This is It!

This week I have done my last day of teaching ever.  Yes, I know that some of my friends think that I won’t last.  That I won’t be able to resist the call of the children for more than a few months.  But this time I really think I can.  There is too much to do now: boats to sail, gardens to create, journeys to travel, houses to love, homes to nurture.  I am so full of plans and so many of them include playing with clay.

So over the weekend we are sorting out and throwing away vast quantities of our old life, shrugging off the chattels which we have lugged from pillar to post over so many years.  Some will go into store to be lovingly unwrapped once the house in Cornwall is decorated and ready to give them a permanent home – I can’t throw out a single photograph and I am having difficulty with some of the children’s toys.  Well, memories are important!

And then I become a proper artist.  Included in my complete change of lifestyle comes a boat on the River Thames which will become our London home from now on.  My days will begin with an exercise regime – well it is about time – and then there will be the trip to the studio, which will no longer necessitate using a car.

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That’s me in the front there!
I already have one piece of work in Cornwall at Tregony Gallery but there will be more to come very soon.  Then there is our Pop up Gallery which has been such a success that we are now in negotiations with the local council to make it permanent.

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Sold but plenty of others available
I have a number of commissions to work on in the next few weeks and I am keen to find myself some kind of artist in residence position before too much longer because I love the idea of doing some site specific work for a while.

 

So that’s it.  Nothing to do now except box up the last few possessions and trundle off up the river to Thames Ditton which is about to become my wonderful floating home.

Will You Still Love Me?

There is a move afoot to go and live in Cornwall properly this summer.  I am extremely excited about this – I have handed in my notice for my teaching post and, whist I will miss the lovely children that I teach 3 days per week, I am very excited about the future . . . . .

Well, I think I am!  I love Cornwall.  It is, to all intents and purposes, my home anyway and the Roseland Peninsular is calling me in no uncertain terms.

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The Roseland Peninsular is calling me.

But, and it is a very big but, what will happen to my ceramics?

 

Eventually I will have a studio in St Mawes.  I have the planning permission for it, it will be easy to reach whenever I want to pop in for a few hours or just for 10 minutes to check on the kiln, I wont have to drive through the London traffic taking up to an hour to go about 6 miles, I can sip my coffee gazing at the weather coming in over the Lizard.  What’s not to like?

Absolutely nothing!  Except, it is a risk isn’t it – this jumping off the rat race.  Wimbledon offers me so much.  It may cost a bit but it gives me easy access to a fabulous customer base without whom I would have stopped playing with clay long ago.  The twice yearly Open Studios, the next one of which is coming up in May, regularly sees 4-5 thousand people come through the doors.  The feedback which they provide on the work they see in your studio is invaluable and the purchases that they make are extremely affirming of the effort which one puts in for the rest of the year.  In addition,  when the feeling leaves me and I don’t know what to do, there is always the kettle.

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Wimbledon Artists Studios gives me so much of what I need as an artist.

You can usually find someone to bounce and idea off, share a moment of frustration with or simply ask how they are doing.  Then off you go, back to work feeling a release from the doubt or what ever was bugging you.  In addition to that, the is Klay.  Our new baby is growing fast.

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Klay is doing so well.
It has done so well in the short time that it has been in operation that the 12 of us had a long and deep discussion this week about what happens when we get to the end of our three months popping up in Camden.  I want to be a part of this project.  I believe that it has a great deal of mileage and, judging by the response that we are getting from our customers and also from Camden itself (whose generosity allowed us to get up and popping in the first place), I am not alone in this belief.

 

It seems to me that I ma going to need to find some way of having it all!