So there I am, stuck on a packed, stuffy train, approaching Nice station in the south of France. Wi-Fi connection had been absent for a few days, but as we get closer to the station, my phone pings and the ‘F’ icon lights up. I have been tagged in a post on Facebook.
It turns out, my friend has seen that the ‘Grand Appeal’ is looking for artists on their next art trail around Bristol and London, she reckons I should apply. This time it’s Shaun the Sheep that will be getting the makeover.
I managed to download the artist’s pack and for the rest of the holiday scribbled down sheep related puns and doodled designs. It wasn’t until I returned back home, that I looked through the dictionary for words beginning with ‘baa’ and came across the word babushka, meaning ‘a headscarf worn by Russian women’. Immediately I began to visualise a Shaun in a brightly, patterned design, reminiscent of a Russian doll. So that’s exactly what I did, a design in all my favourite colours. (I did also submit a further four ideas. Well, they did say enter as many as you like!)
On the day of announcing who had got through, I remember pressing the refresh button on my inbox every 30 seconds and by 6 o’clock, decided I hadn’t got through. Then it happened!! A message popped up – I had mail and it was from Shaun in the City! I was in the kitchen at the time and the rest of the family were in the lounge, but boy did they move when they heard me scream! I couldn’t believe that I’d got through.
I painted ‘my Shaun’ in my Dad’s cold and drafty shed back in November. Made of fibreglass, he stands 1.5 metres high, 1.5 metres long and took forty hours to paint. The lovely guys from ‘Wild in Art’, the company who make and distribute the sculptures, collected him and he went back to Shaun in the City HQ for a final coat of lacquer by the company Dentmagic.
I assumed Baa-bushka would be located in Bristol as I live only half an hour away, but couldn’t believe it when in March I had an email to say that my Shaun had been selected for the London trail. The day before the launch, the official trail map was released and I was further shocked to discover that Baa-bushka was number 1 and starting the trail in Carnaby Street. I think I can safely say that I feel like all my Christmases and birthdays have been rolled into one.
I can’t wait to visit Baa-bushka next month in London and it has been an amazing honour to be involved in such a fabulous project that will raise money for the Bristol Children’s Hospital.