Wednesday, 31 July 2013

One busy week does not a business make!!!

Petrol - Tina Francis - 2013

I am off to Edinburgh for the Fringe Festival and along the way I will be taking the advice of Craft Scotland and visiting some of the great exhibitions and Craft shows that will be taking place during August. I am really looking forward to the short break and just being able to look rather than do, I need a break and this is why.......

The week starting Monday 15th July was one of the busiest of my life!!  It began with a meeting at Craft Central with Dr Rachel Smart who after listening to what I had been doing, what I wanted to do, how many projects I had on the go and how many hours sleep I was getting gave me some fabulous advice on how to step out of this whirlwind and get myself in order!!! Now I love a list and I am pretty pedantic about ticking things off so Rachels advice on making targetted lists was joy to my ears - list making with permission! It has really helped me to look at my practice and question my choices, I'm not stopping on the ideas front just writing them down and investigating them rather than tangenting off into the merry world of research and then having to stay awake half the night catching up on making!  Thanks Rachel!

Next a second trip to London to drop off a small piece of work for Zeitgeist Summer Open.  Zeitgeist Arts Project is run by Rosalind Davis and Annabel Tilley and this exhibition was a chance for all ZAP members to show a small piece of their work and meet each other alongside collectors.  It was a fantastic show and I met some great people and even sold my piece Petrol (above image) which was a total bonus. Meeting other artists and listening to what they are doing really does give you a bit of confidence to carry on with it all, thanks ZAP gang!

During the whole of the week I was stitching like mad because I am going to be on TV as part of a makeover show in the Autumn. So on the Friday of my whirlwind week I was being filmed on the sunny terrace outside my beach hut studio, it mad me laugh quite a bit (inside of course - had to be sensible on film!!) because I had never had to stitch on camera before, it was one of the hottest days of the year and I was stitching with warm wool! As they say in the trade it was a wrap and so once I know when the show will be on TV I'll post it on here, probably be just a shot of me trying to thread a needle under time pressure in the blazing heat but hey any publicity is good publicity - apparently!

So there we go, the reason why I need to take a little break from myself and look and talk and listen to the makers of Scotland and then come back happy and ready to yet again get on with it!

Enjoy the sunshine and happy stitching!

Friday, 5 July 2013

Meeting and greeting!

I had a great time at Fusion at West Dean College, it was a fantastic venue with so much to see and do.  The weather was a little bit of a problem but what can you do?  I was in a small marquee with two other makers which was open to the elements!!  There were food stands, craft stalls, maker displays, drop in classes and much more, I can really see this event growing and growing. I met lots of great people interested in stitch and will definitely be back there next year.

Meeting people who love stitch is the highlight of any show for me being a maker sometimes means lots of hours alone with the radio so it was a great surprise when I had a knock on the door this morning. Standing on the doorstep were the Shermans wondering whether they could see my work - what an honour!  Sam Sherman is a keen stitcher and so I took them down to the Gallery and showed them my wares and talked about stitch for a while.  Sam bought two of my "Use Your Stash" patterns and will be taking them back with her when she returns to the States.  As you can tell this really made my day!  But I think that I need to keep my studio a little tidier in the future!

Meeting people who make for a living is hard even in a small town like Brighton so I am really pleased that some local makers have got together to create the Brighton Etsy group.  Their window display can be seen at Super and Super.  A lot of energy is going into this group with a mentoring programme being run in July, check them out if you are a maker in Brighton.

At the start of this week The Big Forest issued a challenge, this challenge is to remain positive.  It's hard to do sometimes but when you start getting out there meeting and greeting and the sun is shining you just can't help yourself!