Ty Hafan

#family friday

artist spends a sunny day and starry night with snowdogs


I’m from the north-east of England and we were very lucky last year to have the Great North Snowdog Trail which was actually one of the first Snowdog trails, so I have been following Snowdogs since then.

Our design is actually a collaboration between eight-year-old Benjamin Fowler (pictured) from Birmingham, so we both had idea to do the Starry Night design; he designed it and I painted it.

My artistic background started when I did art the whole way through school, college and university. I was always a kid who was really into those DIY art kits and I would spend hours painting and drawing and doing all that, so it’s kind of been a gradual thing all my life.

I think the really nice thing about the Wild in Art trails is that sponsoring the charities is a fantastic thing that they do, getting money to people that really need it. I know with Tŷ Hafan that they do awesome stuff with families and children who really need it and it was the same with the Great North Snowdogs trail last year. I think it’s just that you can get such a wide impact into people’s lives with such positive memories being made.

The other really nice thing is the fact that the pieces of art, whether they are dogs or other sculptures, get people's artwork out into cities and local areas and can have a really positive affect getting people to go out and interacting with artwork. It’s great to see kids interacting and playing with them.

It’s such a nice thing coming to a different city. We have seen so many families out on bikes or walking today. It’s a really positive thing because the trail gives people something new to do over the weekend so that people aren’t just sat at home. If it gets people outside and interacting with the city, that’s fantastic.

Some of my favourite Snowdogs have been the Simon Tozer designs. He’s done Blackberry and Chocolate Sundae. I love those ones because they are something you’re familiar with but done in an abstract way. The designs are awesome from far away, but get better the closer you get as they become the fruit and the chocolate sundae or whatever they may be. I also like the ones that Matt Needle has done. He does fantastic work and his designs are super simple, but he’s really captured the heart of Wales and Cardiff.

The Snowdogs will be on display around Cardiff and the Vale of Glamorgan until 26 November. There will be a final chance to say goodbye to our canine chums when they come together for the Farewell Weekend on 8,9 and 10 December, before they all go under the hammer at the Auction on 12 December. So, if you're after a Snowdog for your home or office this Christmas and would love to raise money for life-limited children, put in your bid!