I just want to thank everyone that has bought work today and helped raise over £500 for charities helping children and educational programmes in Yemen. You are all brilliant.
This morning I listened to the Today programme on Radio 4 as I do every morning, to hear a report that the United Nations has warned that Yemen is going to face the worst famine the world has ever seen unless it can secure four billion dollars to keep aid operations there afloat. Education is one of the casualties of the war. Journalist Orla Guerin – @OrlaGuerin and her producer Clare Read visited a school in Taiz. She says many of the teachers have not been paid by the Government for years so many have left altogether. In one classroom she finds a substitute teacher – Ahmed, a nine year old boy. He is the best student in the school they are told and he has been blind since birth. He wants to be a teacher when he grows up. In the meantime he has a wish list -” a new school, chairs, doors, windows, black boards, lights and bateries. The most important thing is that they work .” They hear gunshot and explosions often and are scared they will die, and yet they still attend school clinging to their education now more than ever.
I heard this and thought I just wanted to do something, however small to help.
So with this in mind I am going to try and do a small bit to help. Listed below are a selection of drawings/paintings that I am offering for sale with all proceeds, minus postage, to go to a charity connected with children and education in Yemen. If you are able to help that would be wonderful . Thanks so much for reading.
All of the paintings measure approx 25 x 20 cm and are unframed. The price is £125 each which includes the postage costs.
Sitting and looking and drawing. A selfie of sorts perhaps. The tree and me.
A drawing from the Drumcarrow Craig series.
A drawing about a place called Drumcarrow Craig in Fife. It is a small hill a short distance from St Andrews, an extinct volcanic plug where the remains of an iron age broch still stand and the outline of at least three hut circles . The hill is scattered with small boulders, exposed slabs of olivine dolerite, with small pools and bog. There are white horses . It is the start of another new project with writer and friend Rebecca Sharp. We will be working together and independently to explore this small landscape- as Rebecca says….’the stories , voices and buried/dreamt things’. This is my reflection, and initial response.
The decision concerning my next project has loomed large for months now it seems. It has proven complicated given our current circumstances here in the UK with the country in lockdown and my dodgy ankle (Glencoe can wait ), but I now have my next expedition mapped and the planning can start.
I am intending to explore the most easterly and westerly points on the Scottish mainland – they being Peterhead in the east and Ardnamurchan in the west. These two landscapes are so very different enviromentally, culturally and linguistically. Peterhead has one of the largest fishing ports in Europe and over half the residents speak Scots. Over in the west Ardnamurchan is a gaelic spaeking, crofting community of only two thousand. The landscape is wild and remote. Beyond that I don’t know much, so I’m eager to get going with some research whilst we are still in lockdown to see what I might unearth about these two wonderfully distinct landscapes.
I cannnot wait to be travelling and drawing again.
Lapwings peewitting, crows polka dotting the bare fields. Kids at the strawberry farm out on this snow day. A quad bike pulling a girl in a plastic box, slipping, sliding across the track, giggling, squealing. Two boys wrestling in the deep snow, hurly burly, falling , laughing on this snow day.