Saturday, 29 December 2012

Off To The States!

Yes, only a few days to go before we jet off to America for the first time as a family... and I can't wait. I seem to have put everything on hold... "until I get back from America" for about two months now!! I'm going to try and just let the flow of life (and Jakki's instructions) take me along for a couple of weeks. We'll be flying in to Las Vegas for a couple of days before driving on to LA and then looping back to Vegas. The trip is mainly to catch up with Jakki's family, we'll all be meeting up in LA, at her Mom's. Jakki's Dad's coming from Montana and Brother from New Jersey. Should be a good time. Jakki's Dad has only seen Texas when he was 6 months old.. and he had a lot to deal with at the time . He has never met Tennessee, other than on skype, and Tennessee is about to turn 5! A BIG trip then. If you want an insight in to Jakki's Dad, you should go read her entertaining blog post, The Towelmaster about him! Hopefully, she'll find time in 2013 to get back to her blog.

from our first trip to Salvation Mountain 2005

 We'll also be taking some time to explore the desert, returning to the Salton Sea and seeing how Salvation Mountain is holding up now that Leonard is no longer on site. It's going to be good to have our two boys with us this time. We've also booked a couple of nights at the Joshua Tree Inn, in the Mojave Desert, the legendary final haunt of Gram Parsons... so we thought we should probably take his room, No. 8. Looking forward to that. I love it around there, obviously we'll take a drive through Joshua Tree National Park. It's just a shame it's going to be the desert in January, rather than June... i could do with a little heat (and dryness) in my life! I'll have a good dig around while we're over there and see if i can find any interesting nuggets to share here when i get back. Happy New Year to you all!!

My interpretation of the mountain.

On another note, we watched the Searching for the sugarman dvd the other night and I highly recommend it. I'd not heard of Rodriguez before this year. I was sitting in a great little pub up in London (The Barley Mow in Shoreditch) and it had an an amazing dukebox. I heard these songs, but I couldn't place the voice. Another woman in the pub looked over at me and said i looked like a cool guy (ha!) and did I know who the singer was? A mystery, i asked the girl behind the bar, but she had no idea... or interest! so i scanned the dukebox but nothing seemed to match, so i scribbled some of the lyrics (and not having an iphone i waited until i got home later) and googled them... Rodriguez!
a quick hop to spotify and there he was. Now i suggest you go and have a listen. Totally unheard of in the States, or here... and yet a legend in South Africa! Really, you should watch the film, it's a lovely story.

Friday, 21 December 2012

Watch These Guys

Thought I'd share this with you guys, I'm reading a lot of tiny home/sustainable living blogs these days... something just strikes a chord (probably due to living in a big 'dripping' house!). Anyway i came across this lovely building project by a band i really like, Bowerbirds. They're building their own home and recording studio in North Carolina, also home to some of my good blogging friends! (Watch the video and if you have the money please help them out, it's a great and worthwhile project, they're doing a good thing).
You can read more about them and their project on their kickstarter page, it's worth a read. I hope they reach their target. Maybe some of you bloggers could add a link and help spread the word ; )
I'll no doubt come back to the subject of building your own homes, but if you haven't been there before head to Lloyd's blog, or Kent's... i need my little fix of these to get me through the weeks. I'm starting to dream....

They're not the only ones at it. There's also this little house built by two other creative talents, Kim and Jonny. They also have a band, Family Band and they self built this cabin in the Catskill Mountains. It's a beautiful house. They also have this, The Wild Unknown, where you can find more of their cabin and also lots of other cool stuff to buy etc. Please go check out some of their videos of other folk playing out at their cabin, and their secret forest parties. These guys like to share what they've got. I'd love to go to one of these gigs up on their lot. Very cool, very human.... am i just turning into an old hippy? Here's one of the videos of a secret forest party, featuring Phosphorescent... another great musician well worth checking out! Right, this post has taken way too long, with too many brilliant distractions along the road. Find yourself a good half an hour and go and explore, it will make your life just that little bit better.

SECRET FOREST PARTY - 2011 from the wild unknown on Vimeo.

Monday, 17 December 2012

John's Indian Adventure

My friend and studio mate John has just set off on his adventures in India. He's started a blog to cover his trip and it will be a great read. He's a fantastic photographer too, so expect some mind-blowing imagery as his photographic projects progress.

