Wednesday, 1 December 2010

give me back what's mine.

"the springtide more golden to me than to the birds"

At the moment I have found a lot of inspiration in the Window to the West, The Rediscovery of Highland Art exhibition at the City Arts Centre in Edinburgh. It is a really interesting collection of Scottish art works mainly referencing the development of change in Gaelic culture. An artist I am particularly fond of Will Maclean has also collaborated in installation of a boat which was created using traditional methods. I've also been reading and listening to recordings of Sorley Maclean poems in Gaelic and English, and attempted a little of my own poetry.

Just to share, here are a few Sorley Maclean poems that I would like to create some art to.

Again and again when I am broken
my thought comes on you when you were young,
and the incomprehensible ocean
fills with floodtide and a thousand sails.

The shore of trouble is hidden
with its reefs and the wrack of grief,
and the unbreaking wave strikes
about my feet with a silken rubbing.

How did the springtide not last,
the springtide more golden to me than to the birds,
and how did I lose its succour,
ebbing drop by drop of grief?

She to whom I gave all love
gave me no love in return;
though my agony was for her sake,
she did not understand the shame at all.

But often in the thoughts of night
when my mind is a dim wood
a breeze of memory comes stirring the foliage,
putting the wood's assuagement to unrest.

And from the depths of my body's wood,
from sap-filled root and slender branching,
there will be the heavy cry: why was her beauty
like a horizon opening the door to day?

His poetry is so beautifully written. Yes... Overall, I am glad I finally ventured outside after being stuck in my flat for about two days and feeling sorry for myself. I love drinking mulled wine at the Edinburgh Christmas market. I have so much university work to do, but I feel completely uninspired about any of the projects we are doing at the moment. Oh well, work work work....

from bad to worse, i don't know how to mend it.

fox takes hare.

A selection of images for my Visual Communication project at Edinburgh College of Art.

Thursday, 11 November 2010

will you sail away with me?

"Will You Sail Away With Me?" - Wood, Graphite

I drew this today as I had a little free time and I felt the urge to draw something to relax me from the current stress I've been under. I have had an on going story with a certain other that we both made up together and I have been intending to illustrate it for a long time now. Its' a pair of tapirs in a gondola, sailing away at sea. I am going to crop it down and possibly sand the edges rounded if I'm brave enough to do it myself this time. I guess its' almost like a visual diary into how I've been feeling about someone at the moment. Not all stories have happy endings.

Where Do My Bluebirds Fly?

"Where Do My Bluebirds Fly?" - Graphite, Japanese Plywood, Conte
ECA So Far Exhibition Project

In this brief I wanted to express my experience of being at Art School as being almost like a permanent imaginary state. I feel like I've been living in a bit of a fantasy over these last few weeks and immersed in my own thoughts and feelings.

I was inspired by a variety of sources from contemporary fashion illustrators, art nouveau artists such as Egon Schiele & Gustav Klimt, and a documentary on BBC4 about the History of British Birds: Garden Birds which looks at how birds have acclimatised to urban surroundings from the last hundred and fifty years to the modern day.

The birds in this image are meant to be metaphorical and analogous in how myself have gone through a lot of changes in my way of thinking and emotions and how I am adapting to my present circumstances. The birds have various symbolic meanings, but in a general term birds represent independence and freedom which I feel conveys my view about being a creative individual and being able to express yourself freely.

Photographs by Rosie Ellis

Sunday, 7 November 2010

fuck knows... i'm a budgie.

if she has a cage to contain me, i am a songless bird.

"An Ode to Melancholy" - Graphite on Wood

After a long absence, I have returned to try and keep up some kind of regular update in my journal. I have now begun at Edinburgh College of Art and I have slowly realised it is now pretty essential to document every thought I have, no matter how small. And if I can get it down visually, well that's amazing. I've met some incredibly talented people so far and I am slowly adjusting to being a real art student and enjoying the yuppie cultured lifestyle. Yes, it is all I imagined and more. In fact talking of So Far, our latest project at ECA is organising our first public exhibition which I designed a rather mediocre poster for. But please feel free to come if you can make it! I also have some of my animals made into collaged badges for sale at the Spider & Fly gallery at 65 Bread Street in Edinburgh, which I felt very flattered that someone was interested in selling my work, now it's just finding the time...

Monday, 19 July 2010

Once again, I've been cut short of time again to update. A very busy schedule which even I've found hard to keep up with.

