We are all gearing up – well, panicking really – for Artsweek which we hang next Tuesday, ready for Private View on Friday afternoon. It is exciting to hang a new show always and a little bit daunting because until we have everyone’s work in the room, it is difficult to imagine how it will shape up. This year Shelagh Baxter is showing with Emma and I, which should be fun. So let’s hope the sun shines and we get lots of visitors.
One lovely thing that is going to happen is that the beautiful church in Longcot will be open and full of flowers, and a window is going to be decorated for each of the artists working in Longcot. Shirley (flower arranging artist extraordinaire!) is organising this and I can’t wait to see the result. How amazing! I never thought I would see my name in flowers…what else? I am off to Harris Manchester College this evening to a Private View of a whole group of linocut artists – Laura Boswell, Ian Phillips to name just two. Their work is quite beautiful and expands your view of the boundaries of linocut as a medium. Anybody in the Oxford area – go and see their show because I can guarantee you will love it! and that is before I have been! Signing off now…things to do, pictures to frame, labels to type…
Helen Pakeman 'Fuschia'
I am just posting a couple of the designs I have been working on, as I asked for help with a problem on Linked in and got such a wealth of helpful suggestions! So here are a couple of the more successful versions: I wanted to draw a little on top of the design to establish some of the shadows but couldn’t find an ink that would hold a) on the rather thin Japanese paper and b) on top of oil based printing ink. Both these images are without any drawing because, actually, I think the answer (thankyou Andrew) is thicker paper and FW Inks (thankyou Catalina) and I am still searching for the right Dr Martins inks to try. This design is quite small ie 20 x 15cm and I think it could look good if I upped the scale quite a bit, although it will require some elbow grease, especially if I am burnishing onto heavier paper. Think it might be worth a go though. I am really enjoying playing around with the background colours.
Helen Pakeman 'Fuschia 2'
I am on a bit of a roll now and itching to spend more time in the studio experimenting, but life seems to be working against me and I know I won’t get any more done this week. I am away for a few days so will sneak some linos to cut into the baggage…
Any comments/suggestions would be gratefully received.
Follow up to Ursula Fookes story: someone rang me, having seen my Tweet and blog post, to say that his wife had bought a whole lot of stuff at an auction some time ago which turns out to be Ursula Fookes’ sketchbooks and preparatory drawings for some of her iconic linocuts. He is going to try and get hold of Ursula’s neice (as in Antiques Roadshow) and see if she would be interested. Did not, foolishly, get hold of the gentleman’s contact details as i thought afterwards that if the BBC cant help him, then he could go via Bonhams where i do have a name he could follow up, as they sold the pictures for the neice. So, if you are out there reading this and need that name, give me a ring again. Also thought afterwards that i would love to have seen the sketchbooks etc before they went anywhere. The power of the internet!