Boomtown Festival – Portable Skate Ramp 2015

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Thanks to James Whitehorn from The Skatehouse crew I was able to go along to BoomTown Festival as a skatecoach.

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A wooden mini ramp was made for Whistlers Green which was open for all to use.

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I was helping in Kids Town with my colleague Jordi where we spent the festival teaching the basics of skateboarding to the youngsters on a kicker ramp and some flat areas to practise tricks.

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I  loved this festival and really enjoyed being out in the sun all day skateboarding it felt so dreamy.

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The skate ramp venture continues to be at Boomtown Fair and featured there bigger and better for 2016!

 

‘a doll a day’ Exhibition

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I was told about this show by an artist called aka lady muck whos work I have talked about before on previous blogs but basically she makes awesome art from recycled London newspapers in paper mache moulds!

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My Ceramics was pretty suiting for this exhibition being that I had been making baby dolls and limbs for some years. I wanted to make something new for this show and had been working on a plaster mould to cast in clay so this was the perfect opportunity.

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Plaster mould taken from sculpture
Sculpture I made from casting the plaster mould with clay and with metallic glaze

I contacted Zara Fox a doll artist who makes incredible dolls and puppets, I’ve know Zara for a while now and always loved her contributions to many UK festivals and her creepy but beautiful creations she has spent many loving hours creating.

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Zara had teamed up with an amazing 3D artist called Dagmer Bennett aka Dagger Bliss who sculpture work is outstanding. One of my favourite of her works is her portrait of Adam Pearson –

Adam Pearson Portrait

by Dagmar Bennett

A heroic bust of Adam Pearson with kind permission from himself. An inspirational man, who is fighting for equality for people with a visible facial difference. He works with Changing Faces Charity and Genetic Disorders UK.

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I was excited for the exhibition and more excited to see all the other artists who were involved too and what work they were going to be exhibiting.

I had a few trial and errors on my clay masks I was making and the glaze just wasn’t coming out how I wanted it. I had the idea to ask my girlfriend at the time (Sian Smith aka Wonnish) who was a mosaic and transfer artist if she wanted to collaborate with me. We decided to go with the theme of anti-war and all the innocent children who die because of war.

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So Sian gathered many ceramic transfers from Carrie Reichardt who she had been working along side. Carrie has a multitude of transfers which could fill a small library!

Here’s how our work turned out –

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It was a really awesome show and loads of talented artists involved. There is another show coming up for Feb 2017 which I’m aiming to be a part of if I can create something new in time, so watch this space.

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Lewes Bonfire night

For the last 2 years I have been lucky enough to witness the Lewes bonfire night. It really is amazing and the most impressive bonfire event I have ever seen, which to be honest I have only ever seen fairly lowsey fire work shows in local fields and parks growing up so it aint hard to beat BUT besides that this is a wicked night in Lewes and not to be missed!

For a start I met Gandalf……….

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Me and pal gandalf at lewes bonfire night 2014

A bit of history

‘Whatever else may happen at the annual Lewes bonfire festivities, one annual tradition that doesn’t change is the carrying of flaming crosses through the streets, in memory of 17 Sussex people burnt at the stake in the town between 1555 and 1557. This was during the reign of Queen Mary (often called Bloody Mary), who sought to overturn the Church of England, set up by her father, Henry VIII. She was more Spanish than English and had been brought up in a strict Catholic fashion by her mother Catherine of Aragon, Henry’s first wife. On becoming queen in 1553, she was determined to re-establish Catholicism throughout the country. Any Protestant who explicitly defied her, stuck to the old English prayer book, refused to go to Mass, and was too open or vocal in their defiance, she had arrested, tried for heresy and if found guilty, sentenced to death by burning at the stake.
’

Read the rest of the article here: http://www.sussexlife.co.uk/people/the_history_of_the_lewes_bonfire_celebrations_1_4291009

