Today’s the last day of NEOS for 2010.  It has been a super week with lots of visitors coming to the village. 

The NEOS catalogue is an excellent year round guide to arts in the North East of Scotland.  As people use this to plan their open studios visits, it’s important that the photo alongside your name is a good reflection of the kind of work you have on show.  One that really caught my eye this year was the entry for Sheila MacFarlane.  Sheila lives and works at the curiously names Tangle Ha’, just a couple of miles from Johnshaven so I was able to pop along to see her before opening up one morning. 

The road to Tangle Ha'


Alongside the road.


Looking towards St Cyrus.


Just when you think the road is about to disappear into the sea, you come across a couple of houses and Sheila’s distinctive blue studio.  

Sheila's studio.


You can't get much closer to the sea than this!


Sheila explained her fascinating printmaking process for which she uses a zinc plate.  Printmaking is something I’d love to explore myself if time ever allows – I went to a woodcut printing workshop a few years ago and (for a complete novice), was really pleased with my results and itching to do more.  I bought some lino cutting equipment but have never really had the time to get to grips with it properly. 

Sheila in her studio.


Sheila’s work is superb and each piece is very individual.  She makes a small number of prints from each plate (16 in this case) using different colours and papers, so they are all totally unique. 

This is the piece that I just fell in love with.  Sheila kindly let me bring it home to get family approval and check that it would look right on the wall.  Later on we all went back along with the money and for Ewan and the kids to learn about how it was created too 

It's mine now!


So it’s away to get framed and hopefully will be back and up in the living room in a week or two. 

Finally, I had to include this photo of a bench against the wall of Sheila’s studio – it made me smile! 

A spot for contemplation.