Life’s had me by the short and curlies recently.
When I have had time or the head-space to think about blogging, I didn’t know what to say.
But I have completed a set of little notebooks for Moseley Art Market next week.
Art therapy ;)
the blog of Claire Leggett, painter and crafter, Birmingham, UK
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 email@example.com) 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?!!)
Back in February I wrote about The Fauves here – the undisclosed reason at the time was because I was working on some prospective work. I find it hard to juggle secret projects and my own work and so sometimes forget to show projects I’ve done that were under wraps but can now be revealed.
The study of the Fauves reminded me to under wash the paper first so that colour glows through any gaps – in this case I noticed in a painting, that pink works really well and so I gave it a go.
I love how it gives the white a depth and glow and how it peeps through lighter washes of colour.
This piece wasn’t chosen by the client but it did move me on in terms of content and technique.
These are sneak peeks of the other piece I did which is still on the hold list – fingers crossed.
When I was in London recently I took a walk down the river past the Southbank Centre and discovered this Temple of Agape.
It is a temporary installation designed by Morag Myerscough and Luke Morgan as part of The Festival of Love.
The ancient Greeks had around 30 words for love and The Festival of Love explores 7 of them – Pragma (love which endures) Philia (shared experience) Philautia (self respect) Eros (romantic love) Ludus (flirting) Storge (family love).
And then the final culmination is a big wedding weekend to mark the change in law this year for same-sex couples.
Agape- The Love of Humanity – is the one explored in this installation – based on a Martin Luther quote “I have decided to stick with love. Hate is too great a burden to bear.”
Lots of colour and pattern to be inspired by and lots of words and thoughts to ruminate over.
Last week I spent a lovely sunny day in London to see the Matisse: Cut Outs exhibition at Tate Modern.
This collection of work spans the last 17 years of Matisses life as he turned from painting to paper cutting due to ill-health and poor mobility. He had initially used paper cutting as a technique for exploring and rearranging still-life objects before committing them to paint and it’s this technique that he developed into his swan song.
I was surprised to find that as he grew older (and poorer in health ) that his achievements got larger and grander.
I think because his work is so deep-seated in our visual memories, that it is hard to be surprised by it because it feels like you’ve seen it before (a lot) and as it’s a style that has been so well adopted into art as we know it, it’s even harder to appreciate that it may have been ground-breaking at some time in the past. Some of his pieces are just about sixty years old where as to me, that seem to be older because of the documentation they’ve had.
But up close in person, they are clever in their painterly quality – the collage papers were hand painted to his specific colour instructions and so have interesting wash lines and tones to them. They are also cleverly abstract whist also having recognisable forms.
Glad I went to see it – it reminds what can be achieved when you keep things simple and what an inspiration he was to battle ill-health and age and still find a vehicle to express his creativity.