This is the third year that we have hosted the Parkinson's art group for their annual show of work, created in the Botanics cottage where they meet once a week. The opening on Wednesday night was probably the busiest yet, and we have already sold quite a few pieces!
Thanks to Lindsay McDermid for making the opening speech and thanking everyone, thus saving me from doing it!!
Always plenty of food, as well as plenty of chat, art and enthusiasm.
Thanks alwo to Bill and Liz McBain for helping me organise the show, and all the contributing artists, both members and friends of the group. Please come along and show your support by purchasing one of the pieces - there is plenty of great work to go around!
The show will be on until 30th September; open 9-5 Weds - Sun, closed Monday & Tuesday.
Taking our usual break in July, we headed north for a change - bikes on the roof rack, off to the north coast and sometimes bleak but always beautiful Caithness. Stuart was persuaded to go the whole hog and spend a week under canvas; luckily we had great weather and campsites, and we greatly enjoyed barely being in a building for seven days!
We camped at the Halladale Inn campsite in Melvich - which has an outstanding beach and serious amounts of birdlife and wildflowers. Stunning.
As we weren't carrying much in the way of kit on our bikes, we had some great day trips to Bettyhill, (plenty of hills - who said the north coast was flat?), Fortingard (where we met a Bon P customer?!) and around the locality of our campsite.
The second half of the week we stayed at the hostel at the Kyle of Tongue, camping right on the water; lucky again that the midges weren't too plentiful this year.
Just about the only cloudy day was our cycle out to Cape Wrath, which we narrowly missed seeing as it had been fogbound all morning. Luckily it lifted in time for us to explore and sample the excellent chocolate brownies made by the lighthouse keeper's wife.
Nothing like cycling on roads where the only other traffic has four legs;)
PS: Stuart has been in court on Jury Duty these last two weeks since we returned, so we are still clearing framing backlog. Please bear with us! We hope to resume some form of normality once the Festival is over, but please come and see us if you have something you need done urgently and we'll see what we can do!
An excuse for gratuitous photos of cycles in the Pentlands - plenty happy cycling this summer so far!
We are away on our holidays in July for a week, from 16th; reopening on Weds 25th with smiley happy faces and no cares in the world. Nothing exotic this year - staying on the home turf and heading to Caithness to cycle, camp and catch one of my paintings at the Caithness Horizons gallery in Thurso.
So.. if you are heading to the far north over the summer, do check out the Caithness Horizons museum and gallery, currently in the hands of a friend from long ago in London, Merran Gunn. Pop in and say hi!!
On a closer note, the ever wonderful Number Four Gallery in St Abbs launches its summer collection over the weekend of 14th and 15th July. Excellent original artwork in spades, beautiful location and walks along the cliffs and a warm welcome guaranteed.
The watercolours of mine below will be at Number Four, with a couple of other things of mine - in very good company.
Apologies, I have been absent; hence the heading.(geddit?) I haven't actually vanished, bar a couple of day trips and visits down south to see my mum...
We have been ticking away happily in Howe St and somehow a month slipped by without a blog word from myself. Nothing untoward to report, just a lot of work as usual! Here's a quick rundown of our activity in pics.
Made a new 'raw' thing - flavoured with vanilla and lemon zest, which is vegan, gluten free and pretty tasty.
Went to Glasgow for a gig and boiled! Sat in the sun and planned our holidays (trying hard not to talk shop!)
Disappeared under a framing mountain.. work has been pouring in this year, so we have had to stop and start our intake of new jobs. Apologies, but we are only small and only have limited time! Good problem to have, I am told;)
I did quite a bit of painting, some commissioned, some (like these) just for my own personal development(?) fun(?) and hopefully eventually commercial gain!
Cycled in the fog a few times, or was it a haar? Despite the odd fuzzy morning in the hills it has been a pretty impressively lovely spring so far.
(I know, I'm sure it will all go to pot now!)