I had my adventure to Riga, Latvia with Aina, which I have to say was one of the most enriching travelling trips I've been on. I've never had much knowledge of Eastern Europe, but it has made me want to travel to all the Baltic countries. We also did a little travelling outside Riga, we went to the seaside town; Jurmala, the baroque Rundales Palace which had absolutely breathtaking interiors and gardens. Cinevilla, a film set outside of Riga in the countryside where Defenders of Riga was filmed. It was more like a small town rather than a film set, with a river, train tracks, fake churches and buildings but very interesting to see. We also took some photos in the farmers fields where wild flowers grow and local people come to collect them for household saunas. The art nouveau buildings of Alberta Iela in Riga were incredible, you could spend hours just looking at all the details of the sculptures.

I particularly enjoyed Latvian food also. I tried some interesting types of food and drink which included; cold fuschia beetroot soup with a boiled egg on top, Kvass (a non-alcoholic beer which tasted a little like milkshake), Rigan Balsams (my favourite alcoholic drink of the moment, absolutely addicted. A cross between Jagermeister and cough medicine to describe it closely!), Rigan Laima chocolates (courtesy of Aina's family and very delicious!).

After my return from Riga, I moved straight away into my new flat in Edinburgh. It's definitely a lot bigger and closer to town than I originally thought. It's definitely the biggest bedroom I've ever had to myself so lots of room to do some work in. It's a great location, Arthurs Seat to my left and the Meadows to the right. Clerk Street is parallel to my street and has a couple of gems, including lots of charity shops, Armstrongs Vintage Clothing and Chariot Express. I was also introduced to the Mosque Kitchen which I plan on visiting again. I feel very blessed!

I went to visit Jo and Amanda in Dunfermilne this week where I got to play around in Jo's studio, learned how to make my very own bracelet and it's not as difficult as I thought so I'm planning on buying a few jewellery making things myself. We sat and drank lots of wine, listened to lots of tunes played by Jo's lovely husband and played with her pride and joy, Pinky, a four month old kitten(!)

I went to see King Creosote at the Roxburgh Art House with Andrew, which was amazing. I was blowing bubbles and got very drunk on a very cute but lethal bottle of ale called Birds & Bees. I've kept the bottle to put a candle in. I also saw a few new bands which I'd never heard of which I plan on adding to my music collection.

Tomorrow; I'm going to Andrew's Home Talk exhibition opening in Newburgh and then in the next week following that I go to Germany and Venice for three days. I can't wait. In a way though, I can't wait to go back and study again as I'm getting a bit bored with the days inbetween and I really want to get back into my art again.

Monday, 28 June 2010

return the starfish to the sea.

I've finally found a moment to spare to update my very neglected journal. It's raining and I hear thunder outside my window.

I just rediscovered my love for 13 Most Beautiful... Songs for Andy Warhol Screen Tests which I went to see in Dunfermilne last year. There's finally some clips on Youtube from the DVD (which I've been meaning to purchase for some time now) which I feel the need to share! I went to the Artist Rooms Andy Warhol exhibition at Perth Museum last week which featured some of his earlier commerical illustration work.

After reflecting on some of the goals I set for myself earlier on in the year, I can happily say I've achieved them and more. My end of year exhibition went very well, one of the lecturers at Dundee College was interested in purchasing my exam work at my exhibition, but I declined as I wanted to keep them for sentimental reasons as I'm a bit romantic like that.

I passed all my modules and exams for my HNC in Contemporary Art Practise and got an A which felt amazing, this means I've met my conditions for Art School and I've accepted a place at Edinburgh College of Art. I was also offered a place at Duncan of Jordanstone which I was very sad to decline as most of my classmates and friends will be going there this year but I think it's definitely time for a change of scenery and life.

I'm currently in the process of moving to Edinburgh and finally got three years worth of junk packed up! I've found a flat, sadly feel a bit like I'm downgrading but at least I'll be living in the Capital and have lots of events lined up which I can't wait for.

Before I move though I'm off to Riga, Latvia for a week with my friend Aina. I will be staying there with her family so it should be interesting adventure! We are also planning on going to Sigulda to explore the Gutmanis Cave which is one of the deepest caves in the Baltic countries. I can't wait. Photos to come.

