I spent my first hours with furzy staff, meeting a few of the volunteers, a small glimpse into the microcosm. There is something special about spaces such as this which is so tangible and entices people to stay and be part of it
A space for tranquillity, time to be part of something that is important and worthwhile.
Id already met with the head gardener who had said that he was happy for me to create different things around the garden, I knew that it would take me time to become familiar with the space so I decided to something simple, so much of creating new work for me is to allow myself time to play and just get into the creative experience so as I love the colours of the leaves especially the varying shades of reds and golds,
Creating simple swirls and circles, large petal shapes and mounds under the rhododendron.
I was drawn to an old wooden stump at the top of the rise. a nearby plant was shedding heart-shaped leaves, different shades of red.
I find such starkness enticing. as I was working for some young families with children walked past, curiosity got the better of them and they asked me what I was doing and if I had created the other shape
We spoke about the pleasurable act of creating shapes with leaves .one of the ladies was particularly interested in what I was doing and asked me if I’ve made the colourful shape under the tree, she said that they’ve been trying to guess what it was, I encouraged them to do hace a go themselves
I am really pleased to be able to share that I have been awarded a talent development grant from a space arts to enable me to work with a mentor and photographer. This funding will allow me to spend time creating new work as an Artist in Residence at the wonderful Furzey Gardens in the New Forest. I will be starting my time there at the end of September and creating work through the winter months.
I will be keeping a record of the experience and sharing this, details to follow.
I’m so looking forward to tomorrow , The Hampshire Open Arts Studios is happening over the next couple of weeks and weve now taken over the whole pub with all of artwork , 9 artist in one space do need a lot of room after all.
We are lucky at the Dancing Man Brewery that the public can view the artwork when the pub is open. However we wanted to be available so over the next two weekends we will be available from 12pm – 4pm
Wev’e now moved into the top floor of the Dancing Man Brewery in the old part of the original city, its such a fantastic venue which started life as a medieval warehouse and has been a tax collection venue which at the time was in the form of wool hence the name of the wool house. It was also a sea life museum and originally housed many of the Titanic exhibits and is now as a listed building has been sensitively converted into independent brewery, pub and restaurant.
The Keepers Artist Collective are moving their current exhibition at the Meticks Bargate to the Metricks Guildhall ready to re open this Tuesday the 28th June.New art works being added, new venue, great coffee and a chilled atmosphere whats not to like.You can find us upstairs if you happen to be passing.
Its been a while since I updated this page, as you might have guessed I have been busy creating new work. Id love to be able to dedicate my whole time to creating my work however as at the moment my time is divided between running my own arts craft workshop business, working a couple of days a week for an employer which provides the regular income that most of us need, creating my own work and of course time spent with the other loves in my life my family and restoring our vw camper van Lilly.
This year I have been determined to get my work out and about and I am pleased to say that the Toton and Eling Art Festival selected all of my 3 submissions the exhibition opens this Wednesday.
I have also been busy working with other creatives working on a number of joint exhibitions. designed to provide creative outlets for artist in the city of Southampton.
The first starting on the 16th May and running for a couple of months is being hosted by the 3 Metricks Cafes in Southampton Centre , old town and the New arts complex. The revolving exhibition is being shared with two other art groups located in the city , Red Hot Press printing studio and Unit 11.
In addition to this I have also helped to form a new arts group called the The “Keepers Arts Collective” (you can find us on facebook), we are taking over the Dancing Man Brewery from Mid July – Mid September and will be part of this years Hampshire Open Arts Studios.
Just the start of more things to come this year looks to be an interesting one.
It so great to see how many Southampton cafes and pubs are supporting local artist in the area by displaying their work, as more local businesses including small local art gallerys are emerging and creatives are working together to put on events that are accessible to everyone. The fact that Southampton has a thriving arts community in its midst is starting to become more known.
The Art Cafe and the Metrics Cafe have both been happy to show my work previously and now I am happy to say that the Dancing Man Brewery which is know locally as the Wool House and the Old Titanic Museum is now showing some of my work .
