The weather is weathery. I’m writing to you in between watching Storm Eunice news reports and YouTube videos of trampolines and wheelie bins taking flight. The trees are twisting and swaying with the fierce gusts of wind, while daredevil ducks surf the white water waves on the river. Somewhere in the distance I can hear a chainsaw already at work.
I’ve been distracting myself, watching this video tour of the In Full Bloom exhibition at Mauritshuis in Den Haag (it’s their 200-year celebration and there are so many great things happening), face up close to the screen trying to get the best view, ears tuned keenly to pick out words I understand with my very (very, very) limited knowledge of the Dutch language. Yes, there are subtitles in English, but where’s the fun in that? Geen plezier.
I saw a squirrel run past the window and over the bonfire pile, followed by Margaret the big ginger chicken, followed by a wood pigeon, followed by a blackbird. I have no idea what was going on, but I think it might have been the conga.
One cold morning we found the Audi 100 was flocked in velvety frost that seemed to have grown across the car like swirling acanthus leaves.
I gave a talk to Salford University photography students.
I got invited to speak at a trade show in Paris about poverty and the environment. There was no budget.
Something died in the roof. At first it smelt overwhelmingly gross, and then it smelt like a pickled onion.
We did the maths (and then we triple checked the numbers) – in 2021 Toiletries Amnesty provided access to toiletries and hygiene products to over 2.25million people. That’s right. Over two million, two hundred and fifty thousand people.
I’ve been sent some interesting things in the post: vitamins, and doughnuts.
I met a man on the bridge who was looking for fish. He said he doesn’t eat fish, but he does eat squirrels, and they taste sweet like chestnuts.
I perfected my bread pudding recipe.
This month’s reading list goes something like this: Practical Classics Magazine… because, there’s a five page feature on Adam’s epic S1 Elise restoration project in the latest issue!
The money plant has started to flower… surely a sign.
Shutter Hub’s Postcards from Europe exhibition opened at Cambridge University with Art at the ARB, including a selection of images from Postcards from Great Britain, marking the 20th and final exhibition in the series of pop-up exhibitions for this project. Phew! Over 1000 images, printed on reams of newspaper and spread across four floors of open, bright and airy space. Such a joy to see an exhibition come together in the real world again. Our next exhibition, Your Body Belongs to You, opens in France this Spring, I can’t wait to see it.
I was invited to give portfolio reviews at FORMAT International Photography Festival, they sold out really quickly again, which is a good sign for me, but not so good if you’re looking for a review. I’ll be doing the New England Portfolio Reviews next month too, but if you’re reading this and thinking ‘damn, I’d like Karen to take a look at my work’, then you can always book a session with me here.
In other news, close to home, our lovely neighbour died. Mr Pope. His funeral was at 12 noon, ‘because that’s what time he used to come home for his dinner’ his wife told us, as two crystal-like tears rolled onto her cheeks, so bright and clear that the world was was reflected upside down in them.
Isn’t it weird how we live and die?
If you’d like to keep up with what I’m up to work-wise (talks, events, exhibitions, that kind of stuff), you can find my Agenda on my website. And, if you’d like occasional updates about all sorts of other nice things, in your inbox, you can join my mailing list here.