A few weeks ago I painted a small acrylic abstract on canvas board titled ‘Lost In Spain’. It became a part of the We Are All Artists free art project and the art work now belongs to a lovely lady named Stacie, who did some excellent detective work to figure out where the painting was made. Here’s a photograph of the art work being finished on our return from Spain, before it was handed over.

Lost In Spain

Lost In Spain : Acrylic and gold leaf on canvas board

The following week I hid a piece of art in my local town after being photographed by the local newspaper who kindly ran a feature on the free art project (the piece in the photo was not the piece I hid that day).

Me Hiding Art Among The Flowers

Me Hiding Art Among The Flowers

By coincidence, Stacie’s son found the piece of art I hid among the flowers! Having already received a piece of art as part of the project, Stacie and her son decided to pass this one on, which is a lovely community minded thing to do. Stacie’s son travelled to the USA later that day and he took the art with him. It now resides somewhere near Simsbury Connecticut, and that has to be the longest distance this free art project has travelled so far.



Map My Art : Can You Help?

I’ve painted quite often since I last posted here, and I’ll get round to sharing my recent work soon. Whilst painting I’ve been thinking more and more about where my art is, geographically. I’m in the process of trying to map my art. I’ve set up a page on Google Maps where I can record the various locations of my art around the world. It’s a work in progress, here’s where I have got to so far (click the map image if you want to see things in more detail).

Current locations of my art around the world

If you have some of my art, feel free to get in touch and tell the the country, town/city where the art is, and I’ll update my records. Coincidentally, here’s a doodle of where some hidden treasure is buried. I sketched this years ago and came upon it again while setting up the map project.



Print Proofs

A few people have suggested that I should make a few of my works available as prints. This is something new for me – pretty much everything I’ve made so far has been one offs. I tried a couple of local printers and I couldn’t get the results I wanted – somehow the textures got lost in the scanning/reproduction process. I parked the idea for a while, until I remembered a friend runs a framing/printing gallery in Brighton, called The Frame Factory. I went to see my friend Polly, and left three original art works with her.


These samples/proofs have just arrived in the post. I’m delighted with how good they look so I’ve placed an order to have some finished prints run off. Once I get them delivered, I’ll make them available in my Etsy shop as limited editions. They’ll be hand finished in some way – haven’t decided quite how yet. Watch this space…


Museum Piece : An Invitation To The Tate

Carole and I recently visited the ceramics department at the V&A museum. We were blown away by the range and quality of what we saw, here are just a few examples.

As we left the museum, I spotted a jar of seed markers on sale, and bought a few. I knew I wanted to do something artistic with them, I just wasn’t sure what.


Seeing how they were meant to be used in a garden – I returned to a previous favourite of mine, the poppy. I worked up an abstraction of poppy heads on the reverse of the sticks.


I’m really pleased with how these turned out. I should have left it there, but sometimes it’s tempting to keep on keeping on, and before I knew it…


…I’d gone too far. I really didn’t like what I saw in front of me so I painted over this image.


Frustrated, I abandoned the work. A few days later, I went to a preview of the new wing of the Tate Modern with a couple of good friends. We had a great time, and on my return home – I painted a version of the graphic which was on our preview invitation, onto the blank seed marker ‘canvas’.


An Invitation To The Tate

I certainly didn’t imagine this when I first spotted the seed markers at the V&A, and I’m OK with the fact that I’ve ended up with an abstraction of a museum, painted onto something I bought at…a museum.



What’s In A Name?

It was Carole’s birthday a few weeks ago, and as part of our celebrations, we went to an event called Paint Jam. The session had a David Bowie theme, and after being led through a few simple introductory exercises, we were given a canvas and encouraged to experiment.

I made this picture using acrylic paint. First I applied the paint using a wooden canvas spacer. It felt odd not using a brush at first, and I began to enjoy the more random nature of how the paint got from the implement to the surface.

Once I had created the grid of rectangle shapes, I took a broad brush, wet it, and dragged the watery brush across the surface in a single zigzag swoop. Once the paint dried I took the canvas home where I varnished the centre band of the canvas. I applied three coats, and when it catches the light, the shine looks really good.

