A Wild Card on a Wild Day

Last year I decide to take the plunge and enter 'Sky Landscape Artist of the Year'. I submitted  a painting and waited.....I then found out although I didn't make the short list I was able to apply to be a 'Wildcard' which I did and got in.
Hosted by Joan Bakewell and Frank Skinner, the competition is judged by award-winning artist Tai Shan Schierenberg, independent curator, Kathleen Soriano and art historian Kate Bryan.

Each of the locations that are chosen have the shortlisted artists and an additional 50 'Wildcard' artists. We were able to choose which location we applied for and although I would have preferred 'the Gower Peninsular' I felt it was probably better that I went to a nearer location on this occasion. This was 'Paddy's Hole' a small harbour apparently named after the many Irishmen who helped build 'South Gare', an area of reclaimed land and breakwater on the South side of the River Tees.

A few days before I thought I had better try my hand at 'Plein Air' painting as I usually paint from the comfort of my studio.
I visited Seaham Harbour, did a small sketch and then went on to do a very large scale painting shown below:)

That was it my preparation for this momentous occasion!!

When I knew I was definitely going to 'Paddy's Hole I decided to check out the location to hopefully calm the old nerves. The area was along a rather foreboding private road. When I arrived, talk about being exposed to the elements! It was an extremely brisk day and definitely blew the old cobwebs away.

I took lots of photos and felt a little more prepared for the next day if only knowing where it was!
Early the next day the weather was extremely changeable. I headed out not knowing what to expect and took everything but the kitchen sink. We were filmed carrying all our gubbins in groups and led to one of the view points.
Thankfully I had a far less industrial view. I had the lovely sand dunes and sea view with a group of wind farms in the distance. I chose a spot a bit further down from the road and boy was I glad as I found we were thankfully sheltered from the elements. One minute it would look like the heavens were going to open, the next it was beautiful blue sky.

The industrial view point.

The Fishermen's Huts.

I had some brilliant company to my left and right which really made the day fun and calmed the nerves.  Brenda Ward was painting to my right and Sarah Watson was to my left. 
Every now and again the judges would do their rounds and talk to various artists.

Brenda ward

Sarah Watson

Progress being made.

 We only had four hours but I seemed to paint a lot faster on this particular day.

'Wild at Heart' by Linda Vine

At the end of the day we were invited to go and have a look at the shortlisted artists. Shortly after this Brenda and I were asked to comment on camera about one of the artists work. You can see this highlight of the show for about 2 seconds on the series.  If you day 2 of the episode from Paddy's hole about 45 minutes in you will see our debut performance:)

The Misty & Beautiful North Pennines

Yesterday I had to go and take some of my work across to Allendale Forge Studios, I say had to but any excuse to drive over there is one I gladly use.
I love the drive through Wolsingham, Stanhope and then from Rookhope to Allendale. 
It's usually extremely quiet and a bit bleak but when the light is dramatic its a real treat, to me anyway. It was a very gloomy journey on the way but on the way back there was a great combination of light and mist.

Very atmospheric

Love it!

'The Look'

I have been working hard this week to get organised for the Christmas events I taking part in at Wynyard Hall and Durham Christmas Festival. I will have lots of prints particularly of the winter scenes in various sizes. They will be available framed and ready to hang.
I am also working on a series of mini originals which will make a lovely unusual gift for Christmas.

Cozy Cottage

Here we have this years Christmas Card, now under the banner of Linda Mumba Fine Art.
This is the first of my Art Cards and there will be more landscapes and seascapes to follow next year.
Can you just picture yourself inside this cozy cottage with the fire blazing staying toasty inside, best way to enjoy the snow!
The cards are now available to order in packs of six on the website. They are 150 mm x 150 mm, printed on a high quality textured card.

Cornwall - Day 4

Today I intended to just go to Rock and get the boat over to Padstow but then as other road signs popped up I couldn't resist visiting a few other places. 
First stop was Port Isaac, the main car park is out of the town centre which is fine on the way in but rather steep you could say on way back!
As I entered Port Isaac I stumbled across the film crewe for Doc Martin the TV serial! They didn't seem to want any extras so I went on my merry way to the lovely 'Chapel Cafe' which also had a gallery/gift shop.

Port Isaac Harbour

Wanting to make the most of my last day before travelling home I left port Isaac and drove to Rock where I boarded a small ferry sailing from Rock to Padstow.



I loved Padstow and despite the gloomy weather report it turned out to be a beautiful day.

Stein's Patisserie

One of the locals

Smoked fish salad - lunch/Tea at Cherry Trees Cafe, Padstow Harbour


I think this was my one of my favourite places if not the favourite as it was so peaceful with just a handful of people around. I am sure it is not so quiet in the summer but it really feels like a hidden gem. Sat and watched the waves for a while.

The coastal paths in Cornwall are stunning, though exhausted by this point I decided to take a walk along this one. The interesting thing about coastal paths is you just want to see around the next corner, which can make for a far longer walk than anticipated. I asked a lady along the way if it was worth going round one of these corners and she assured me it was so I kept going!!!

Glad I did to find this view with the stunning Sea Pinks which are out in May.

I kept going and came to Daymer Bay, after seeing a quaint old church in the distance I felt compelled to go there asking myself do I really want to do this?
However I am glad I did and after crossing a golf course I came to the splendid 
St Enodoc's Church. The oldest parts of the church date back to around the 12th century.

St Enodoc's Church

By the time I had been inside the church dust  I realised it was time to start walking back as it was getting late and nearly dusk. It had been a lovely day and very fruitful on the photography front. On my whistle-stop tour of Cornwall I took over 1700 photos!! I have no excuse with that amount of inspiration! I thoroughly enjoyed my Cornwall experience and realise there is so much more to see so hopefully I will be back in the not too distant future.

Looking ahead

Last year was a good year for me in many ways yet I believe the best is yet to come and am really expectant of great things this year. 
I feel excited about the direction my work is going and the way the momentum is picking up. One of the things I love about my job is going out to find inspiration for my paintings, one of my favourite places is Bamburgh, Northumberland although I have yet to do a painting of this beautiful part of the coast. 

On this particular day I have to say it was extremely wild with the sand rising up making interesting patterns. I then travelled to Stanhope then across some very bleak countryside to Blanchland, what a cute village! 

I had to of course inspect the local tea room which was really nice there is also a nice hotel 'The Lord Crewe Arms' which I have yet to try out but looks a treat.

So many quaint cottages round this area just waiting to be painted!