Work in progress or am I done here?

This is a piece of course work. An exercise concerning materials, although I’m not completely sure whether that refers to materials in view or in use. I’ve covered both bases – wood, fabric, glass in the frame; oil crayons, charcoal, inks, and a variety of implements to scrape and scratch at the layers for texture, a bit like sgraffito. The base is cartridge paper prepared with a layer of gesso which I’ve textured to reflect the materials in view, and the colours come from layering the various media, blending, scratching, and generally shoving the media about. So, am I done? … Continue reading Work in progress or am I done here?

Left brain, right brain, or something else?

The old left brain/right brain chestnut keeps on popping up, especially in reference to creativity. Dead but it won’t lie down. It comes from some very old studies on people with severe epilepsy whose brain hemispheres were surgically separated to prevent seizures swamping the whole cortex, plus the observation that motor functions are generally right side dominant (governed by the left motor cortex), and that language tends to be located in the left temporal lobe. Early studies seemed to support a view that the left brain is logical, ordered, and language related while the right is more spatial and image-led. … Continue reading Left brain, right brain, or something else?

There’s a cow in the basement …

… what are ya gonna do? Luvvit, that’s what! This is, let’s call her Muriel, whose first job was to illustrate a story called The Bridge in Not Being First Fish, and who today has joined several cats and a sheep at The Basement93 in Steyning. Here’s the rest of the gang. You can have a flick through the book and if you like what you see (read), you can nip across the road to get a copy at the Steyning Book Shop, otherwise you can click your way over to that there Amazon. From February 1st, the gallery will be … Continue reading There’s a cow in the basement …

Art and politics

There’s no credit for this image on the Facebook page so I’ve clipped the whole post and added a link. I find this profoundly moving, skilful, and so simply, alarmingly, graphically on point. Science fiction has produced numerous stories of the environmental apocalypse of our own making [unfortunately I can’t put my finger on one for now] but this sculpture is the best illustration I’ve seen. I like art to have meaning, which is not to say I need it always to make political points or to be in-your-face emotional wrecking balls, just to say something that prompts a bit … Continue reading Art and politics


This large lady with the world-weary expression is an enhanced version of the one in Not Being First Fish where she illustrates a story about townies not shutting gates because why should they, huh? She may be appearing in a shop near you*, well near me anyway, in the new year. There’ll be a copy of the book too, for perusal, and copies for sale over the road in Steyning Book Shop, bless ’em. *The Basement93, Steyning High street. You’ll find them on Facebook, and also Instagram where the whole shop-full of loveliness is presented in pictures. Continue reading Cow

The Wild Rose and the China Doll

I was messing around with charcoal yesterday and made some sweeps across an A2 sheet of cartridge. Another couple of sweeps and I saw what it was – a scene from a story I wrote some while ago which had been triggered by that extraordinary track by Nick Cage and Kylie Minogue – Where the Wild Roses Grow. I’d heard that track just a day or so ago. The story is called The Wild Rose and the China Doll and you can find it here on Full of Crow.     Continue reading The Wild Rose and the China Doll