This was from a previous trip John made to Sri Lanka

Wednesday, 12 December 2012

Satan Christmas Card!

Should have put this up sooner.... this is the design for my Christmas card this year, Satan/Santa (nice anagram)... and what I've been selling, along with my regular cards. Should have put it in my shop, but a bit late now. It's a reworking of one i made many years ago now. I like that it's printed and then the 'N' is hand cut and re-pasted, leaving that nice little empty window. Should anyone want them they are 5x7 inches in size and are £2.50 each or I'm doing a deal of 10 for £20. I'll be on it a bit sharper next year! This year in general has been a bit of a wash out and one I'm happy to forget. We're heading out to Vegas and LA in January to see Jakki's family and It'll be the first time Jakki's Dad has seen Tennessee, who'll soon be 5! I'm intending to move everything on in 2013. It's going to be pivotal. Well, hopefully!... it could also just fizzle out too!! You'll just have to keep checking in and see if I achieve any of it : )

Friday, 7 December 2012

Parallel Universe Cont.

I found the box with the Parallel Universe artwork in it! ( that's quite an achievement in our house.)... now the scanning begins. Going to see how i can best work with this stockpile of images. I need to find the best way to get a large range available for people to buy affordable prints from. It's something for the New Year, although i have put 9 available to buy for £15 each on my online, Big Cartel shop, GarrettWare. First I need to archive them. As far as I can remember there are about 220-240 of them, so it may take a while!
Anyway I'll come back to them and let you know what i decide to do. If you live in Hastings and St Leonards then you can still pop down to the Kave Gallery, Kings Rd, this weekend and pick one up on the spot, you can even get them framed ready to put up on your wall or wrap and give as a gift. I shall also be selling my wares at Christchurch School, St Leonards later this afternoon, pop along say 'Hi' and grab some goodies. I'll have cards, prints, framed prints, little envelopes filled with special prints, pebbles and even some of my Klutz Mix & Match, drawing books... buy one and get a FREE doodle (wow!) by yours truly. I think that about covers it. I'll leave you with a few more Parallels, hope I can bring a smile to your face.

Thursday, 6 December 2012

Talking of Gifts...

I received a package from fellow blogger Tracey last week, what a lovely surprise! A great old book on English Country Crafts that she'd found whilst digging around someplace. I've no idea how Tracey manages to think of these things, Tracey said she thought of my family when she saw it. How nice is that! There's even a very thorough section on how to dig your own local clay, process it and then weather it properly, brilliant! very old-school. Now i just need to keep some chickens and make my own baskets! (believe me, i would... I've still got a few years left!... i should probably crack this pottery conundrum first!!). On that front, my throwing is coming along, starting to 'feel' my way into it, getting the rhythm and flow going... and a bit more height! I have my weak points, but i shall be focusing on them, cue watching lots more clips on youtube of clay spinning! Anyway, just wanted to share one fellow bloggers kindness to another. Thank you Tracey.

Wednesday, 5 December 2012

The Gift

I meant to post this a while back. It's a beautiful short film made Independently by my good friend Griff, who used to share studio space with us all. A mightily talented man who has gone from illustration, to animation and now into full-on film! Hopefully we'll still work together on one of my animation ideas at some point (and there is hope on that front). That's unless he starts on a full-length feature! Anyway, enough of me....  now watch the film, you'll like it.

The Gift from Griff on Vimeo.

Tuesday, 4 December 2012

Parallel Universe

My exhibition opening went well, with some good sales. It was a good private view... except that i over did things on the booze front, when will I ever learn??? That meant i missed the other sale I was meant to do on Sat!... and so lost sales, bummer. Anyhow I thought I'd put a couple of these older Parallel Universes up on here. They were very popular at the gallery on Friday and I'd only thought of including them a couple of days earlier. I think I need to go back and revisit these and get them working for me again. I might even look back in to the idea of making a book of them. I shall be putting prints of these up on the shop soon and change them around more often to cover more of the range. They will be £15 an A4 print, they look great framed and it was really nice to see the smiles on peoples faces. When i created them originally for the Independent on Sunday (Review magazine), I never got to see that. I never got to see folk read the magazine and see their reactions. I miss doing these every week, it was a great job and nice to have to keep coming up with ideas. "Thanks" to Jonathan Christie and Sara Ramsbottom, who commissioned me and helped edit as we went along . Anyway, I'll make another post when they are in the shop, i may even clear the shop out and only have these for a while. Enjoy!

