My 1000th Fishink blog Post !!!
WOW, now I am officially old, 1000 blog posts old to be exact ! Who would have thought, way back in 2010 that I would reach this milestone and still be enjoying and exploring my illustrative ride ?
I must say that it has been a real privilege to create Fishink Blog and to bring you all of the stories and illustrations over the last five years. Thanks to all the hundreds of artists who have given me permission to do this. I’ve really enjoyed working with different publishers to help promote books that I adore, liaising with fellow illustrators and creative folk at fairs, shows, exhibitions or simply over a piece of cake and a coffee. It has made my five year ride simply speed by. I have gained new friendships, both on and off line and so I most of all want to say a huge THANK YOU to everyone who’s been on my journey with me, either part of the way or throughout the entire ‘Thelma and Louise’ Fishink road trip ; )
I must also confess, that the truth in writing a blog, is that it can be both incredibly frustrating and rewarding at the same time. The hours are long. Posting three times a week, doing all the research, finding/assembling the images and setting up the Q&A sessions, all takes up a large percentage of two to three days work. All just purely for the love of writing and sharing my appreciation of the arts and all things creatively visual.
Most importantly it would be great to have more people commenting. Perhaps everyone is getting as busy as I am or perhaps my readers don’t all speak English but when you can sometimes almost hear that on-line, ether-made, tumble weed blowing around amongst the silence of your blog posts, then I sometimes crave a little more audience participation lol.
But generally, (thankfully), those times have tended to be few and far between. They completely pale into insignificance when I get a random comment from some mid-century illustrator’s son or granddaughter that I’ve featured, telling me how proud they are to see their relative’s work on my pages. It’s a joy to feel that by writing about them, that their work is almost reborn to a more contemporary audience, who may not otherwise have ever come across their illustrations. That is such a wonderful feeling, and I feel so lucky to be instrumental in making that happen.
Or when that one shy person (who never, ever, normally comments) steps out of their comfort zone to declare how much they have enjoyed viewing something I’ve created, or how a post has somehow reminded them of happy times from their youth. I like how a reader’s thoughts on a post agrees (or even disagrees) with my own. These times are what a blogger, like myself, dreams of. This I feel, is what keeps us all engaged, alive, happy and energised to go on creating more.
Some figures from the blog show that it now has around 16,000 views per month. That I’ve featured over 9,500 collaged pictures over the last 5 years and there are over 700 of you who receive a daily email and another 1000 followers on my Fishink Facebook Page, 900 on Pinterest and a further 400 on Instagram … all pretty impressive for a small art blog. This year, I was delighted to be one of the top ten runners up for the UK Blog Awards and also when artist Mark Hearld, included my blog in his top five on-line reads. Praise indeed.
With that in mind, readers, I feel that I have reached a time in my blogging life, when I see a need for me to branch out into other artistic areas. During the last year, I felt that my time had been so overly-stretched and realised that in order to try and accommodate and continue all the things I love doing, that something had to change. I concluded that we can only maintain very intense periods in our creative lives for so long, before something has to give way and make room for fresh and exciting events to happen. After all, it’s how we enable ourselves to grow and encourage the discovery of the ‘new’, to re-nourish our own creativity.
So on reaching my 1000th post and in an attempt to create some new space in my life for fresh creativity, I’ve decided to reduce my blog-posting to just once a week. I don’t want the blog to fall away completely, but neither can I afford to keep working for three days a week just for the love of illustration alone. I hope that this will be a happy solution for all.
I’ve decided to concentrate this post on a retro reminisce, featuring some of the posts that stand out in my memory as ‘top times’. Either for the artist the post celebrates, the times they represent or just because the work is pretty dog-darn amazing !
Hope you also enjoy the look back in time with me….. do let me know : )
For the contemporary painters I wish to recall the work of Mary Sumner,
and the almost ‘too many to count’ posts on modern day favourites like Angie Lewin,
Modern day ceramics by Ramp Ceramics
and more retro work from Lisa Larson
Mid-century Illustrator-wise my favourites are still Helen Borten
More present day would be Benji Davies
and Chris Haughton
Of course there are many, many, MANY more and these are just a few who spring instantly to mind. I will share some more favourites over the coming weeks. Please let me know if you like my selection or if you have other posts that you remember more strongly and for what reasons.
Lastly a vote of thanks to my core contributors, you know who you are and your comments have kept me going over the years and have been very much appreciated : ) Look forward to hearing from you over the next 1000 posts, thanks for being on this journey too, it’s good to have like-minded friends all over the globe : ) Happy 1000th to you all !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!