Tuesday, November 27, 2018

Visiting the travel sketchbook festival in Clermont-Ferrand, France

It was lovely to visit the travel sketchbook event, ‘Rendez-vous du carnet de voyage’ earlier this month. I first visited the festival, which is held in the French city of Clermont-Ferrand, last year and vowed to return, this time with more spending money! Over 90 artists, including many from the Urban Sketchers community, come together to show drawings from their travels all over the world. Quite a few artists who I follow on Instagram had stands at the festival and I left with a great haul of books, all signed and some with special drawings too. 

The festival is held at the Polydome near the city's rugby ground.
My haul of books!
Here are links to the artists I bought books from:

Hugo Barros Costa - @yolahugo on Instagram
Manu Ripoll - @manuripoll89 on instagram
Juliette Plisson - @juliette.plisson on Instagram
Marielle Durand - @idrawamerica on Instagram

Hugo Barros Costa on his stand 

Lapin drew a portrait for me!

Manu Ripoll signing my copy of his book of drawings

Beautiful fold-out print by Juliette Plisson

Lovely display from Francois Wagner

Below are my own sketchbook pages from the trip.

The watercolour illustration at the top of the blog post is of the 'Hotel le Lion' where I stayed on my trip. I had a room on the top floor with a great view across the central square, which you can see in some of the sketches. I booked through Expedia and thought it was good value and would recommend it to anyone visiting the city!

This is the link to their website - http://www.hotel-le-lion-clermont.fr/en/

This is the link to the 'Rendez-vous du carnet de voyage' website - https://www.rendezvous-carnetdevoyage.com/en/

Tuesday, November 13, 2018

New studio space!

Lots of light!

It’s been almost two months since I moved into my new studio space. It’s still not Pinterest-ready (will it ever be?) but already it has helped me get more work done. It’s the first time that I’ve ever had a room of my own to work in. Over the years, I’ve worked mainly from home, either on the kitchen table or using a temporary desk in the front room. Most of the time this has worked okay but domestic restrictions mean that work has to be packed away at certain times and it’s difficult to separate work with home life.

Books and art materials 

I have tried a few other options. First sharing with local graphic designer which was great until rain kept on coming in and nothing seemed to be happening to fix the problem. I left there, moving to a desk space area on the top floor of an old building in Croydon Old Town. This worked okay but then the studio owner moved to a different venue and the new space didn’t really work for me. A desk space in a lighting designer’s studio was next. The space was okay with lots of natural light but it wasn’t the sort of place I’d like to stay on to work in the evening or at weekends.

Inspiration on the walls

Of course, the biggest concern from my point of view about renting space is the cost. So I was interested to hear about the new Artist Company Studios (ASC) being built in Croydon and the fact that they might be affordable for me. I’d heard about ASC from a couple of artists so had been on their email mailing list. Although I thought they would be quite a way out of town, I was pleasantly surprised when I went on the Open Day that they were quite close to transport links, had large windows and lots of extras including a communal kitchen and seating area. There is also a gallery area.

The Grand Entrance
On Friday the gallery holds its first exhibition, ‘40 degrees centigrade’ curated by Tabish Khan, art critic and Visual Arts Editor for The Londonist.

The PV will be open from 6 - 9pm. For more details, contact ASC by email at reception@ascstudios.co.uk or view their website.

I'm hoping the new space will allow me to be more productive so that I have time to experiment with new techniques too.