Thursday, 29 November 2012


.... so good! John Stewart AND Stevie Nicks, what more could you ask for??? Turn it up! I thought I'd leave you with this for the weekend. It's been a frantic week, I've got my joint exhibition opening tomorrow and another sale on Sat at the Printworks, where I have my studio. Hopefully folk will pop along and even more hopefully... buy some stuff! I shall report back with pictures.

Friday, 23 November 2012

The St Leonards Four- Art Exhibition

I'm having a little exhibition with some friends in just over a week (gulp, better get some work sorted). The St Leonards Four, will be at the Kave gallery, Kings Rd, St Leonards from the 1st-16th Dec. Private View on the 30th Nov (come along and say "Hi". Should be good. Will be fun. Pop down and get some prints, cards, mini-this and mini-that, everything affordable... Hell, I'll even be selling post-it notes and pebbles! Anyway here's the flyer and some splendid blurb.

The St Leonards Four exhibition @ Kave gallery

Overview by Brian Coen, Arts correspondent for the Bohemia Village Voice.

  This is not Art for the furrow brow crowd.  This is Art for the mischievous lovers of life.  
  Freed from normality, these four local intergalactic creative deviants, drag works of irreverent satire and beauty into the white cube of Kave Gallery, Kings Road, St Leonards-on-Sea. An inspiring, diverse combination of Illustration, Print, Collage, Painting and small Sculptural pieces makes this a riotous feast of Art. Check the gallery for extra curricular events being staged during the show.
  A must see for all curious live humans.

Scott Garrett
Mister Scott Garrett is the hairiest of the Artists in this Exhibition. His growth and development has born fruits in many fields. The power of his Art lies in the mastery of few words combined with succinct flourishes of the enpenned fingers to articulate wry human truths. His exposure of the fragile beauty in all is life affirming. Comfortingly reassuring for the insecure and a blast of humour for the rotund. Scott Garrett is an Illustrator of the highest standing. A mighty tall man, he has work published in national newspapers and a multitude of very important capitalist enterprises. Recently the coiffeurs’ paradise boy has directed his forces through to the third dimension. Along side his illuminatory drawings comes a wave of small sculptural artefacts. Combined and distorted consumer items of our current cultural morass reformed into new forms of tactile wonder. This is one beast that shall never be contained.

Sarah Evans
Sarah Evans commands a natural beauty that invigorates all who are lucky enough to witness her work and her eyes. With an understated passionate talent, her paintings and drawings combine deep understanding with seeming effortless joy. Having a lifelong love of creative exploration and a strong involvement in the education profession, Sarah Evans’ work and the work of those she has aided and inspired, clearly informs all to the importance of proactive creative endeavour in the community. She creates characters with gentle depth that draw you into their family. Her work uses line and colour so deftly that you are in danger of missing its technical delicacy as your consciousness swims in her magical world. If you are fortunate enough to own one of her Artworks, you know you have a treasure all yours forever.

Thad Skews
Heavily moustachioed Artist, Thad Skews, uses craft-oriented techniques to explore the fracture lines of Human Behaviour. His work oscillates between themes of love and the absurd. There are three parts to his Exhibited work here. His most recent work is the “Light Body” series. Using his “wandering eye” style clay heads, six caged colourless humanoid creatures wait for something. Vaguely embryonic and elderly, the Artist insists that the work is about making use of “…my all too short life”. To the viewer, the Art Brut and childlike constructions hover around a sense of angered “I could do that!” and “Why?” whilst being essentially mirrors. Other works by Thad Skews in this exhibition include lino-carved animal prints of a playful style and old encyclopaedias butchered with their image content reassembled into gently chaotic theatre scenes. His work is diverse and adventurous, though he claims to be the victim of distracted and inconsistent creative impulses. 

