Fine Art

After I finished my GCSE Art, I vowed to myself I’d never paint another picture again. It took me twenty years to break this promise but during Summer last year I took some time out from work and went to a drop-in painting class in Deptford.


I enjoyed it so much, that I decided I wanted to do more, so spent the next few months attending class after class, evenings and weekends, to build up a portfolio with which to apply for a more protracted period of study. I went to ‘Painting for Beginners’, ‘Painting Continued’, ‘Drawing for Beginners’, ‘Drawing Continued’, ‘Introduction to Watercolours’, ‘Creative Sketchbook’, ‘Painting from Photography’ and a few more drop in classes when I had the time.

At 6.30pm yesterday evening, I had an interview for the only course I’ve applied for.  It’s a two year course in Fine Art timetabled around work commitments (because you’ve still got to pay the bills, right?).

At 6.45pm yesterday evening, I was offered a place on the course.  Just like that.  No nail biting wait, no unreturned ‘phone calls or rising tension when the postman comes.  Just a simple “Yes, we’d like to offer you a place”. I start in September. I’m happy.



Who knows what tomorrow brings?

Sometimes, on a Saturday, I go to a painting class. I went yesterday with the intention of painting something I could use as a Christmas card.

The class takes place in a large warehouse studio in Deptford and is run by a very charismatic and famous artist (self proclaimed). He provides all the materials, a few anecdotes and a generous lunch of wine, smoked salmon, crusty bread and French cheese. Plus the most eclectic selection of music to paint by I’ve ever heard.

The playlist has expanded since I first went to his class in the Summer, but it always starts with Up Where we Belong.

And over the next few hours, I’m sung to by The Beatles, Bob Dylan, Marina and the Diamonds, Adele and Kate Bush. The power ballad continues to feature heavily too, with Meatloaf telling me he’d do anything for love, and Celine Dion waking me from my post-lunch/post-wine lull with It’s all coming back to me now.

As corny as it is, the playlist has become more than background music; it’s become a soundtrack for my journey.

It was by going to the class in the first place that I found where I wanted to belong and after picking up a paintbrush for the first time in twenty years felt it coming back to me.


Oranges seem to be the only fruit

Tonight it was painting.  And the subject?  Still life. With oranges.  Again.

However, I seem to be getting better.  And there was almost a bit of banter in the class.  We still didn’t say “bless you” when someone sneezed (twice), but at least there was some level of chatter when the tutor announced that next week we’d be drawing from a nude female model.

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