Letter to the editor

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Things to do when self isolating. And to prevent cabin fever…

Dear Editor

Can I recommend joining an urban sketchers group and following one of the ‘drawing indoors’ challenges that are being set up. The first I knew about it was a Facebook post from Urban Sketchers in London. They had decided to do a thirty day challenge while they spend enforced time at home. After all you only need a pen or pencil and some paper.

My branch of Urban Sketchers in Stoke-on-Trent are thinking of doing the same…

Yours X

So then I drew a dragonet

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Another four year old picture from my memories. Another one done in ArtRage. Just a bit silly and fun. I think it started out as an attempt to draw an egg, then I got a bit creative. I’ve illustrated a book before, and this could be used for that sort of thing.

Drawing from your imagination is more difficult because you have to have an idea of what you are drawing in your head. I often describe what I’m drawing to myself so that I have an idea of how to depict it. I want to get my mojo back!

Teapot at the potbank..

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Photo my friend took on February 2018, I think it was up until 2019. Its also been exhibited at the Waiting Room Gallery. I liked doing these pottery ‘portraits’, but they are imagined, using pottery patterns and marrying them up with teapots or plates or bowls etc. It’s also about creating imagined backgrounds.

Acrylic on canvas, created, 2018, for sale…

Why use ‘woke’ as an insult?

” In its modern-day, politicised context, ‘woke‘ is defined by the OED as ‘originally: well-informed, up-to-date. Now chiefly: alert to racial or social discrimination and injustice’.”

I’m guilty of being ‘woke’ I guess. I try and care about things, I’ve always questioned why people can’t get on. When I was a child in the 1960’s I remember I asked why people were nasty to brown people and not pink ones?

But recently ‘woke’ seems to be being used as an insult. Like you can be too ‘woke’ to be interested in helping others? Too caring? Why? Why is it OK to tell someone off because they are too politically correct, or disagree with populist ideas? The world seems to get more selfish by the day.

I don’t think everyone should agree with me, I can agree to disagree. But what do you do when someone constantly disagrees with you? Or dismisses what you say. Even when I’d agreed to disagree a person who I’m not naming kept digging. Recently they started to call me a snowflake and woke. I said I was pleased to be a snowflake as we can gather together and turn into a blizzard! I don’t want to stop being in touch with this person as it means I’m not totally in my own bubble. But I do wonder if I should unfollow them. The world seems to lack altruism, everyone is in it for themselves, hopefully the tide will turn.

Garden design.

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Firstly, I’m not a garden designer, but I just wanted to talk about putting ideas down either on paper or digitally. I’m using my sketch app on my phone to work something out. It’s a bit scruffy but gives you an idea. I’ve used a short oblong because it’s approximately the shape of our garden. I’ve drawn in some of the trees using the elipse tool. Then marked in possible paths using a ruler tool for straight lines. Then filled in with a spray tool. I’ve added a blue patch to indicate a pool and sprayed in colour where I want flowers. As there are a lot of trees I’ve shifted the flowers over away from shade although you can get woodland flowers to cover the ground below the trees.

Basically it’s worth doing a drawing if you can to get an idea of what you want. Also work out the compass points. Then you will know where plants will do their best.