A Nostalgic Lookback



                        Life as a Teacher and Artist in England.

                                                                                                           

My scrap book is old and not in the best shape, but allow me to share some of the print media coverage starting 55 years ago in Coventry, England.

As a school teacher, creating art in the summer was like another full time job; school ended at 3pm and the sun set at 9pm. The garden shed at the back of the family house was my studio, it allowed me to earn enough income to afford a shared luxury 2 bedroom apartments in the first central heated building in the city, in the heart of the traffic free shopping center and five minutes walk to my school.

A journalist who shared the apartment with me for a period, alerted me to the unusual practice of other journalist publishing my address in every newspaper article; according to him they were prompting the police to have a look at my activities; they could not understand how a school teacher could afford such an apartment.

The fact was that keeping warm was just as important to me as eating, the art provided enough income and the expenses of the apartment were shared. I was not involved in any illegal activity, as was the question being asked by the journalists.

These newspaper clippings show how active my life was , both as a Teacher and as an Artist,The move to Barbados did change my life as a Teacher, but began my long life as a fulltime artist, entrepreneur and Gallery Owner; as you will see in future newspaper clippings.

24 Comments


  1. Hi Courtney,

    I loved reading your nostalgic look back I do love a bit history so finding your article was a nice surprise. 

    You have clearly always been a hard worker and what looks like started out as a way to get by but to this day you are a successful entrepreneur. Congratulations to you, you are an inspiration. Great website!

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    1. Thank you Dianne, not all is a bed of roses, but I am happy I took the journey.

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  2. Good evening Courtney,

    Reading your post made me look back at my life. I will be 69 soon so have experienced all kind of things in many countries. I would not have missed any of it even if it was not always easy.

    Going back in time when I was studying at the University in Perugia, Italy I remember the cold winter of 1971. I had rented a small apartment in the old part of this medieval town. I had a big old fashioned stove I used for cooking but to do that had to use wood. Well, it was so cold that I put my feet in the oven. I survived this stupid action but my feet did suffer some.

    I can imagine this luxury 2 bedroom apartment which included central heating must have triggered a lot of envy. Now you are in Barbados and I am living in the south of Spain. Temperature wise we are both well off.

    Regards, Taetske

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    1. Thank you for visiting Teetske; I still have memories of Perugia, I was visiting the ceramic museum where I saw the best collection of ceramics from ceramic artists from all over the world, It was an international exhibition held every 2 years, I still have the books with all the extries up until that date.

      What made the trip from Yesi  near Ancona more memorable was quite fascinating, I was with 2 beautiful ladies from South America and we met 2 Italian men on their way to work, but were attracted to the 2 ladies and inquired if I was dating either of the ladies, on hearing NO- they decide to skip work and drive us to Siena, where we enjoyed the beautiful Cathedral and il palio festival. unfortunately the ladies did not return the admiration.  I enjoy the sun, sea and sand too much to endure the cold

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      1. Good evening Courtney,

        Thank you for your reply.

        Do you know the ceramics from Deruta in the province of Perugia?
        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Deruta_ceramics
        The pattern is very unusual and old. You will often see a Griffin depicted.
        I have various pieces of Deruta ceramics here at home.

        I have been to Siena but did not see Il Palio, only on film.

        Greetings from the south of Spain, Taetske

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        1. IT’s so long ago I am not sure, we did visit other ceramic establishments, But I do recall the all inspiring visit to the International exhibition; a friend of mine from Sweden who shared my studio, and exhibited with me in Barbados was excepted in one of the exhibitions.undoubtedly the best collection of ceramic art I ever had the pleasure of viewing.

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  3. Tons of value to be found on this post on Nostalgic lookback.This is a great and simple to follow guide. You laid it all out clearly and showed series of examples that helped emphasize your various points. I appreciate the fact that you shared real life experience with your blog readers. This is an eye opener for me. Thanks for sharing

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    1. Thank you for visiting; I sincerely hope I can be an inspiration for others to follow.

