Posted in Uncategorized

News: The Good. The Bad. The Ugly

First I’m going to start with the Ugly. WTF WordPress?! How do you add images to your posts now?! Can anyone enlighten me on this? I’m seriously not digging this new change.

There are other changes that I am not digging however I totally won’t go into that now as I’ve been going into it in my mind over and over. The rule of six is how applying to all sorts of things and like everyone else, I’m trying to figure out the nuances and how to make sure I am following new guidelines. Maybe it’s a good thing I’ve largely been into rule following as I can roll with these changes fairly ok. I think.

My daughter is having a birthday soon. This is always a wonderful event to look forward to. Obviously this year’s celebration will be small but it will be big on love.

I THINK the exhibition is still going ahead. I am going to continue to make work to fill the space as if nothing has changed. The thing that is so difficult is to plan. Anything. That isn’t online. Most of our show will have live streams to watch on Instagram however we still need to set up in a space. Monday through Thursday 1:30 – 2pm I do a bit of live painting on Instagram live. This is starting to be very enjoyable (was awkward at first) as it is nice to feel like I have company. There is always music or a podcast rattling on in the background.

So I guess all of the above is considered good. Small bright sparkly stars shining in an atmosphere of uncertainty.

What is bad or sad rather is that my grandmother passed away last week. Although expected, it is still a very sad event for the family. It is sad that my mother and her family are having to navigate their way through this. I wish I could be there to help in practical and emotional ways. To honour Leona’s wonderful life, I have set up a Maggie’s Just Giving page. The page will include 100 drawing prompts to see you through many hours of happy drawing. Drawing can be therapeutic, calming, can help centre you. I find drawing is my safe place. If you would like to join in, please visit by page here.

I’m going to end with this question: How the fuck do you add images to this? I mean honestly. What a faff.

Posted in inspiration, news, process, Uncategorized

Drawing in Community

Cass Mark workshop image

Drawing in community.  As I write this I am thinking of two different interpretations to these words.

First, I think of the bringing together of people to learn, chat, and create together.  There are groups all over the world of people joining in for art sessions in an artist’s studio, gathering in public spaces to draw stuff, and now forming groups online to learn illustration.  Recently I listened to The Good Ship Illustration’s podcast about their community of artists and classes.  I want to join in.

The second interpretation is pulling in, bringing together, finding those floating souls out there and inviting them to join in an activity.  How do you draw people in to what you are doing?  What are people looking for especially now that boundaries are constantly shifting?

Edinburgh Sketcher Mark Kirkham and I are running fornightly drawing sessions, recently focusing in on the architecture of Edinburgh.  Jo Caulfield joined us during our last sessions, sharing her love of Leith and its varied architecture.  My heart did swoon when she zeroed in on the Imperial Docks and that big monster sitting on the edge of the water.

Our next sessions is September 1st.  This time we will be featuring David Blaikie and one of his team’s gorgeous projects.  We will be using two widths of pen for adding depth and detail in our drawings.  Does this sound like a community you would like to test out? See if it’s a good fit?  We have such a lovely group.  This is my invitation for you to join us.

You can buy your tickets here.

 

Posted in allthesmallthings, galleries and shops, inspiration, news, process, Uncategorized

Announcing the line up for All The Small Things group exhibition

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
Hannah Bailey

Check out all that water.  I don’t mean the water falling from the sky in depressing waves, sheets, mist fogs, and water walls.  I mean check out all that water in the photograph.  This piece is by artist Hannah Bailey created for her series Looking out to sea/Looking out to see.  When I saw her submission come through I could see it vividly in my mind, sharing space with another artist I will talk about next week.  Coincidentally, they are both Baileys however no relation as far as I am aware. Fi BaileyJenni Douglas , and Cassandra Harrison will also be showing their work in this exhibition.

Later this week the four of us will all have a zoom chat and discuss the vision for the exhibition.  I am aware that times they are a-changin’, sometimes one week is so vastly different from the previous one.  With this in mind, we will create an in-person exhibition alongside a scheduled online presence.  We will have live videos of the artists showing their work and discussing the process from ideas to the work set out in the space.  There will be teaching sessions, chat, opportunities for the public to get involved and so much more.

Opening night is September 25th and there is still much to do.

Thank you so much for following this story.  Please share the hashtag #allthesmallthingsblocgallery (no k!) to stay tuned in.  It would be wonderful if you could share this far and wide.  One way to support our artists is by disseminating the information. I look forward to updating you all as the show unfolds.

Posted in allthesmallthings, inspiration, news, process

#allthesmallthings submission deadline August 19th, 9pm

I have just had a hearty laugh at my PLANS FOR 2020 entry into my Maker’s Yearbook (I buy one every year – so handy for checking progress and making plans).  By this time I was to have fully launched and have taken several bookings for in-person parties for my Crash Course in Art History business.  I was to go into businesses, parties, homes to give a fun and interactive art history/art making experience.  There was the first one which was so much fun and a success…and then lockdown happened.  Some of that I have carried onward to zoom and Saturday art classes.  If you want to know more, please visit my website.

