Introduction:

"This blog is not necessarily for lovers of art, it includes a variety of topics and whatever. I'm a painter who likes to know what's really going on in the world today. So you might find anything from Shamrocks to Salmiakki mentioned here on my blog. There will of course be some boring, factual and informational posts, but I'll keep them to a minimum, I promise!

And I might get a bit nostalgic now and then.

So you have been warned!"


- Alan Hogan



Monday, April 16, 2018

Meeting Miss May


Around this time last year (April 8th 2017 to be exact) I popped in to buy a signed copy of Imelda May's latest album 'Life, Love, Flesh, Blood.' It was a quick meeting with only a few words exchanged but it was nice to meet such a talented singer. She also seemed like a very nice genuine person with a really good sense of humour. Her album is great and her voice is amazing. My favourite song from the album is 'Levitate', mainly because it sounds like it could be a classic James Bond movie theme! It's a brilliant tune accompanied by a wonderful collection of songs which bind together to make this album a really worthwhile addition to any record collection!





Here's a clip of Imelda May's album signing at Tower records on Dawson street, Dublin last year.




Too often many celebrities or people of distinction or office just smile and shake a hand with a few crocodile tears thrown in for good measure, but Imelda May wears her heart on her sleeve. While chatting at her record signing I mentioned that I was over from abroad to see my parents and told her my father wasn't well. She listened closely and asked me to pass on her best wishes to him. She even asked me to say hello to all my friends living over in Finland. As well as signing her album for me she also signed a promotional poster with a greeting written in Finnish (or Finland-swedish which might be the case!). After asking what to write on the poster she giggled saying 'I hope this means what you're telling me, I don't want to find myself in the Finnish news for the wrong reasons!'. Anyway, just thought I'd post a few photo memories on my blog today. It was nice to meet this amazing singer and a real Dublin celebrity.





Imelda May's record signing queue in Tower Records.
















Morjens Finland!



'Sally O'Brien and the way she might look at ye! ...or Imelda May even!! 😊










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- Alan

   

Monday, February 12, 2018

Holy Redbreast! ..just sold my Robin design!







Sold!!!... thanks to the person in North Carolina USA who bought this 'Robin' chiffon top design from my Redbubble webstore. This is the first time I've posted details of an art product sold by an online webstore. I hope to do it again. I would be very pleased if buyers could send me photos of my artwork or products so I can share on my blog or facebook. If any of you have anything simply contact me through my Facebook page 












































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Thanks for reading my blog and please feel free to share it with any of your friends.








- Alan











Wednesday, December 27, 2017

My Finland 100 : 91- 100







Finland became an independent state on 6 December 1917. Already there have been numerous events staged throughout the country to celebrate this centenary year. The theme of the centenary year is ‘Together’. 


As I have been a resident of Finland for the past ten years I wanted to do a little something. For this I decided to post 100 images to my Instagram account on social media with the hashtag #finland100_igchallenge .




Anyone familiar with the Instagram application will be aware of the vast amount of wonderful photography posted every day online. There are so many amazing images to be found featuring Finland's stunning nature and landscapes. I imagine my photography may be lack lustre in comparison and as a result may not be noticed. So I decided to simply look closer in and around my new home for another approach. I have posted a variety of images found around my own house and neighbourhood. I didn't know much about Finland before I moved here, so I view this as an opportunity to show others a few things I discovered about or associated with Finland and it's culture. I have included everyday items, nostalgic items, locations, food and also some Finnish-themed artworks which I painted myself while living here. In other words, a bit of everything!!




The images are in no particular order of importance or preference, and now I'll finish with 91-100!






91/100
...a much aquired taste, Salmiakki is a salty liquorice sweet/candy from Finland which I tend to keep well away from.🍬 . Instead I prefer it's alcohol-infused cousin in liquid shot form (served cold!)
πŸ·πŸ˜€ ...'bottoms up! .. Have a good Saturday!!!


A post shared by Alan Hogan (@alanhogano) on




92/100
...Sunday sounds! Hailing from Kitee in Finland, Nightwish have to be the most successful Finnish band internationally ever. The ultimate in symphonic metal! ..Play extremely loud!!! πŸ‘ŠπŸ˜Ž
A post shared by Alan Hogan (@alanhogano) on




93/100
'Pohjola' is the Finnish word for North. This and many other soapstone sculptures were made by Finnish artist Hilda Flodin for the facade of the Pohjola Insurance building in Helsinki. Her sculptures were inspired by Finnish folklore and blend in perfectly with the wonderful art nouveau style seen throughout the city. They're one of my favourite features in the capital. I painted one of the sculptures with a little 'tongue in cheek' addition of some mobile phones. I called it 'Holding for Hilda'. 

A post shared by Alan Hogan (@alanhogano) on





94/100
'The Snow Tree' (acrylic-on-canvas, 2009)
A post shared by Alan Hogan (@alanhogano) on





95/100
..this is the Joulupukki in Finland also known as the Julbocken or Yule goat, a very old Christmas tradition in northern europe which won't be found in my old country Ireland. The joulupukki can even be found on some Christmas beers up here. ...so cheers!!! 🐏 πŸΊπŸ˜€ (ps. Santa Claus is also called Joulupukki in Finland)

A post shared by Alan Hogan (@alanhogano) on



96/100
...fakenews and ad-free technology and my favourite era of mobile phone evolution. Nokia have now moved on to creating smartwatches amongst other things. A long way since kiddies' shoes! (see 15/100).
A post shared by Alan Hogan (@alanhogano) on




97/100
.. Vodka Veekend! #finnishvodka #tgif πŸ˜€ 🍸

A post shared by Alan Hogan (@alanhogano) on



98/100
Postcard from Karis!
...The best little town in Finland!

