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Wednesday, 29 June 2011

Catching up after a binge of exhibiting!
Post exhibition thoughts: Cuckmere Haven, was a fantastic experience for me for my art and for my confidence as an emerging professional artist. Touches like being asked to drop off work and not having to hang it, the exhibition being curated by people with experience, being shown alongside artists of good repute and an Eric Ravilious on loan from the Towner - My work stood out and I sold one piece (the bottom right) on the first day so all in all it was a rewarding and positive learning experience. I felt really valued as an artist - both my work and as an individual.

Rye Contemporary Art Fair was great for making contacts as I got involved preparing the exhibition space - only possible because my parents were staying and able to look after Ed for a whole day. It was a hard job to decide what to hang and how to hang it - something I need to develop my skills in I think though I was pleased with the over all look of my board, 4x8ft is not massive! I paid a lot of attention to getting work framed and mounted very carefully and hanging it in line, straight and in groups of style.

so it went from this

to this:

and then to this:  mine's on the left. Plus Victoria lent me the king of all browers for the fair which caused more than a little browser envy from neighbouring artists!
I sold the three on the bottom right which is great - all to different people. It also shows that people who like my work can't always afford the bigger pieces and so I am thinking of producing some prints of the  3 paintings I exhibited at Cuckmere. Off to the giclee farm...for me

Friday, 17 June 2011

learning and emerging

cuckmere collage 1 

blue triangle

cuckmere collage 2
I quite like these - they are the end of the current Cuckmere Haven project and I think they are significant for me. They are well within my comfort zone, though I am using new colours, and for me they are different because they are so controlled. It feels like they are a full stop. Throughout the project I have made a lot of work and moved forward mentally and physically with my art. Now I need to look back and reflect.

I had my crit with my mentor, Colin ( this week and it was really useful to look back on all the work and to get a sense of what's good and worth pursuing and what's just OK. He picked out a sketch which encapsulated a free and sensitive balance of materials and marks.
river broadside 
This is more typical of work I have done in the past. Except that it has a maturity to it that I haven't acheived before.

 It's really helpful to talk to someone who has been there before and recognises what I am able to do and who can point me in the direction of other artists that I should look at. It made me realise its time to focus just on the people that I can learn from and the journeys those people took. Sandra Blow, Robert Motherwell and Roger  Hilton. So this is my list to action:

1 Research artists Sandra Blow, Robert Motherwell and Roger  Hilton
2 Change my workspace round too so I can use the biggest space for my work and the smallest for sleeping.
3 Concentrate on a new body of work for Coastal Currents using the river sketch as a root. -  try developing wave pictures but going out and doing it all on location different sizes and using different materials.
4 Find ways of making a mess and getting bigger work made - have fun and not worry about the end result.
5 Look at Wilf's drawings, his use of space and marks.

Children have a lot to show us about mark making and making drawings that are uncensored and unedited. Wilf's are brilliant - he has a quirky eye and captures lots of fun in his art. I found some great drawings by Jago today of birds. I will blog them later.

Its really hard being an aspiring woman/mum painter the demands on time are impossible but I have so much that I can also harness and use and children's art  and approach to it is one of them. I am going to go into Jago's school and do art with them  before the end of term so I think I will learn a lot from them.

Wednesday, 15 June 2011

East Sussex Contemporary Art Fair

Today I am thinking of how to display work for the East Sussex Contemporary Art Fair. On the back of having a portfolio crit from my mentor I am now able to make some better decisions regarding the framing and what to display though we both agreed an Art Fair is not like an exhibition so its anyone's guess what to show - more literal and perhaps more commercial things or the work that I want to be seen to be doing. Well here's a sneak preview of what I am thinking of:
Given I am trying to do this flat on the floor and some of the paintings are elsewhere its a start. But I have to commit and send the details off to the organisers this week so I have to go for it....
Its a problem bunching up work on a small format too - is it better to show  more at an art fair or is it aesthetically better to show less? is less more if you see what I mean.
 I have a lot I can put in the stands - they look fab mounted up properly. Plus I have made the mounts the right size to fit ready made frames....makes life so much easier for me at this stage.

Ok off to measure up now and get going on the admin for this...

Sunday, 12 June 2011

artists statement for Cuckmere Exhibition

I am currently developing my art practise through drawing, collage and painting. I love exploring mark making and working with shape, line and form to get the right 'fit'. It is from this starting point that I am looking for a way to make paintings, which are in relationship with the original subject matter and beyond that form a further relationship within the confines of the physical surface.

It is important to me to begin by working from the original source, developing and recording my response to the subject matter, in this case the landscape of Cuckmere Haven. Recently I have moved from making initial sketches solely in black and white to colour.

I actively look at the subject from several angles and immerse myself in the landscape for some time. This forms the basis for an intuitive response, which I then pursue through collage. The process involves me segmenting my response into the overall sense of colour, surface textures, form and line, solidity and movement.

As this process evolves the surface of the ‘painting’ develops a character and story of its own. At each stage I refer back to the original source – my feelings, memories, impressions and sketches, in order to build independence and integrity. (The end products take hours of meticulous positioning, reconsidering and re-positioning)

Each piece of collage material is derived from a journey of its own, often forming a family of pieces. It is through this journey that I develop a relationship with each piece and often form attachments, which I sometimes need to break in order to get the right ‘fit’. Throughout, the original source remains an essential common thread and gives me the confidence to detach when necessary to create an ultimately more interesting discovery.

Pump Barn:

early sketch for segments 2

Segments 2 
Light and shadow, colour fields and livestock movement. The ochre door suggests a way into this hidden natural world.

Segments 1

segments 1

early sketch for segments 1

Riverbank and river flow broadside, reflections and chalk face.  Contrast of solidity and movement.

Segments 4 

segments 4

Turn of the river, a sense of permanence, solidity counterpoised by fluidity, floating forms suggesting erosion and gradual change.

In the last 18 months I have completed four private commissions. 
I studied Glass Design at Edinburgh College of Art and left with BA(HONS) in 1991.
Since graduating I lived in London for 10 years and moved to the south coast of England in 2003. I now have three young boys.

Saturday, 11 June 2011

Exhibiting in Celebrate Cuckmere Haven 10th - 19th June

My work Segments 1, 2 and 4  are  in the Pump Barn, Seven Sisters country park. There are loads of activities scheduled for the duration of the exhibition. The valley was beautiful today and apparently there are usually about 400 visitors each weekend!

The walk along the meandering Cuckmere river is amazing and teeming with wildlife. My boys 2,4 and 7 were loving climbing the steep sides to the path and watching 'things' moving in the river tributaries.

I will be stewarding on Sun 11-12 pm.

Its very exciting to be showing work along side an Eric Ravilious print and several other good artists.

I am particularly glad the curators chose to hang all three pieces together.

Go see!!

Sunday, 5 June 2011

low cost original hand drawn logos and illustrations

Having met up with a friend who moved away from Bexhill this half term, I found myself drawing her a business logo and helping her come up with some business name ideas. Not something I thought I would be doing if anyone had asked me but it was quite fun. I might offer this service including illustration to a few friends to build up an idea of my own style and see where it goes.

Tracy is setting up a business using garra rufa fish to pedicure clients feet.  She has recently had a baby girl and wants some work to fit into her timetable as she looks after Phoebe and her two older boys. Tracy also runs her own business with her husband Andy .

The brief was to draw a classy looking foot with the little fish swimming around it.

She is going to use these as posters and flyers with her own text.

If you want a low cost original hand drawn logo or illustration then please get in touch with me. I am interested in potential business services swaps or the usual £'s regarding payment.