Saturday, 19 May 2012

Handmade Shop, Colchester

A few days ago, I popped over to Colchester to see Maryann who runs the brand new 'Handmade' Shop in Sir Isaacs Walk. I have put some of my prints in the shop, but had run out of my Hollyhocks when I put my stock in, and had to wait until I had some more printed.

So dropping the Hollyhock's print off gave me time to check out the shop. My prints are in a lovely position right at the front:


Of course, being in a shop full of handmade goodies put me in the mood for a little shopping... I wandered around checking out all the contents of the shop. I headed first for the jewellery of course:

And then looked at all the other lovely things, including pretty tea-cup candles:

Scrummy things for the bath:

And Hazel Rayfield's lovely Encaustic paintings:

In the end I decided I simply couldn't leave without buying a couple of things (photographed when I got back on the studio cushions)... This pretty porcelain ring by Lisa Stevens:

And for the teen's ever-growing ornament collection this wonderfully tactile little cat:

The teen was delighted, although when I called, "Come here, I have something for you!" she complained like mad, thinking I wanted her to do the wiping up; A sad indictment of my mothering skills no doubt. But at least I have dry crockery, so we must be philosophical about these things.

If you are in Colchester any time, do pop in to the lovely and tiny handmade shop, you will find an Aladdin's cave of hand-made British goodies, perfect for treating yourself or a friend. 

And before I go, just time to give you a preview of my new seashell lino prints. I have called them 'Shoreline', and so far printed some in blues and some in yellow ochre:

A couple of them are in the Gainsborough's House Printmaker's exhibition, some are available in my online shops, and a few will be going out to local venues like Maryann's shop, and other upcoming exhibitions. One of them is such a perfect match for the colours of my new laundry room that I am having it framed for my house. After all, I may not be wealthy, but at least I can have some real art on the walls!

Friday, 11 May 2012

Exhibition O'Clock

Yes, it is that time again, when all the spring exhibitions are suddenly upon me and I wonder why I didn't make more artwork during the winter! 

First up is the Colchester Open Exhibition I entered a couple of weeks ago, and a late night phone message informed me of my fate:

"Woodbridge Dreams" in Gouache and Collage, painted with the exhibition in mind - Accepted, Yay!

"Orwell Estuary, Low Tide" in Watercolour, put in because it fit the criteria and to make the numbers up -
Rejected, Boo Hiss!

Of course I am happy to get one in, and the exhibition was selected by several artists and curators including Colin Self, and Ron Sims. According to the chat I had with the receptionist on picking up my Orwell painting the selection commitee took their time (not always the case) and it went on for 11 hours! Although things went to plan for me this time, you can never be sure of the taste of the committee, and sometimes I have found that the piece I put in to make up the numbers is the one that gets in.

Next up is the Gainsborough's House Printmakers Exhibition in St Peter's Church in Sudbury, and I am fighting the clock to get some new seashell prints finished. Here are the some of the backgrounds, ready to be over printed with a shell and starfish design. Much use has been made of those net bags you get oranges in:

And here is the carved lino ready to print over the top:

Whilst I was getting inky, I also worked on some new card and tag designs, they are selling steadily locally, so now I am adding some seaside inspired designs:

After the printmakers exhibition it is "Potters and Friends" at Lavenham, where I am sharing my allotted space with some of my students. Perhaps I will take along my latest two mosaics:

In the midst of all this exhibition prep, a lovely local lady made an appointment to come to my studio and choose some prints for her house. She chose two, and I arranged to have them framed in white, as she requested, rather than the wood I usually use, I thought the frames suited them, and snapped a quick photo in the studio, of them wrapped, just before collection:

Finally, I have been asked to help organise this years SSAS (Sudbury Summer Art Show) started by Sally Freer to compliment the bi-annual 'Visions of Sudbury" exhibition on alternate years. An initial meeting laid out some changes. This year there will be guidlines about prices (not too low) and framing (bad framing is something that irritates me beyond words). Plus artists chosen will be by invitation only, and the organisers get to chose who is invited. I will, of course not be swayed by donations of cake; but I should mention that carrot is my favourite, with that cream cheese icing...