Sarah Janes
Sarah Janes is a perpetual volcano of free-spirited ideas. The smouldering forms of her work hit the surface of the world with a friendly slap. From her Quality Portraits oddball celebrity caricature series, shown in Brighton and Bexhill, to the diverse multi-media pieces exhibited at the legendary Aardvark Gallery and Tea Rooms, along with her voracious desire to put on concerts of incredible underground world class music acts in our little town… Sarah Janes is a major force for the Arts locally.
  This exhibition holds her new “Alphapet” series. The theme proved one of the most successful of the Aardvark projects. The reason for this success is their playful surreal simplicity. Bright coloured blocks of wood brought to life with choice collage material from old animal encyclopaedias, re-formed into absurd new zoological realities. These swashbuckling bizarre beings made of confused truths hint at works by Spike Milligan and Dr. Zeuss.

Many thanks to Jay Toole at the Kave Gallery, for all his enthusiasm, creativity and support for inspirational Arts in our small community.

Tuesday, 20 November 2012

My T-Shirts Now Available!

I've just opened a new T-Shirt shop, 'GarrettWear'.. which i hope will be successful, so pop on over and have a look around (and then buy one). It's mainly typographic at the moment and quite restrained, i don't really wear T-shirts with big all-over-the-front designs. I like them simple. I will be adding other designs (open to suggestions) and maybe tweaking the colour options of the designs available. The designs aren't restricted to the t-shirt colour shown, you can pick your own Tee colour, but the designs don't show up very well on certain colours. There are also a couple of tote bags and i may add other product along the way. Firstly lets see if anyone wants a T-shirt. Let me know what you think (and that should be easier to do now since changing my blog comment settings, give it a try, say "hello")

Wednesday, 14 November 2012

Those Glazed Pots...

Finally got some pictures off my phone, so figured I'd share a few of this last firing.

most of the bits, much better 'glassier' glaze this time.
you can see the back of the money box in the top image.

owl.... 'lump'? ...paperweight...whatever. Just made simple
pinch pots and put little bases on so i had things to test in the kiln

argggh, the curse of the rims! 

Monday, 12 November 2012

Glaze Firing #2

... well, it was better. Glaze is now looking much clearer, thicker and shinier... all good things. I'm still having an issue with the glaze coming off on rims and fine points, but nothing like it was last time. It's getting so nearly there. The colour is better too, both of the pot body and the glaze.. i added some iron to the glaze... i need to add a little bit more to get what i want. Now, if i could only figure out how i can get the glaze to just stay put. Next I'm going to tweak the glaze temp, i only changed the bisc temp this time, i didn't want to change both and not know where i was. It's going to be tricky as I'm restricted by the mini cone choices, although i can tweak this with the position of the cone on the pins.
Anyway, now i need to make some more stuff to test. This means more throwing practice for me! I want to put some photos up of them , but my camera (well, phone) doesn't want to work with me on that one! I'll get some soon. here's a little snap to keep you going (he lost the glaze off the tip of his nose : ( )

Saturday, 10 November 2012

Photographic Black Magic

...Trapping the souls of me and studio 'cell mate' Tim Marrs! Taken by friend and talent John Hodgson, check out more of his 3D photos here. Taken with one of these Nishika 3D cameras.

Wednesday, 7 November 2012

This Town-Hastings

Well it's actually St Leonards on Sea, but really it's all pretty much part of the same thing (well, depending on which side i want to be associated with at the time!)

Shoreditch-on-Sea from Hastings Borough Council on Vimeo.

...and here is a rather beautiful blog post that i've just read over on a blog devoted to this side of town, St Leonards.

Monday, 5 November 2012

All In The Background

... Lots of stuff going on here, but all in the background.. nothing solid i can put up here. I have a couple of local sales coming up, so I'm sorting prints and cards for those. I'm also sorting out a small joint exhibition in a local gallery, so my heads buzzing with things i can make and sell for that. It's been good for me to think about getting my work together for these and I've a few things I'm developing for them that i can sell, couple of different formats. Even thinking of names for the exhibition has kicked off a new line of thought for a possible project/prints. I'm trying to get some T-Shirts sorted out to sell too, so i can apply my designs/slogans etc to them, very simple, very graphic, i like them. On top of this i have my illustration work that needs doing... and It's been school half term, so we went visiting family.. and now I'm working at home as there's an "inset day"( another teachers day off.. the week just wasn't enough!). I also fired a bisc load yesterday to a lower temp than the last one, going to see how that works with the glaze. I'll then fire that as soon as... and then see if i need to tweak the glaze firing temps. I think i can tweak the glaze temps by adjusting the mini cone position on the kiln sitter pins. I read it somewhere and it makes sense. The cone issue was bugging me (and the local suppliers were pretty useless at offering advice) but i went to the internet and finally got a handle on it, i should be able to get pretty near the temps i want. Some confusion was over standard cones and mini cones(for the kiln sitter) being one number out, to allow for the smaller cone melting that bit earlier/lower. Anyway I'll see how it goes. I've also added more iron oxide to my glaze, so it's not so pale. Like i said, there's a lot going on in the background! I'll have some pictures of something soon. maybe a preview of my Christmas card this year.... maybe.

