selection of work on display. We had a lovely wine reception on Wednesday night and we enjoyed some tunes and some banter on the rainy evening. Thanks to everyone who came out to support us.

Besides the work on the walls and in the jewellery case, we also have a selection of prints, cards, and even some small originals available for purchase towards the back of the exhibition at our sales table. So do make sure to have a rummage through the racks so you don't miss some bargains.

I love the strength and variety of my peers' work on show together. It's been so great for us to get to know each other better over these last two exhibitions. It feels more like a proper community of artists currently and that is a great feeling.

The video above is a quick guided tour and the video below is a super quick jazzy taster. Remember though if you are local and able, nothing is better than seeing the show with your own eyes. 

A Closer Look
Wednesday 13th - Saturday 23rd September (Not Sunday) 
The Out of the Blue Drill Hall, 36 Dalmeny Street, Leith EH6 8RG

Thanks for your support - until next week, go see some art and keep fighting! 

Friday, September 8, 2023

Exhibition news! A Closer Look

Poster artwork by Kate George Design
Printed by

A Closer Look 
Wednesday 13th - Saturday 23rd September 
Hours: 10am-5pm
Opening Reception Wednesday 13th of September from 6-8pm
Join us for drinks and nibbles
36 Dalmeny Street, Leith EH6 8RG

Following the success of Outside + In in May, the talented studio artists of the Out of the Blue Drill Hall have joined forces again to bring you, A Closer Look. You are guaranteed a friendly welcome and a relaxed atmosphere to enjoy paintings, drawings, prints, illustrations, jewellery, photography, mixed media works, textile pieces and more. There will be art for all to enjoy as we invite you to take a closer look. 

Participating artists include: (give these artists a follow on Instagram)

Friday, September 1, 2023

Feels like September

This busted chair feels like September

Hello, Dear Readers, 

Well, there is no denying that people are fascinated with AI. Last week's blog proved popular and outranked several of my recent posts.  

I won't be using AI this week and I am happy to be sitting here in front of my computer listening to music and contemplating which thoughts to share with you. This studio blog is part of my art practice and after sixteen years, it's part of my life - even if and when the "robots" can do it better. 

It's September and the tea is still tasting good as the light starts to shift and the darkness shows up faster than I would like. For the blog this week, I thought a cultural roundup was in order. I used to do this back in the day - share the things that were inspiring, teaching, and or reminding me of who I am or who I want to be. 

Let's see: 


Working Class History: 

I just listened to E21-24: WCH Crime: The Columbia Eagle Mutiny - "about the hijacking of a ship full of napalm by two anti-war US sailors during the Vietnam war." I thought this was well done and I enjoyed listening to Alvin Glatkowski tell his amazing story. I enjoyed learning about something I knew nothing about. 

I am currently listening to another podcast produced by Working Class History. I just started E27-29: Lesbians and Gays Support the Miners - "about the young LGBT+ people who transformed the workers’ movement supporting the UK strike of coal miners in 1984-5." Give them a listen! Our world is filled with such courageous people creating change sometimes at great personal cost. I am thankful for them.

For a bit of fun, I also enjoyed listening to "Who Robs A Banksy?" A six-part series revolving around a true character by the name of Andy Link."In 2004, he kidnapped one of Banksy’s pieces of art in broad daylight from the middle of central London, and held it to ransom." You will have to listen to hear how it all plays out.


America Over the Water by Shirley Collins. I read this earlier in the summer and really enjoyed learning about Shirley Collin's role in helping Alan Lomax get all those Southern recordings. If you are in Edinburgh - I picked my copy at Good Vibes in Leith - a super friendly record and book shop. They have great incense too. Check them out!

HELLSANS by Ever Dundas. You might not think that a story about a typeface that causes grotesque sickness in some and euphoria in others set in a dystopian future would be the book that would offer me solace as I slowly recovered from COVID-19, but you would be wrong. I clung to this book for three solid days. I badly needed to disappear from my reality and into another and Ever made that easy. This book also changed the way I relate to technology and helped me to explore some of my beliefs about myself and where I fit into this world. Reading HELLSANS reminded me of myself at 16 staying up all night eating saltine crackers and salsa while devouring Alan Moore's The Watchmen. Thank you, Ever

Occupy! Occupy! Occupy!: A People's History of Occupation. This 36-page comic book helped get me acquainted with the occupations that have taken place in Scotland from 1940-2021. That's an amazing feat to capture in 36 pages! What a great resource directly from the voices that took part. This is really well done and I highly recommend picking up a copy. A bargain at just a fiver! Solidarity!

BADASS HABITS by Jen Sincero. Oh no, a self-help book - who let this one in here?! Whatever - I read it and I followed along for 3 weeks as it prompted and well, it helped me. Some of it was good and some of it was yucky but it did help me figure out a few things. So, maybe it will help you.

Films: (A bit of a theme here)

Salt of the Earth
Norma Rae
The Take
At the River, I Stand
Sunset Boulevard



I listen to Dave Brubeck every morning while I eat my porridge. This song comes on first (I mean if that doesn't set the tone - I don't know what does).

Currently, I listen to Christian Löffler's Haul on repeat while I am out walking. You know I am listening to a variety of music all the damn time - so I am not going to get into all that. :) Some of you, even have access to my playlists - I know you are long overdue an update. Thanks for your patience.

I hope you have enjoyed this culture round-up. I had to take a break from writing it to walk over for a wee meeting about an upcoming group exhibition at the Drill Hall later this month with my studio peers. See, I fit a bit of art talk in there. I will tell you all about it next week - so you can put it in your diaries and join us.

Thanks for popping by the old studio blog. If you enjoy my blog or appreciate these particular recommendations consider leaving me a tip. Please share what is inspiring you in the comments. Until next week, keep fighting!