Tuesday, 15 April 2014

JUST A THOUGHT

I have at last found some time to get back in the studio to experiment.
I have a cunning plan for this glass ware,
and  once again have hit my sketch books with a few ideas.
Still obsessed with natural history and museum collections.
Starting off with etched copper and
digital transfers
This copper fits nicely into some of the jars and bottles.
 
I am gradually building up enamelled objects and playing with 3 dimensional placement in this small cupboard. I am looking forward to the arrival of my new digital transfers for this project, thankyou for your help Jane getting that sorted out.
I will keep you posted on the progress of this Natural History project. 

 

Thursday, 3 April 2014

SPRING IN THE SHED

At last the weather is warming up and the seeds are coming up in veg pot city which is taking advantage of a sunny corner in my walled garden.



You might have spotted what I am using for plant labels. Determined not to
forget what I have planted this year I have enamelled the names on bits of cutlery.
The orange bucket is the Gardening Clubs potatoe in a bucket competition. Who can grow the most for the August show, I am consistent and always come in the last 2.
I am also very smug about my spring bulbs this year.
I am still on target for doing a print a month, even though I am cheating and appear to be doing 2 a month. Will this mean I can have a holiday here and there? I suspect not...momentum is everything.
These are both collagraphs called Singing the Blues. The winter plump blackbirds were in the garden during December. I love the blackbirds song, always cheery at dawn and twilight, hence the labels with gum arabic transfer. I am running a one day Transfer workshop at Hampen Factory on June 21st if you want to learn more about the technique.
 
BREAKING NEWS:- I will be featured in the Artisan section of Period Living in June. Very exciting, several pages of my work, shed and Frank the cat. I believe the magazine comes out in May so watch out for it in your local News Agents.


Tuesday, 18 March 2014

TA DAH!

Back in November 2012 I was invited to design a piece of public art to celebrate 200 years of trading on the Bath Road, Cheltenham
I can remember feeling daunted by the enamel coated panels waiting to have the design scratched into it.
Thanks to Hy-Tech Enamellers, www.hytechenamellers.co.uk
Rachel and I were able to work in the factory while Agas and baths were being enamelled around us.
We learnt so much from John White about the industrial enamel process.
The excitement of watching the panels being fired
 in large continuous furnaces.
But today was the day the Bath Road panels were unveiled to the world. 
I got the chance to meet again those who helped the project succeed, Viv from Hy-Tech cheerfully kept us all organised.
John who allowed us into his factory to make the work.
Brian lent me lots of precious material which makes the panels detailed and fascinating.
Niki, who got me involved with the project in the first place.
A real Ta Dah moment as Martin Horwood MP unveiled the work.
At last this work is on the wall of the Exmouth Arms, Bath Road, Cheltenham.
It has been an exciting journey, researching into the local history of this interesting road. There are so many people to thank for helping me and Rachel achieve this project. Thankyou Cheltenham Connect whose initial idea it was to commission a piece of public art.

Thursday, 13 March 2014

HERE'S ONE I MADE EARLIER

Next week is the penultimate week of my 10 week classes. 2 printmaking groups and an enamel class. It has been a lovely term and I have enjoyed it all thoroughly. Everyone has worked so hard. 
It is interesting to look back at the quick examples I do in front of my groups and how different yet similar they look compared to the work I make to sell.
These 5 pieces are my enamel trials. They build up
week by week as I teach different skills that develop over the 10 week class.
We use copper and this panel shows many of the techniques in one place.
We have had lots of fun with transfers.
I teach weekend workshops in between the regular 10 week classes. I found
these 2 collagraphs with gum Arabic transfers included hidden in a pile of samples.
My New Brewery Arts printmaking group explored inking with viscosity inks and
plate making with glue and tile cement.
The Hampen Factory group experimented with dry point on plastic with a second collagraph plate providing the coloured background. The results have been gorgeous.
 
I will be teaching more printmaking and enamel classes near Cheltenham and in Cirencester. 10 week and weekend workshops in both places, just email me at sb.brown@talk21.com for summer term details.

Tuesday, 25 February 2014

CONTEMPORARY ENAMEL

I have a couple of galleries after some of my enamel spoons. This means I have had to lock myself in the shed today and crank up the kiln.
 
After preparing the steel spoons with grip coat which is black.
2 coats of white enamel is applied.
Here are some naked spoons waiting to be adorned with screen printed transfers.
I am still beetle obsessed, but I am being seduced by these chintz transfers.
 
 
Just adding a touch of Spring to the fly's and ladybirds.


 

Sunday, 23 February 2014

THUS SPOKE THE RAVEN

There has been a flurry of collagraph activity in my shed this month. I have got over the January lull and despite the damp weather, I am feeling the creative Spring urge along with my garden.
I have made the decision to make a print a month, I now have a print in hand after making this raven.
This image comes from a set of drawings made sometime ago. It is always worth looking back through old sketch books, there are often treasures nestling in the pages.
Using grey board, Poly filla, wood glue and carborundum I get the tones and textures I need for the
dark feathers and high lights of the raven.
A really good way to start Sunday morning, cranking collagraphs through my press.
This raven is just how I remember him. My friend Lesley and I spent a thrilling morning getting to know Marley the raven, it brings back lovely memories revisiting this image.
 
Here they are hanging up to dry, my studio always looks organised after a printmaking session!