Such a lovely building sympathetically converted the owner Mandy told me that the majority of the conversion has been designed so as to lift out almost like a stage set so as to course no damage to the structure to the building. http://www.dancingmanbrewery.co.uk/ Ive always been a fan of interesting spaces as well as historical spaces so I am thrilled to display my work there
Now Ive completed the 3 weeks I thought that I would share how it went.
As the exercise for me was linked to freeing up the imagination and challenging myself I decided to go with the flow.
Over the 3 weeks the tasks focused on doodling every day . Freeing up and recognizing the things the get in the way and learning to overcome them. Challenging yourself and putting yourself into different situations by going of on a physical journey, in a way that you wouldn’t normally do and keeping a journal.
Over the first week I decided to carry a small drawing pad with me to doodle on where ever I was.This was great fun but I must say hard to keep up the impetus.
In week 2 we were set the task to go out on a physical journey . again an interesting one to take us out of our comfort zone . I rarely sketch outside , also I decided to use a pen and so having to commit to using very light lines and darker ones to reinforce.
In week 3 we were asked to keep a journal and this is where I had problems, I am involved in so many creative practices that I found it difficult to find a way to record what I was doing. The thing to consider is whether or not to set up to different journals or try to manage with a folder with inserts or a mixture of both, I am not sure which one i will go for .. Ive decided to sign up for Janis follow on course which is a 30 day journaling exercise maybe by the end of it Ill have decided which I prefer.
As with all creative processes it is very easy to become fixed in a particular style of working, what with deadlines and limited time around other creatives this is always a potential problem.It is interesting how by spending lots of time helping others to be creative can effect your own ability to let loose and explore your own creativity.
I wanted to explore this topic by taking part in activity’s that would allow me the time to free up my own creative nature and fortunately have been able to enroll on a free 3 week online course ,recently designed and created by a lovely fellow creative Jani Frank who has been through the same thought process herself and wanted to share this with others.http://janijellybean.blogspot.co.uk/
One of the questions that Jani posed on her blog is how you go about getting around creative blocks and creating anyway… one of the ways I find is to set myself a limited time period, I usually set aside a minimum time of 2- 3 hours, then try not to think about what I am going to do and just get on with it, the starting is often the hardest bit , don’t always expect to get going straight away just doing helps and before you know it will happen.
I have often started with a inspiration , a photograph that I have taken etc which has always been a good place for me and in the past I was often able to draw inspiration from my imagination.
With time constraints I have found that the my ability to create ideas from my imagination has been overtaken by this method of working and although useful I find myself considering how to free up the more exploratory side of my nature, hence my reason for joining Jani s course.
I have decided to share this journey with you and will be setting up a page to share my explorations
If you are reading this post because you have attended this exhibition I just wanted to say thank you for all of your support and kind comments.
Now into our 4th day I am glad to say that I have have had much interest and have sold my sunset seascape mentioned recently, to a lovely gentleman who had actually been to the place in Montenegro that the painting was based on.
We have all been having a great time and received some great feedback , it is always great speaking to other people especially when as in my case my work can often be interpreted in different ways.
Well we are nearly there, Ive created several new pieces ready to show (Ive added them to the gallery if your curious). Ive never shown as many pictures in one go I usually show one or two pieces and a gallery or a exhibition. This time around I am showing 9 paintings , so I am both apprehensive and a little bit nervous as to what reaction I am going to get.
It will be very different being there to hear visitors reactions , also Ive been asked if I can create a painting while I am there which will again be a new experience. Ill let you know how it goes.
If your curious to attend I am exhibiting with Noel Barker, Peter Jarvis, Graeme Hodgson, and Kevin Longstaff as part of the Hampshire Open Arts studios. so wish me luck.
I decided to start a new painting of a fish under water, recently water related paintings seem to be of interest to me. This is the first version once again I need to decide on which new colors to include as I want to make the image more fluid with more balance I will let you know how this goes