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Hoxton to Portobello but Sh!

Well the weather couldn’t have been better for a trip to London on Friday. My man and I packed up the car and headed south, sunshine flooding our faces, wall to wall blue skies, and not a cloud to be seen. The journey was an easy one, even on a Friday and we got to the shop and Hoxton Square in good time.

I’d spoken to Renee, the manager of Sh! in Hoxton, earlier in the week and she’d requested that I not arrive before noon as she’d got a film crew there filming “Joy of teenage sex” but they had promised to be off the premises by 12, and indeed they were all packed up when I arrived soon after. I’ll watch that programme with interest to see if my artwork is featured in the background. Renee and I greeted each other and over a welcome cuppa we chatted about our erotic worlds, and other peoples embarrassments within them, and the ways we try to ease that embarrassment for them with our easy manner and professional understanding.

I was pleased to finally meet Sarah too,  and put a face to the name, since I’d heard of her from the “Fannying around” (love that title!) sessions once a month, where women go to paint their fannies, that is they do paintings of their fannies, not paint ON their fannies! And since Sarah knew I have done my series of paintings of the “Fantasy Fannies” which she loved as a concept, we were able to compare fannies, so to speak. 🙂

The pictures, packed up, and ready to go, I hugged Renee goodbye, thanked her for hosting my exhibition, and left the fabulous Hoxton Square and its lively inhabitants sitting on the grass under the dappled shade of the September sunshine, and headed across town, over to Portobello.  This meant a trip through the touristy bits of London – Trafalgar Square in a halo of sunlight, Admiralty Arch, the Mall, Buckingham Palace, Park Lane, Hyde Park, Bayswater Road, and through the pretty roads of the quietly elegant white facades that is Notting Hill to the vibrant area of Portobello. Satnav found the Sh! shop easily, and I was delighted to note it was just a few yards away from the famous Portobello market itself.

Sh! Portobello exhbition

I went in the Sh! shop and introduced myself to the lovely Shelly who was expecting me, and who offered a very welcome cup of tea whilst I unloaded the car and set up the exhibition in the basement of the shop. I liked this venue as much as the Hoxton shop, although it was a slightly different set-up. I much prefer my artwork to be displayed together rather than scattered around and this shop was better laid out for it, with white walls that quietly display the work. It was hard work, hanging,  and I was more than thankful for the air conditioning, on that very hot day, and loved the look of them when they were all up. I said my goodbyes to Shelly, and left, with high hopes, which is always the way of exhibitions. Living in hope, that some will sell.

Sh! Portobello exhibition well lit

But, now it was time for lunch, even if it was almost 5 o’clock, we’d earned it. My man and I wandered around the meandering market, soaking up the vibrant atmosphere, and eyeing the diverse wares for sale – gleaming antiques, wooden furniture, vintage clothing, leather bracelets, fragrant crepes, vintage jewellery, fresh fruit, floral bags, brightly patterned pashminas, wooden toys, and all sizes of  scarlet shiny chillies, whilst listening to the background beat of reggae music, lighthearted banter, laughter, and the stall holders shouted greetings, I was aware of the vibrancy of the place, and thought it an ideal venue for my diverse, brightly coloured, erotic art. 

Sh! Portobello exhibition

I've been an artist all of my life, and my paintings now hang on walls in Europe, USA and Canada. I'm working on getting them on the other continents! My wide range of artwork has been exhibited nearer to home in the East Midlands, with the Guild of Erotic Artists at Beaumont Hall Studios in Hertfordshire, and at "Erotica", Olympia, London. I have also been featured alongside my work in the Guild of Erotic Artists book (volume 2). I love to create dramatic interest in my pictures, whether it’s to paint an unusual landscape, or just to utilise dramatic lighting in my figure drawings or strong colour in my animal portraits. Delighting in the spontaneous tendencies of watercolour adds an interesting and distinctive look to my paintings, some of which are purposefully ambiguous, enabling the viewer to use their own interpretation of my artwork. I also love to hide images, and humour within my paintings, whether it’s a secret message, or an erotic couple hidden within a landscape, or even an erotic landscape where the couple are camouflaged as the features of the land itself. I am equally happy painting in oils, acrylics or watercolours and love to draw with pencil or ink. I have also developed the very effective method of drawing using white pencil on black card which creates dramatic pictures by just picking out where the light catches the body and leaving the rest of the image to the imagination, in darkness. I can also utilise many different styles, whether it is realistic, abstract, surrealistic, erotic, fantasy or camouflage art where something is hidden within the painting. I'm just passionate about my art, whatever I paint! But, it doesn't matter how many landscapes or pet portraits I paint, its always the erotic stuff that people are interested in! I started blogging to share some of the strange conversations I have with the people I meet. But its evolved into far more than that now.

Comments (2)

  1. Steve Harding
    Oct 2, 2011

    Excellent blog and website. Good luck with it.

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