Shanklin Town Council Elections – Thursday May 4th

I am letting you know that I am re-standing for Shanklin Town Council Elections on Thursday 4th  May.  I was co-opted onto the Council around 18 months ago and will be a candidate for election in the Shanklin South Ward.

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I am standing as an independent.  Shanklin Town Council has traditionally not been about party politics.  This enables us to ensure that we are able to get things done for the benefit of all Shanklin residents.  With the Council elections going on the same day and with some town council candidates also standing as party representatives for the IOW Council there is a danger that this could give the Shanklin elections a political bias which could be detrimental to the town.

With more aspects of the Council’s work being devolved locally the role of the town council is becoming increasingly important.  I can offer stability as I am already a council member, enthusiasm and drive to ensure Shanklin continues to thrive.  I have spent seventeen years in the tourism industry and know how important tourism is for Shanklin’s success.  I have recently sold my guest house to move onto new challenges and I have moved to the Shanklin South area I wish to continue to represent.  I am now self-employed as a professional artist.   I hope this also gives me a creative vision towards the future of Shanklin. Public money may be tight on the island but with energy, determination and imagination we can get things done.

Please include Karl Stedman in your choices for Shanklin Town Council Election – South Ward. I would be grateful if you could share with Shanklin South voters.  I am not intending to produce a leaflet as I do not feel it is appropriate and it is less recycling for you!

A few more of my drawings

I drew this ages ago of the Ukrainian Catholic Cathedral on Duke Street which is just off Oxford Street in London.

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Another oldie this time the reception building at The Mariners on the Island of Anguilla.

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I drew this just before it was knocked down for a development of flats. It was the old Palladium Cinema in Kendal. The front part of the building had some lovely 1930 details, now lost forever. The building had already closed down but I was able to get access, I took some photos in the gloom but it wasn’t until the photos were developed that I was able to really see all the furniture and original light fittings that my flash photos had picked up.

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The Esplanade Gardens Cafe on the seafront at Shanklin on The Isle Of Wight has recently been ‘redeveloped’ with a new roof and layout. Unfortunately this has meant the loss of the little cupola and the internal wood panelling that gave it it’s character….that’s progress!

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A second set of random drawings!

Here are a second set of random drawings from the pile!

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Chester

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Brampton

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The Keep, Brough Castle

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The Clocktower, Brough

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Good old Ambleside

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The Town Hall, Barrow.in.Furness

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The market square, Brouton.in.Furness

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The priority church of St.Mary and Bega, St.Bees

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St.John’s in the Vale, north end

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Dame Birkett’s school, Penrith

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The Swan Hotel, Grasmere

 

 

 

 

 

 

Book Bingo and my first completed squares!

My partner Phil and I volunteer at our local community library which stopped being funded by the IOW council and has been taken over by Shanklin Town Council. If the town council hadn’t taken it over we’d have lost the library for good……incredible isn’t it!

We have one paid member of staff and a team of volunteers. Fundraising in circumstances like this is very important. Phil over at reviewsrevues.com (read the whole story there!) had the idea to produce bingo cards set with reading challenges instead of numbers. Sold at £3 per card they aim to generate some much needed money and get library users talking and excited about books.

If you complete a line you get a small prize and at the end of six months the first full house card pulled out of the hat will receive a Grand Prize!

The scheme was introduced at a library coffee morning last week with the Mayor, High Sheriff, local press and radio in attendance. We were interviewed and it was on the local radio hourly news bulletins throughout the day.

Already the response has been incredibly enthusiastic with people coming in for their first stickers and wanting to talk about their books.

So here are my first two stickers and the books I read!

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“The Sketchbook War, Saving the nation’s artist’s in world war two”, by Richard Knott and “Eric Ravillious, masterpieces of art”, by Susie Hodge.

The 1930s and 40s seemed to produce a rich seam of British artists and illustrators and some of my favourites are Edward Ardizzone, Edward Bawden, Eric Ravilious, Evelyn Dunbar and Lara Knight, all of whom produced large bodies of work during the war.

(I think we we are lucky enough to have found another rich seam  with likes of Clive Hicks-Jenkins, Paul Bommer, Ed Kluz, Mark Hearld, Angie Lewin, Kit Boyd and Emily Sutton, amongst others).

The Sketchbook War tells the story of some of the artists who went to the front to capture something of the life and death, horror and destruction caused by war (I’m not sure they were supposed to show so much of the horror and destruction after all ‘ the powers that be’ don’t like to highlight that inevitable aspect of war).

It’s a fascinating read with information gathered from the artists’ letters and from recorded interviews (from those who survived!). I don’t always want to know too much about the private lives of the actors, musicians and artists whose work I admire in case I’m disappointed but in this instance I find myself even more impressed and inspired by their work.

My only criticism of the book is that there are not enough examples of the work talked about……however of course that’s set me the task of searching out more books about these artists. The first one I’ve discovered is from the Masterpieces of Art series and deals with Eric Ravilious.

Eric Ravilious was responsible for a magnificent range of different works, workbook illustrations to ceramic designs for Wedgwood, from travel posters to murals and watercolours. The first part of the book deals simply and straightforwardly with a biography of his life interspersed with examples of his work while the rest of the book allows the reader to enjoy his extraordinary work, his landscapes and interiors, wood engravings, High Street illustrations and War art.

On 28 August 1942 Eric Ravilious flew to Reykjavik and then travelled on to RAF Kaldadarnes on the coast. On his arrival, on 1 September, an aircraft failed to return to base from an operational flight and the next morning three planes were despatched at dawn to search for it. Ravilious chose to join one of the search missions. But his aircraft failed to return and after four days of searching the RAF declared Ravilious and the rest of the four-man crew lost in action. His body has never been recovered.

As a fan of his work I can see this being a book that I’ll treasure.

Crafternoon party

Last year I started a craft group in Shanklin. We meet once a month on a Saturday afternoon to ‘do’ crafts. There are usually about fifteen of us and a wide range of crafts on the go. From knitting and crochet to needlepoint and cross stitch, rug making, glass painting, paper cutting and jewellery making.

We’re called The Shanklin Crafternooners (you see what we’ve done there……..crafting in the afternoon- crafternoon….genius!)

We meet at the community centre but in August we decided to do something a little different and have a summer garden party here at The Hazelwood. People would still be able to craft but the afternoon would be more of a social affair and we’d all bring food along to share (though in fact the Crafternoon is usually just a excuses to eat copious amounts of home baked cake anyway)

As it got closer to the day of the party we began to get worried that we might have rotten weather so of course if you can’t have a garden party actually  in the garden the only alternative is to bring the garden inside……so that’s what we did. We moved a lot of the furniture out of our breakfast room and brought our big plant pots in. Infact the weather wasn’t too bad and it was quite a sight to see a group of crafters sat in a big circle in the middle of our lawn with glasses of wine, plates of food, all talking and joking whilst happily knitting and crocheting away!

To make the breakfast room a little more ‘gardeny’ and ‘crafty’ I made a hanging of big dramatic white paper flowers to hang over the fireplace………IMG_20160211_080415_kindlephoto-46072533

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A walk along the esplanade

With a break in the horrible weather we took a walk along the esplanade. Apart from a small cliff fall which has pushed some beach huts onto the revetment path Shanklin seems to have managed to survive the winter pretty unscathed!

The surfers were out in out in full force…..they must be mad!

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My pen and ink drawing of the same view