I was also in Amsterdam two weeks ago to celebrate finishing college with fourteen friends from Edinburgh. Not so much a cultural holiday but I did go to the Sex Museum and Katten Kabinet (Cat Museum) where they had Cat Pinball! I did visit the Van Gogh Museum again which of course, was very inspiring. I've been itching to do some art but I actually don't have time or space to and it's difficult with everything being packed up. One of my favourite paintings ever is "Blossoming Almond Tree" so it was nice to see it this time round without being too stoned. You know what they say, when in Rome....

Cat Pin Ball at Katten Kabinet in Amsterdam

David's Beach Party in Pittenweem

Anyways, to round it up I have been one extremely busy lady. To be truthful though, I've not really been in Dundee at all since I got back from Amsterdam. I've been in Edinburgh all weekend, had a pleasant time up Calton Hill, then been dotting in between Pittenweem, Perth and Newburgh during the week.My summer is also shaping up to looking pretty eventful. My calendar consists of so far...;

The Edinburgh Film Festival in July, definitely want to see the The Illusionist by Sylvain Chomet (Director of the French Animation; The Triplets of Belleville).

I am going to go to Dunfermilne on 13th July with my classmate Amanda Lambert to visit our other classmate Jo Barrett to do a taster course in silversmithing at her house which I can't wait for! They have both been accepted in Duncan of Jordanstone and have been my main life support throughout this year at Dundee College, so I'm going to miss them greatly.

Charity Baw II at the Roxy Art House with King Creosote, Panda Su and other acts - King Creosote is one music artist that I adore but haven't had the pleasure of seeing yet!

My friend, Andrew Lennie; a current student at Edinburgh College of Art is having an exhibition of his painting and drawings alongside Grant Jeffrey's photography from July 19th onwards at The Steeple in Newburgh.

Andrew and I have booked flights to go see my family in Germany and also planning a small trip inbetween to Venice at the end of July/beginning of August. Watch this space!

Beirut at HMV Picture House in Edinburgh - I've ordered my tickets, and waiting on them arriving. I can't wait as I've liked Beirut for quite a long time now and seeing them live will be delightful.

Anyways, I am going to enjoy my last night in Dundee by going to the most cultural place possible... Guess where? Fat Sam's! Watch out, the heroic duo are going out to paint the town red.

Thursday, 27 May 2010

tortoise regrets hare.

A slow but not forgotten update. I've been rather preoccupied with daily events in the last few weeks. I helped volunteer with my friend Kirsten at Dundee's Big Top Jamboree in setting up the Cut Click Exhibtion which was great fun to be involved with. It was really inspiring to see all the different mail based art. I've been doing a few mail swaps with friends at the moment so I can't wait to try out some new ideas. I also made some badges and a fabric corsage with Pale Face at the Jamboree workshops during the day. I also bought myself a Mystery Drawing by David Galletly and a cute little green note pad with a paper cut deer on the cover. Here are a few photos of the Cut Click exhibition that Kirsten and I helped set up and a couple of envelopes which particularly caught my eye.

Apart from trying to round up the last of my duties for college work in these last few weeks, I also managed to go see the Duncan of Jordanstone Degree Show last Friday. To be truthful I wasn't completely sure if I was particularly thrilled. After looking around at the different subject areas, it has made me wonder if I want to do Illustration anymore or if I should do Fine Art. I wasn't feeling very inspired by the Illustration department at all this year, whereas some of the Fine Art work may suit my style better. At the end of the day I guess it is what you make of your time at Art School.

In saying that, I am really looking forward to the ECA Degree Show so I can compare both universities. They are having a Roald Dahl themed Degree Show party, which I will be dressing up as Fantastic Mrs Fox which I can't wait to make a costume for! I also have my Barbara Robertson linoprinting class lined up for the 6th June at Dundee Contemporary Arts which I am ecstatic about. Although I may have to do an all nighter coming back from the Roald Dahl party...

I have failed to mention that in amongst my busy social schedule, my lecturers seem to be very pleased with my final pieces for the Graded Unit. In fact so much one of them mentioned she wants to keep them! Although previously before I went in to get my feedback, another Textiles lecturer at Graham Street spotted my work before my hand in and asked if it would be on sale at the exhibition. Although I'm unsure if I would actually sell my work or not, it was very complimentary that someone was interested enough in possibly purchasing my canvases.

Here are a few photographs of my completed work for my Graded Unit...

We are hanging our exhibition on Monday and the opening is on Tuesday evening. I have invited my parents and a few close friends which should make it a pleasant evening. Hopefully. I've got my eye on a rather fetching pair of suede and chiffon wedges and a tencil jacket from Topshop which I plan to purchase when I'm in Edinburgh this weekend. Overall, I am feeling content that college will soon be over with and exciting new times lay ahead.