A post shared by Alan Hogan (@alanhogano) on




99/100
... Christmas in Finland means glΓΆgg with vodka!! ..kippis! ..skΓ₯l!! πŸ·πŸ˜‚

A post shared by Alan Hogan (@alanhogano) on







100/100
Merry Christmas from the home of Santa Claus! ...HyvÀÀ Joulua!! ...God Jul!! ...Have a good one!!πŸŽ„πŸŽ…πŸ‘

A post shared by Alan Hogan (@alanhogano) on


Click below for more:

1- 10

11- 20

21- 30

31- 40

41- 50

51- 60

61- 70

71- 80

81- 90

91- 100


















Share this blog!







Thanks for reading my blog and please feel free to share it with any of your friends.








- Alan









 

My Finland 100 : 81- 90







Finland became an independent state on 6 December 1917. Already there have been numerous events staged throughout the country to celebrate this centenary year. The theme of the centenary year is ‘Together’. 


As I have been a resident of Finland for the past ten years I wanted to do a little something. For this I decided to post 100 images to my Instagram account on social media with the hashtag #finland100_igchallenge .




Anyone familiar with the Instagram application will be aware of the vast amount of wonderful photography posted every day online. There are so many amazing images to be found featuring Finland's stunning nature and landscapes. I imagine my photography may be lack lustre in comparison and as a result may not be noticed. So I decided to simply look closer in and around my new home for another approach. I have posted a variety of images found around my own house and neighbourhood. I didn't know much about Finland before I moved here, so I view this as an opportunity to show others a few things I discovered about or associated with Finland and it's culture. I have included everyday items, nostalgic items, locations, food and also some Finnish-themed artworks which I painted myself while living here. In other words, a bit of everything!!




The images are in no particular order of importance or preference, so I'll continue with 81-90...






81/100
... 'Kivimiehet', aka the Stone Men of Helsinki. This is a graphic impression of Emil Wikstrom's big statues outside Helsinki railway station. 

A post shared by Alan Hogan (@alanhogano) on


82/100
.. these Finnish Christmas pastries are called Joulutortuu or JultΓ₯rta, and I'm having a pre-festive #instatasting ! 😊

A post shared by Alan Hogan (@alanhogano) on




83/100
...when summer arrives many Finns disappear to the countryside or out by the sea to a place I call 'The Escape Hut' (acrylic on canvas). A small summer cottage which usually has a sauna, just like the one in this painting had. I took my first finnish sauna in this one!
A post shared by Alan Hogan (@alanhogano) on



84/100
..for that retro look you can't beat Marimekko's classic 1965 'Unikko' design. ...Nice curtains! πŸ˜€

A post shared by Alan Hogan (@alanhogano) on



85/100
..clearing snow is part of life in Finland. And like everything else, it's good in moderation! ⛄
A post shared by Alan Hogan (@alanhogano) on




86/100
.. 'Snow Tango' (acrylic on canvas) πŸ‘«πŸŽΆ - it's not uncommon to see people dancing the tango in towns around Finland during the summer and every year in the middle of winter the world snow tango championships take place in Tampere city, no matter how cold it gets!

A post shared by Alan Hogan (@alanhogano) on





87/100
...originating in Italy, the celebration of St Lucia is celebrated in a spectacular manner at the Helsinki Cathedral Finland every year in December. Here's this year's Lucia leaving in her carriage. ...Bringing some light into darkness! πŸŒ‹
A post shared by Alan Hogan (@alanhogano) on





88/100
...having grown up beside the Cadburys chocolate factory in Dublin I've been a fan of chocolate for a long time. I've tasted a lot of it from near and far. This large Finnish Christmas chocolate bar or Joulusuklaa is one of my favourites! ..I used to take several bars of it back to Ireland with me every Christmas for friends and family, and they love'd it too! ..Sadly the bars aren't to be found anymore. Maybe they'll bring them back again. They only have them in sweet form now, but i really miss the big chunky bars! ..πŸ’―% Christmas!!
A post shared by Alan Hogan (@alanhogano) on




89/100
...scissorsisters!! ✂✂✂...every artist needs a good pair of scissors and I can honestly say there's nothing better than Fiskars scissors. Their factory a short walk from where I live. A company who now own Iittala, Wedgewood, Royal Doulton, Gerber, RΓΆrstrand and (a piece of my Irish heritage!) Waterford Crystal. πŸ˜€
A post shared by Alan Hogan (@alanhogano) on








90/100

Oh..Star Wars, you never let us down! ..Brilliant!! πŸ˜€πŸš€..got to watch it in 3D (recommended!) at the Bio Forum cinema in EkenΓ€s. It's Finland's oldest cinema, operating since 1912 and it doesn't seem to have changed much since then. No computers, just one old lady behind the desk selling popcorn and tickets while scratching seats off a piece of paper. A nostalgic gem!! πŸŽ₯
A post shared by Alan Hogan (@alanhogano) on



Click below for more:

1- 10

11- 20

21- 30

31- 40

41- 50

51- 60

61- 70

71- 80

81- 90

91- 100


















Share this blog!







Thanks for reading my blog and please feel free to share it with any of your friends.








- Alan









 

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The Art Garage, Finland

The Art Garage, Finland
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