Sunday, 28 September 2014

Xatt L-Ahmar under the promise of a storm.

What a terrific couple of weeks at The Mill Room we have had. Plenty of people through the gates despite the holiday season beginning to slow down. We have 5 artists in residence now (with room for a few more) and all of us are using our new studio spaces to the full. I have been painting outside making use of the breeze blowing through the roof tops. The upper terrace is a lovely cool place to sit and paint.
The artists co operative is working well and it has created a lovely vibe for us all to work in. I love to sit with the others swapping ideas and putting the world to rights. Visitors like to join in. They come and explore the old building and chat to us as they wander about. our work is finding new homes in all corners of the globe, as far away as Australia, Canada, Japan and everywhere in between. We have a map that charts the migration of our work ! Something visitors are intrigued by.

My doors on wood have proved popular and I now need to scour the bays for more wood.. The painting below was taken from a wooden panelled window. Intricately carved sections all cobbled together to form a whole rather lopsided but beautiful window. Not quite finished ...

We still haven't had a decent downpour...a few showers over night but nothing more than to dampen the dust. On a Raffi walk to Xatt L-Ahmar the other day I managed to catch the stormy light. I was hopeful for it to materialise but it passed us by. 

Looking over to Malta

The fishermen's boat shacks kinda remind me of Essex , Maybe it was the colour of the sky !

 What a spot for a beach hut

Just love this tent perched on the cliff right above the sign that says 'No Camping' 

Sunday, 21 September 2014

Marsaxlokk revisited

I first went to Marsaxlokk in 2010, it seems like a life time ago... and I think it was. I was struck by the pretty harbour and the crumbling buildings. My trip over there today hardly saw a change, Some new smart apartments on the water front, but not much else has altered. Still the coach loads of tourists visiting the Sunday market. My first trip inspired a series of paintings that featured the peeling paint and decorative balconies, Today I was again captured by the same buildings. I think I will do a whole new series.

My original mixed media piece 100cm x 70cm. Now residing somewhere in Norfolk.

Nothing has changed.

The colours are not quite as vibrant as when I was last here but boy was it hot and humid today....exhausting weather.

Love this.... Pirate junk !

Lunch at Pretty Bay Birzebbuga threw up an informative menue !  Duh ,,,, couldn't help sharing lol
Another fabulous day,

Thursday, 18 September 2014

Saatchi Art

Oooh it's all soon to be available at Saatchi Art. Click here.  I will let you know when I have work for sale. I have to get some decent photos done first. My Etsy shop will be soon be up and running again soon. All these things are Winter jobs. Summer is for selling !

This week I have been organising my new studio and gallery space. We had a flurry of people in this morning as I was hanging and sold a couple of pieces that were propped up on the floor ......very encouraging.

Beginning to take shape... a little more to hang, then I must crack on with some new work.

AMB Jewellery has a corner here too, displaying some new work.

Thursday, 11 September 2014

21 and the boy is back

It was child #2 's 21st birthday this week. How time flies ! It only seems like yesterday when he was in an incubator like a tiny rabbit. He's now a strapping lad who has just performed the lead role in an all singing all dancing production of Pink Floyd's 'The Wall'    What a star !

Frankly he needs to spend more time in Gozo to top up the tan. Who knows he may get a part in the Brangelina film now under way down at Mgarr Ix Xini, fingers crossed.

The beautiful Dahlet qorrot was a perfect swimming place on our tour of the island.

 Wied il Ghasri still very lovely but not as imposing as the out of bounds Mgarr Ix Xini. Looking forward to the filming to be over so we can all go back down there !

I am taking on a new studio space at the Mill Room Gallery. A light and airy room with a mezzanine floor that makes good use of the space. All I need to do is clear up and then build myself a pallet work station.

Plenty of room for hanging. So when all the family go back I will get on and kit out my new space....exciting stuff. Keep an eye out for winter workshops.

Saturday, 6 September 2014

On a bit of an adventure

A weekly trip to Malta is not only a chance to buy things not readily available on Gozo but is also a voyage of discovery. There is so much to see on the Island. I am always on the lookout for secret places to gather organic material for my plant dyed papers. Swimsuit, snorkel and fins are always taken, just in case an inviting bay is happened upon. 
This week was no exception. I collected a couple of commissioned ceramic pieces (a birthday present to myself !) from Ta’ Qali , 

checked out ‘Krea’, Malta’s answer to Ikea...not ! Ate half of a pretty filthy lunch in Mellieha. When I told the waiter that I was less than impressed he said ‘Thank you madam, goodbye.’  !!!  On the way back to the ferry I took a detour down an unpromising winding lane. It took me through a very pretty fertile valley which ended in a bamboo plantation, opening out onto a spectacular view and a secluded bay. The tiny sandy beach into the sea looked inviting and an hour or so spent there more than made up for the disappointing meal ! 
I will certainly revisit the lush valley soon to gather material for my art work. 

Bamboo paper making is on my list of to do things for the winter.

Progress with the kitchen chest.

Tuesday, 2 September 2014

The winds of change

Living in a garage the Gozitan way !  It seems that everyone here lives in a garage....literally. Quite a lot of people actually live with their cars in the front room along side the sofa and kitchen units.. As I don't have a car I thought I would turn my garage into a living and studio space. It has been all change with my move and downsize from a very lovely  (but hideously cold and damp in the winter and noisy in the Summer) house over looking the bay to a something more suited to my life style. I have fabulous views of the cliffs from the roof a pretty courtyard at the back, perfect for Raffi and place that I am able do with as I please. I have to say it is a joy. A limited budget has dictated how it is furnished but I love the sparseness of that ! A lick of white paint to camouflage the grubby stone walls was a must , making the whole place much lighter and brighter. My foray into furniture making has resulted in a pallet sofa and coffee table on wheels ! 

My next attempt will be this !!! But without the wash basin.

The wind picked up yesterday and a welcome coolness with it. The weather has been unbearably hot and humid for the last month, that a little in the way of change is nice. It also means Raffi enjoys his early evening walks again. Of late all we could manage was a quick dash to the cliffs and into the water for a swim.

What a change in the sea, yesterday it was like glass. With the wind we expect storms and probably the onset of autumnal weather. .... and with it the flies ! hey ho we can't have everything. I am looking forward to the rains bringing a little greenness to the fields enabling me to start some plant dyed works again.

The perfect place for a good old fashioned sundowner G&T

A very lovely end to a very lovely day.