I'm usually in the gallery seven days a week,
which although I enjoy it does mean that I miss out on a lot of important things in life.
Little things like seeing sunsets or rainbows, the colour of the sky, the shape of the clouds,
the changing of light after a storm. All things I love.
Also I miss out on more important things, like having a relationship with my wife and children, spending time with them and my lovely dogs, and just being at home a little bit.
But, the gallery does seem all important and I am determined not to leave a "stone unturned"
when it comes to making a success of it.
So most of the time I really enjoy being here, but, just every now and again I wish I wasn't.
I never expect any visitor to purchase anything, I fully appreciate that these are uncertain times
and that the art we show is not cheap [although it is certainly an investment].
So I am used to people asking "can we just look".
Of course they can, the majority of the pleasure that I have comes from ordinary folk who just
take great enjoyment in what we show, the majority of them are a great pleasure and the questions they ask give me satisfaction as I am able to close my eyes and picture the artist, their studio, home, and many times the sources of their inspiration.
This is great fun and a great pleasure to pass on to interested people.
When they leave, usually with an apology for not purchasing it is not a problem,
they have enriched my day.
As an example a family visited this week. They were interested in and asked about many things.
They wanted to know the origins of the gallery, what I used to do, how I found artists,
and generally just what it was like to lead this strange life that holds no guaranteed pay packet.
I answered every question honestly but finished with a comment that I probably had only one
hour of real pleasure [enjoying the art] each day.
Before they left the father told me
" let me tell you that you have just given us our one hour of pleasure today".
How lovely and how rewarding.
Bu, it's not always like that, sometimes it's like today.
Many of the display area's in the gallery are "sand pits", which is good and bad.
They have to be combed to give patterns in the sand. When freshly combed and with sculptures or ceramics displayed upon them they look fantastic, and I am often told
"what a fantastic idea".
Unfortunately people like to play with sand, I don't mean children I mean 30 - 70 year olds.
Often to my great irritation I will find a name written in the display or a "July luvs Peter"
[I hope he loves her because I don't].
It takes me about 20 minutes to remove the exhibits, carefully smooth and comb the sand and then replace them, so that when a serious person comes in they are displayed at their best.
So today after having to do this three times [yes, there are a lot of brain dead people out there]
I was feeling less than happy.
This was followed by an obnoxious man asking for a large discount if he purchased two sculptures. Rather than ask him when he last asked this in a supermarket I gently explained
that everything was "priced to sell" and that almost everything was priced by the artists.
"Can we have them anyway"? His wife asked him.
"Do what you want, but don't ask my approval, if we don't get money off I don't want them".
He Replied [such a nice man].
I explained to Sir, that if he could make them, and make them cheaper that I would buy them from him.
I don't enjoy days like today, they leech all pleasure that comes from being here.
Still, the sun is shining so I am going to close [what! its not 9pm yet] and go home.
Tomorrow is another day and there a lot of lovely people in the world and the chances are at
least one of them will come in here.
In fact one did today but it is just a measure of how a few small unpleasant experiences can
outweigh the good when measured over the day.
Tomorrow I hope to have some exciting [for me] news that I will want to share, complete with pictures I hope.
Meanwhile one of today's better moments was taking the long overdue pictures shown above.
At the top is the shrine by Novie Trump, titled "Dreaming of Flight".
Both sides are shown, on the reverse there is an egg behind a glass window. I love it.
Next are a pair of "Boxing Hares" by the talented Nichola Theakston, we haven't had any of her work for about a year and it is lovely to be showing something new, exciting and fresh by her.
Last of all is a beautiful, strange sculpture by Helen Nottage.
"The beauty Within" is what I have named it, but I think that it also says a lot about us all.
The person within is revealed, something that not often happens.
Three [four but one is a pair] very different works that all excite me in their own different way,
all of them I love and feel very fortunate to be showing.