Saturday, 3 November 2012

Wentworth Castle

Pat has got our next show set up for the end of the month in Wentworth Castle... which isn't really a castle at all, more of a 'Stately Home'.




It's the venue for Weddings and Wedding Receptions. The Happy Couple usually pose outside the 'Folly," Stainborough Castle ... therefore I am currently drawing this scene, which is both a nice subject to draw and the prints from it a logical commercial product.


I'm not sure if a folly is an international concept, or just a British extravagance. Such buildings are purely ornamental, serving no practical purpose whatsoever. 

You may recall how my artistic history is littered with unplanned events that changed its course - I only discover I am at a crossroads after I have passed it! Well I'm rather hoping it has happened again. I was supposed to go to the Printers last Tuesday to pick up my latest batch of prints. He asked me to come on Thursday morning instead, as he was running behind schedule. 

As Pat was late back from the hairdressers, we didn't get to the Printers until mid afternoon. Having missed our appointment, we found Darren was busy with his #1 customer who had boxes of paintings for framing. He apologised  and handed me over to his assistant, but not before I gave him my artwork of the 'Lunardi Balloon'  (two posts ago, below). His customer dropped what she was doing and said, "I like that, copy it in and blow it up, Darren."...... she liked it!

It transpires she owns two galleries and is opening another in Stratford-upon-Avon (Shakespeare's home? Google it). Having glanced at the work I was picking up ...we spoke for an hour ... she is coming to see me here on Monday and Tuesday. My stuff would be ideal for Stratford, with its Tudor black and white timbered buildings. However ... getting to my age has made me the perpetual sceptic, I anticipate that this will go nowhere. Decisions that are quickly made and need to be 'run before a partner' before it is finalised seldom go very far. .... However, another paragraph in the memoires :0) 

27 comments:

  1. Oh John, roll with it. If it leads somewhere great. If not you'll have learned something. It that a Rolls (Ellis always wanted the Bently),or a Deucenberg? A car buff I'm not, but I like the form.

    These castles and stately homes laying around your country side would get me out of the house into plein air. I do love your historical buildings and would love to draw them. Ours are so 'down home' and folksy. The only structures that get me excited here are wind-worn barns leaning towards the ground with some tobacco advertisement painted years ago on the side.

    It's fun to show your stuff--particularly to a lady gallery owner. You'll do great. Your talent is great. Follow wherever it leads.

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    1. It's a Rolls Royce ... I'm not a car buff either.

      You say there are no castles or stately homes in the US ... you are the New World, you wouldn't expect old world buildings. On the other hand you have other 'images' I love. One of my favourite artists is the American, John Taylor Arms, and his, “West Forty-Second Street Night 1922,” portrays 'New World Castles' :0)

      I'm not worried about the gallery, been there got the flak jacket ... although I sell my stuff, it isn't really the money ... it's the fun! It's like keeping score!

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  2. Well, if a thing like that happened to me, no matter the outcome, I would be jumping all around... but, things like that never happen to me and though I say I don't mind, every man has his/hers luck, etc, I actually do mind a little... nonetheless, I'm going to stop here because this is about you and not me-duh.
    So I'm very happy for you and your exciting news. I wish everything turns out as you want them to.
    I will be waiting to see the drawing you are working with :)
    Hugs and Smiles.

    Ps I trust that your wife will be nag-free, about hairdreesers and delaying, after that for at least a year..? :)

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    1. I know what you mean. Everyone else seems to get the lucky break. There is a bit of truth in making your own luck though.


      I always work a little harder than most to make up for my lack of brain cells and talent. We do shows, show our work everywhere, and generally get a much exposure as we can. If one persists in this for long enough then the chances of making contacts is increased ... luck never found me, I generally have to go after it and worry it to the point that it says, 'OK OK I give in!'.

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  3. Wow ... how great is that? John, it's hardly surprising that the gallery owner instantly saw the value of your work. I would be amazed if this didn't turn into a great opportunity for you.
    I can just imagine how your drawing of that 'folly' will turn out but I can't wait to see it. I may be visiting my daughter in Sheffield around the end of the month and if I do, I'll try and get up to Wentworth.

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    1. It's all a bit of fun, John. I never take myself too seriously. If it comes off, great; if not ... so what! :0)

      I have found a great and unusual view of Wells Cathedral... commercially it's a no-brainer, but what a challenge. I shall do that after the folly, trouble is I have boat projects and balloon projects on hold ... (static art versus kinetic art!).

      Look forward to seeing you, John.

      ps I'm aware I've missed a couple of postings on your's ...I will catch up though!

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  4. Dear John, is so beautiful this side variable in the life of an artist!
    I wish you that your special skill brings you even surprises and satisfaction!

    Even here someone have built buildings for decorative purposes, not least for the International exhibitions so popular 800.
    An entire village complete with a medieval castle was built in Turin for the World Expo of 1896, on the banks of the Po
    Buildings to have fun in your own garden is a must in the past, in the most extravagant styles (ancient Greece or Pagode ...).
    Also collect beautiful old cars
      is still in fashion, and there are many EXHIBITIONS organized to put these and owners in exhibition ......!

