- It is easy to feel that we are surrounded by despair and deep sadness with turmoil, war, political unrest and hardship. I want to challenge this perception. As human beings, we have a natural tendency to counter-balance this through optimism, love and an endless capacity for joy. Even in the hardest times, we pause in our lives and generate moments of happiness through the act of celebration. It reinforces our sense of connection to each other and reminds us of the stories which define our families, communities or nations. This can involve regular rituals; gatherings of friends to share food, music and dancing; costumes, masks and decoration, and objects and artworks which provide a focus for our feelings. Celebration can be based around religious beliefs, life milestones like birth or marriage, achievement of goals or simply pleasure in the positive experiences of life.
The Work & The Venue
I will explore the theme Objects of Celebration in more depth culminating in a solo show at The Studio Pavilion, House for an Art Lover in Glasgow next September. My main aim in doing this is to challenge the perception that we are going to hell in a handcart! The project will involve talking to people from different backgrounds and communities about their approaches to celebration, exploring customs and celebratory objects. I hope to uncover the unusual, the funny, the beautiful, and the poignant. I will then use this research to generate artwork, which pulls together common themes and conveys the delight of celebration as a human activity.
The Studio Pavilion is a wonderful space hosting exhibitions, masterclasses and workshops with leading contemporary artists and designers. As befits such a venue, I plan to make this my most ambitious work yet, working on a much bigger scale with screen print, digital and mixed media. The increased scale will also ensure maximum visual and emotional impact. I will use digital technology, not only to generate ideas and end products, but to gather and record the different ways in which people celebrate the joy in their lives. Although the end results will include textiles, words, humour and sculpture, drawing will be the thread that pulls it all together.
A wee bit about me
I studied textiles at The Glasgow School of Art, specialising in embroidery. 30 years ago I set up INCAHOOTS and expanded my work to include illustration. During this time I have worked on a huge range of commissions, exhibitions and projects. I continuously develop my work in new ways; consequently my output is quite diverse, from detailed scraperboard prints to more experimental sculptural and mixed media pieces for exhibition. Alongside this I have taught design, textiles and illustration in further and higher education and for workshops throughout Scotland. I find that teaching and designing alongside each other is a perfect combination, my work feeds into my teaching practice and vice versa. I guess we are all on a creative journey.
Currently I am the chair of Off the Rails Arthouse, Ladybank Station, Fife. Off the Rails Arthouse is described as ‘ A creative space to gather and learn’ and is my labour of love! www.offtherailsarthouse.com
How can you help?
• Firstly… SHARE! Crowdfunding is all about networks and tapping into the power of the internet to reach a wider audience. This could be sharing with distant relatives abroad or someone just around the corner! So when that link on Facebook appears, click the share button, retweet it on Twitter, put it on your Instagram story.
• Secondly… REWARDS! I am offering lots of rewards in exchange for funding pledges. I hope that some of them take your fancy to give things a good kick off!
• Thirdly… STORIES! One of the most important elements of the project will be collecting stories of celebration and celebratory objects. Starting in January I will be asking specific questions about aspects of celebration and who knows - these may end up in my artwork. I have had many conversations about the theme already and am amazed at the extraordinary thoughts and experiences people have. I am looking forward to collecting many more.
How will I use the fundsThe funds will help provide materials and time to do all of this……
Screen print production: fabric, screens, inks, print studio time. Digital printing on fabric. Experimentation with digital media and new materials, laser cutting, 3d printing, construction techniques.....and much much more.
Your rewards for being so kind
I have 14 rewards to tempt you with and they are all connected with the Celebratory theme in some way! Here are some extra things to tell you…….
• Each and every contributor will be added to a virtual wall of fame on my website and a physical wall of fame at the exhibition.
• All the rewards can be given to someone else as a present whether a Christmas/birthday/wedding or ‘I just want to give you something’ present.
• During the exhibition private view in September 2017 I will give someone who has pledged over £50 a special one off piece to say thank you. This will be called ‘The Crowdfunders artwork’. You never know I might choose your name from the wall of fame!
1. Thank you post card featuring a bit of the ‘Festival Fun’ print with a hand written thank you (£5)
2. Special edition. A wobbly message makes this greetings card even more special for you to send. Choose one of the following messages:-Hello, Happy Birthday, Celebrate, With Love. Estimated December 2016 (£10) Here is a wee video to show the wobble!
