BBC Radio Stoke Interview

I’ll be joining the marvellous Susan Hanks today at 2.30pm to chat about all things arty. Why not tune into BBC Radio Stoke on 94.6 MHz and 104.1 MHz FM, 1503 kHz medium wave? It is also available on the Stoke & Stafford DAB digital radio multiplex, and online.

Drawing Tuition From 6th July


Depending on your location I can offer private tuition.  We can discuss your previous experience and what you would like to develop and then I can devise a way to help you.  I teach all abilities from beginners who need to learn the basics to the more advanced who want advice on how to develop their technique.  

Prices vary depending on location and length of session but an hour long session will normally be £30.

Contact me to discuss your requirements

‘Pretence of Wisdom’ Selected for Mall Gallery Exhibition, London

‘Pretence of Wisdom’
A portrait of my grandmother, Joan Bennett (1921-2000)

Preparing for this is rather exciting first appearance at Mall Gallery Exhibition, London.

Dear Artist
I can confirm that your painting has been selected for Final Selection.
Mike Clark. Treasurer

Society of Graphic Fine Art

99th Annual Open Exhibition at Mall Galleries, London.

The Drawing Society
Established in 1919, the Society of Graphic Fine Art exists to promote and exhibit works of high quality in colour or black and white with the emphasis on good drawing and draughtsmanship, in pencil, pen, brush, charcoal, conté or any of the forms of original printmaking, as well as any original artwork including paintings, which demonstrate evidence of drawing by hand.

The exhibition will be held at the Mall Galleries, The Mall, St. James, London SW1.


Submissions of work are invited from visual artists working in any medium which demonstrate evidence of drawing.

Artwork Types

The SGFA exists to promote fine art drawing skills, to this end the selection committee will be looking for strong evidence of drawing in the work submitted.

Work that is eligible for submission includes: Drawings in any medium, monochrome or colour – pencil, coloured pens and pencils, pen and ink, pastels and oil pastels, charcoal, conté, etc.

Any original artwork which demonstrates evidence of drawing by hand: – original printmaking, watercolours, acrylics, oils and 3-Dimensional work.

My Analogue Press Release Success

Well last week (10 days to be precise) I emailed my first ‘analogue’ press release to local reporter’s Les Jackson of the Leek Post & Times and Andy Lees of the Sentinel. I’m happy to report Les and Andy were the ultimate professionals when receiving my little story. Both were helpful, supportive and keen to push my latest art venture along.

However, what’s not seen or cannot be calculated (by those who have read it today) are hours devoted to tapping away on a photoshop app cropping , sharpening, blending, erasing, tilting and distorting, uploading and downloading my chosen 1MB image.

Then there was my achilles heal, formal English! Creating a story, an interesting story in the written form presented my biggest hurdle. The prepping, drafting, spell checking, redrafting and quality controlling of a 250 word press release, (with a story tell with supporting quotes and quality pictures), posed my greatest January challenge. But I knew I had a secret weapon, networking buddy, fellow Foxlowe Hubber and ‘copy’ specialist (amongst other things) Mark Brammar Associates.

The verdict, “Pretty good Gav, but there were too many superlatives.” Noted! I now know what a superlative is. He added, “Let the audience see your work and they can decide how good your work is.” I knew Mark would spruce this little story up and ‘learn me” to temper the salesmanship. Mark’s final spit and polish Lesson redraft meant I was ready to deliver.

But let me go back to approximately 12 months ago. I was tentatively developing my mingling and networking skills with fellow sole traders, business owners and support organisations. The Creative Industry Roadshow, which is a fully funded and supported event by Staffordshire Moorlands District Council, showcases the support, mentoring and business development available for creative business of all sizes in the Staffordshire Moorlands area.

Apprehensively, I found my seat near the front. Pen and note book in hand, I was ready to listen and learn about the virtues and tools required to makes a creative business sustainable and successful. The guest speakers, Emily Whitehead – Simply Great Britain, Mark Brammar – Mark Brammar Associates and Phil Edmeades – Journalist and PR Consultant were tasked with sharing their experience and wisdom regarding ‘Branding’, ‘Analogue Marketing’ and ‘Effectively Sharing Your Story and News’.

First up, your first meeting to your first sale, your customer interactions by email or face to face, and why they are all part of you and your brand. I think I was on the right track here. Time will tell.

Next, the importance of ‘Digital and Analogue Marketing’ and getting your news story printed. The advice, get an interview with the local newspaper/magazine. Check! Make radio appearances or two. Check! Don’t forget, word of mouth advertising, they’re all ‘Analogue Marketing’. Check! Well I know I’ve tried to face my fears and, to various degrees of success, do all three.

Finally, ‘What’s my story? This was it. How to prepare a press story, what angles the journalist or editor are looking for, how can your story or news stand out from the crowd.

Well it’s 12 months on, how did I do?

Emerging Stag sold at the Guildhall Gallery, Stafford