Had this wee turtle dove accepted for the Royal Scottish Academy open show, so he'll be in the big gallery on the mound for most of July. (And on cards and mugs in Bon P )
Had a blast teaching my wee painting group in the evenings at Bon. I'm thinking of doing some more classes (this is a private group) so please get in touch either by email or person if you are interested and have an idea of what you would like to do - so I know what to offer!
Another balmy evening, a good excuse to catch up with a pal and enjoy the wonderful food at Wee Buddha, just over in Jamaica Street. A great addition to the Howe Street family of small businesses - great value, great vibe and really fantastic grub, especially appreciated by myself for amazing vegetarian options.
Hope to catch you all over the summer months; we will be heading for the far north (of Scotland) in July - dates to be confirmed - but here as usual for the rest of June and the beginning of July.......
We think this is over now... (please don't blame me for tempting fate if I'm wrong)!
And - I saw this little guy hopping around in Quartermile the other morning, so it can only mean one thing; spring is with us at last.
We have celebrated the turn of the season, albeit a little late, with a new (actual, holdable, on-the-tables) menu. Lots of wee tweaks to old favourites, plenty of fresh salady things and the usual industrial quantity of scones.
On the walls we have some new work from Melanie Williamson, who I hope will be familiar as I have been showing her paintings on and off for pretty much the whole time we have been here. I love them - and they get better every time new ones arrive in my humble opinion.
Hope you'll swing by for a look, a bite and a chat next time you are in Howe Street.
The spring is even elusive in Scotland, and this February's Beast proved how unpredictable the weather can be at this time of year! We really (foolishly) thought that we might have missed the 'worst' of it when we came back from our hols a week later than usual..
Thanks everyone for putting up with slightly erratic opening hours and framing delays; the latter due mainly to our suppliers having their own problems getting out and about.
The cafe is now showing new work from three artists, all local; two new to us and one returning for another visit!
Peter Jones (image above, of Portobello's beach cottages) is based in Portobello, Edinburgh' seaside village, which is why it features often in his work!
Much of Peter's work is based on the architecture of Scotland, but his style is far from stuffy and the looseness of his line and watercolour interpretations often makes the walls dance.
I love the trees and clouds that peek over rooftops as much as the mellow yellow stone and wobbly rooftiles! Peter does carry out quite a few commissions to order, but also roams the nation drawing whatever takes his fancy.
Anne Nicolson has been bitten by the art bug and just loves to create; having studied graphic design and spent all her life dabbling in projects, in retirement she has joined a number of art groups and says that her favourite place is her shed, '"packed from floor to ceiling with my 'art stuff'".
Her studies of plants, flowers and butterflies are all based on observation and she carries a fantastic sketchbook of images gathered from walks in the country which perfectly explains the journey from observation to finished artwork.
Our third artist this month, Bernadette Levoir, is native to Stockbridge, although like myself she originates further south! Portraits and still lifes are 'her thing' and she does it so well that we keep having her back!
Many a discussion has been had in the cafe about our mutual work and our lack of ability to control it; a conversation I always love as I know how often it is repeated all over the world and right through history by us insecure art types!!
I'm back on the big piece that I abandoned temporarily at the end of last year due to lack of working hours (and light). I can't wait to finish this, but not in a bad way! It has been a good journey and as usual a learning curve; there are many plans jostling in my head however so it will be no time before I am back with multiple canvases jostling for space in my little corner..
Another year, another winter break. We are nearly up to the seven year mark on Howe Street! This January we went once more to Thailand; probably our twelfth visit to the country and very probably our favourite trip yet!
So to all who ask 'why do you keep going back' and 'what do you like about it', my answer is...
(Photos not chronological!)
We stayed a week in Chiang Mai (Air BNB), a week in Chiang Rai, incorporating a three day cycle north to the Mekong and Golden Triangle (local, excellent bike tour company, local family-run resorts) and a week in Bangkok (AirBNB) with a day's cycle trip courtesy of GoBangkok bike tours.
Flew from Edinburgh with Etihad via Abu Dhabi, internal buses and flights in Thailand various companies.
And yes, we are already planning next year's trip...