Saturday, 27 October 2012

Let Go

... which i guess is another way of saying "fuck it" (my latest approach to life and worries!). Ever since watching that video of Lloyd Kahn (man crush) riding on his longboard, i've found myself watching more and more skateboard clips... particularly the longboard... don't know why it appeals so much? Well, i do when i watch clips like this one.. the scenery may help! Anyhow, get a coffee, sit down and take a 5 min ride and.... just let go.

Friday, 26 October 2012

I'll Explain Later

... but here are a few elements from something I've been working on

Thursday, 25 October 2012

My Town- St Leonards on Sea

Read a nice little review of my little town, St Leonards on Sea, on this blog the other day. Blogger Paul had a link that took me too it. It's all very true and it is a town full of movement, in the right direction. I will be having a little exhibition/sale of a few interesting things sometime in Nov, I will report more as i get more info myself. Great town, come and visit.

Wednesday, 17 October 2012

Blast From The Past

I do like a bit of The The, very underrated. Time for a revival! 'Soul Mining' (Uncertain Smile) used to be a firm favourite, but now I've switched to 'Dusk'. Anyway one from each. Enjoy!

Tuesday, 16 October 2012

Throwing Shapes

... no, not on the dance floor. I finally made myself find some time to sit at the wheel and and get some clay spinning. It was good, but it was bad! It's very frustrating knowing where you want to get to, but knowing what you have to go through (or throw) in order to get there!! My first one always goes kinda ok, but then they seem to get progressively worse. Then I regrouped and settled down and the pots seemed to actually be achieving something (the fact that "something" was just a cylinder is neither here nor there!). I was finding my hands were finally figuring out what they should be doing and i relaxed a bit. I now feel encouraged to keep up this practice and somehow find a bit more time. I'm going to use these pots to do another firing and try and get this glaze and kiln working together. Until I can get that sorted i feel a bit on-hold. Don't expect to see any pot pictures for a while,  after all who wants to see pics of badly thrown pots?? Ha.

Thursday, 11 October 2012


I can't really take the credit for this, they are my boy's words (what's the opposite of proud?). He was having an argument at school with his friend who had told Tex that he was a genius, which apparently really pissed Texas off! Smart kids those two, ha! 

Tuesday, 9 October 2012

Life Savers

Thought I'd push a couple of books on you. These two popped up just when i needed them. I wasn't looking for them, they found me. Firstly there's Tiny Homes, this is the book by LLoyd Kahn that i said  i had bought. It is a fantastic book, with hundreds of pictures, of small homes, shelters, shacks that people have built. Tracey, you need this book... and not just because you make them. Anyway, go buy a copy. There's no way you could be disappointed (unless you have no heart or soul and if you don't please stop reading my blog!). The price is also incredibly reasonable.

The other book that found it's way to me is 'Fuck It, the ultimate spiritual way'. If you worry about stuff too much, care what others think too much etc etc go buy it and read it. It's kept me the calmest I've been in a long time, it gives you great perspective and it's not all that usual "spiritual" stuff, it's funny and very well written. It's a very Western way to embrace Eastern ideas. There you go, so whatever is troubling you at the minute, just say "fuck it" to it.... feel better? good. Buy it, read it, feel better. I've been sitting there in the evenings, when Jakki is working, with the lights down, both books on my lap, notebook, sketchbook and pen to hand... and found myself relaxed! (though that could be the booze, also sitting next to me!). Definitely books for this new century of ours.