Thursday, 13 May 2010

Final College Project

These are my drawings I’ve been working on this week for my final project. I’ve been heavily inspired by Crystal Neubauer who uses a mixed media of vintage ephemera and wax covered collage. I particularly loved her Field Studies – Encaustics & Bugs series which has largely influenced my idea for my sea theme collage series. Watch this space.

Wednesday, 12 May 2010

communist daughter, standing on the seaweed water.

I sadly have not had any reasonable amount of time to update, but as study and exam time looms over… I find myself procrastinating a little and coming across a certain blog ( which always seems to gets me in the mood for writing and thinking why can’t I?!

I have been incredibly overwhelmed with college work, getting my portfolio together for art school and now exams. I have been given two offers from Edinburgh College of Art & Duncan of Jordanstone in Dundee. I am pretty torn between the two. I see it as if having to choose between two lovers. One is the more secure, stable and conventional one (DOJ) and the other one is the new, exciting and unpredictable (ECA). To be truthful, I didn’t really think I’d have to make a ‘choice’ between two great art schools and I guess it’s all dependent on whether I pass my course or not so I can’t really make a decision until then.

It’s Gael Garcia Bernal week on Filmfour which has been preoccupying my free time in the evenings. Not that I can complain, the films he seems to star in are always aesthetically and culturally indulgent which I would always highly recommend to anyone. So far I’ve watched two films I hadn’t seen, which were Y Tu Mamá También and Deficit.

I have a fair few activities lying ahead for this next month, so this will probably be another short insight into my rather busy lifestyle at present. This weekend I’ve planned to volunteer for Dundee’s Big Top Jamboree, a unique creative independent craft fair which appeals to me a lot as I think it’ll give me some insight on how to go around setting up my own stall/online store in future and becoming more of a creative entrepreneur.

I am then planning on attending the exhibition opening of ‘They Had Four Years’ at Generator Projects in Dundee; a video and film installation from 2009 Duncan of Jordanstone graduates . I haven’t been to any exhibitions in Dundee for a while so it’ll be interesting to see what DOJ graduates are up to at the moment. I really feel the need to research into what ECA and DOJ are both doing as current and previous students so I can be better informed in my decision for art school.

Another few events I hopefully will manage to squeeze in this weekend is the Made in the Shade Jamboree, another independent craft fair but this time based in Edinburgh with a larger collective of illustrators, designers and artists. I still haven’t had the chance to visit the Made in the Shade shop in Glasgow, so I’ve an overwhelming curiosity to find out what they’re involved with. There’s a few designers I know they work with that I like, such as Claire Nicolson; a textiles artist, Anthony Zinonos, fine artist/printmaker who puts together amazing collage packs full of old vintage style ephemera which I’ve been using a lot for one of my series of mixed media collage pieces for my final project.

Then on Saturday and Sunday evening, may take my dancing shoes for a small trip down to the wrong end of Dundee town to go see an old acquaintance, Mr. Boom Monk Ben who is DJing on Saturday at the Reading Rooms, and then I have a ticket for Mr. Scruff on Sunday for a bit of nostalgia.

a few photos from a day out at arbroath beach

Thursday, 18 February 2010

I have failed once again to continually do regular updates of my daily inspirations in my neglected digital journal. I decided to give my journal a fresh look to try and attract my attention to it again. If you were wondering my photograph at the top of the page is from Macau, China. In all honesty, I should be doing productive work but have failed again and managed to successfully procrastinate by writing in here instead.

As I have not managed to update since last year I think I'll make a new start by writing a list. So here are a few things I'd like to achieve in 2010;

  1. Pass my HNC in Contemporary Art Practice - This is an essential part to my year to gain entry into University on the basis that I pass. I've managed to try and work my hardest (apart from now!) but I think it would prove to me I am going in the right direction with my life.
  2. Get into Art School - If some small miracle happens and I get into Edinburgh or Glasgow then I'd be of course, over the moon. But Dundee would suit me just fine also, be with my friends and still be able to go DCA to use the print studio. Duncan of Jordanstone has a good reputation so no complaints.
  3. To do more travelling - so, Morocco hasn't been enough for me this year, but I do have some plans to go to Paris, France & America to work possibly. I have my flights booked to Netherlands in June after my course finishes which should be excellent.