3. Five greeting cards – Featuring extracts from the Scraperboard prints: Auld Reekie; Dear old Glasgow toon; A wee bit of the East Neuk; Eilean Donan- God’s own country; A divot of St Andrews. (£10)
4. Two hand printed cotton tea towels from my current collection- 7 designs to choose from. Have a look on my website- the tea towel page and tell me which two you would like! (£20)
5. An exclusive brand new ‘Celebration’ tea towel design. Limited edition to make it even more special. Hand printed on a cotton tea towel. This tea towel can also be transformed into a piece of framed artwork. No image yet as it will be designed as part of the project! (£30)
6. Scraperboard print of special places in Scotland and England. Unframed and signed–18 titles to choose from. Look at my website to choose a title.(£46) Here are a few examples.....
7. Scraperboard print. Framed and signed (only in the UK) 18 titles to choose from. Look at my website to choose a title. (£60) And another example...
8. A limited edition ‘Muckle’ print mounted in an Acrylic Prism 15x15cm Lovely Scottish words to make you smile (£50)
8a...NEW REWARD!....Blueprint shadows (see reward number 10)'Blueprint Shadows' fine art matt print is bonded to a solid 18mm Wooden panel with a matt black edge. Each wood panel comes ready-to-hang with a split baton back floating the print 10mm from your wall for a dramatic effect. 30x40cm
9. Drawings, drawings, drawings!! Relating to the theme of celebration receive a special drawing every 2 months from January until July sent by email (4 drawings in total). These drawings will also let you have a peek at the project’s progress. The drawings will be produced using a wide variety of methods including digital and mixed media. Some of these drawings will be included in a book produced for the exhibition and you will receive a signed copy. (£75)
10. Even more…Drawings, drawings, drawings!! Relating to the theme of celebration receive a special drawing every month from January until July sent by email (8 drawings in total). These drawings will also let you have a peek at the project’s progress. The drawings will be produced using a wide variety of methods including digital and mixed media. Some of these drawings will be included in a book produced for the exhibition and you will receive a signed copy or you can choose one of the drawings to have printed and signed. (£150)
11. Would you like to be in one of my Scraperboard prints? I will ‘scrape’ you or someone special into one of the prints, add a little colour (if you like) making it a truly unique piece of artwork. This is an example of one that I did this year. The sister of the bride commissioned it as a wedding present (and I’m told she was she was delighted!!) Framed UK Unframed overseas (sorry I’m not permitted to send glass overseas but shipping is included instead) (£200)
12. A day in my studio. Come by yourself or share the day with up to four friends. Look behind the scenes, have a rummage in my plan chest, talk about ideas and techniques, have one to one tutorials or a demonstration, look through my sketchbooks and have an exclusive peek at how the project is progressing. Includes tea, coffee, cake and lunch. Available from January 2017 for one year. 4 days available throughout the year (£250)
13. A day at Off the Rails Arthouse. For up to four people. Work on your own or gather a dream team to share the day (and the cost with you!)
Off the Rails Arthouse is at Ladybank Station in Fife.
Work alongside me at the Arthouse. The upstairs studios will be yours and I will work in the downstairs studio. Have space to work on your own projects, see your work in a new environment. If any of you would like to have a chat/tutorial about your work we can start and end the day with a session (but this is optional). In between you can work at your own pace and in your own zone. Monoprinting, Lino cutting equipment and a Bernina sewing machine are available. As the Arthouse is used most often at the weekends the availability its better for weekdays however some weekends may be possible. Lunch included. Available from January 2017 for one year. You might want to work on the theme of Celebration (or not!) (£150)
14. Two days at Off the Rails Arthouse For up to four people. Work on your own or gather a dream team to share the day) The two days can be consecutive or not, it is up to you. Off the Rails Arthouse is at Ladybank Station in Fife.
Work alongside me at the Arthouse. The upstairs studios will be yours and I will work in the downstairs studio. Have space to work on your own projects, see your work in a new environment. If any of you would like to have a chat/tutorial about your work we can start and end the day with a session (but this is optional). In between you can work at your own pace and in your own zone. Monoprinting, Lino cutting equipment and a Bernina sewing machine are available. As the Arthouse is used most often at the weekends the availability its better for weekdays however some weekends may be possible. Lunch included. Available from January 2017 for one year. You might want to work on the theme of Celebration (or not!) (£300)
Risks and challenges
The only area of risk I foresee is the length of time it might take to learn how to use the digital technologies, with the resulting timetable disruption. However there is an element of flexibility within the project plan and I will have a lot of support to overcome this.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (30 days)