This painting was based around my daughter Emelia's 5th birthday. She wore her hair in tiny wee plaits for a long time. Her cake was actually a teletubby cake but I liked the idea of the chocolate one with 'smarties' (M and M's) on it better as a visual statement. This painting was made into a greeting card that was sold as a hospice fundraiser about 12 years ago. My Dad who was a local sign writer had just died. The hospice was amazing in the care they gave him. They afforded him a dignity and sense of peace that I don't think he had in life. He was waiting until retirement to get into his art... but died shortly after retirement of cancer. Emelia (Millie) is 17 now. This painting represented a major change in style for me.... I was trying to work out how far can you 'prune' down detail and still have a painting that tells a story and reflects some of the character of the subject. It was part of a solo exhibition I had at Kina. Painting generally has moved on a lot since I painted this. I now view it as a bit clumsy but I like the moment it captured in my family.