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'Below Goat Fell, Isle of Arran', Acrylic & Pastel, 2010

'Below Goat Fell, Isle of Arran'

I’m in a strange situation at the moment. I’m living and working here in Speyer yet arranging (with huge amounts of help from my partner Anita in Irvine) a joint exhibition with fellow Courtyard Studios artist, Alison Thomas. The six week long exhibition is to be held at Blairmore Gallery near Dunoon where we had a short exhibition together early last year.

Of course I had to get all the work finished before leaving for Germany back in early May, but several pieces had still to be framed and all the works labelled and wrapped …these jobs fell to Anita on her return to Irvine.

The exhibition opens on Friday 18th and June and Anita and Alison are taking the work up to the gallery tomorrow. This is definitely not such an onerous task as which ever way you go to get there, it’s very pleasant. To drive all the way means a lengthy trip north up the side of Loch Lomond and then up and over The Rest and Be Thankful, before heading south through more beautiful country, to reach the gallery at Blairmore.

'East from Ben Lui, April', Acrylic & Pastel, 2010, 30 x 30cm
‘East from Ben Lui, April’

The other alternative, equally enjoyable, is to drive up the Ayrshire coast to Gourock and catch the ferry across to Dunoon. It’s about a twenty five minute crossing and there’s always something to see along the way – porpoises on one occasion, a submarine on another …and the views of the hills to the west and north are particularly fine from the middle of the Firth of Clyde. From Dunoon it’s just a twenty minute drive around the loch side to Blairmore and its fantastic gallery. I’ve been exhibiting work at the gallery for several years now and it always makes for a great little day out.

The exhibition will include ten pieces of work by each of us. My work will include pieces based on visits to the Isle of Arran, Ben Lui and the Drumochter Hills as well as three recent sketches. I haven’t seen much of Alison’s recent work but although our work is very different, we do have a shared interest in texture, marks and colour which should make for a good show. As I’ll not be getting to see this exhibition, if anyone reading this does see it, I’d appreciate hearing what you think.

The Blairmore Gallery is a great place. It’s in a wonderful location on the side of the loch and it has a fine tea shop in which to enjoy a cuppa and something to eat while looking at the paintings. Hope you like the show……and the tea and fine food too. You’ll be sure to get a warm welcome at the Blairmore Gallery from the proprietors Sylvia and Steve.

'The Ben Lawers group', Acrylic & Pastel, 2010, 76 x 23

'The Ben Lawers group'

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