Thursday, December 31, 2015


Found a seabird skeleton in this cave…thought that was pretty neat. I would've carried it back home with me, but it fell apart after shooting with it as a prop for only like 6 frames…blap.

(All pics. snapped on 12/31/15 - using a Sony Cybershot)

My laptop has been acting seriously dumb lately, and one of the things that makes it spaz - is whenever I try to edit my pics. on iPhoto…and because of that, this entire group of photos is unedited, so there ya' go.

Even though I've been to this bay a thousand times before, it wasn't until last week when my kids were here with me for Christmastime, that I went inside of the cave that's tucked into the cliff on the north side - for the first time...and I was positively awestruck by its beauty and delicious natural light! I was however utterly disgusted with myself, because like the dumbass that I can be sometimes, I'd forgotten to bring my GoPro with me. I vowed to come back to try and capture its beauty another day…and the more I thought about it, the more I became fixated with the idea of staging a self-portrait shoot there.

So. After much hesitation and procrastination, I finally mustered up enough determination to make today the day that this shoot would happen. I packed my shitty little camera inside of six sealed ziploc bags, rode my motorbike over to the lookout, wended my way down the track that leads to the sea, jumped in, and then swam across Little Bay - carrying the makeshift waterproof camera-bag as much over my head as I could keep it for such a long distance. I carefully climbed out of the water - trying to avoid stepping on a dreaded sea shooter (or multiple), scuttled up into the cave, set up my camera on its companion Gorillapod, and let myself get completely lost in my work, and this remarkable venue.

Was truly a magical way to end the year…

Happy Old Year's Night to YOU - my wonderful readers! I love you all madly, and wish you all the best in 2016!!!

Friday, December 18, 2015

Just What the Doctor Ordered

(I began this shoot feeling basically like this ^...)

(…but by the time I was finished? I felt much more like this…thaaaaaank goodness)

(All pics. snapped on 12/17/15 - using a Sony Cybershot and edited on iPhoto)

Some people in this world really are just so wicked…yes, even people here on this warm, friendly island (well, at least one for sure that I know of) .

Back when I was living in The States, I became quite adept at shrugging off the negative remarks that folks regularly made about me, and my blogs…remarks that usually only made it to my ears as secondhand information, as most of the people who had such huge problems with my art, and the unorthodox way that I lived my life - were too chickenshit to share their negative opinions of me, with me directly. For whatever reason though, no matter how scathing, I was always able to let the rhetoric roll right off of the thick skin on my back…those naysayers didn't matter to me, see? So neither did their derisive remarks.

Long story short, it's just not my nature to give a shit about what people say, or think about me. So this week, when someone here on Anguilla said something directly to me - something that I found to be so mean-spirited, humiliating, and cruel - I was startled by how badly it upset me…like it honestly made me sick to my stomach.

I couldn't seem to manage to shake off the initial sting of his biting sentiments…matter of fact, the more time that passed, the worse I felt about the whole thing, it sucked pretty bad. But then I thought back to all of those times in the past, when financial woes, or boyfriend troubles, or whatever - got me feeling similarly supremely low…and how sometimes the only way for me snap out of my chagrin - was to go out and stage some new self-portraits. And more times than not, doing so did cheer me up.

So. Yesterday, I decided that maybe I should implement that same strategy, in order to (hopefully) lift my spirits a bit.

I left the secluded, somewhat secret spot seen in the selfpics above, feeling about a million times better than I did when I first got there. And I'm happy to say that I'm (mostly) done fretting over the troubling verbal exchange between me and the wicked scunt.

Before he so quickly switched from being sweet, charming, and polite - to rude, hateful, and mean - he noted that I hadn't posted any new pics. on the blog in a long time…Well? Here ya' go…a new brand set of self-portraits, and a story all about you to go along. Enjoy.

(P.S. Don't kid yourself, you actually are mean…like, REALLY, REALLY mean)

Monday, November 23, 2015

What You See, Is What I Got

(Some seriously bunged-up feet with so many broken toes. Ew.)

(All pics. snapped on 11/23/15)

Haven't tended to "The Big Ugly" for a good little while, sorry 'bout that…I'm here now though, so hopefully we're all square? K, good.

