Saturday, December 31, 2011

Looking back

What a year, what a sketching, painting, writing, thinking, planning, travelling year! It may not have looked like it to you here, as I didn't quite keep up reporting on it all but when I look back... whew...
It was the year of:
  The incredible Lisbon Symposium
  The Postcard from my Walk exchange

The Art of Urban Sketching book - due to be launched world-wide in February, and in which Johannesburg, and I feature!

  The Dark Cloud - a fully-packed year long painting course
  A Don Andrews workshop
  Giving my own first workshops - first a sketching one here at home to practice for the symposium, and after much needless anxiety, the 'Urban Portraits' in Lisbon
  Trips all in a row to Zambia, Portugal and France
  The flourishing of the Joburg Sketchers group, which has gathered lots more participants and is in need of more efficient organisation and - dare I whisper it - another blog

While many would have taken all this in their stride and hardly blinked at all this activity, I have to admit to feeling wrung out towards the end of 2011. All the new experiences, commitments and schedules so different from my normal laid-back and pretty secluded lifestyle were a shock to my introverted system - happy and exciting, but still a shock. Keeping up my own postings, and with everybody elses on the art blogs, Flickr, Urban Sketchers and Facebook just got too much and I apologise again to everyone I neglected.

Looking back at the year in pictures from the postcard project is very satisfying. A record of the seasons turning in Joburg (apart from one done on holiday in Zambia), memories of who I was sketching for, when and where - after all the insecurities that we all seemed to share about producing cards 'good enough' to send - I approach the end of it with mixed feelings. The eagerly awaited postcards plopping through the letterbox took forever to arrive, while time to make another one to send, seemed to come round as soon as the last one was stamped and sent off. With three to go, I've stumbled and fallen behind with this too, but will catch up soon and show you my wonderful collection of cards from a lovely bunch of artists and friends from Sketchercise. In the meantime you can follow them all arriving to and from around the world here at Postcards from My Walk.
I'll be back with wishes for the New Year!


dinahmow said...

Well, speaking as one outside this frenetic circle...I have thoroughly enjoyed your year's postings.
There is something non-precious about your blog and your art that is something I "call up" when assailed by doubts!
Thank you for a lovely and colourful year in words and pictures.
Happy 2012

Cathy Gatland said...

Thank you Dinah - what a nice thing to say. Happy New Year to you!

Sadami said...

Dear Cathy,
Beatufiul sketches, very eye pleasant. Especially, colours! I wish you Happy New Year!! Keep up wonderful art activities.
Best wishes,Sadami

Sydney said...

Congratulation on such a successful year! Happy 2012!! :)

Shirley said...

I love seeing all of your watercolor cards in one posting. Thanks for sharing - and I will follow you in 2012 with great interest.

RH Carpenter said...

Your year sounds so full and enriching and exciting - and, yes, a bit tiring; but oh, what a year you had! I hope 2012 brings you everything you need and most of what you want :) Thanks for sharing your work throughout 2011 and sharing your lovely home.

Cathy Gatland said...

Thanks Sadami and Happy New Year to you, I sure plan to keep on making art as long as I can!

Thank you Sydney and Shirley, and may the year ahead be inspiring and fulfilling, thanks for your support.

Rhonda, can't I have all that I want too ;-) Thank you for being a constant source of encouragement - best of everything for the New Year

Laura said...

Lovely to see several of your beautiful sketches all laid out this way and to read about your eventful year! Here's to another happy year for you!

Art with Liz said...

My gosh Cathy, I'm exhausted just reading your post! Wow, but you've packed in a lot this year and look at the results! Incredible.

Maureen said...

What a year indeed! This is a very nice way to remember everything wonderful that happened last year. The sketches are absolutely beautiful; I especially love the one with the iron table and chairs.

Cathy said...

Whew! What a year indeed! And what a post! I admire you for taking the task of summing up and documenting a whole year. You say you are tired, but really it's no wonder!
I wish you a more relaxing but still exciting and creative 2012!

Ganapathy Subramaniam said...

These are very beautiful sketches. delightful to look at.