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Latest News


WHAT WE DO NOW is part of a nationwide network of projects coordinated by Creative Scotland's Culture Collective programme. It's bold and collaborative, involving work with communities, creative freelancers and regional and local organisations to ignite and inspire new imaginative possibilities.  

My commission is in Stranraer, a seaside town not far from my home in Dumfries & Galloway, Scotland, where I've been working with my artist colleague Rory Laycock and two vibrant organisations, the Stranraer…

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SO MANY CHANGES.  It feels like March 2020 was another universe. The night before lockdown I shut down the relatively new studio space I'd worked so hard to get together.  Saying goodbye to the empty room, I turned off the light and stacked art supplies and work in progress in the boot.  

Within a few days at home it became clear that our lovely old cottage was not a feasible place for me to live and work. Nearly fell over myself finishing a painting of The Lonesome Pine, below, in the tiny 8 x 10 workshop…

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'So come the storms of winter and then the birds in spring again.  I do not fear time.' 
Sandy Denny | Fairport Convention


I don't exactly fear time but I hate losing track of it when life happens so fast there's hardly a chance to breathe. Maybe I should heed Sandy Denny's words and stop counting time. Grab time instead, throttle it, make it stop for a while so I can reflect on extraordinary moments before they fly away. Unlike the birds of spring, some moments never come round again, not the same way. 

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From Bob's Back Passage to Brooklyn... 

Just thinking about how almost exactly a year ago I performed at Nice 'n' Sleazy in Glasgow wearing a pink feather boa and a nasty t-shirt - sweet memories!  

I don't have a performance schedule, performing just materializes from time to time. The only thing these events have in common is that they are a bit odd. Like playing at Book at Bedtime in a bookshop for the Wigtown Book Festival, dressed in a nightshirt and nightcap like Wee Willie Winkie. Or being the opening act last summer in the…

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Solo Exhibition at CatStrand  

CatStrand is a beautiful rural arts centre in the historic Scottish town of New Galloway.  The name comes from the Cat, the stream (strand) that runs beneath and beside the building.  I'm delighted to have my work there until the end of September. 

The natural environment in this part of Scotland where I live and work has had a deep impact on my painting.  It affects my approach to light, colour and subject matter - trees are so interesting that my desire to study them was re-ignited when I moved here. The…

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IN THE THICK OF IT...reflections on SNAFUs & The Bladnoch Altarpiece  

The Bladnoch Altarpiece project just finished a few days ago, and I'm still recovering!  More about that later.  But while organizing files in the aftermath, I found an unposted blog written on the day everything went wrong - isn't that how the expression 'snafu' came into being during WW2 (Situation Normal All F##ked Up)?  Here's my memory of that day and maybe it'll encourage others who are in the thick of it, because we kept going and somehow it all ended well...


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Unit 3 Gallery - The Bladnoch Altarpiece project 

Just getting into this new project with about 7 weeks until the launch.  Very busy time coming up.  Mostly covered in paint, which is the way I like it!  

The Bladnoch Altarpiece is a site specific work based at Unit 3 Gallery at the former Bladnoch Creamery, now home to metal workers, artists and music producers.  Using the audio-visual language of the Medieval Church, I'm creating a tribute to the former Bladnoch Creamery and the people who worked there and work on the site today. There will be…

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For quite a few years I had my art studio in a building at the Bladnoch Industrial Estate in Bladnoch, near Wigtown in rural South West Scotland. The building was part of the old Bladnoch Creamery that closed in 1989 and was on its way to dereliction before I moved in. I loved it...the vast space, the peeling paint and rusty bits of leftover machinery, the atmosphere of calm disturbed only by occasional sounds of heavy metalwork and imagined echoes of the past. 

Today, the Creamery site is being…

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'Hidden From Praise' - article about new arts-based education programme for prisoners makes me realise why I work in the arts 

Lately I've been working with Helix Arts (Newcastle) and Nepacs (North East Prisoner Family Support, Durham) to create Hidden Voices, an arts-based education programme designed specifically for men in prison to help them reconnect with their children and families.  

It's been a huge challenge.  Workshops with children and prisoners, desk research, consulting with criminal justice professionals, then going into isolation in my wee study to think, and think, and think....and then write a full modular…

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I got Spotified... 

It took ages.  About 4 years after recording an album of original songs called Aim Low, I finally put it on Spotify.  And after more weeks of avoidance, frustration and a cry for help, the Spotify link now sits happily on the bottom of each page of this website as if it were no effort at all.  

This was a remarkable feat for someone as untechnifried as myself.  And I do mean fried, because that's what computers, smartphones and all apps do to my brain.  Have pity.  I grew up in the age of typewriters, even…

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