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  4. Wow! This is so inspiring. Your just revealed the power in determination and consistency. You never gave room to any form of distraction, you worked along the path of your passion and you were steadfast in it. 

    Nice to see another great write-up and it’s nice to meet you, Courtney. I will definitely re-visit your site because I can see you give such great and inspiring article here. Thanks for sharing

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    1. Thank you, my daughter in the photo must be inspired also, she just launched the first food delivery service today and seem to be very busy, I thought she would be satisfied with her new job as a clinical psychologist, but she has gone straight into business, i hope she stays longer at her job than I did.Nine years in University studies is a long time.

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  5. You have a very different website.  I think your scrapbook idea is charming.  It shows some real history, which we who read your post enjoy.  It is a nice look at a bit of your past; allows us to get to know you a bit in a very personal way.  

    Your site is a great way to show off your art.  I looked at the pieces you show.  You are really an excellent carver!  I loved the wooden pieces.  As I’m a fan of antique maps, I’ll have to come back and look again when you get that category online.  

    You have a good start, and I wish you lots of luck as you build on your website.

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    1. Thank you Fran; I wish I had taken up the computer earlier in life, but my fears were real as I now see how time consuming it can be and you never stop learning.The featured exhibition is requiring a lot of additional work, which requires more time creating.There was a feature in the local  weekly newspaper yesterday, and the chamber of commerce wants to do a radio interview next week.So much to do in so little time.

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  6. Hello devonish, it so nice to read your article and thank you for sharing with us your past experience.I was so impressed go hear about your nostalgic look back. I would love to read some of your old articles know the time past. You are indeed a motivator to me. Best regards

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  7. Indeed history has a lot to teach us. You took action for what you want and your success was causing people to raise an eyebrow? Rather unfortunate.

    People who are not proactive will always feel skeptical. Your hard work and desire to make a difference has bore fruits. Congratulations on your achievements.

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    1. Thank you, for a little country boy from a little Island; I can say life was an exciting journey beyond dreams.

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  8. Oh that’s great!! You are such a hard working man and you have made a story for yourself, leaving a lifetime reputation. This is great seeing a teacher who could afford such a luxury life. The police and journalists were looking for an offense to hold against you but little did they know that your hard work has taken you far. I love your article and my father is a teacher too. 

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    1. I guess the journalists could not believe I could afford the luxury apartment on a teachers salary; I never had problems with the police, I guess they were more informed. Thanks for visiting. 

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  9. I am really impressed with the life you have lived when you were young as a teacher and an artist. You have really explored your world and have impacted lives with your teaching and artwork. 55years is not a joke and I am certain you have lived a fulfilled life this is evident in your nostalgic look back. I am motivated and inspired the more to live a fulfilled life like you. Best regards.   

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    1. Thank you, doing the best you can always, being true to oneself,and my motto of not doing unto others what you would not like done unto you, has always been my guide in life. This has helped me to establish many long term and long distance relationships.

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  10. Wow! I haven’t read anything like this in a long time. Reading through your nostalgic lookback made my day. The scrap book is quite interesting, especially  where you played the part of Jimmy and the discussion between Jo and her mother.

    Reading through your nostalgic look-back made me reminiscence on my life’s journey and the experiences I have had (though it is a story for another day).

    It is not easy working as a teacher and as an artist, it takes a hardworking man to be to combine the two and still come out successful.

    Your website is unique, keep up the good job.

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    1. Thank You, my only regret is that I did not stay in teaching longer, I think I could have helped shaped some young minds for the better.

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  11. Hi, I read your whole article about A Nostalgic Lookback. It was wonderful to read. The story of being a teacher’s artist is really incredible. I am really surprised to see 55-years old Nostalgic art show. These remind us of old memories of England. The teacher was a very creative person. The teacher used to live many luxurious lives along with his career. My father is a government primary school teacher too.

    Thank for getting to know something new after coming to your website. Now I am going to share it with my friends I hope they will be very surprised to see it too. 

    Reply

    1. Thanks for visiting and agreeing to share.All the best.

      Reply

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