...until the new year - so please come and see all the new work by myself, Ingrid, and the excellent selection of postcard sized originals which we are selling with all funds raised going to the charity "It's Good 2 Give".
That is a selection of my work, above; I've had some great sales early on but there is a lot of work still to go as I have been a busy bee this year, and I'm pleased with the direction in which my work has gone in 2017. Who knows what I'll end up doing in the New Year - but that's half the fun!
'Tiergarten" - above, was the last to go on the wall - still wet! Inspired by a lady I met in the woods in Berlin (as you do) it has attracted a lot of interest in the first week, but is still available. All the available work is now on my website at www.ingridnilsson.co.uk
Please drop me a line via the website or our email firstname.lastname@example.org
if you want to reserve anything until you get in to have a look! I can ship work abroad or in the UK as well.
Above and below, some of the really stunning and interesting pieces that have been donated for our charity fund-raiser. All the work is priced between £50 and £150 with 100% of the money raised going to the charity. For more information on "It's Good 2 Give", Lynne McNicoll and the Ripple Retreat, visit the website at www.itsgood2give.co.uk (or come and ask us at Bon P!)
The piece below by Peter Capaldi is still with us - so please give me a message or drop in if you want to make an offer as this is a truly unique and excellent piece!
That's all for now - so come and see us! Small businesses rely on this time of year to make up the rent payments and the bills, so we are wholly in favour of local shopping! We had a very busy Small Business Saturday and are ever grateful to our wonderful and loyal band of customers.
Hope to see you all over the midwinter, festive, Christmas period; we are closed 24th - 27th December, (inclusive) but open again 28th - 31st Dec and 3rd - 6th Jan.
Sorry! It was pointed out to me today that the 'shows' page had our winter show beginning, somewhat cryptically, on Thursday November 2017...
This should read - 'from 5pm on Thursday 30th November 2017'
Apologies for those who came early, and we hope to see you again soon.
Below some sneak previews of work from my show (Ingrid Nilsson) and the postcard sized pieces that we are selling for excellent charity
'It's Good 2 Give'
Hope to see you all soon - show runs right up and over Christmas! (We are closed 24th - 27th inclusive this year.)
MORE TO FOLLOW SOON FROM - SCOTTISH ARTISTS AND CELEBRITIES!!
Autumn is with us and so we come to the last couple of wall-changes of the year. The current show presents work from four artists who we have come to know during our time at Bon; Aileen Grant and Rona MacLean have showed with us on a couple of occasions over the years and so make a welcome return. Anupa Gardner has given us some of her fantastic prints for the first time, and Emma Sutherland has switched medium - previously we have shown her oil landscapes, and in this show some fascinating semi-abstract works using encaustic, beeswax and pigment.
Aileen has recently moved 'up north' near Applecross, giving her excellent opportunity to indulge her love of the outer isles in both print and paint. Her work always has a life to it that is born of much 'en plein air' sketching.
Rona works in a range of print techniques; screen printing has come on a lot since my time at college and her multi-layered pieces fascinate me! Her recent work is also very much focused on trees, which always appeals to me and many others.
Anupa is another artist specialising in printmaking and shows a collection of lino cuts and screen prints with us in her first visit to Bon. I love the way she uses her imagination, drawing and print techniques to add a twist to wonderfully familiar domestic subjects.
Emma's pieces have a fantastic patina created with the use of encaustic and beeswax; the surface is tactile but strong with delicate pattern and drawn areas; deceptively simple and tranquil.
Last but not least a forewarning that our winter show opens at 5.00pm on Thursday 30th November; all welcome for a good chat, some of Stuart's tasty bites and a peek at what I've been up to in the studio these last six months or so. (That's Ingrid Nilsson for those unfamiliar with the blog!)
We are also repeating our sale of postcard-sized art originals for charity; this time in aid of Lynne McNicoll's charity 'IT'S GOOD 2 GIVE', to help with the continued work at the Ripple Retreat in the Trossachs, providing respite for families of children undergoing cancer treatment.
The Retreat was built and opened this year with all money raised by the charity: www.itsgood2give.co.uk
Ingrid, and Stu sometimes