Another Circle Closes

It’s that time of year again… I’m working for the last time in the book I have shared over the year with Ben, before I post it back after Christmas. I’m feeling a sense of achievement as I look back over the pages we have shared, and the visual conversation we have had. I have been lucky enough again to share with two talented practitioners who have made me think, and have challenged my own practice.

My experiences on the Artist Teacher scheme have inevitably found their way into my sketchbooks this year, and vice versa, reminding me how different aspects of my practice all inform each other and are influenced by each other. Having the sketchbooks on the go alongside the ATS enables me to put ideas on the backburner and work on something else, or try things out in a different way, allowing me to explore and experiment in different contexts.

I have sent my sketchbook back to Louise for the final time, and I’m excited to see how she responds to my final additions. I have signed up for another year of the Circle, hopefully one sketchbook partnership and one digital partnership; I am already excited about where the experience will take me next.

Copies and Colours

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This weekend I have been continuing work in Ben’s sketchbook.

Ben reproduced one of my images in black and white; the reproduction is also slightly textured. He has, I think, used the same or similar technique elsewhere in the book and scraped marks into it. I am curious to know how he has achieved this tactile effect, and have included a note asking him to explain.

Anyway, I like the black and white reproduction of my own image, so I have been developing this idea, making other versions of it using tracing paper, carbon paper, inks, oil pastels, pen – a colourful extravaganza. I will perhaps continue to extract shapes and parts of the original image to play around with some more before returning it to Ben at the end of the week.

I have been pondering this idea of infinite reproductions and variations on a single theme recently; I have been using the photo editing software on my phone to manipulate images of my signature squares doodle, as well as drawing it in different mediums and colour combinations. I remember discussing the need to repeatedly return to a single image at Sarah Goudie’s drawing workshop at the Practice Imperfect event at BCU earlier this year; the idea fascinates me. I am a compulsive doodler; it helps my brain to slip into a flow state, which is useful when I am working on something specific and want to loosen up mental muscles; I also find it a good way to relax and let my mind ebb and flow at the end of the day.

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