30 June 2011

Sales, Stewarding and Scrubbing!!!

I've been over to Burnham Art Trail to steward today.  Hooray, found out I've sold a couple of Postcards - this is one of them.  I hope whoever has purchased enjoys.
Alas I don't have a photo of the other...  I'd sealed it up in its cello bag before I realised and of course photos through plastic aren't so good.  But it is one of my map pieces.  Must do more of these, as they seem to get comment and be appreciated.
The Trail is on until Sunday, so plenty more time to go out and buy!!  I've heard some nice things said about my actual pieces on display, so that's good.
Art wise I am working, but not on things I can show you.  My piece for the ERTF selected exhibition is coming along - slowly.  Actually its a bit like the days of studying C&G - lots of part bits laying around, trying to plan out when to do, as for instance I'm out at a stitchy meeting on Tues, so makes sense to have something of this I can take with me to do.  My fingers bear evidence to working - no, not blisters - rather dye ingrained into the nail bed - cough, it was navy blue, so they look a bit grim.  Didn't you wear gloves I hear the cry - errr no.  I'm useless with gloves, have a box of them, do wear them, but also manage to get everything inside them anyway.  So its a scrubbing brush, followed by a large dollop of hand cream.  At least this is better than the bloody massacre of the other week - when I foolishly decided to remove a spray nozzle from some paint, as it wouldn't work.  Except once dismantled I pressed it and it squirted all over me, the table, notebooks - and it was red.  See its not the creative art stuff that's a problem... its the time it takes to clear up the resulting mess.

24 June 2011

Burnham Art Trail OPENS 25th JUNE

First off, rejection.  I didn't get into this year's Essex Open.  Surprised, not really, been counting up.  I've entered now 7 times, and got in twice.  Like everything its subjective, who knows what the judges were looking for.  The good news about this event is that its not a fortune gambled on entry fees - and you have to be in it to win it.  So having tried, I think that now gives me bragging rights, to walk around the exhibition muttering under my breath "my piece was better than that one" ggg

The good bit - tonight is the launch party of the Burnham Art Trail.   There's my work in situ, at Venue 22.  And no, they won't mind you walking in for a look.  Between us we decided on the back wall only - 5 pieces - as that would cause least disturbance to diners.  Work for the art trail has to stay in place for the entire duration (25th June - 3rd July) although it is available to purchase.
However, at the Museum there will be work to purchase and take away there and then.  I have put in  two small, what I call 'artist enhanced sketchbooks' because I did not make the actual books plus 10 'postcards'.  The sketchbooks are £6 each and the postcards £15 each.  The postcards are mini artworks, 8" x 6" so not small, they do have high quality cartridge paper on the back, so you could write on them if you wish, or frame them - and of course there has been for years and years various projects sending "naked" art postcards through the post to see if they arrive whole, so you could try that, if you wanted, but no guarantees as to what might happen.
Do go along to the Trail for a visit - most things are displayed to be viewed from outside the premises, those inside expect visitors, so don't be shy.  I will be stewarding in the Museum on the afternoon of 30th June, so say hello.

22 June 2011

Its All Change....

Its alright, I've stopped dancing now!!!  At the moment I'm on Avoidance Technique number 235 - write a blog post!!!
I'm feeling a bit fed up today... sign of the times, finances being what they are for people at the moment.  You will likely know that the Julia Caprara School has ceased to be - check out Chris or Gina's blogs, to read of the upset and difficulty this is causing.  I only reaslised at the end of last week, that the Windsor (East Berkshire College) textile courses are also at an end.  It was a must on the calendar, and I have travelled over there a few times (though not recently it must be said).  I find this such a shame, because when it comes to the likes of textiles and particularly when these courses are aimed at adults - these are people who want to study - and for many (as it was for me with my studies) a long held ambition to do so.  City & Guilds has all but disappeared from colleges too, and my local college which always held wonderful summer school projects in textiles, this year is offering only a couple - one on how to knit and one on how to use your sewing machine, sigh.
Last week brought the news that the USA publication Fiberarts has also ceased to be.  I've been taking this, I think since the mid 1990s.  You would almost assume that with an international readership they could keep going.  And now I understand that the UK's Workbox magazine is also either at an end or about to be.  I didn't take this one, but in my opinion it was always the best magazine for reviews of textile groups and exhibitions.  And we lost Classic Stitches last year I believe.
I wonder, just by blogging, if in my small way I contribute to the demise of these things.  Everythng but everything is out there now, the internet gives us information about whatever we want.  Techniques, products, direct contact with artists via their own websites or blogs - its all instant, and available to cherry pick. Whilst I still take magazines (two of them are via digital that way I can afford them both) I very  much enjoy everything about them. I read everything even the ads!!  And I love unwrapping the new magazine, the smell of the ink on the paper... yep sad I know.  But still you have to take the articles you don't like alongside the ones which you do - and that makes it a considered purchase, particularly when prices increase and personal budgets get tighter - and if the odds stack the wrong way for you personally - well that's another purchaser lost.
I expect someone will see the gap and want to fill it - either courses or magazine wise - but the question to ask is, if these long established organisations couldn't weather the current economics, beware.
Right that's my Wednesday philosophy over with... and remember this, when life is dire........ there is always CHOCOLATE!  If you're nice, you can have a lick!

