Monday, 11 May 2009


Im very excited...
...I have some fabulous news...!

...Yesterday was selection day for the Great Sheffield Art Show, and all my three pictures were chosen for the exhibition!!! I was - am - delighted!! I couldn't believe it! The art show is in its 22nd year and has a fabulous reputation as the biggest art show in the north! It will be my second chance to exhibit since my daughter was born 2 years ago - Im very, very chuffed to say the least and you'll have to pardon this blatent bit of trumpet blowing for the moment! :)

The three pictures are from the top 'Porthcurno', 'Twilight Daisies' and '9 Days of Summer' - they are all mixed media done with watercolour, crayon and inks.

There will be about 1400 pictures on show, and over 4000 visitors turned up last year so its a great way of getting your work seen. If you want to know a bit more, or are thinking of having a visit yourself you can click here to have a look at their website.

I think I have to say, that this year I decided to impose certain challenges upon myself. As well as being a mum to the most fabulous little girl, I am still Julia and I still have that part of me that likes to paint and create - and I cant ignore it. No. Over the last two years I have slowly come to understand that what was my own personal 24 hours a day, to do with as I wished, was suddenley 100% dedicated to this wee small thing. I was at her beck and call, there to acknowledge her every whim and want. And I love it, I truly do - but Ive had to deal with my 'lost freedom' gradually, and learn how to insert little pockets of time for myself into each day. As she grows, Im finding it a bit easier (as Im also less tired) and most evenings and afternoons I am making or painting something.

Its a necessary staple for me, as essential to my wellbeing as food, water and sleep.

So this year, the little one being almost two, I figured I would set myself a few challenges here and there - one to take part in the Art Show, and the second to run a stall at the Craft Candy Summer Fair. Im still waiting to find out if Ive been chosen to have a table but Im hoping I have. These things make me feel like Im achieving something for myself, and it creates a happy balance. It also makes me feel like Im still capable, Im not sure why but that is important too.

Well, onto other things....the warm weather is slow in coming to this part of Yorkshire. The temperature is still on the chilly side despite the huge blue skies and chubby lambs that are looking more like young sheep with every day that passes. There is a brisk wind today and it feels cold, but on a brighter note Ive heard on the grapevine that we're in for a BBQ summer!! Hurrah!!! Lets hope so!

This vibrantly coloured field is what I pass on the way to my Mum's cottage from our house. It is the most stunning thing and I love it! I love how everything is so vivid at the moment, the myriad of greens that are bursting out of every bud and stem are drenching the land - its a very uplifting time of the year for me!

It has led me to another crochet project - yes, another one. The cushion cover has been stuffed away with the crochet blanket, sidelined and forgotten for the time being whilst I steam ahead with my new bag! Im almost done, but for a few little adornments and I will post a picture of it as soon as its completed. To tempt your curiosity, I will only say that the colour scheme was inspired by a recent purchase of CK strawberry print fabric and its looking delightfully bright and jolly - you will certainly see me coming with it, lets put it that way!! :)

I hope you are all bright and happy yourselves, and that your weekends were relaxing and reviving - talking of which, we have just booked ourselves a week down in beautiful Dorset, at the end of June in a little thatched cottage close to the sea - I cant wait!

Sending you love, a deckchair in a sunny spot, 40 winks and a scoop of tranquility

Til next time,
J xxx


  1. Congrats dear friend, that is the best news!!!! I can't wait to see the new bag you have been making. I finally have the hang of ribbing and have begun a cute little preemie hat for my charity knitting/crochet so I am very excited! I can see this becoming addictive lol. Hope to catch you online soon, I've been on today but didn't see you here. xxx

  2. OOOOOOOoooooooh Well done!!
    I am sooh pleased for you, I love the painting, with squares, all lovely seaside things,
    Love Helen

  3. Oh I just love the third picture, just fab, they are should make them into cards....

  4. Well done you!
    Beautiful happy paintings.
    Always keep some time for yourself creating,soon your little one will be joining in.
    My youngest is eleven and it only seems like yesterday he was two.xx

  5. Congratulations on your work being exhibited it must be amazing to see your work on display like that. Thanks for your lovely comment on my blog. It is nice to get feedback, especially when you are not too sure about something. I have tucked your shell pattern away for future use, someday, maybe, get the picture. Dev X

  6. Woo hoo! Well done Julia, what great news. Love 'Porthcurno'....not surprising really!

  7. Hi Julia, I remember the loss of freedom hitting me very hard when my daughter was about 6 weeks old. I didnt have her until I was 32 and you get used to doing what you want when you want don't you. She's almost 17 now and I still don't have much freedom!!! but I am a bit more used to it. Its great that you have something that is very much you that you can hang on to. I have to say though that I have enjoyed every stage that my kids have gone through (not always at the time!!)and they have taught me so much - and continue to do so. Your pictures are all utterly delightful (I am knitting a Porthcurno scarf at the moment!!) I'm hoping that I will be able to come along to the exhibition, so keep reminding me. xxx

  8. YAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    I am so happy for it. And of course you deseerve it Julia. Oooooh congratulations!!!!!!! I'm so excited for you!
    I'm typing words between doing a happy little dance around the room and clapping my hands. Well Done! Your paintings are Gorgeous!
    As for the rest of your post, I totally understand what you are saying about mummyhood. And errhem crochet addiction, yes I have very much got the bug too :o) loverly ain't it?
    Wishing you many more wonderful, happy painting and crochet and photographing wonderful scenery days

  9. Hi, I have just come across your amazing blog and website. I love your paintings, they are so happy, full of colour and make my heart sing!!
    I know what you mean about being a mummy and not having the you time you get used to. I have 3 children, all grown up now, but also fostered babies for many years and I remember snatching minutes of time to be creative.. it was such a life saver.
    Will be be back again xx

  10. Wow...what awesome news to share...your paintings are so beautiful and fun that they should be picked!!! Love your yellow field image...i would love to sit right in the middle of it with a picnic lunch!!! Smiles to you!!!

  11. I've not had time to read this post yet but I will be back tomorrow!x

  12. Well done on getting all 3 pictures accepted. You must be really chuffed! I can see why the pictures were chosen. They are happy,vibrant,inspirational and have the feel good factor about them. Before I had my son almost 11 years ago now, all I had to think about was myself. Now I value every bit of free time I have. I was so carefree in my old life without responsibilities. I am just getting back to finding myself again. It has been an uphill struggle and I always feel guilty if I do something for myself. I think when you have a child you lose part of your identity. I love my son to bits but I feel that a bit of my old spark has gone. Looking at the work that you and fellow artists produce give me the incentive to keep on creating. I think it is my life's purpose.x

  13. Oh my gosh do I love the 9 Days of Summer! Beautiful. Your work is gorgeous. I would love to have this hanging in my house during the long gray yucky winter.

  14. oh, i love the bag and those seasidy artworks are just beautiful, i am so pleased you were picked. I see your little slice of heaven is porthmeor , i live in St. Ives and i wholeheartedly agree!! x noelle


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