Wednesday, March 17, 2010


A day spent tidying raised the dust and now it is possible to see the floor in my bedroom. The cleaning was in honour of Anji Spangle who I had met a few years back in the briefest of meetings when she came to pick up her prints from me at an exhibition in Marlborough. We must have said no more than 29 words to each other, but enough to know that I had met someone I liked, and email and facebook meant that we exchanged more words. Still, just before she arrived I had a sudden fit of nervousnes. So when she arrived tired and late with the biggest and most boysturousiy of a dog in the biggest and widest world and cats scattered to the seven corners of heaven I wondered what on earth I had done! Maybe facebook sleepover not such a good idea!
However, after a bowl of food Anji soon settled down and a glass of wine was easily pressed into her hand! Poor dog was so excited by all the best things ever in life being in one small house, but on the wide wide beach she ran free and crazy with Rosie in dancing delight for being alive. First time on a beach and the sand underfoot was the best, then the cold sea, and she ran and tasted the sand and then just to be sure tried it again, again, again incase in different places it held a different salt taste. Sun came out on cloud softened day and dogs ran billy-o crazy and danced.

And though it was good to see them dance so free and happy, for me the best best thing was watching Tansy leap with crazy delight into rockpools sending water showing in diamond drops and stick her head underneath what was left and blow bubbles. 
Cats settled, dogs settled and we had a great day that included being shown around secret places in the cathedral, my favorite being the hidden paintings that I must incorporate into a painting again, and the Tudor graffitti from where the choir boys carved their name and small drawings of ships into the stone. I will try and get a photo of this wonderful piece of history, but so good to have such an intimate tour. I had never realised before that the mosaic that shines in gold was of Venetian glass and never before really seen the tiled floor as a whole, distracted by each tile. It makes a warm carpet of light in the sunshine.

This morning we will walk the dogs again on the beach, I will wrap paintings and then Anji will head off for a very long drive to Edinborough. I will then settle to paint, with a head full of ideas and a glad heart. Facebook sleepover was, after all, a good idea. 


Anji is now on her way to the dark north lands, having left me with a cd by her partner, David Hughes, and I am overwhelmed and head spun with wonder and delight, not at her leaving, but the music. ( I think I have picked up on Tansy's joy of living) Fantastic, lyrics and music. Just fantastic. 
And I have just had news that in advance of Bologna Frances Lincoln have sold the rights for The Ice Bear to Gautier Languereau of France,  ING Edicions of Spain, and Klematis in Denmark aswell as a Taiwanese publisher who are taking The Snow Leopard, Tell me a Dragon and Lord of the Forest also.

I have a story in my head, a book to read, a song in my heart and I think that maybe Anji is a catalyst for good things.


  1. Your art and photos and words are always so beautiful but this entry made me smile like no other. That unlimited crazy joy that only dogs can express so naturally is so vivid in these photos and your text. Thank you.

  2. Congratulations on the book news ..the pictures of the dogs captured in mid caper are great! their energy and joy is really infectious
    Glad you had a great kids had their first sleepover last week and were bouncing off the ceiling with excitement...looks like it might be the same sometimes for grownups lol

  3. The facebook sleepover brought so much joy, and I'm thrilled for you about the news from Francis Lincoln! It looks like this will be a good year for you, Jackie Dear... thanks for sharing the photos of the dog dancing.

  4. It seems you spent a wonderful time Jackie!! It´s so good for the soul, isn´t it? Don´t you draw better,fresh, lively and freely after a "therapy" of the kind you just had?
    And CONGRATULATIONS! about the rights sold to other publisher houses!

  5. What an exciting wonderful time, it sounds such great fun! Congratulations on your fantastic news and so well deserved!!
    Love Jane xxx

  6. Congratulations! This has been one of those days that you end with an earnest."Life is very good!"

    I apologize for always posting as Anonymous....I don't feeel anonymous, but I can't seem to qualify for anything else...What is a URL?

  7. It struck me how the photos of the dogs jumping together are like your paintings of hares.

  8. Those days with you have done me a power of good; a multi-layered, multi-coloured reminder of what is important (vital, more like) ...

    and Tansy danced on the beach at Troon this afternoon

    and I am heart-glad.