screen printing


This week I’ve thrown my time into screen printing, taking the dayoff work yesterday to use the college print room. Most of the prints are still drying, but I got to bring these 3 home!


I used the backgrounds I created the previous week… plus a bunch of random papers from my ever increasing collection – dyed envelopes, painting experiments, dictionary pages, collages. I’ll post some more up next week ūüôā

thoughts of the moment…


In the accidental gap year I found myself in last year, I determined myself to continue learning. I absorbed a wonderous feast of inspiration and enthusiam from the good folks of the internet. Yes, that includes you. I thank you sincerely.

Day 1 back at school, drawing with strips of paper.

I collected and devoured books and articles, blogs, tutorials and galleries (online and off). I explored new techniques and new media with whole-hearted abandon. I believe I learnt a lot.

close up: 1st in series ‘Structure’, drawing with paper.

Turns out I forgot a lot too.

I forgot the time lost to debating the obvious and making suposition about the intents behind all manner of art. With mind maps.

3d city scape constructed from recycled paper

I forgot that for every hour in the classroom, at least another one or two are needed for research and time lost down figurative blind alleys. I forgot how the time it takes swells and nudges out of place all other aspects of day to day being.

noticing, photographing, recording moments: all that visual stuff other folks don’t see…

I do remember having a big wobble at about this stage on my last course. The initial I’m an art student euphoria has burnt itself out and in its wake sits a mildly stunned version of me, in mini-crisis-of-intent. Just a stage in the process.
The shopping bag by my desk. Thank you for your simple wisdom, orange elephant.

I will always be learning: day 1 :D


Well folks, I’m happy to report the course is running! Big thanks for all your kind support – it really worked!

I haven’t got my student loan through yet, but I’ve got my ID badge and I had first day today!

The story, so far…

Enrollment on Monday was the usual fiasco… but that seems to be the nature of enrollment days. Which baffles me every time, they do it every year, right?

Randomly we were sent about from room to room with groups of other students, and everybodyTalkingAtOnceAndVeryHighSpirits, and then to an induction to the photo studio – which I found the most useful part of the day – although one part-time technician + more than one dedicated photography courses means …well, we’ll see.

I left with very mixed feelings: I have such strong memories of the foundation course 2 years ago. Exhillerating, Mind-expanding, Enlightening, Exciting, So so Stressful, the Self-Doubt, Criticism – internal and external, Judgement, Exhausting, Draining, and Fantastic. I came out with a group of friends I know I’ll keep in touch with for a very long time. And more ideas than I thought my head could contain. And some of gloomiest moments of what’s the point of it all-ism. And an overwhelming need for more. Art IS a drug.

Can I do 3 more years of this? Can it ever live up to that fantastic year? Am I trying to relive the past? A lot of inspiring tutors had taken redundancy last year, the department is stretched. The facilities are ok. Old and tatty, but it has a homely feel.

The course runs Wednesday and Thursday, plus Monday mornings (a bonus 1/2 day of learning. Guess I can juggle to squeeze it in). Advertised to start next week, it began today. Depending who you ask, it’s either Art & Design or Fine Art. Details, details I guess. It’s just there are so many of them.

Throughout Tuesday I swung radically between Pro or Con. I made the decision to give it two weeks. Unless this week was enough to judge, in which case I’d give it one week.

Day One

We are a friendly group of 9, most already know each other from last year, there are 2 others from my year.

As an intro, we were asked to bring an example of recent work and give a short presentation. Well, as you know all my recent art is part of a larger (8 weeks @ a page a day!) format.

I’m going to let you into a little secret here………..
Until today, you were the only ppl who’d seen my project.

I’ve liked it like that, but it was also fun to take him (the book) out into the other world… as I explained why I hadn’t just taken a page or two from the book, I found myself describing him as ‘like a little animal I’ve been feeding and nurturing’. Looking back that might have sounded strange.

In the afternoon we were given 2 hours to produce 10 A3 line drawings from around the college, the theme: structure. As my brain ached from the struggle of translating 3D structures to flat pencil lines (strictly no shading) I thought back to all those hours of drawing practice I’d promised myself, but instead allowed IK distract me into something more messy, colorful, and with sugar-high instant gratification!

I had forgot how mentally and physically just concentrating really hard can be! The mental version of running a marathon straight after a fortnight in bed with flu. And having eaten a big roast dinner. Wearing flip-flops. I told the tutor this. She suggested it was more like a 1/2 marathon.

Some hours on, the drawings don’t look so bad, only one or two were a struggle to identify.

I’m back on that rollercoaster of a learning curve – Weyhey!

resistance to drawing


Funny how some fragments of life become lodged in that part of the memory that keeps rolling back round to the front.

This was part of the conversation in my interview for art school 2 years ago…

Me: I’d really like to learn to draw
Tutor: Huh?
Me: Yeh, I can’t draw, y’know like real things
Tutor: Bullshit!¬† Fuck, I’m not meant to swear in interviews…

This was the point I knew I was going to fit in.

In class with same tutor some while later we were drawing the music that was playing – the topic came up again: But you are drawing a real thing… or are you saying music isn’t a real thing?

But I still have this resistance towards drawing. I accept I can (to a degree) do it, but something inside me chooses not to. But I want to. But I don’t.

The inner-squabble continues, meanwhile I splosh and splatter and doodle inside the familiar comfort zone, rarely stretching out to sketch and interpret shapes and objects.


Page 32 began with ink and coffee dregs – the ideal background for some drawing of real things! I started out with some stuff in my immediate view – scissors, water jug, paint brushes, my left hand.

Over this I drew some of the imagery from a vivid dream I had the night before. (After all, dreams are real things too, right?)

I will endeavour to do this again. Art is like all exercise – remember to stretch!