At this time of year, I like to look back over all my photos, posts, sketchbooks and journals, to remind myself of everything I’ve created over the last twelve months. It’s often a surprise to see designs, paintings and products created many months ago, lurking way back in my camera feed. It gives a nice sense of achievement to view them all together and see how some ideas have developed over time.
Most of the artwork I made this year was of a practical nature – hand-painted ‘things’ and products with my art on, rather than actual wall art. The big favourite was hand-painted feta tins, which are super popular as planters. It was hard to keep up with demand on these as they are very labour intensive.
Hand-painted zip purses and hand painted stones also made popular summer gift items in the studio, as well as handmade books and bookmarks.
The focus on painting more ‘things’ rather than new original paintings, was in part driven by wanting to have a wider selection of ‘gift’ items available to purchase in the Charakopio store.
But one artist can produce only so many items….so I also sourced a few products from a favourite Greek designer, adding cotton tea towels and wash bags to complement our own tote bags and cushion covers. I’d love to go to the big Gift fair in Athens in January to find a couple more suppliers and manufacturers, but we’ll have to see how the Covid situation is by then!
This year we started working with a specialist printer in northern Greece, who print onto slices of beautifully white marble from the island of Thassos. We now have a dozen or so of my designs available on marble coasters, fridge magnets, pot stands and paperweights. They were very popular in the shop this season.
Some new wall art was made here and there during the year. I created a series of thirteen new original paintings specially for our 2022 calendar ‘Textures of Greece’. The originals are now available from this website and paper and canvas prints will be added soon.
Seascapes became a bit of an obsession of mine this year! I made rather a lot of new seascape originals, and taught several workshops in them as well. I love painting them without using a paintbrush, using a credit card, cardboard or pallette knife to apply the paint… sometimes working on a monoprint to start with…
We started 2021 with a strict lockdown in Greece… We had to send a text or fill in a form every time we left home.The Art Studio was closed to customers for months but luckily, I was able to work in there with the door locked! Much to my surprise, we actually had a pretty good summer season after that, with quite a few new visitors. It was also a long season, with summer visitors around until well into October.
Looking forward…. We have a few projects currently in process which we will launch next year… The Lumieres are almost ready for production, plus we have a mini cookbook in process????