The burning of Richard Woodman and nine other Protestant martyrs
Lewes, England, UK — The Burning of ten protestant martyrs, Lewes, Sussex, 1557. Seventeen Protestant martyrs were burned at the stake between 1555 and 1557 during the persecutions of the reign of Queen Mary. The victims on this occasion, the 22nd June 1557, were Richard Woodman, George Stevens, Alexander Hosman, William Mainard, Thomasina Wood, Margery Morris, James Morris, Denis Burges, Ann Ashton and Mary Groves. — Image by © The Print Collector/Corbis

 

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Present time tradition of the flaming crosses paying tribute to the burnt protestants

 

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Flaming Barrels

‘The Lewes Bonfire Night is the biggest celebrated Fifth November Event in the world, and is held in the usually peaceful county town of Lewes (pronounced “lu-is or loo-is”), East Sussex, every year on 5th November, and the carnival or festival is known as either the Lewes Bonfire Night Celebrations, Lewes Bonfire Night or just simply the Fifth.

It is the biggest and the only proper bonfire night celebration left of its kind in the Uk.’

‘Enthusiasm for the ‘Fifth’ was rekindled during the 1820’s and from that time the local press has reported the annual celebrations. These reports graphically describe very lively, if not riotous, proceedings with a large bonfire being built in the High Street between the White Hart and County Hall (now the Law Courts) attended by large crowds. Fireballs and squibs were thrown and an increasing number of blazing tar barrels being dragged through the streets. The magistrates, supported by local people sworn in as special constables, attempted to curtail the more unruly elements and in 1847, following an attack on a local magistrate the previous year, London police were drafted into Lewes in an attempt to suppress the bonfire boys’ activities.

Such was the support for the celebrations in the town that this attempt failed, but the bonfire boys were compelled to hold their celebrations in Wallands Park, away from the High Street, until 1850. In that year the reintroduction of the Catholic hierarchy into Britain led the town authorities to permit the celebrations to return to the High Street. However this return to the streets of Lewes was marked by a significant change in the celebration’s character and heralded the formation of the Cliffe Bonfire Society. Recognising that riotous proceedings would no longer be tolerated the bonfire boys formed themselves into Bonfire Societies and set about organising military style torchlight processions efficiently marshalled by members resplendent in various titles including Commander-in-Chief, Staff Officer and Inspector General.’

http://www.cliffebonfire.com/history.html

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As you can see from the photos, people go absolutely mad for this one night of the year and its such a great atmosphere, I have only witnessed the last couple of years but I have been told by locals it has really calmed down a lot with the health and safety standards coming in, it used to be rife with bangers in the streets and fires getting out of hand!

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An effigy of Jeremy Clarkson is paraded through the town of Lewes in East Sussex where an annual bonfire night procession is held by the Lewes Bonfire Societies.
Lewes Bonfire night
An effigy of Russian President Vladimir Putin is paraded through the town of Lewes in East Sussex where an annual bonfire night procession is held by the Lewes Bonfire Societies.

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The amount of effort that goes into making these effigies is unbelievable and so impressive. The societies are working all year round to put on this show and you can see that by the detail that goes into them all!!

The Zulu Voodoo Liberation Taxi tours UK Festivals

In West London, Chiswick there is a wicked cool workshop/ shop/ studio space covered in mosaic which is ran by Carrie Riechardt and her team The Treatment Rooms Collective who make political art and craft.

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carrie outside her workshop

I have over the last 5 years been venturing to and fourth to this area of London to participate in this way of making art and feeling part of something alot bigger than myself, something with meaning and making a difference. Over this time I have been inspired to make art with people through workshops and within the community.

There has always been an awesome project which has needed volunteers to get involved with.

I was fortunate to contribute to some of the creating and touring about of this amazing art car made to raise awareness of political prisoner Kenny Zulu Whitmore. I went to Standon Calling Festival and Shambala Festival last year where we made people aware of the kickstarter campaign created by ‘Wonnish‘ which was to help fund and fuel the completion of this awesome art car. We gave out flyers and much needed information about Zulu.