Anyway, I'll excuse my absence by blaming it on my couple (or three?)-months-long renewed love of baking, plus some other interference that's prolly not worth mentioning…today however, I woke up to the disquieting realization that because I am currently without trans (my motorbike won't start), and with only a few measly dollars to my name - I haven't the means with which to get my bike fixed, nor do much else for that matter - like buy the ingredients that I need in order to be able to make more sweets. But despite the fact that lately I've been effectively convincing myself that this whole multi-years-long fascination, fixation, obsession (whatever you wanna call it) that I've had with self-portraiture, is borderline pointless - for some odd reason, today, like on this… - I couldn't think of any better way to while away the daylight hours, than by going out on foot, with my humble assemblage of shitty camera gear on my back, in search of a place to shoot some selfpics….

The footprint of the house in which these pics. were snapped, is minuscule. But it's tininess has become even more diminished by the vegetation that has grown up and in through the floors, doors and windows…and so I felt somewhat limited in my options for finding much creative diversity within this shoot (plus, being as morbidly afraid of stepping on a centipede in these types of environments as I am, kind of squelches my adventurous nature) - again, my sincerest apologies. What was cool about the resultant images though, was that after having uploaded the pics., and then scrutinizing them (per my usual), I realized that the photos needed very little editing (like none actually, in my opinion)and for the first time ever in the history of "The Big Ugly", I was perfectly content to post photos on here, that hadn't been tampered with at all…and I have to admit, there's something about that that made me feel uncharacteristically proud…so if nothing else, at least I have that going for me right now. 

Sunday, August 30, 2015

Sunday Stroll

 (Snapped on 8/30/15)

I had a positively lovely time this morning, snappin' self-portraits intermittently, while wending my way down the track that leads to one of my favorite spots on this island...

Saturday, August 22, 2015

That's a Wrap

(Snapped on 8/22/15)

So after looking online for what felt like freaking evah - I finally found a company who can print my Anguilla images on lightweight cotton voile sarongs, and when my kids came down to visit me last week, they brought me the three prototypes that I ordered and had shipped to their dad's office a few weeks ago. Personally? I think they look fantastic!

I posted a few different images of these same three wraps on my Facebook page (Lauralyn Brickhouse), and also on my Instagram (@thebigugly)…in the event that you may be interested in seeing other snaps of 'em.

If you think you might like to have one, please contact me at: - I'll give you all of the details about which images are available, and answer whatever other questions you may have about purchasing one...or more :)

Muchas Gracias!

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

I "Shutter" to Think...

…that it's been nearly two. whole. weeks since I staged any new self-portraits...


(Snapped on 8/12/15)

…but the thing is - last week marked the climax of Carnival, here on Anguilla - and it was sheer mayhem for days (and nights) on end, as usual (not really my thing, to be perfectly honest about it…could it be that I'm getting too old for such highly concentrated and prolonged partyin'? Indeed.) The good news for an anti-socialite like myself however, is that there were sailboat races on 6 out of 8 days during this year's summer festival, plus loads of work to do to get Satellite (the boat on which I've been crew for just over a year now) all set and ready for the very first race and beyond - and then broken back down again, out of the water, and up to her resting spot under the gigantic mahogany tree up here in North Hill (a hell of a lot of work goes into the Anguillian racing boats, y'all probably have no earthly clue). The bad news though, was that I was so busy with the Satellite, that it never even crossed my mind to tackle a new set of selfpics.

Carnival and sailboat racing season are both now over until next year though, so it would stand to reason that there oughtta be enough of a lull in my island activities, to allow me to spend some quality time planning and executing new self-portrait shoots, correct? Not so. For the last two days, I've been deep cleaning my house, while simultaneously trying to sort out an ongoing plumbing problem, and also making numerous trips to the grocery on my motorbike (I can only carry so much at one time) - all of which is in preparation for the arrival of three of my precious children to Anguilla tomorrow afternoon! HOORAY!!! 

The little darlings will be staying here for one week, which (I predict) will seriously impede my ability to squeeze in any quality self-portrait time. This never crossed my mind until late this afternoon, and when it did - I kinda panicked. I thought, "If I don't take some new pics right this instant - three weeks will have passed before I'll have been able to update The Big Ugly". That no bueno.

