Weekly Inspiration 31.3.16

Recently I’ve been pretty uninspired, to get out of this I’ve decided a few things:

a) stop moaning and just start making (even if its just collage and photography for now, thats still creative and good!)12496335_10201260392027093_1152374809624903744_o

b) think about what inspires you and why

To achieve point b) I will be writing weekly about artists or pieces that have inspired me.

This week I thought I would write about the most recent exhibition I’ve been too, as it’s still fresh in my mind. Just before it closed I caught the Concentric exhibition at Jacobs Market. The exhibition was a collection of works by 10 female artists to celebrate International Women’s Day.

As I entered the space, Zoë Gingell’s piece Jelly Belly instantly struck me. The milk cradled under the chair was fascinating; it was only as I was moving around the piece that the smell also hit me. The cloth was concealing but also revealing the abject materials and themes of milk and bodily function.

The exhibition had been recommended by Zoë, my mentor during my time at the Inc. Space. I enjoyed most of the work displayed but specifically felt Sheila Vyas’ work was the most relevant to what I have been, and want to be producing. The pieces were intricate and spellbinding, from afar they were decorative and beautiful but up close they were grotesque and surreal and intertwining imagination and bodily shapes imagined and intertwined much like our bodies. The patterns were moving and swirling as the forms of the body are explored.

Next up I will be heading to Zoë’s galley, Cardiff M.A.D.E to catch Aidan Myers’ solo show. Manoeuvred Matter is open from 17th of March to the 9th of April 2016.

 

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March

This year has been an all time low for art production. Life post-BA and during-work isn’t as fun, and I’ve had barely any time to get to the studio, lets just say that. I’m finally getting myself out of a funk, and what better way to do that than take lots of 35mm photographs in Amsterdam with your best friend. Determined yet again to get productive!

Inc Intro

So far my time at the Inc Space has just been getting busier. From the inpiring trip to London at the end of September to the lectures and talks on setting up as a profesional artist and/pr designer. At the moment I’m preparing for our first group show. The members of the inc space are introducing their work to the public, through the following show:

poster 2

We want to talk to you about our work and extend an open invitation to our private view on Wednesday the 10th of November. If you can’t catch us on the Wednesday, pop in to the unit at Mermaid Quay during the week, as we’ll be invigilating the show too.

As well as promoting this and creating the posters and flyers, I have been exploring the body further through my illustration. Yet again I am focusing in on teeth, obsessively drawing their forms. I plan on creating a limited edition zine, and the work in the show will be pieces from this project.

Monday Muse: Re-directive Practice

Whilst studying for my BA in Illustration, one of my favourite parts of the course was the artist talks and seminars. They inspired me so much that I now want to set up talks and seminars exploring art and design myself, but as I am working this out, I’m still enjoying the wondrous evenings put on by CSAD Illustration staff, including this conversation between the lovely Amelia and Dr Martyn Woodward. It was a great way to welcome the first years to the weird and thought provoking world of illustration, and to start them off on questioning everything from day one!

Below are my (kind of) illustrative notes from the session. I got too engrossed after a while, just scribbling notes furiously.

  

Inc. Space goes to London

After a wonderful trip to the London Design Festival I moved into my new studio space at CSAD’s Incubation Space. The trip inspired me ready to start a year of making and planning.

We started the festival at Tent London. Here I focused on the few practicing artists that were exhibiting, instead of the product based exhibits. The illustrators that I found had a clear identity and brand, showing a considered and complete sample of their work. The spaces were expertly curated, and this is what drew people in. The artists had postcards and business cards available to be picked up by all, as well as a selection of prints or illustrated products on show.

The product based exhibits made me focus on the packaging used and how this represents the product and the care that you put into in, even when it has sold.

The festival was mainly product based, and as an illustrator/artist, many of the products at the festival weren’t applicable to my work. What I focused on instead was how illustration can inform and feature in these products. There were many examples of wonderful surface design, that my illustrations could translate too. These surface designs could then be applied to numerous amounts of products from notebooks, to cushions, to furniture.

Rainbow Scrawl by Kirkby Design x Jon Burgerman

I met one of my favourite illustrators, Jon Burgerman, as he had recently collaborated with Kirkby Design and launched the range at Design Junction as part of the London Design Festival. The space was interactive and engaging, with the illustrator drawing and talking to the visitors. You could also browse through the many fabric designs that had been created and imagine the endless applications. This made me focus on creating work that speaks to the viewer, showing my way of making and extending the possibilities of my work.

Most of all this trip inspired me to make a space for myself in the world of art and design, and to not just wait for it to happen to me. I will make it happen.

Society6

An illustrator needs to be a multi platform artist. I’m lucky enough to be able to harness technology and social media to inspire and promote my work. To take advantage of this, this week I’ve been looking at all my options and starting to use them! Today I’ve been creating a profile and uploading work to Society 6. This wonderful website offers prints and other products featuring artists work. You can view my profile here. You can buy my work or even just share/follow me on there too. I also plan to set up a big cartel to sell original pieces and limited edition screenprints of my work, as well as the giclée options available on Society6.

Graduate Blues

Since graduating in July, my motivation to work has been at an all time low.

At first I was more than happy giving myself a few weeks of as a reward for all of my hard work over the past few years. It’s now the end of August and I’m still enjoying that time off. I need to get back into the practice of painting or just making as much as possible. I think living at home has impacted this, as I have no designated workspace. I plan of finding as much inspiration as possible over the next few days, to start a spark. Hopefully rejoining university in September as part of the Inc. Space will kick me back into shape, too.

I’m really excited about starting the Inc. Space residency. I will have my own studio space, with the other members of the Inc. Space. This will make me work harder, as seeing others work makes me want to work too. The mentors I will have will also help me; sometimes I need someone to tell me straight that I need to get my act together! But at the end of the day, I need to work hard to get where I want to be, and blogging regularly is my first port of call. I will be updating the website, adding more work and ways to access my work, and sharing what I haven’t or couldn’t previously.

hole in the heart text

Performing Medicine: Inside the Heart

Rebecca Thomas Heart 7

Just before the opening of the degree show, I illustrated an event at the Heath Hospital, building on the relationship I have built with them. The event was part of the performing medicine season. The event was run collaboratively by the anaesthetist doctors at the Heath University Hospital Wales, Clod Ensemble (a drama group) and the Wales Millennium Centre. The event was exploring the heart and what it means to us through anatomy, a simulated medical emergency, and the perspective of a dancer/choreographer.

Follow this link to the event posted on Professor Judith Hall’s blog, explaining more about the event, and also this wonderful illustrated conversation by my fellow students Maelle Chevallier (blog) and Helen Turnbull (blog).

Rebecca Thomas Heart 2

It was amazing to see what happens from a medical perspective when there’s an emergency with the heart. I was interesting to see how impressive it is too keep the calm doctor exterior, as you are still assessing the patient and what they need. As always I have learnt new things about the heart, the anatomy station enlightening the structure of the heart. I have the utmost respect for anyone within the medical community for their amazing work.

Rebecca Thomas Heart 8

I want to develop the imagery I created at the event, as the sketches as they are don’t seem to be working to their fullest potential at the moment. I have uploaded a few of my favourites from the event, and will update more when I have had time to develop the work.

Rebecca Thomas Heart 9