So there we were only just back from the TT in the Isle of Man when we have to start packing for a swift road trip to Amsterdam with a car full of other artists and a boot full of paint for, what is probably, the final Paint & Beer at Villa Freikens. The elite travel squad consisted of Lil Miss Wah, Korp, Process Smith, My Dog Sighs and ourselves. Quite a formidable team wouldn’t you say? Time to hit the Eurotunnel.
On the drive we were all assigned roles – My Dog was driving, Process was to be navigator (with Sholto as backup in case things got crazy), Miss Wah was trip videographer, Korp was logistics and H&S, leaving Hugo on social media but his phone died as soon as we arrived on Friday and he never quite managed to get it charged again. Maybe it wasn’t the best idea to put him in charge of social media…
Before we knew it Saturday was on us and it was time to throw some paint around and drink some beer – as the name of the event suggested. We managed to get finished up in reasonable time then added the LED’s for the eyes (which don’t look half as good in the pic as they do in real life), did a little chit chat then headed off to the bright lights of central Amsterdam.
It was before 11 when we hit town and about 4am when we realised we couldn’t find another drink and so should probably head back. After an amusing episode with Hugo trying to climb a gate with spikes on at about 4.30am we managed to make it back inside Villa Freikens for a final drink with whoever was still sat up. Getting woken, having to pack up and get back in the van all happened in pretty quick succession on Sunday then it was a leisurely drive back home. Win all round. Cheers to Snub for having us, My Dog for driving and everyone else for putting up with us.
I can only assume that the planets are coming into alignment for id-iom as whilst we’ve been back home for the TT we’ve also been in discussions with various local luminaries in order to secure any wall spaces to paint and we finally triumphed in the face of adversity. So, when we finally managed to wrangle permission to paint a big wall down a tired and somewhat unloved passageway in central Douglas which is officially called ‘Guttery Gables’ (although there are many more colourful local names for the lane which are probably best not mentioned here) we thought we’d best act swiftly before they realised what they’d let themselves in for.
After being granted permission on Saturday we decided that we should paint as soon as possible and so set ourselves the deadline of painting on Monday and so had just a couple of days to come up with a design and make the necessary preparations. The space is perfectly positioned so you see the wall directly ahead of you when you enter the alley so we needed to come up with something that had a big impact and brought some colour to an otherwise nondescript back alley.
After much deliberation we finally hit on Oscar Wilde’s quote from ‘Lady Windermere’s Fan’:
‘We are all in the gutter but some of us are looking at the stars’
The quote seemed pretty fitting considering the alley’s name and once we’d combined that with the gargantuan face of a young lady with stars in her eyes we had just about what we were aiming for. After adding a few triskeles to give it that Manx touch and an Oscar Wilde tag to attribute the quote we were good to pack up and move on. Big thanks to Charles for helping us out with this one…
Fuck street art. Garden art is where it’s at these days. The natural setting lends the picture a certain vitality and gives a more vibrant and natural look. This little lady may eventually end up on the street if I can find somewhere suitable for her to be deposited but I thought something a little more classy would be better for her first foray onto the internet. Well, it’s either that or perhaps I’m just lazy and can’t currently be bothered trying to find a suitable location that isn’t in the garden. Whatever you think I’m going with the first description as the story I’m sticking to…
On a side not I’m not entirely sure why I decided to colour her in blue but I think the avatar look suits her quite nicely. Either that or she’s a rather human looking relative of Igglepiggle from ‘In the Night Garden’. Which would be weird. Oh well, onwards and upwards. What’s next?
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Whilst out watching the TT races we happened to come across this guy who was a little worse for wear to say the least. We presume he’d been drinking all day but couldn’t be quite sure due to the fact that he couldn’t speak but only mumble in incoherent fits and starts. Most people gave him a wide berth but we decided not to err on the side of caution and go and engage this ruffian…
This is a stark example of what happens when you drink and paint. You’ve been warned kids!
We’re at home for TT week but that doesn’t mean we’ve been entirely idle. After rooting about in the garage we came across some boards and we thought we might as well give them a new lease of life. As is sometimes our preferred route of creation we decided to just attack the boards with no particular plan in mind and see what revealed itself.
As in most cases when we don’t have a plan we somehow ended up painting a girl. There’s no need to fox ourselves before we’ve even stared now is there? The words in the background were added by Sholto who practised his free form writing. I believe it has something to do with her dead Grandfather, stars, loss and only knows what else. The sun was out and the beer was flowing by this point and things were getting rather free and easy and we were still only painting the background.
Somehow we managed to get it finished before we’d had too many beers and even managed to come up with some leather laces and a drill for the hastily conceived id-iom necklace that she is wearing. We’ve still got a while left at home so I’m hoping we can sweet talk our mother in to collaborating with us on a piece. Watch this space…