I did nothing to my appearance (I almost never bother with all of the elaborate stage make-up that I so heavily applied, and relied on when I was shooting back in The States), I chose a spot that was super close to home, and once there - I literally spent only about 40 minutes snapping the handful of pics. from which the three seen above were plucked. It was definitely a rush job, but at least I have something to offer…something that will hopefully carry you guys through until I can get my head (and my body) back in the game.

Friday, July 31, 2015

Slashed and Burned

(Snapped on 7/31/15 - using a Sony Cybershot, and then edited on iPhoto)

Well this sure was a fun one! And I really do mean that - I absolutely loved finally doing this shoot, after trying to psyche myself into it over the last a couple of weeks. And miraculously, I barely even hurt myself while stomping through, and rolling around in the ash, and broken ceramic tiles, and nails, and good knows what else - I only ended up with one deep slice on the top of my left foot.

The government water is flowing nicely today too, so after I got back home - I was so stoked to have been able to shower all of the black char and sweat off of my filthy, disgusting body, and out of my brutally teased, nasty rat's nest hair! (Too bad that I clogged the damn shower drain in the process…)

Been a great day already…but now, if you'll kindly excuse me - think I'll go down to the beach and see if I can find even more fun to get into. Happy Friday, everyone!

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Through the Looking Glass

(Snapped on 7/28/15 - using a Sony Cybershot, and then edited on iPhoto) 

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Goin' Out on a Limb Here

(Snapped on 7/28/15 - using a Sony Cybershot, and edited on iPhoto)


Friday, July 24, 2015

All Washed Up

(Snapped on 7/22/15, on Sandy Island, Anguilla, BWI - using a Sony Cybershot, and edited on iPhoto)

Here's one from a different set of self-portraits that I staged the other day on Sandy Island…

Thursday, July 23, 2015

Brown Bikini Diaries - "The Birds"

(Snapped on 7/22/15, on Snady Island, Anguilla, BWI - using a Sony Cybershot and edited on iPhoto)

Obviously there are times when, and places where - posing for self-portraits in the nude simply can't work…and since I have almost no costume collection at all here on Anguilla, I've decided to make my teeny tiny brown bikini a fall back ensemble of sorts. I shall wear it not always, but in certain situations when other people are around during my shoots. Hope everyone's cool with that :)

Thank You sooooooooo very much to the wonderful folks who work on Sandy Island - You Guys are so helpful and generous - I just love you all to pieces for your kindness!!!

#seabirds #sandyisland #anguilla #brownbikinidiaries

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Up Against the Wall

(Snapped on 7/15/15 - using a Sony Cybershot, and then edited with iPhoto)


Friday, July 10, 2015

Brown Bikini Diaries - "Welcome to Paradise"

 (All pics. snapped on 7/07/15 - using a Sony Cybershot and edited on iPhoto)

 Today marks the one year anniversary of when I came to Anguilla last summer with a plan: to stay on island (for just over a month), in order to try and determine if it might be possible for me to live here long term. After crashing at The Anguilla Great House for the first six days of what turned out to be a phenomenal extended vacation, I moved into and began renting a small, frame house in my most favorite village on the island - North Hill…and for as much as I always enjoyed visiting Anguilla as a tourist, back when I was still married and my kids were wee little - I can't even express to you how much more I loved living life here as a "local".

 Ever since first visiting Anguilla back in 1999 (I think?), I have maintained that the island is bar none - the best place on the planet. But after being afforded the privilege of immersing myself in the culture of the island, while simultaneously forming some of the truest friendships that I've known in my life - I very quickly realized that Anguilla is the place where I genuinely am supposed to be…the place on this earth where I am the happiest, where I'm stimulated artistically by my environment, where I feel sincerely embraced by her warm, friendly people...a place where (for the first time ever) I feel that I actually do belong.  

