It’s Moseley Art Market this coming Saturday and amongst the usual range of cards, paintings and prints,
there will be some limited edition hand-painted boxes and …
if the printer delivers by tomorrow then there could be 2015 calendars too :)
the blog of Claire Leggett, painter and crafter, Birmingham, UK
Over the last few weeks I have been using my Italian holiday photo’s for pattern inspiration.
Studying holiday photo’s is a great way to re-live a holiday.
First you examine why certain places, colours, paintings or cultural details inspire you to take the photo in the first place and then soon after the design prompt can be found again.
I looked up at a lot of ceilings during my week in Florence. Italians used to recline on a dais on the floor and so the ceiling was the most decorative feature of a room. Luckily for us we have iPhone reverse direction mode and so can photograph the ceiling without getting a crick in the neck!
These ceilings were from the Medici Palace and as soon as I looked up, I could see a repeat pattern calling out for development.
As I played around with drawings and tracings, I began to see which elements to keep.
The colouring came from generally soaking in all the colours I’d seen around me – I have quite a strong colour memory and often remember the colours of a place more than the details of names and places – not usually a useful quirk to have!
There was a lot of faded distemper, crumbling concrete, exposed brick, terracotta rendered house walls teamed with turquoise shutters or a painted door; the wall paintings are faded frescoes from Far Angelico’s painted cells.
I called this collection Soffito as it literally means a ceiling in Italian and doesn’t everything sound nicer in Italian!
Claire Curneen is a ceramicist, internationally known, and my HB is a BIG fan of her work – hence the longish day trip to Wales to see it :)
It was well worth it as her work is very special; touching and emotional.
She likes to work in white porcelain,building from the feet upwards which she does by holding individual pieces of clay that she presses into her palm and adds together to create the form. All these pieces then bear the marks of her fingers which brings an additional connection between artist and piece. She will sometimes find a gap or hole in the 3D form which she chooses to leave as it provides an insight into the structure.
She makes personal, intimate portraits which are often quite sorrowful, and she likes to exaggerate the hands and feet in order to communicate emotion and vulnerability. These are often based on her own, so in that sense it becomes autobiographical.
While we were in Ruthin we had a little potter around the village which was very quaint and English/Welsh ( oh the Welsh are going to slate me for saying that but it was quintessential – you know what I mean!)
I do love to walk around new places picking houses that I’d move into – and either of these would do nicely.
Finally do you see the pub below left – The Myddelton Grill on the Square ? Look how many roof windows have been put in over time – cute.
I really enjoy trips around foreign places via other people’s blogs (Sharon does it particularly well ;) So I hope you’ve enjoyed a little armchair trip this Sunday.
I picked some of the last garden flowers and brought them into the studio and I think they are influencing the colour of my work :)
I adore the colour fade on this Dahlia.
And The Untamed Yellow Bush taking over the garden is very happy for me to cull it and those flowers are so cheery to be around.
Happy days painting and patterning.
On Saturday 6th September, Digbeth, Birmingham will be transformed into one of the UK’s largest outdoor art galleries.
City of Colours is going to be huge street art event celebrating all urban art forms – live painting, break dancing, DJs, beat box battles, B-Boys & other innovative and engaging visual art forms.
And believe it or not, I am going to be there too – no not showcasing my unique break dancing style but in the market hall selling my stuff (I might have to wear a snapback though!)
Come and say sup :)
I spent yesterday in Loughborough at the Town Hall hanging my latest exhibition in the Balcony Gallery.
This gallery space is open to application – hooray for Loughborough council to support the arts in this way.
This is the lovely Lucie who helped me hang my pictures which was surprisingly fiddley, hot and tiring! Thank you Lucie :)
Here’s a little walk round once it was finished…
They have a packed Autumn programme so I’m hoping that lots of visitors will sit here and enjoy my paintings while they enjoy their pre-performance drinks.
Not the most exciting set of photos ever published here but it gives you the idea ;)
It will be hanging until January 2015 if you’re in the vicinity.
Last post was 10 days ago – really? I don’t know how that happened. I’ve been here, working away everyday. I can’t explain such an absence – sorry.
I’ve been cutting these yellow flowers down as fast as they grow just so we can walk down the garden – they are ginormous and hanging all over the path – not sure show to rectify this problem as I’ve already tied them back twice but at least they look nice as they drop rain drops on you as you slide past.
Been worrying about this cutie as she has seriously damaged the cruciate ligament in her knee (anyone reading this with any experience of the same, we’d love to hear – please email firstname.lastname@example.org) Looks like either expensive surgery or early rheumatism – feeling sad about it either way :( X-rays next week and then we will know some concrete facts.
Been trying to finish what I started in the garden but it turned really cold this week and the wind blew down my bean and sweet pea wigwams so they are not marvellous even though we tied them back up and because of the miserable weather, my interest is waning. I usually love the harvest ta,da’s but I’m not feeling it yet this year…
I have been crushing on this wonderful artist whose print I just bought below – Jennifer Orkin Lewis is the artist behind the name August Wren who has a wonderful style that inspires me no end. She has a project over on instagram where she’s painting daily in her sketchbook and it’s awesome – check it out here.
Our Bank Holiday project last weekend was to spend an inordinate amount of time chewing over the merits and down points of putting the top back on the dresser (it’s just been a cupboard for years) whether to paint it or not (the bottom is old Welsh pine) whether to put all that china out (whose gonna dust it – you guessed) should we keep the shelves open or put the pine boarding on behind…yadda, yadda, yadda. In the end we propped it all up (no screws yet) and decided to live with it – within seconds of that we both decided we loved it!
And my final piece of scintillating news is that I bought some of these bags – big dream come true! It doesn’t take much to please me!!
I have seen artists turn up to events as cool as cucumbers and unpack their undamaged work from these marvellous foil/bubble wrap bags and I have watched with my green eyes!!
I had a gallery visit a few weeks back and got buried in a pile of discarded bubble wrap – professionalism was hard to keep with breaking rubber bands pinging around the room and me getting in a sweat trying to put the right pieces back in the right size bubble wrap, all while talking ‘calmly’ about myself, my work, my business – not. The gallery did take most of the work so I didn’t have to re -wrap many but I decided enough was enough – time to upgrade. I am already in love with them and can highly recommend them – they weren’t as expensive as I’d expected – you can get them here if you’re interested.
Have good weekend, Claire x
Just back from a lovely sunny mini break in Norfolk, with Dahlias clutched all the way home in a jam jar of water.
I knew in my heart of hearts that they wouldn’t make it home gloriously and last for long, but we don’t get these kind of home-grown flowers so cheaply in our local shops and I couldn’t resist chancing £2.50 on them.
I had a fun afternoon drawing and painting and inhaling their distinctive peppery smell. And I made a jolly little pattern too – just because!
I thought I’d do a little Sunday share today.
Considering that on my recent trip to London, I only walked the few miles from Tate Modern to Waterloo station, I managed to stumble across a lot of inspiration – first Matisse, then the Temple of Agape and now Kitty McCall whose work was selling in a lovely little shop in the Oxo Towers building.
Kitty McCall is the working name of Catherine Nice who has brought her years of working in fashion and textile design, to her own brand (named after her grandmother).
There is a nice write-up here on the hearth and home magazine site.
I love the butterfly prints best of all and have put one on my Christmas wish list (is it too early for that?!!)