Friday, 18 November 2011

Finale







The exhibition of my drawings and paintings at the National Cancer Research Institute's annual conference in Liverpool earlier this month was an exciting and high-profile finale for this collection of very special work.

In my address there I spoke about how I had continued drawing and painting myself, as the model, following my cancer treatment and how – with the amazing energy and assistance of Dot Browning of Plush Art – this had become a project involving over twenty local women sitting for me.

For me, Breast Cancer LIFE was all about life – a affirmation that despite the fear of our illness and the physical and psychological scars left by our treatment, we continue to be beautiful, to be female – and that we can continue to express and celebrate this.

The women who gave up their time, who told me their stories, and who trusted me to draw or paint them during what for many was a difficult and vulnerable time – were an inspiration. They each got something different out of the experience.

Personally, I wouldn't call it therapy – they were sitting for an artist, no more, no less. But I do hope that it provided, and will continue to provide, some hope and encouragement to women going through diagnosis and treatment; and to their families and loved ones.

Those drawings or paintings which sold will shortly be passed on to their buyers, so the exhibition will be unlikely to be seen together again. The book is however still available via this link.

I'm back painting the landscapes and seascapes that I love; but I will always continue to draw and paint from the model. It's what I was trained to do, and I'll never stop.

There are some more pictures of the exhibition here. If I manage to get hold of a good quality video of my address, or the interview I gave at NCRI I will of course post them.

Update: Here are a couple more pictures from another blog.

Tuesday, 15 November 2011

Speaking



I spoke at the National Cancer Research Institute's annual conference last weekend.

It was a very large auditorium, and a select and knowledgable audience – so I was very nervous. The talk went very well though. Once I was up on the stage I managed to say what I wanted to say.

It was very encouraging to have so much positive feedback afterwards, both about my talk and the exhibition itself – which was on display there throughout the week.

I will put up some more photographs, and a short video, over the next day or two.

Thursday, 3 November 2011

Working From The Model



Here is a short video which will be playing on large screens at the annual conference of the National Cancer Research Institute in Liverpool this weekend.

All of the Breast Cancer LIFE paintings and drawings will be on display, and I'll be giving a short presentation on Beauty, Femininity & Self-Image on the Sunday.

It feels like a fitting conclusion to the Breast Cancer LIFE project for me; an opportunity to see all of the paintings and drawings together for the last time before they go off to their buyers, and a chance to speak with cancer specialists about issues surrounding cancer treatment and self-image.

I'm very grateful that the project has given me the opportunity to draw and paint so many women from life, like Stephanie – shown above.

I'd like to thank my sponsors for the project, Chris Rudge Renewable Power and Dorset Cereals, and NCRI for inviting me to such a prestigious event.