The last week has been one long blur of driving and collecting work from different artists.
It is such a shame that I had so many to visit and so little time to spend with each one, because visiting the artists at their homes, seeing their studio's and getting a small insight into their world is just about the only "perk" that I have found in this job.
I visited many people and time permitting I will get around to them all, but to start with I will mention the person who instigated the my mini-tour of England, that person is Jackie Morris.
Many people have asked where the image of the Hare at the top of the 'blog site' comes from,
well it is a slightly altered version of an original drawing by Jackie which we were lucky enough to have and then sell a few months ago.
I say lucky because Jackie has allowed us to be the only gallery that has some of her original pencil drawings on show.
As many people know Jackie is a very well known illustrator and author, and has more books to her credit than I can think to remember. Her latest 'Starlight Sailor' was published only last week [and if anyone wants a signed copy including a unique drawing with the signature, then give me a call].
Although many people don't know her name they would instantly recognize the work if they have been inside a bookshop in the last few years, as she creates the covers for the books of many
Well my visit to Jackie came about as she had told me "you are only getting more drawings if you come and collect them".
So I did.
It was a little bit of a literary journey as on the way I was able to visit the home and "writing shed" of my all time literary hero, Dylan Thomas.
Having visited his home, shed and grave almost 40 years ago with my girlfriend [now wife and mother to my children] I wasn't able to pass nearby without having another visit.
Sometimes things are better left as memories and this was maybe one of them.
Much as I loved seeing his home and the scenes and pub that he looked at and visited daily it was a little sad to see the village 'Laugharne' [or Milkwood as it became immortalized] changing and becoming part of the modern world, a little of the magic had vanished forever.
I will at some point [I promise] show a few of the pictures that I took of the places that hadn't changed and where a little of Milkwood lives on.
Above are paintings by Jackie and a picture of her. The very strange thing is, as I mentioned to her "you write very much like Dylan Thomas".
"It must be the Welsh air", she replied.
Maybe, who knows?
The last picture shows the inside of Dylan's "shed", complete with his last beer bottle.