Friday, 5 October 2012

Harvey Ball

We all know the now iconic image of the smiley face, but how many of us know who first created it? Well, i do and his name was Harvey Ball. How can something so simple be so....?... lovely. Considering his brief, it's a solution of genius. I've had this bit of paper taped up near my desk for the last 11 years (really?!) We should all wear one of these badges/buttons.... not a generic smiley, not the emblem of Acid House music, but this one, this perfect Harvey Ball one, which has something more of the Mr Men about it. He never applied for copyright, never made his fortune from it, just the $45 fee. It sold 50 million badges in 1971 alone!! I've rehashed it in photoshop, so i suggest you print it out and make a badge and wear it with pride and a big smile. How about a name badge too, so we can all 'know' each other a little better! (that was Elaine's idea... I was watching Seinfeld, the one with the 'fat free' frozen yoghurt!).

Thursday, 4 October 2012

...For Balance

Here's my other boy Tennessee, he's also a lovely human being (well, more often than not!). He's a very different character from Tex... for one he's happy to dress up! The boy likes a two piece suit, UP grape soda bottle cap badge and cap. This was on a rare trip up to London. How the hell did I live there for 9 years?? People, get the hell out of there!... it's killing you and fleecing you while it's at it. There's a better world waiting for you somewhere. If you're stuck for ideas just come to Hastings, I'll even buy you a beer.

Wednesday, 3 October 2012


Texas is 6 today and is turning into a fine human being, let's hope i don't go and muck that up along the way! He's also starting to look uncannily like his mother as a kid.

Tuesday, 2 October 2012

Magnolia Electric Co.

 Just been listening to Trials & Errors, by Magnolia Electric Co. (again!) and thought I should do a blog post for those bloggers that I know who dig a decent tune. Magnolia Electric Co. started out as Songs:Ohia, who started out as a guy named Jason Molina! He deserves a mention, a superbly talented guy who has run into some tough times recently, due mainly to drink and stints in rehab, which have left him with some large medical bills, read a bit more here. Anyhow, he's back on a farm someplace and hopefully doing fine. I won't write too much, I'm no music journo, I just listen to a lot of music, but can't play anything or dissect/ describe it very well, I just trust my ears and heart (always the best way, right?). I'll leave it to the music. If I was going to listen to more i think you should go listen to/buy The Lioness album, by Songs:Ohia and then I heartily recommend Trials & Errors for a good old rock out! I place Jason Molina right up there with Bill Callahan/ Smog and Will Oldham/Bonny 'Prince' Billy, yep in my book he's that good.The guy just doesn't make a duff album.

Monday, 1 October 2012

Lloyd Kahn

Saw this clip thanks to Robin Wood's blog (go and watch the other clips he has and save me re-pasting them!.. the surf/camera guy is well worth a watch and the line walkers is ... well, terrifying! but the photography is stunning).  I think more of you should see this film, if you haven't already. This man knows what's what. he get's it ...and I want more of it, well, a little at least. I'm off to find out more about this man...(and have since..and bought a book, which I can't wait to get and start reading and thinking. I'm on a real soul search these days aren't I? Ha!). Lloyd also has a very interesting blog, check it out!

Friday, 28 September 2012

Heading For Winter

I can tell I'm starting to prepare for another long miserable winter (isn't that all we have here now?) when I find myself listening to these kind of brilliant things. I need more sun, more warmth, a bit more joy, some palms, a cool beer, the desert.....well, that's me fucked then!! Better just hunker down and welcome my winter tunes back into my heart. Enjoy.. and definitely explore these great artists further if you're unfamiliar. ( Brendan Perry's album Eye Of The Hunter is highly recommended).

Wednesday, 26 September 2012

S.L. Jones

Shields Landon Jones. A new one for me, but here's a sample of his handsome carved heads and some info here. I sure would like one of these!

Tuesday, 25 September 2012

More Heads

Some of my other recent head discoveries. You can find/ track back to more info on these through my Pinterest, which I'm growing slowly and organically.

I love the use of green for the hair , I'll have to try that.

Weirdly this one reminds me of my dad, though not yellow!

just about as simple as a mask can get.

Monday, 24 September 2012

Just Because...

....I like them. Stumbled across these lovely things and thought I'd share. I do have a thing about heads, always have. It's what i always come back to. I'd love to make some like this. I have clay to explore now, but i think somewhere down the line i will also embrace wood. i have some tools stashed somewhere at my parents and a wood carving vice,  I'll have to hunt them down. I do like to make!

What a lovely face and expression. i found it here
Simple, but very lovely Milliner's head.