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    1. Italy has always been the inspiration for art and architecture Rita, as Tito demonstrates so frequently. I will take a lot of time next year to focus on Italy. A lot of my roots are there - my grandmother was Italian - so I should do Italian stuff.

      We have a lot in common

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  5. Wow.. what a great experience even if it goes no where but it just might. Lovely to have the recognition of work well done. I love castles. I think the third painting I ever did when I started painting in oils was a castle... and do you think I can find a photo of it anywhere.. nope. Fingers crossed that good things come out of the visit of the Gallery owner this coming week.

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  6. oh I agree, I would not "count my chickens before they are hatched"! But still. Those are great moments and indeed it may lead to something--It all remains to be seen. I know why everyone is excited about your work....it is unusual! No one has that kind of ability anymore--well, few people draw in ink anymore---and you do it so well! I can imagine people practically trip over each other to see your work. I'm looking forward to the next installment. I love England! (or do we say Great Britain?)

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    1. As you say, Celeste, I'm counting on nothing

      Thank you for your kind and supportive comments.

      Yes the England /Great Britain/UK thing confuses most people!

      Great Britain is the (United States) combination of England, Scotland and Wales.

      The United Kingdom (UK) is the combination of England, Scotland, Wales AND NORTHERN IRELAND.

      Ok so England is a country ... Scotland is a country, whilst Wales is a Principality (Prince of Wales?).

      Scotland and Wales are passionate about their nationality and even have languages that are older than English.
      The English are far more laid-back about it all.

      Yet, together, they are all British! Only the English are English! The Welsh come from Wales, and the Scots (not Scotch - that whisky) are from Scotland :0) :0).

      OK if you think that's complicated ...

      If you look at the Union Jack (The British Flag) on my balloon, a couple of posts ago, you will see that there is a red cross like the crusaders; that is the cross of Saint George and England.
      There is also a white diagonal cross and the blue background - that's the cross of Saint Andrew and Scotland.
      Beneath the cross of Saint George is a white cross - that's the white cross of St Patrick and Ireland, which was part of Britain until it won it's independence back!

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  7. Wow John, your way through life is paved with happy coincidences! How extraordinary! I'm sure this will be a great opportunity for you, your work is great! Everything crossed for you!

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    1. Thank you, Judy, I will keep you updated

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  8. Well, John, it sure looks like a castle to me! Such a stunning place and I do so love the "folly." It looks like it would be such an awesome home itself. Kitchen and living room and bathroom on one half...bedrooms and bath on the other... Oh the romance of it all!

    Congratulations on finding another venue for your work too. I pray it all goes well at your meeting.

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    1. Thanks Sherry, these old estates need a lot of maintaining and that is why they are now all open to the (paying) public.

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  9. I think it is sound policy to anticipate the worst and be pleasantly surprised when the best happens - since I, however, am not the subject of this serendipity, I confidently predict the best for you! I think it is a great sign that a gallery owner showed such a reaction right off the bat. (Not to get your hopes up or anything).

    Britain's castles may be only ornamental, but I think they are absolutely beautiful! The only building referred to as a castle here in Miami is Coral Castle, carved over 28 years by a sole gentlemen, entirely from the local coral, as a tribute to his lost love. We also have the Biltmore and the Deering Estate, but, as you say, they are only stately homes. But what homes!

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    1. Thanks Dan ... if your prediction is right, you'll be the first to know :0)

      Some of the castles are still quite functional - I particularly like Windsor Castle.

      The other man's grass is always greener, Dan; just as many Americans love the Olde Worlde of England, lots of Brits (including me) really enjoy the US - and I have been all over the USA and always been made to feel very welcome.

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  10. It's a mighty good omen when a gallery owner drops what she is doing to admire your work! I am hoping this serendipitous event turns into professional gallery representation for you, John. Your work deserves it!

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    1. Thank you, Susan. I'm not very optimistic, but neither am I very concerned at this stage of my 'career'.

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  12. Wentworth castle/stately home is so beautiful! It looks like it's right out of Pride and Prejudice. I really look forward to seeing your sketch of the folly - wonderful stonework! And aren't you the lucky devil, meeting the gallery owner while at the printer! Unbelievable good fortune, John. :)

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  14. Thank you, Kathryn ... I've heard no more from her so I'm assuming she's not that interested!

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  15. Kathryn's post got added twice - hence the deletion

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  16. Hi John,

    Yes, I love the movie Pride and Prejudice and this looks like something that would belong to Mr. Darcy. As for the gallery owner showing an interest in your work does not surprise me, your work deserves representation from many galleries. Best of luck to you John.

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  17. How exciting! Good luck with the Gallery and, in any case, the lady was certainly taken with your talent! I will be looking forward to your next post.

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  18. Ooh, don't you just love places like this - especially at this time of year! And Your work should most definitely hang in a Gallery! :0)

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