Brief description below taken from – http://www.widewalls.ch/carrie-reichardt-mosaic-vehicle-zulu-voodoo-liberation-taxi-kickstarter-campaign/

‘The Zulu Shade Never Fades

Carrie Reichardt’s connection to Black Panthers goes a way back. More than fifteen years ago she started writing to people on death rows and political prisoners and many of her correspondences turned into some long-lasting friendships. In her work, she does homage to her friends, commemorating their existence or bringing attention to their mistreatment as a result of their political beliefs. Zulu Shade Never Fades, a tag line for the Liberation Taxi, is her way of telling the world how unjust and cruel the justice system can be. Kenny ‘Zulu’ Whitmore is cruelly punished for the crime he was innocent of, in the process of prejudiced investigation and prosecutorial misconduct, as his lawyers report. Whitmore is charged with murder in 1973, and sentenced to lifetime imprisonment which turned out to be a lifetime in a closed cell because of his membership in the former Black Panther Party.’

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Lady Muck and Carrie with art car

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images

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Free Zulu tee
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Wonnish, Weardoe and Carrie at Chiswick Studio
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‘I am not what happened to me I am what i choose to become’ me adding mosaic to car

 

Artist ‘Wonnish ‘ member of The Treatment Rooms Collective lead the project at Standon Calling Festival 2015. There was a wooden building built which was going to be The School of Revolution. Here would be a serious of political art workshops giving knowledge to those who wished to seek it about dead revolutionaries and previous revolutions. The mosaic Zulu Vodoo car was also parked up and was very popular for photos and a point of conversation.

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Wonnish making campaign video for Free Zulu

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Some photos from the mosaic workshops where tomb stones were decorated and placed over in the church yard area of the festival.

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Artist ‘Weardoe‘ was in charge of organising graffiti artist to decorate the church yard area of the festival, which ended up looking dope!!

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weardo driving the zulu car
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artist ‘wisher’ painting
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artist left to righ – Neonita, wisher and larny

The car toured Shambala and also Boomtown as well as Glatonbury and many other locations including exhibitions and events.

The team all worked incredibly hard to deliver this project and cause and they continue to do so!

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Albert Woodfox member of the Angola 3 and Black Panther Party was released this year 2016 in February which was celebrated hugely by many activist working to raise awareness of this injustice served.

“The one thing that used to anger and frustrate me in prison was that I felt I had no voice. So I’m dedicating the rest of my life to being a voice for those still in the hell of solitary confinement – I feel such a great responsibility for them.”

He stays in touch with Kenny “Zulu” Whitmore, who was recently returned to a dormitory block in Angola having spent more than 30 years in solitary. Woodfox also spends a lot of time on the outside with Robert King, another member of the Angola Three, who was freed in 2001. – Taken from article from the guardian, see link below:

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2016/apr/29/albert-woodfox-43-years-solitary-confinement-wish-i-was-back

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woodfox a free man

 

 

The Skatehouse Re-Launch Jam 2015

The Skatehouse was in need of a bit of a revamp!! We wanted to throw an event to celebrate the most recent part of the park which now made the skatepark complete!

With the handy work of a small team of volunteers – Jordi, Jay, James and Albert and a few other parents here and there chipped in to! The new wooded ramp area was looking pretty dope!! The Skatehouse had found itself some flow after 3 years of building and all the park is connected.

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in the process of being built 2015
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Being built and nearly finished!! 2015
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Oli Johnson one of our team rides on the pyramid ramp!!

James Whitehorn used his graphic design skills to get us hooked up with a new look, we think our new logo is spot on and shows quite clearly what were about (skateboarding in the house).

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fresh new logo!!

It was time to hold an event to celebrate. Thanks to Lewes Town Council for giving us some funding a skate jam was organised with lots of prizes and giveaways for the skateboarding competitions. We had an array of judges from The Level skate shop, Live and Breath skateboarding and our own in house skatehouse judges too.

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level-skateboards

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mini ramp comp
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mini ramp comp
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bowl comp round up
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re-launch poster

We had our balcony room kitted out so Starfish Youth Music could have some band play live music!

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balcony room top right getting ready for the bands!