 My decision to try and make a permanent move to Anguilla, was based not only on the fact that I adore the island and her people (and because I made a pact with myself to never put myself through another miserably cold winter ever again), but also because I am not exactly what one might consider to be a patriotic citizen of The United States. The reasons for my deep-seated dislike of virtually everything "American" - are too abundant to waste time itemizing on here. Suffice it to say, I do not like The U.S. (with a passion). Besides being completely offended by the commercialism, negativity, excessive gluttony, greed, ignorance, complacency, uppityness (shall I go on?), I also never felt entirely comfortable in any of the many different environments in which I tried (in vain) to find some semblance of contentment during the 45 years that I lived in Virginia (specifically)…I've spent the better majority of my life feeling like a social reject - a fish out of water, so to speak.

So here it is. One year after I got it in my head that I was gonna havta try and make a go of island life here on my favorite rock, and I can honestly say that it is absolutely one of the very best decisions that I've ever made. I was fortunate enough to have been able to buy the little wooden house in North Hill, and even though it is the smallest house that I've ever lived in (600 sq. ft.), it is absolutely my all-time favorite, you have no idea (I did the inside over, and it's super cute now, plus I just love being up here in North Hill!) And on top of that, I am stimulated daily, by the endless supreme beauty of this place - be it in the turquoise water that surrounds the island, or simply the island itself. As an artist who makes the majority of my work using a camera, I am never without plentiful and interesting photo opportunities. Praise be. 

I literally have only two total gripes in regards to living here on Anguilla…two - that's it! And neither of them grate on me the way that shit used to annoy the feck outta me so badly, back when I was living in The States. The first thing is a fairly recent problem, but I must say - in the last few weeks? It has definitely gotten much worse. The government water is shut off, for the better part of each week now. Meaning: on most days - I cannot do laundry, scrub the floor, fill my kettle, wash dishes, take a shower, flush the toilet - ya' check? But whatever. I can manage. The second thing though, is a somewhat bigger problem…and although I now fully understand why it is the way that it is - it still makes it terribly difficult to get by. As a person who is not a native of Anguilla, I am not able to get a work permit that will allow me to have a normal job here. That is, I am never going to be hired by a restaurant, or hotel, or even a fishing boat - because all of the jobs that those types of businesses provide, need to be made available to folks who are from Anguilla. And after coming to grips with that whole premise, I realized that it does make perfect sense, and also that I would never want to take a job away from an Anguillian, I simply couldn't do that in good conscience. 

So. I've had to try and be creative while trying to figure out how on earth I'm going to generate some income in order to continue living on this island that I love so much - and naturally it occurred to me that my photography might possibly be the best logical means to that end. 

When I moved all of my belongings down here, I packed a brand spanking new Epson Stylus Pro 7900 printer into the container along with everything else, knowing that I would want to be able to make fine art, archival prints of my work no matter what else was going on in my world. So I am able to make, and have made some seriously gorgeous prints of my images. Here's the thing though. For years I've shared a whole lot of my pictures on the internet, and so people have grown accustomed to being able to enjoy them for free. And maybe they poach 'em, maybe they even print them out, who knows. I've always ascertained though, that unless the print is signed by the artist - then it has no real value, other than aesthetic. Lately I've seen several of my pictures turn up on other people's IG and FB feeds, without any photo creds to me at all - and that's fine. I'm just glad that people like 'em enough to want to share them with their friends. But after an acquaintance of mine who lives on Anguilla part-time, messaged me to ask for the original image file of a picture that I'd taken of him kite surfing (one of many that I shared with him on FB), because he wanted to make an oversized print of it to hang in his house, plus his mother wanted to have it printed on a blanket via Shutterfly - I was like…"Tha fuck?!" Even after explaining to him that I don't typically "give my images away", as selling my photos it is the only livelihood that I have at the moment - he essentially poo-pooed the very idea that he should pay me to make him a print of the image in question, saying something to the snarky effect of, "Oh, so that's how you make the big bucks then, huh?" (And since I've heard nothing from him following our conversation, I have only to believe that he went ahead and stole the image anyway, printed it himself, and made the blanket for his mom. Nice. Feels eerily similar to the shit that musicians have to deal with in regards to theft of their songs) 

The guy's sarcastic dismissal of the very idea that I might make my living as an artist, not to mention the lack of respect for the value that I personally place on my work, along with the tremendous amount of effort that goes into producing it, left me thinking that I've been something of a chump for all of these years that I've been (virtually) giving my images away. Why should, or why would anyone bother to pay me, the artist - for a print of one of my photos, when chances are - they can simply pluck it off of whatever site it is that they found it on, and do whatever the hell they want with it after that, right? Right.

