Tag Archives: West Wales

Family And Folly Farm

29 Aug

Camel Dau Grwbi

Finally! A day out with family. To celebrate a little one’s birthday. We’ve been isolated for months but today we piled into cars, masked and sanitised, and headed West to Folly Farm. It’s a British Bank Holiday so of course it was chilly and damp, but it was still a fantastic day out. I scribbled a Bactrian camel and learned that its name in Welsh is Camel Dau Grwbi. I can’t describe how wonderful it was to be able to get together and have a grand day out in the fresh air in a lovely place. We’re in Easedown now, not Lockdown and I was impressed with the improvements Folly Farm has done to make the place safer.



A Chance To Own One Of My Artworks

I have some small screenprints for sale, inspired by my drawings of the taxidermy collection at Swansea Museum. I have given these antique artifacts a modern twist by combining them with images of rubbish – old fruit nets, bubble wrap and plastic – highlighting the problem of human pollution and how it affects wildlife.

To buy my work on the Swansea Print Workshop site please click the image to the left.

In this one, I combined the image of the bird with snippets of text of things my Nana used to say. She used to take me to Swansea Museum a lot when I was small and I could hear her voice in the back of my head as I was sitting and drawing the birds and bugs.

20 percent of the cost of each screenprint sold goes to support Swansea Print Workshop, which receives no public funding.



The One Show And Me

10 Feb



Back in the summer last year, I took part in a public ‘draw-in’ in St. David’s on the west coast of Wales. A dozen artists based in Goat Street gallery were filmed drawing or painting locals and holidaymakers who queued up the road and round the corner for a chance to have their portrait done and appear on the telly. The item will finally appear on the TV tomorrow night, 11th February on The One Show, BBC1 from 7pm. I’ll probably end up on the cutting room floor, who knows.

It was good discipline for me because I aimed to draw each portrait in 30 minutes while getting a good likeness. I drew seven in 4 and a half hours. I hadn’t done anything like it before so I was well pleased with myself. Here is one of the portraits I drew with Faber Castell Pitt drawing pens into my A5 leather bound Steampunk sketchbook.

126 Portraits For The Telly

11 Aug


These are the 8 portrait drawings I did for an event in St. David’s a few days ago. BBC1’s ‘The One Show’ filmed over two days and will eventually edit all that footage into a couple of 4 minute items. I worked with Faber Castell Pitt drawing pens, sizes S, F, M and B into my A5 Steampunk sketchbook. I was based inside the Goat Street Gallery while other artists (11 of us in all) worked outside in the glorious garden below, with the backdrop of the cathedral.



Between us we managed to do a hundred and twenty six paintings and drawings of the people who queued around the block. It was a fascinating but intense experience. None of the people I drew had posed before and it’s difficult to get a decent drawing and credible likeness the first time you draw someone, well it is for me anyway. I found that I put a lot of pressure on myself to do a good quality sketch that the model would like, pressure that isn’t there when I work with professional models. And it was very public, with people milling around and looking over my shoulder as well as a film crew. But it was also excellent practice and really pushed me forward. I feel far more confident about tackling portraits now. I’ll make sure to get the word out when The One Show decides to broadcast the two short films.

David, Non And A Lovely Lad

8 Aug


This young man was one of the huge queue at the Goat Street Gallery, waiting to have their portraits done as part of BBC1 ‘The One Show” filming in St. David’s yesterday. He’s a very nice lad and a terrific model, very still and patient and held the pose for about half an hour.  I drew him using a Faber Castell Pitt drawing pen in sizes S and F into my leatherbound Steampunk A5 sketchbook, going slightly across two pages.

St. David, Wales’ patron saint, gives his name to the city and also the vast cathedral, but this was built by the Normans at least half a millenium after he lived. He was born a couple of miles away and there is a tiny, ruined stone chapel dedicated to his mother, Saint Non, close to the Coastal Path, which is supposed to be David’s birthplace. I much prefer the simplicity of Non’s chapel to the grandeur of David’s cathedral. It’s more in keeping with the Celtic christianity which they practised back in the sixth century.

I’ll blog the rest of the portraits I drew over the next few days.



Long Day In The Tiny City

7 Aug


Another late one, just got back from a day in the tiny historic city of St. David’s where I was one of a group of figurative artists being filmed by BBC1s “The One Show”. We were based in the Goat Street Gallery and we worked from 11.30 to 5.00pm, drawing or painting the general public who were queueing up the street. I’ll tell you more in tomorrow’s blog because I really want to get off to bed. I am shattered.


Here’s Ann who sat for me for about half an hour. I drew her with Faber Castell Pitt drawing pens sizes S and F into my leather Steampunk sketchbook.

Fleshpots Of Llandysul

18 Aug

Today we had a drive around West Wales, going to a new exhibition at Waunifor and exploring the fleshpots of Llandysul. Only there are no fleshpots in Llandusyl :). So I wasn’t inspired to do any drawing. That’s an excuse; I just wanted a break. So here’s one I did last week, when the Olympics was still on. There was a giant screen and deckchairs in Castle Square in the city centre and we stopped there occasionally for a rest and to catch up with the Olympic news. I’m not normally into sport, except for Rugby Internationals, but there was something special about this Olympic Games,  Danny Boyle’s amazing opening event and all those sweet sportspeople – Jessica Ennis, Mo Farrah and Usain Bolt – terrific. I wasn’t expecting even to watch it let alone enjoy so much.

A Grand Day Out.

7 Apr

Ink sketch - giraffes at Folly Farm.

A little relative had her 5th birthday today so we had a family day out at Folly Farm in West Wales, which was grand, although freezing cold. Of course it was, it’s a British Bank Holiday – too much to expect fine weather. At least it didn’t rain. We are lucky to still have four generations in our family and we made up a group aged from 15 months to 80 years and it was lovely. There was a very high wooden walkway going right up into the air and we were level with the giraffes. They are such strange creatures – I’ve never seen them close to before. Their hips face forward and they have these ridiculously skinny legs with nobbly knees. And very lumpy heads. I had my fingerles mittens on but my fingers still froze! We also saw meercats, mongooses and a foosa. Brilliant day out.

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