Category Archives: family activities

National play day , willow dragonfly’s

willow dragonflysIts national play day tomorrow I am making willow dragonflys with children and familys at Holly Hill Countryside Park as part of the fun countryside day that Fareham Borough Council is running, there is also going to be making dens and camp fires definitely my kind of thing to be involved in makes me wish I was a kid again :-)

Last weekends lantern workshops and getting ready for next weeks parade

IMG_2262We have just had another great couple of days getting ready  for next Thursdays Lantern Parade . It was very busy and I didn’t stop all day on the Saturday for lunch so thank goodness I had thought to have breakfast before I left in the morning.

We are  so lookIMG_2337ing forward to the parade itself we made over 80 lanterns and have sold over 40 packs and with others are being made at home we decided to make  some changes this year and decided to reduce the size of the lanterns in the parade. It is so tempting  to make bigger lanterns however I would advise any IMG_2295one planning a parade to really give some thought to both your location  and the numbers of people taking part as well as observing . Their is some great advise out there when it comes to ensuring that your event is as safe as it can be.

I have received some lovely emails from schools and IMG_2318local groups so it is going to be really interesting to see what they have made.


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Winchester Lantern Parade , getting ready for this years event

Ive been so busy with the planning for this years Lantern Parade (November 28th) all of  the necessary legal requirements are in place and I have been busy recruiting volunteer helpers to assist with preparing the lantern packs for sale at the Cathedral as well as volunteers to assist me during the workshops…

This years parade is different to past years , as it is a stand alone event with a 5o’s style band the Cadillacs playing in the Cathedral grounds as well as a variety of other entertainment with of course the parade were planning a celebration feel to our event

Its going to be great fun .

Ive also put together a information sheet for anyone wanting to make their own lanterns which you can find on my ….Free hints, tips and resources page

If you want to join in with this years parade either as a participant or as a a volunter please contact the Cathedral for more details



Teaching parents how to face paint their children

I have just had spent a lovely day at Winchester Lantern Children Centre introducing parents to  the art of face painting.

My aim as usual was to provide parents with some hints and tips that the books don’t tell you and help them to feel more confident about approaching  face painting their children.

I first started face painting when my son was two years old ( he is now 25) as a means of providing a fun activity and offering a freebie to friends as a present when I didnt have very much money, in fact I often made presents or offered to provide activities as a present little did I know then that I would be where I am now.

When Ash was 8 years old and I had finished my university studies I went to work on Southampton s Play Bus for 3 years where every school holiday I trained staff to face paint ready for the children’s schemes, this carried on when I moved on to running Eastleigh Councils play schemes and over the years I have provided many subsequent training sessions as well as working at Festivals providing face painting as well as art activities in the children’s areas.

Always a useful skill t which  I enjoy passing on but this was the first time that I had agreed to providing a basic workshop for parents with their children so once again the old thinking cap on deciding what tips might be of most use to parents.




Eastleigh Community Mural project December 12

I have been very busy over the last few weeks consulting with local residents in Eastleigh about themes and ideas for their new murals, as with all such projects the difficulty is finding a common theme as everyone has such different ideas.

Many of the residents talked about what it meant to live in the area, the history as well as the present and the local countryside and how people interacted with each other.

I also needed to consider the fact that the designs would need to be multifunctional as  eventually the images would need to be  divided into smaller images and relocated at a later date, quite a tall order when in comes to creating a design that would meet the different needs.

From this we decided on two themes  and styles the first one being four panels with a theme including the local countryside , oak trees and silver birch being very relevant and one that included children.

The second would be one large design and so more traditional depicting a a central focus  including different  images  relevant to the area.

As would would be impossible to predict how many residents would be able to get involved in creating the design and  as we were so close to Christmas I engaged a assistant to help out on a couple of days  .

On the 8th of December I started on the week long project at a local hall.


Andover Jubilee Celebrations

Over the Jubilee weekend I joined forces with my friend and fellow artist Stuart Jebbitt to offer a creating a range of creative characters with families at the Andover Jubilee Jamboree. We were very lucky with the weather with the odd down poor and windy but as usual we didn’t let this stop the fun.