 

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I held a mosaic skatebaord workshop outside with friends Sian ‘Wonnish’ and Phili ‘Weardo’.

Weardo was spray painting a mural on our double doors and boy was we in for a treat with what she done!!

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me, wonnish and weardo reppin our skatehouse tees
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me and wonnish getting the mosaic workshop started

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team skatehouse youth getting involved with mosaic
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weardo deep in her design process
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team rider arwyn getting stuck in
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‘one love’ board nearly complete with the help of these guys
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this one is look good
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breathtaking piece by weardo!!

All in all it was a pretty special day with a good turn out and a good vibe!!

Our next event will sadly be our last on the Phoenix Estate this July 23rd. I’ll be posting more about our ‘save the skatehouse’ campaign and our developments on moving on but we are hopeful for the future and to be able to continue to keep serving the wheeled sports community.

 

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Sisterly adventures

Well this is a bit off topic of my usually arty blogs and posts on here but I wanted to put something together to show off how awesome I think mine and my sisters relationship is.

Me and my blood sister were adopted to different families but in the same city of Southampton, we saw each other a handful of times growing up but sort of lost contact until she decided to call me up on her 18th birthday asking if I wanted to go to her party, she is a year older than me so I was 17 at the time.

I went to her party and we have been in contact ever since for various reasons but mainly because were both actually quite similar and enjoy ADVENTURES!!! We know how to party together but we also know how to be sensible together and have wholesome times, were all right me and my sis and I’m so lucky she is in my life.

She is a just graduated food technologist (well clever) and has been my healthy mentor and inspired me to get fit and active and stay fit and active as well as how to eat better, although I still have days where I eat whole bags of cookies and entire tubs of icecream but there not as often (and I don’t tell her as much). She got me out to Vietnam in 2015 which is the furthest I have ever travelled before and totally out of my comfort zone and into a new culture, she makes me feel strong.

I love her.

me and sis
Me age 11 and my sis age 12, I had some catching up to do in height!
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I think ages 19 and 20, I’m the younger one and is this photo clearly the fitter one… hanging out at ‘the dungeon’ southamptons dingy metal bar!! £1 drinks should be illegal
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Glastonbury Festival 2009?? I think…..not sure was so long ago
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Another glasto shot same same
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WOW ibiza I think I was 17 or 18 so this must have been like 2007. My sis took me away for my first holiday as an adult haha to ibiza!!
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We worked in a sleezy night club together for a bit ‘rhino’ in southampton, funny times!! 2012 I think
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We done a fair bit of drinking back then
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We liked Ibiza so we went back a few more times
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2010 was a good year it seems
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We love camping and hiking together, this was in Ireland where we done some wild camping too. 2012
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I love this shot of us and also in Ireland
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We love a good festival, this was festibelly 2012
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Getting ready for Dimensions 2013 festival with our matching bumbags ofcourse
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Taking in the croatian views at Dimensions together 2013
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Stopping off in Slovakia for a friends wedding 2013, slovakia is awesome!
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Vietnam 2015 hanging out in waterfalls with the locals
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Loving the street food everywhere!! Vietnam is so so amazing
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Taking it all in, still Vietnam
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Sharing a kayake with my sis pretending were hobbits in lord of the rings coz were right nerds!!
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Our most recent adventure was surfing in Senon Cove, was so much fun!!

This is just a few snaps of many memories shared and some of the photos I’ll probably get told off for using😉

I don’t know what our next adventure is but I know she will be in my life till end of days.

Starfish Festival 2015

Another year of Starfish Youth Music Festival!!

Starfish is another youth service on the pheonix estate that provided space where young people can go and play music, form bands and use rehearsal and recording rooms as well as have the opportunity to perform live around many different venues and events in east sussex.

They hold an annual youth music festival each year in the paddock green in Lewes. It an amazing day with great local talent, art workshops and lots of yummy food stalls. We look forward to another amazing day this year!!

http://starfish-studios.co.uk/

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starfish poster 2015
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Zoe singing 

We took a skate ramp to do some basic beginner skateboarding teaching and some of the regular skatehouse skaterts could bust some tricks and show off a little. There were some stickers given out as prizes to best tricks.

