One of the hardest things to write about

has to be yourself, doesn’t it?  Where do you start.  At birth, as a teenager, when you started a business or now?

I’ll start at birth.  Mine was in Coventry, but this is a place I never got to know.  A city known for its brutal architecture, the Phoenix with its spikey arms and flat structures with sharp corners.  I’d moved over to Birmingham in my early months though, so know nothing of Coventry.

I’ve visited Spon End in my mid to late 50s and was struck by the brutal architecture.  The big blogs of concrete, the walkways, the little railings.  A Council Estate amongst estates.  

Writing is something that I like to do and I can write for you if you want.  Website content, brochures, social media content.  Just get in touch if there is something to discuss.

Ska d’cat – that’s right, that’s right, that’s right …

Ska d'cat art work - illustration two tone cat on sideboard with blowers and next to a figure standing up

Ska art with a twist …

Ska d’cat comes out at night but then again, can be pretty lively in the day too.  This is a special cat, black and white, at one with the world out there.  A lover of ska and two tone, this cat loves flowers too and standing on sideboards giving flowers to someone who looks a bit like a Pharoah.  Original art work for you.

Ska d’cat original art work £40 including postage in the UK. 

 

The food queue

Graphic = Why am I seeing poverty every day and why are the people giving food away driving Mercedes and Range Rovers and wearing Hugo Boss?

Every day the poverty is clear.  Crossing the town the queue for the food seems to be getting longer.  How come the people giving it away drive Mercedes and Range Rovers and wear Hugo Boss?

The Life of a Market Trader – 11/4/23

Graphic of woman with flowers caption The Life of a Market Trader

The day started with the trolley, this time I didn’t take as much as the previous two times.  I was going to focus more on my cards now at the market.  Travel was fine, it’s easy enough to get the trolley on and off the bus and the bus drivers are always so nice to me.  I sit up the front of the bus so all’s fine.

The people you get in Birmingham at the Rag Market are quite a mix.  I’ve seen lots of older white people, some of them looking quite poor (although maybe they aren’t) and many of the younger people are immigrants.  The people who have stopped to chat to me I think are just looking for a chat, but to be fair I’ve done that as well when I’m out and about and I’m not buying all the time either. 

There’s plenty of alcholics and probably drug users around the city.  I see that too in Walsall.  I’ve seen people eyeing up my stall and realising that there’s no ready money on my table, it’s all original art work and wouldn’t sell quickly and easily.  That means that theft is low (so far anyway, which is good).  It may be different if I was selling lighters, for instance.

I’ve got chatting to a few people who seemed like they had mental health issues, as you get chatting you get a sense of this.  That’s fine by me, I’m just saying.  Some man asked if he could rest his legs and sat on a table.  He told me that he struggles with his feet being on the ground because of nerves in his feet (I think) and years of being an alcoholic.  Other than that, people are just walking around and some look at my stall and others don’t.

One of the nicest things being on the market is the other traders.  I’ve learnt a lot from them and love their approach to life.  They have an optimism that I admire in people and they are good to be around.  I suppose that’s what self-employment does to people.

I’ll be on the Rag Market once a month, all being well.  Dates will be shared on my social and should be on my website too, so keep an eye out if you are interested.  You can buy my work through my website too.

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The Woman and Coffin

Soft sculpture The Woman and Coffin

Are the people of England being replaced by immigrants as the internet would suggest at times.  The same for Europe?  It will be interesting to see what happens over time, will Europeans have more children or not?

Archie

Archie - original hand painted art work

Who needs the police when we have each other.  Social media screenshotter.

For as much as his Paisley shirt was his favourite, Archie knew that every little squiggle and pattern represented a thought someone had had that had been crushed by someone else.  The social policing on social media had somehow become the mishmash print, oozing with great intellect whilst being crushed at the same time.

Archie is hand created on A4 card. 

£35 including postage in the UK.

Little blue bag

Blue bag with hand painted art

Do you ever get sick of buying deodorant from Lidl or Aldi?  Watching This is England on Channel 4 Catch-up makes you look at little bricks.  Up close.  It’s the little things that count.  Like where you buy your deodorant.  The main thing is is whether it causes white stains under the arms.  Sometimes we just need to get dressed up.  That’s what the little blue bag is all about.  Sprucing up.  Strutting your stuff.

Hand painted blue bag

Hand painted vintage bag – £35 including postage in the UK

You’re everywhere and nowhere baby – 19.5.09

Photo of England flags in window of high rise flat

What’s so little about being a Little Englander?  The colours fly high.  When did the “red, white and blue” turn into “red and white”?  The tiny windows don’t have to be tiny minds.  Simple Minds were from Scotland after all.  Then Patsy became part of Cool Britannia according to Vanity Fair.  So what is fair?  The Gallaghers know how to party, we all know that.  So when did this place lose its soul?

The wild flowers

Wild flowers

Tiny little footsteps, the wild flowers that ring true.  The bolt on the door, the closed shop, the time when you were nine.  They never go away and neither they should.  That time you should have spoken out, you know you were right.  The dust in the air, chip shop paper.  Do you know the time of day? Now that’s a silly question.  Fred Perry collar pinned down and looking smart.  Still climbing up the ladder, just can’t work out what the ladder is.

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