Saturday, 17 September 2011

17/09: BONUS TIME!!

Isn't it wonderful when life throws out a few unexpected treats?

Yesterday morning  I phoned the London Gallery  to check whether any of my 3 pictures in the Society of Feline Artists (SOFA) exhibition  had sold.  I was told that none had -   The Exhibition finished last night and collection day for unsold pictures was today.

We got to the Gallery around lunchtime and I was really chuffed to learn that in fact one picture had been sold (the Norwegian Forest Cat based on 'Page' who belongs to my Dutch artist friend Daisyree).  So that was 'surprise number one'.  For the second year running I've 'been hung' and sold pictures at a prestigious London Gallery !!!!  Yeaaaaahhh!!

From the Waterloo Gallery we drove to the Methodist Central Hall, Westminster to lend a hand with preparations for the UKCPS exhibition which opens with the Private Launch tomorrow afternoon.   Over 300 pictures had to be unpacked, measured, recorded and prepared for hanging (mirror plates attached).    Many of the volunteers had been at the Hall since 9am so were quite jaded and seeking refreshment in the Cafeteria when we arrived.   

We discovered that today was 'open day' at many famous London Landmarks -  the Methodist Central Hall was one of them (one day only) and we could take tours of the beautiful building seeing parts that are not normally open to the public.   The 'dome' at the top of the building which is really high up and affords brilliant views over the Westminster skyline in London was opened up specially.    

During a lull in 'operations' David and I took the tour.  We had to climb a lot of stairs and finally ascend  a narrow metal circular staircase which could only be accessed by 6 people at any one time .. but the views were certainly worth it.   Unfortunately it was pouring with rain at the time we made the climb so the photos I took show a very 'grey' London.    Here are a few .... must say I feel proud of our capital city when I see some of the fantastic buildings there.

This photo was taken at a 'lower level' balcony

More or less the same view ... but the photo was taken from the very top of the Central Hall - definitely worth the climb!   Please don't ask me to identify all the buildings .... The London Eye (Wheel) is on the left and the
Houses of Parliament with Big Ben (clocktower) on the right.  To the right of Big Ben (looking a bit shadowy here) is 'The Shard'.     When completed in 2012, this will be the tallest building in the European Union and the 45th-tallest building in the world.  (yawn ... enough history/geography)??   The River Thames is kind of running through the middle of all the buildings here :-)

Oops .. I think this is the same view .. except in the second photo you can see all the tourists with colourful umbrellas avoiding the rain!

When we left the Central Hall building we walked through 'Dean's Yard' which is part of Westminster Abbey - an absolutely idyllic setting with quiet gardens and mature trees -  a far cry from the busy London roads outside - to get to the car park.     Ouch!!!   £3 per hour to park!!   and tomorrow we will be here for around 10 hours - need to take out a mortgage to pay the parking fees methinks!

Anyway, walking from the Central Hall building to the car park we passed the most beautiful buildings ... gateways and arches always fascinate me .. what lies beyond (etc).   Here are a few of the nicest ones we passed.

So we're back in London tomorrow.   Several of the other Executive members/volunteers are staying in hotels for a few days and with hindsight maybe we should have done the same.    Driving takes approx 2.5 hours each way for us and parking costs are horrific .. but we checked out making the journey by train and realised there are so many weekend engineering works taking place it will take us longer and cost more to use public transport .. so the car it is!!

I will be back at the drawing board on Monday and should be starting on a Golden Retriever, a 'human' and another cat (in no particular order) during the next week or so ... and I'm very conscious that I have the graphite drawing to complete from Mike Sibley's workshop in Maidstone last month ... its sitting on my workbench looking accusingly at me!


Anonymous said...

Congrats on the sale Sue, it is all good. Love the pictures and have to agree we do have some lovely architecture in the city.

Dais said...

Congrats on the sale Sue.
We already kew that Page is quit a portrait :-) but it is indeed a great painting.
If you need another Page photo just let me know. He loves to pose for my camera.

Jan/ said...

Yaaaay! Congratulations on the sale, Sue! I knew you'd have at least one and I'm so glad for you!
And thanks for the photos as I doubt I'll ever get to visit in person. You all do have some beautiful buildings!
Now, get busy (as I'm sure you already are hard at work or maybe even finished by now)and get the UKCPS Exhibition ready for even more sales for you!

"JeanneG" said...

Thanks for sharing the photos. I love seeing photos of other countries. I have never traveled and so nice that the internet makes that possible. Next best thing to getting my own ref photos. Congratulations on the sale. Please remember me when you are famous. (grinning).

Jennifer Rose said...

congrats on the sale :)

very nice view, would love to play tourist one day and see the buildings in person