The Whos down in Who-ville

This is a work in progress from Carols in Perrett’s Park just before Christmas. It put me in mind of a rhyme and set my mind on a slightly more positive course this New Year’s Day.

Colours will be added soon!

Carol Singing in Perretts Park with view of Bristol



They’d do something he liked least of all!

Every Who down in Who-ville, the tall and the small,

Would stand close together, with Christmas bells ringing.

They’d stand hand in hand. And the Whos would start singing!

They’d sing! And they’d sing! And they’d SING! SING! SING! SING!

And the more the Grinch thought of this Who-Christmas Sing, the more the Grinch thought, “I must stop this whole thing!

“Why, for fifty-three years I’ve put up with it now! I MUST stop this Christmas from coming! But HOW?

from How the Grinch stole Christmas by Dr. Seuss

Front Room Art Trail 2016

Choral wrapping paper

For the 10th year running (!) I shall be part of the Front Room at tbc (Totterdown Art Trail) exhibition during the Totterdown Art Trail next weekend. I’ll have lots of prints on show as usual, and some greetings cards, but for the first time I’ve had wrapping paper printed!

This design is based on sketches of the Brahms Requiem concert at St Michael and All Angels Church, Windmill Hill, on the 2nd October, with the Windmill Hill Chorus and Orchestra, Conductor Mark Randall, Soprano Helen Roberts, and Baritone Martin Le Poivedin. I’ve been to several of these concerts which always coincide with the Art on the Hill trail, so I’m always exhausted, but they’re always amazing. Such a tiny community putting on its own orchestral concert is remarkable in itself, but after Handel’s Messiah and Mozart’s Requiem I did kind of wonder whether this could match up. It did – the chorus and orchestra produced what I can only describe as a wall of sound – different as it may be from the Spector version. It was all encompassing and engrossing and kept me scribbling until I’d drawn almost every singer and musician. Since then, I have to admit, I’ve saved Brahms Requiem on Spotify, and with this week’s news, I’ve found its sombre tone has fitted the mood especially well.

My normal method, once I get the sketches home, is to scan them and create a composition. Usually I try to include some context for the people I’m drawing — buildings, roads, trees, horizon, etc, and these give structure to the composition. This time I just had a bulging spread of people that didn’t quite work on its own. At the same time, I’d noticed that the printing company I use for cards was offering to print wrapping paper.  I wondered whether any of my images would work as a repeating pattern, and tried copying and pasting these musicians around an A2 canvas. The result felt like the concert itself, evoking that mass of harmony.

So I’m offering this work as ‘Choral wrapping paper’ – it’s going to be a very inexpensive way to get buy one of my prints, at just £3.50 a sheet, and would make excellent gift wrap for a friend in a choir!

Christmas cards

I’ve also had plenty of Christmas cards printed – using the image of Carol Singing in Victoria Park a couple of years ago. If you can’t get to Front Room, and would like some of these, please let me know. They are £2 each, or I’m willing to sell 10 for £15.

I’ll be in the Jarman Hall at the back of Totterdown Baptist Church, Sydenham Road, from 12 to 6 on Saturday 19th November and 12 to 5 on Sunday 20th November. Hope to see you there.