One thing that IS happening is the #allthesmallthings exhibition.  Instead of filling the space myself, I am looking for collaborators.  I have found over the last several months that working with people, making plans, cheerleading for each other is certainly the way forward.

Some of the plans I have for this event is to make is an online event as well as an in-person event.  There will be a live launch online plus interviews with the artists, to be added to a podcast I am currently planning.  Does this sound like good fun to you?  Perhaps you would like to join us? Read on!

The details to consider before submitting:

-The exhibition opens at 4pm on Friday, September 25.  Work needs to be taken down on September 28, in the evening.  Time to be discussed.

– Does your work fit within the title of #allthesmallthings?  I’m interested to see how others interpret this theme so therefore I do not want to list ideas of what this could mean.

– Are you available to bring your work to the gallery on Sept 25th, install the work and be ready to present it to the public by 4pm? I will open the space at 10am on the day.

-Are you available to take down your work on Monday 28th?

-You do not have to be available all weekend as I will be in the gallery all day on Saturday and Sunday.  However, if you wish to sell your work and other pieces (prints, cards, stickers, etc) it would be advisable to have your own method of taking payment.  When you are not present we can make another arrangement for you to receive payments. (Will discuss that at a later date).

-The space you will be given will be approximately 5 meters long plus all the space up to the ceiling and down to the floor.  You will also have space in the window to display your work.

-Inclusion in this exhibition does mean I need to take a payment of £65 for this space.  This covers the space plus a bit of help to pay for a vinyl sign on the window and flyers.

-If this seems like a perfect set up for you and you’d like to get involved please email me at cassandraharrisonartATgmail.com.  In the subject line please write #allthesmallthings as I do receive a lot of mail for sales, commissions, admin, etc.  I will let everyone know by 19th of August the outcome of their submissions.  Please submit either a link to your Instagram, website or other social media.

-Please note that if your work is not chosen it does not reflect on whether or not the work is good, bad, too black and white, too colourful, too big, too small, or any of these things.  I am aiming to put together a coherent show that visually gels.

Thank you everyone.  Please email me if you have any questions.

Here is a link to Bloc gallery.  The photograph above is from the opening exhibition at Bloc Gallery in August 2019.

Posted in allthesmallthings, news, Uncategorized

Artist call for submissions #allthesmallthings

meatbloc

This is a call for submissions to an exhibition that is approaching a little bit faster than originally planned.  Thanks Covid-19, you have spun us all around in the year 2020.  So many things planned, scheduled, dreamed for, paths cleared, and now it just feels like I’m trying to upright myself after all of that change.  And change that continues.

I had originally planned for occupy all of Bloc for an exhibition in October 2020.  For months I had worked towards this solo show and then lockdown happened, homeschooling happened, hours for work did not happen and now change is happening.

This is my invitation for other artists to join me in a collaborative effort to create a show with the theme of #allthesmallthings. As I have been planning this new thing, I have had to consider a) social distancing measures and b) which is actually still a) number of people in the space at one time. With this in mind, I am asking for 4 others to join me in an exhibition.

The details to consider before submitting:

-The exhibition opens at 4pm on Friday, September 25.  Work needs to be taken down on September 28, in the evening.  Time to be discussed.

– Does your work fit within the title of #allthesmallthings?  I’m interested to see how others interpret this theme so therefore I do not want to list ideas of what this could mean.

– Are you available to bring your work to the gallery on Sept 25th, install the work and be ready to present it to the public by 4pm? I will open the space at 10am on the day.

-Are you available to take down your work on Monday 28th?

-You do not have to be available all weekend as I will be in the gallery all day on Saturday and Sunday.  However, if you wish to sell your work and other pieces (prints, cards, stickers, etc) it would be advisable to have your own method of taking payment.  When you are not present we can make another arrangement for you to receive payments. (Will discuss that at a later date).

-The space you will be given will be approximately 5 meters long plus all the space up to the ceiling and down to the floor.  You will also have space in the window to display your work.

-Inclusion in this exhibition does mean I need to take a payment of £65 for this space.  This covers the space plus a bit of help to pay for a vinyl sign on the window and flyers.

-If this seems like a perfect set up for you and you’d like to get involved please email me at cassandraharrisonartATgmail.com.  In the subject line please write #allthesmallthings as I do receive a lot of mail for sales, commissions, admin, etc.  I will let everyone know by 19th of August the outcome of their submissions.  Please submit either a link to your Instagram, website or other social media.

-Please note that if your work is not chosen it does not reflect on whether or not the work is good, bad, too black and white, too colourful, too big, too small, or any of these things.  I am aiming to put together a coherent show that visually gels.

Thank you everyone.  Please email me if you have any questions.

Here is a link to Bloc gallery.  The photograph above is from the opening exhibition at Bloc Gallery in August 2019.

 

Posted in allthesmallthings, crash course in art history, inspiration, news, process, Uncategorized

Making is Connecting and Creating Community

makingisconnecting

You know when you stumble upon a book and there’s that fabulous zinging sensation that pings through you.  You know you are about to get your hands on something that resonates with what you’re about or the part of the journey that you are on right now. That was this book.

