And so it came to pass...
In my blip dated 28th February 2017 I said the following,
"Bought something for the house in the Coffee shop as we were leaving that sparked a brilliant idea in my head for a wedding anniversary pressie for David (it's not till August but it may take a while to get organised) and sent an enquiring email this evening. Got a positive reply so it's game on! I am so excited! Sorry for being so cryptic but can't say any more at the moment for fear of D sussing what it is! But at least I know what will be blipped on 3rd August! "
The "something for the house" that I was referring to in that blip was four small prints by artist Gail Robertson Stirling.
When we spotted the prints, we immediately fell in love with her quirky style and loved them even more because they were all local scenes and landmarks.
When we got home, I immediately googled her and was delighted to discover she is a local artist who as well as doing gallery work, accepts commissions, and so a little seed began to grow.
David and I try to mark our wedding anniversary by buying something we love for the house, not every year, just if we happen to see something we like. Sometimes it's a small thing like a scented candle or a daft thing like a novelty bottle opener and sometimes it's a special thing like photograph frame for a special photo.
This year, way back in February, having bought those prints, that little seed in my head grew into a thought of how wonderful it would be if this local artist who we had just discovered and whose style we loved, would be willing to take on a commission to paint our house (on canvas not the actual walls ;-)) as a surprise anniversary present for us (well a surprise for D :-)
I emailed her and she responded saying she would be delighted to discuss the detail with me. I was a bit concerned about how much it might cost but her estimate surprised me and we agreed I would contact her around May/June when the garden was a bit greener, and she would come out and take photos and discuss the commission further.
My plan had been to keep the whole thing a secret from David until the grand reveal, but in further discussion with Gail about the finished look of the painting (there were various options) I felt it only fair that David should have a say.
I arranged for Gail to visit in June and told David about an hour before she arrived so it was a surprise of sorts. We have been waiting with baited breath since then to see the final result and today marked the end of the wait.
So although I had planned to blip the painting on our 28th wedding anniversary in two two days time, when Gail dropped it off this morning I decided I wanted to blip a shot of her with the painting, so it had to be today.
It's not the best shot in the world as it was a last minute decision and there was no time to set it up properly (which is why I have cropped it within an inch of its life) but it shows the painting (still wrapped in loads of cellophane so not as vibrant as it will be in the flesh) with its wonderful creator, and we couldn't be happier with it. It's even better than I dared hope it would be.
Gail also framed the four prints we'd bought at the coffee shop and joked we are now collectors of her work. Here's hoping she's the next Peter Howson :-))
In other news, the new washing machine is now working and on its third load. I love it! It has a quick wash that only takes an hour. Last one took a minimum of three hours at the same settings.