Wednesday, 19 October 2016

Pecha Kucha MK

Creatives Talking

Since recovering from a bout of illness, I've dived back to the fast-flowing stream that is 2016. Last week I attended the local gathering for comics and zine creators and indie publishers hosted by Milton Keynes Gallery.

It was great to have such a buzzing session where everyone seemed to find someone to swap ideas and stories with. The idea was to have a space where the kind of creatives that attended MKomix in 2012 could meet up. We're making use of the existing MKomix Facebook group to keep the conversations going after the event and a similar opportunity to get together should happen again early in 2017.

Pecha Kucha MK

Even though I thought I knew what Pecha Kucha was, having heard the term applied to a couple of gallery events, I didn't realise it had an international and licensed format. Milton Keynes now has an official license to hold Pecha Kucha events, with the interesting twist that the creator of this format and platform used to live in Wolverton, Milton Keynes, where the first talk will be held.

The first event will be free to attend and I will be one of its speakers. My slide show (20 slides, 20 seconds each) will talk about my experience as a new emerging artist. The presentation will cover my creative interests in urban & social landscapes, contemporary art. urban sketching, comics and zines.

The first PK event will be on Wednesday 19th from 7pm, see this link for more details.

Thursday, 13 October 2016

Back to Sketching

A Return to the Drawing Board

My plans for 2016 were many and varied but tackling problems this year has turned out to like wrestling a many-tentacled octopus - as fast as you tackle one arm another appears. As such I have been short of time and energy, so I had to focus more on opportunities as they presented themselves rather than chasing more ambitious plans. Learning to be more focused and efficient with my time could be a good thing in the long run.

So, here's what has actually happened with my work in 2016:

I've spent a lot more time on Instagram - it's a quick way for visual artists to share their work on social media, if you don't need to edit your images much first. Although the site lends itself better to high-impact images rather than conceptual projects, if you can tick both boxes you're onto a winner for promoting your work. Whilst people can and do comment on pictures, if you want a longer discussion you may be better off on Facebook.

Instagram has inspired me to return to sketching and, as my interest is in the urban landscape, this has meant urban sketching. Urban sketching is quite a big thing it seems, with international groups (chapters), so I'm enjoying dipping my toe into this new world.

One of my urban sketches became the basis of a page of comics artwork for the GirlFrenzy to CroneFrenzy zine, which was published online and the artwork was printed for an exhibition with Rachael House's event at the Supernormal arts festival in Oxfordshire. Girl Frenzy editor Erica Smith created the event's online zine

The same page of artwork is now heading off to show in an open call exhibition at Winchester Gallery, Winchester School of Art as part of the Small Press : Independent Comics and Self Publishing event 24th - 28th October 2016.

My foray back into comics also led to a conversation with Milton Keynes Gallery about running another comics-based event. The last one, the MKomix event, was linked to their show of Pushwagner's comic book inspired work in 2012. The gallery agreed and the Thursday Scratch Nights MK Zine, Comic and Indie Publishers Meet up is happening on Thursday 13th October from 7pm.