For weeks I have been teaching online classes via zoom.  I have been teaching so many art history and art making lessons that my files are stacked with ideas, images, notes, and even a book proposal based on what I am learning.  Not only is my mind being fed all these gorgeous, inspiring images but it is starting to make connections that I had not fully explored before.

On Saturday, there I was, sitting in front of my computer screen, watching my attendants appear one by one.  The ‘connecting to audio’ and ‘connecting to video’ messages gave way to faces I had not seen before. Some screens remained black so I had no idea who I was speaking to.  This past Saturday I was winding up my Saturday art sessions which have been rattling on for 15 weeks.  During that time we have explored Still Life artworks, the works of Wayne Thiebaud, Helen Frankenthaler, Suzanne Valadon, Jean Michel Basquiat, Landscapes and Abstract Expressionism.  We tried our hands at continuous line drawings, mark making, patterns, and collage.  All of these lessons were of my own making, sometimes using a small nudge from an outside resource.  It’s been fun for me to go ‘okay, I see what that lesson is doing but how can I make it my own and how can I fashion it better for the people in class.’

When the last session was winding down, the people on the screen began to talk.  Seattle calling. Australia calling.  Edinburgh calling.  We were calling from at least three of the four corners of the earth and here we were, all connecting for this session.  I nearly cried with joy.  What was it that was so touching in that moment?

I have been on my own journey of discovery, finding ways that learning about art can connect us to the past to better understand our present.  That is practically word for word what Eventbrite write on their page when they promoted my class to America. For years I have been teaching children and adults about the stories of perseverance seen in the lives of artists.  There are themes of loneliness, love, anger, bravery.  Art can create a bridge between people and help them to cross over to the other side to view life from a different vantage point.  Creativity is connecting to not only what is within yourself but to others.

In David Gauntlett’s book Making is Connecting, Gauntlett states, “…art was never really just ‘product’ – art and creativity have always been about ideas and relationships.” I circled this statement, wrote GOLD next to it, and dog-eared the page.

For the month of July I will continue to write on this subject and give examples from my classes.  In a time when many of us have felt increasingly isolated, making art ‘together,’ can be part of the answer to feeling part of a bigger picture.

Here is C Lavelle’s interpretation of Las Meninas.  I feel like we ended on a high.

Posted in Uncategorized

Embracing the good: Lockdown moments

This week I have been busy completing Lockdown portrait commissions. Some of these have been requested for Father’s Day. The one I really want to show you I can’t as the recipient follows me on social media. It’s super cute so I’ll share after Father’s Day. Some requests have been for birthdays and anniversary.

It has been a joy to make these and it’s even better when I can hand over the work personally. I’m thankful that I can bring a small spark of joy into people’s lives. Just like I am happy to receive the great teaching and creative gifts of others; it’s nice that I can be a part of the creative gifting economy as well.

Posted in allthesmallthings, inspiration, process, Uncategorized

Lockdown Painting Experiments Continue: Finding my groove

Threeinarow1Threeinarow2

£75 each

6cm x 6cm (two on the left)

6cm x 4cm (the allotment on the right)

Whilst in Lockdown I have been going on an adventure with getting down with my painting style.  I like where my drawings are going, I am happy with developments in textile work however now is the time to see where I can take my paintings.  For weeks I have been working my way through a series of hours of frustration, elation (if it can all be pulled together) and curiosity as I try different painting surfaces.  Textured canvas?  I like that for picking up oil pastel marks.  Hard board? I can draw on it with pencil easily and it keeps the line.

These paintings here are my favourite so far.  I have been working with these colours for years and I am glad they have found their way into my paintings.  These were inspired by a feed I follow on Instagram.  The photographer takes high contrast photos of buildings, using interesting angles.  I see the images and mentally break them down into shapes then begin to paint what I am constructing in my mind.  Of course it never translates directly.  Sometimes the accident that happens on canvas is better than what I held in my mind.

The above pieces are for sale for the Artist Support Pledge.  After I sell £2000 of work I then buy a piece from another artists.  It’s artists supporting artists and many of my artist pals are a part of this.  I would be so delighted to support one of them and of course, own a gorgeous piece of art that will bring me happiness for years to come.

 

You can see a portfolio of my illustration, commission and painting work here.  If you like the ones featured here please get in touch.

Posted in inspiration, news, process, Uncategorized

Interview with an Artist: Edinburgh Sketcher

The other day I caught up with Mark Kirkham (EdinburghSketcher) and had a great talk about how the Lockdown has been a time to create and explore new things.  Not all things are bad during this weird time in which we find ourselves. There are glimmers of hope and sunshine and I think the best in people has been brought to the surface.

In June Mark and I will be teaching Urban Sketching sessions online.  For more information and to book your spot, please visit the info and ticket page at Eventbrite

Posted in inspiration, news, process

Interview with an Artist: Kenris Macleod (She is sew fabulous)

Well, this is a pretty intense still however I do not have the skills to edit this bit or jump 30 seconds to the right or left.

Last week I caught up with Kenris Macleod about Lockdown, making art and her exhibition that opened just before everything became closed to business.  I hadn’t spoken to Kenris in weeks so this was great to see what she had been up to in the last month and a bit.