What to call this work? I’ve been pondering this question for days, and unusually all I get in return is silence. So I asked friends to suggest a title for this painting…in all I got almost 50 responses. Here they are, along with a few subsequent exchanges between me and some of the kind contributors.

Eva-Maria Griese: Bowie, flash, lightning…? That’s pretty obvious though

Doug Shaw: Perhaps no surprise, this work was started at a Bowie themed evening, and I finished it at home.

Grahame Baker: Hi rise cheer?

Doug Shaw Nice. I see where you’re coming from. I enjoy offering things like this up for opinion and ideas. I’ve been stuck on what to call this for a while and these exchanges help free things up.

Victorio Milian: “Rainbow blitzkrieg”

Doug Shaw: The Ramones would be proud of you.

Stephanie Barnes: Have you tried asking it what its name is?

Doug Shaw: That’s the only conversation me and the painting have been having for weeks. I figured we’d got stuck and needed counselling, hence the ask!

Stephanie Barnes: I have three thoughts: Shazam (which is probably trademarked or copyrighted), breaking the monotony, or making a path

Doug Shaw: Great stuff. The path idea has also surfaced on Instagram and I am drawn to it. Thank you.

Heather Bussing: Sky scrape

Doug Shaw: How about that!? I only used one brush stroke in the whole thing, and it was quite nerve wracking for me, making that big mark right at the end. All the rest of the paint was applied by scraping the surface with a wooden canvas stretcher.

Elliot Merrony: Bowie x Physical Graffiti

Colin Newlyn: Ziggy played guitar

Doug Shaw: When the kids had killed the man I had to break up the band.

John Sumser: BrickSit

Doug Shaw: 😂 Love it!!

George LaRocque: Shazam

Mary Faulkner: Winner!!!

Michael Heller: #HROSBrit cc: Lars Schmidt

Philip Dodson: Postage stamps from Mars

Jason Seiden: Career Path

Sharlyn Lauby: “Wake up call”

Kirstie Johnson: “Bolt”

Jo Cook: Zig a zig ah. Sorry, made me laugh🙂

Fred Eck: How about the Shaw Slash!

Grahame Baker: The Shaw slash redemption?

Fred Eck: Love it!!!

Tony Mason: Electric red white and blue……

Annabelle Lambert: Bowie tower

Mark Farquar: Turner For the love of Zorro.

Paula Turner: Lighting is……..

Bina Briggs: Ziggy Stardust! X

Richard Martin: Loot Chute

William Tincup: Schutzstaffel?

Marco Fandango: Picture no. 53

Matthew Stollak: Waffle Sevens

Josh Rock: “2 Minutes for Slashing”

Ade Bird: Rest in pieces.

Gavin Collinson: Chair in the window.

Padraic Doorey: Cafe Rouge-baix

Claire Boyles: Dot dot dash

David Lambert: ‘s grate

Lesley Dodson: Zorro escapes!

Kirstie Tribe: Carpet burn

Steve Browne: I’d go avant garde and call it McTavish on the Plain !!

Heather Kinzie: Just a Splash

Kevin W. Grossman: Shazam-skiddish

Paul Hebert: For the bin

Barry Flack: “Four storeys high”….say what you see…..

Jayne Harrison: Crossing Dimensions, or Choices, or Infinite Possibilities

Shayna Joson: Use Your Vote

Circle Indigo: Aladdin Insane

Meg Peppin: Zag

Diane Taylor-Cummings: Seven

I’m grateful to everyone for the suggestions. I’m still not yet sure what to call this piece of work, and what’s been really useful so far about all this feedback, is that it’s opening my mind to possibilities I hadn’t previously seen. Thank you. I’ll update this post once a name is chosen.



Art On My Back 

Never Records logo

I’m heading into London for a preview of the new Tate Modern wing. I’m wearing a jacket which Arturo Vega and Ted Riederer screen printed for me. Carole and I watched the production process.

The logo was designed by Vega in support of the 2011 Merge Festival, which I was fortunate to play a small part in. I recorded a song onto vinyl, titled Human Resource, which became part of the festival.

Arturo Vega is now dead, and his excellent visual design work lives on. Keira has a t shirt he printed, so does Neil Usher, who cowrote the song, and I have the original test pressing of this logo.