Sunday, 5 January 2014

Christmas with the Fleet Keeleys

In November I got a new set of pastels for my birthday.  They sat largely unused on my desk for the first few weeks until I found myself with a bit of spare time in the days between Christmas and New Year.  I decided it was time to get my pastels out and learn to use them by, er well - painting Christmas.  This was more about experimenting with a new medium than it was about producing finished pieces of art but I thought I'd share the results with you anyway.

Christmas started for us this year with a trip to see the Nutcracker at the London Colliseum on 23rd. I remember Anne trying to get tickets for this last year but they were already sold out so we were quite pleased when we managed to get it booked this time.  It is such a lovely festive story and the production was beautiful so it made for the perfect start to Christmas.  You're obviously not allowed to take photos during the show so I based this picture on one of the photos off the web site.  I went on to add a background after taking this picture and I think I spoiled it a bit by doing that so I may actually re-do this one at some point.  Note to self - learn when to stop!

Christmas Eve usually takes place at my house.  I invite friends and family round for mince pies and mulled wine. It's generally a pretty good evening and this year was no exception.  Looking back through Christmas photos there are very few pictures from Christmas Eve so I've skipped a day in my illustrated guide to Christmas and have moved onto Christmas day itself.

Having cleared up from Christmas Eve, I head round to Mum and Dad's house for breakfast.  This is usually accompanied by a glass of bucks fizz although we somehow managed to forget that this year and drinks were postponed to lunch time.  Not entirely sure what got into us there but never mind!  After breakfast we open our stockings and then head out with Dylan for a walk around Fleet pond.  Every year we stop for a photo in the same spot and every year we tell the same joke about how we should line up all the photos so we can watch ourselves getting older.  Sue and Ian were missing this year which seems wrong, so in order to produce my interpretation of the Christmas photo I have borrowed them from last year's picture.  While I enjoyed doing this picture, I probably wouldn't chose pastels if I was to do it again as it was very hard to get enough detail to give each individual features.  Either that or I would use an enormous sheet of paper instead of A3.  Still, I hope there's enough there for you to be ab

le to identify each person.  Once we're back from the walk it's time for a cup of tea and more presents then the rest of the day is spent either preparing or eating food and consuming far too much alcohol.

Boxing day is all about the walk.  We spend half of Christmas day debating where to go and then eventually, on Boxing Day morning we pile into the car and head off to our chosen location.  This year it was Frensham Pond.  It was a lovely misty day and I took loads of photos of trees in the mist.  I have no doubt that some of those will end up as paintings too some day. This is is a picture from Boxing Day of Dylan pretending to sit so he can get a treat from Dad.  Of the three pictures I've done over the last week, it is my favourite so I hope you like it too. Happy New Year and thanks for reading.