This is by far the longest blog entry that I've written in a long while, and so I guess I should probably get to the long and the short of what it is that I'm trying to say already…which is this: I am so utterly grateful to be living here on Anguilla now - even without pipe water, and a job. I am also still very much in love with taking pictures, every day actually…and I have no real desire to stop sharing them with the rest of the world, simply because I have begun to suspect that my photos are most likely being stolen off of the net. I do hope however, that anyone who has an ounce of respect for artists who take pride in what they do, put forth an enormous amount of effort to create (but sadly - may still be struggling financially), and whose work they do happen to appreciate - might consider doing the right thing by supporting such artists…by buying their work, and turning other people on to it so that they might in turn choose to help the artist, as well.

I have prints listed for sale on, or if you'd like to contact me directly about a particular image that you might be interested in having me print, sign, date, and number for you (all of my self-portraits are 1 of 1, and my non-self-portrait pics. are 1 of 5), please don't hesitate to email me at:

Just think...both of the only two complaints that I have about living on Anguilla, could easily be solved if enough people decide to buy prints from me…I'd essentially have figured out a way to be gainfully employed, plus if I make enough money - I might eventually be able to buy a water collection tank so I that I can ultimately wean myself off of the Water Corporation tit - woot!

Tuesday, June 30, 2015


(Snapped on June 30, 2015 - using a Sony Cybershot, and edited on iPhoto) 

Not sure why I end up with dogs in so many of the self-portraits that I take on this island...I do kinda like it though. It's like the little curs add humor, and this sort of sweetness to images that would've been far more grim, otherwise. Thanks Pups!


Monday, June 29, 2015

Ms. Liberty

(Snapped on 6/24/15 - using a Sony Cybershot, and edited on iPhoto)

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Thinly Veiled

(Snapped on 6/24/15 - using a Sony Cybershot and Instagram filters)

#seafan #bikinitop #dinghy #rockybeach #anguilla

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Greetings from the White House

(Snapped on 6/17/15 - using a Sony Cybershot, and edited on iPhoto)

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Turban Exploration

(All pics. snapped on 6/09/15 - using a Sony Cybershot, and edited on iPhoto)

Friday, June 5, 2015

Forever Looking Over My Shoulder

(Snapped on 6/04/15 - using a Sony Cybershot, and edited on iPhoto)

Thursday, June 4, 2015

Don't Worry 'Bout Me, I'm Fine...

(Snapped on 6/04/15 - using a Sony Cybershot, and edited on iPhoto) 

Dogs is Funny.

Friday, May 29, 2015

Fill in the Blanks

(Checking to see if I have service on my shell phone)

(All pics. snapped on 5/29/15, using a Sony Cybershot, and edited on iPhoto)

Those of you who used to follow The Big Ugly waaaaay back in its glorious (albeit short-lived) heyday, are no strangers to the fact that although I truly do love to write (ad infinitum during certain particularly verbose periods in my checkered blogging past), a series of unfortunate circumstances awhile back, literally and figuratively - left me speechless. Gone were the days when I was free to brazenly, and vividly recount the stories that accompanied my self-portraiture adventures, for fear that I might incriminate myself yet again…and wind up in a deeper pile of doo-doo than I already was. 

That being said, there is also a part of me that prefers to allow every viewer to draw their own conclusions when observing my drawings, paintings, and photographs. And that is precisely the reason that I never title anything that I create…I would rather have an onlooker decide for themselves what they perceive the work to be about, rather than force-feed my own personal slant on the piece(s) in question.  

I guess what I'm trying to say is, that although it was (and still is) terribly unnatural for me to have to curb my verbal enthusiasm most times…I do think that there are instances where a "less is more" approach is completely appropriate, perhaps even optimum. And I believe that as far as the story behind, and being told in the group of selfpics above is concerned? It's gonna havta be up to you guys to fill in the blanks…Have fun!