15 June 2011

More Excitement and Anticipation....


A few months back I was approached about an exciting opportunity, but it was only this week that things were finalised and I'm pleased to say I have accepted the offer.

I am one of the latest recruits to the Textile Group:

The group has been in existence for over 10 years, and I've known of them for most of that time, knowing many of the Members via various other organisations. So I have seen their exhibitions over the years. They meet in what I call Metropolitan Essex, ie inside the M25 - luckily no passport needed to get in!

I am joining the group at an exciting time for them, as they are collaborating with a similar group of Canadian artists on an exhibition to be shown both here in the UK and in Canada. So I will need to plunge in running, as I have several other commitments already in the diary.

I am expecting this opportunity to take me in new directions - in terms of artistic practice, types of work, themes, the challenge of working with others, and the physical new direction of just travelling to an area I'd otherwise visit rarely. Boundaries to be expanded in all ways, much to be gained for me personally I believe - and I hope I make a good contribution to Material Girls.

Thank you for inviting me to be a part of the Group - time for Happy Dancing!!

12 June 2011

Excitement and Anticipation....

It going to be a busy mid June - Friday I went off to a meeting of Essex Members of the ERTF.  I had a great afternoon, lots of chatter, laughing and plenty of thoughts for future Essex get togethers.  Nothing better in my view that meeting over tea and cake!!  Looking forward to getting to know relatively "local" Members more in the future.
Yesterday I was at our Embroiderers' Guild meeting.  Guest speaker:  Lee Ault.  She has been to our branch before, previously as a Victorian Lady - this time she came to speak on Rationed Fashion - dressed in a suit of the period.  Once again she gave the most entertaining talk, and we all marvelled at the trunk which seemed bottomless as item after item emerged.
The photo, boring I know, but its next on the list.  Pile of work retrieved from storage in the garage to be checked over, make sure strings on the back are still tight etc.  Its in readiness for the Burnham Art Trail, and also a couple of other submissions.  Well what else would you be doing on a Sunday afternoon in June, when it tipping it down and COLD.  Completely at odds as we've had so little rain here, the grass was going brown.
Not sure my mojo is back - but it does a soul good to meet with others who share your interests, and I do feel a tingle of anticipation for future events.

08 June 2011

Flowers and the Abstract Artist

What do we have here then... those of you who know me and my work might well faint with the shock. Its almost something "real". Actually its part of an ongoing project and I'm not saying more. But for me who is an Abstract art person, this is unusual. Over the years I've come across a few negative comments re my abstract art as in.... its just a few squiggles... your work doesn't have an much effort as mine does... (if only they realised the hours I can spend pouring over dictionaries of symbols or background research)... your work isn't worth as much as mine because its abstract. I'm always baffled, I'd never say such a thing about a landscape piece.  I admire realism, wish I could stitch a tree that looks like a tree, but its just not me.  During my P1 C&G studies we were often told "if you want a piece to look like a photo, take a photo" - not meaning that everyone had to go for abstract, but more its your interpretation, not an exact replica.  So when I want the real, I take a photo, because I know I could never match or even get an essence of the reality.  If you only knew how many photos I take of skies.....
For years and years I struggled, wanting to be a Constable, before finally realising that I'm more a Picasso. I can't help it, the abstract is just more natural for me - its not even that I see a tree and think pure shapes, there's no deep and meaningful thought in that regard, its just how I am, what flows out of my fingers. I don't understand any of the snobby attitude re any kind of art - to me, you either like something or you don't.   Perhaps my thought processes are too simplistic, but surely we all need art in whatever form, whatever taste you have in music or drama, the point is to find pleasure and joy.  Thank goodness for choice.
So my flower has to be some exotic species from a faraway land - because its never going to look like the real thing!!

Latest News:   Burnham Art Trail - I will be stewarding in the Museum on the afternoon of Thursday 30th June.  Come and say hello.

01 June 2011

Art Trails - Yes TWO!!!

I've been to check out my Venue (number 22) for Burnham Art Trail.  Click on the poster to enlarge.  It looks nice and easy to prepare for this year.  We've decided I will have the one wall on view as people walk in, so as to cause least disturbance to restaurant customers.  So displaying up to 5 pieces.  You can see my space via the restaurant website   Please check out the Trail website, for all participants and much more information, there is much more than just the displays to indulge in. Also this weekend received confirmation that I have a place in Rochford Art Trail.  A little way off - 22nd/29th October.  I don't have my venue as yet, as there is more paperwork to complete in this regard, but as soon as I do I will post it on the righthand side.  Juliet also has a place on the Trail.
So I guess I'd better find my mojo with all of these things in the pipeline (and more)