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Jordi (skatecoach) building the ramp run with young volunteer Ned
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Oscar doing some tricks on the ramp 
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Jordi teaching someone to drop in on the ramp

 

I held a clay key ring making workshop which was very popular like the year before, everyone loves clay!!

 

 

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clay workshop
Me running a clay keyring making workshop
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some of the clay keyrings made on the day 
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clay key rings fired and ready for collection

My very own kiln

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Donated kiln

I managed to pick up this little test kiln from a school in Hove as they were trying to get rid of it thanks to Samira from Zu Studios which is the artist studio/events space warehouse next to The Skatehouse on the Phoenix Estate. I got this kiln in the summer of 2014 but it needed some work and electrical testing before it was safe to use within my studio based at the top of an indoor skatepark. Health and safety was crucial to be followed as sadly there had been a fire in one of the warehouses on the Pheonix Estate ‘The Phoenix Theatre‘ where the building went up in flames leading to the inhabitants loosing their entire lifes work! So you can understand there can be absolutely no fire hazards!

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RIP pheonix theatre
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brutal fire

Full story on the Pheonix fire here: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-sussex-26808745

 

So now my kiln is electrically sound I can test it out! I have not used a kiln with heat cones before so I am learning something new, I have only ever used electric programme kilns which are a bit more straight forward as you just programme the setting and heat you want and leave them on and it does it all for you, like below:

 

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top loader kiln

So now I have researched and learnt how to use the kiln with heat cones and regular checking through the bung/peep hole to see when the cones have bent down. I am ready for first firing in new kiln, yaaaaay.

I had for some time been developing my slip cast mould I had made from a large sized hand sculpted baby head.

Step by step process:

Make a plinth and a wooden core with wire to serve as your infrastructure for your sculpture and to attach and mould the clay to.

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core of clay sculpture

Ok so maybe its not a step by step photo process as I wasn’t that great at taking photos of my work back then which was like 3-4 years ago.

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sculpt away! the hat is not needed
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still sculpting
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its taking shape now

So now I have my sculpted piece ready to take a plaster mould from.

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beer can chopped up for barrier in clay
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section your sculpture to create the mould, in this case a 3 part mould

Mix up your plaster and get throwing at your sculpture, yes literally slap it on.

Tidy around the edges to reveal the beer can barrier as your going to need to be able to pull those out when the plaster is set. Leave your mould to set which I left it over night as I struggle with patients so I would have been there picking at it if I had been waiting for it to dry.

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Ready to open
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ready to open

So now I have a mould which has been successful, this means I can begin taking clay impressions from the mould which is different to the slip casting I have usually been doing, but as you can guess I like learning new things.

3 part mould

Roll out a layer of clay and push into the moulds, join the mould together and allow to dry within the mould till slightly hardened and ready to take out the mould easily.

Product of 3 part mould clay impress

Tidy up the edges…………..

bigger head compared to smaller

So sadly this head did not survive the kiln as I made it too thick, it wasn’t dried out enough and I didn’t put holes in the clay. This was all learning curbs for me as I was trying out something totally new and I have since developed the process resulting in successful kiln firings with no explosions! These previous attempts were not fired in my kiln I now own as my kiln is to small to do a full head so instead I have been firing just the front mould of the face to create a mask.

hair salon
CandyKonk duo
Haus of sequana

Tuttii Fruttii  creator of haus of sequana, candykonk and the tecnikolor hair salon this awesome clown, jungle, punk, performer, barber, gangsta based in deptford had asked me to make her some of these baby face masks, being the longed out artist I can sometimes be these creations took a wee while longer than anticipated. Tuuttii gave me confidence back in my earlier days when I was carrying about ceramic baby pipes to raves she shone a bit of light on my art which led to me meeting some amazing people including Britt foe head of cult mountain, Carrie Reichardt along with the treatment rooms collective and my beautiful girlfriend Sian Wonnish Smith.

I got some clay masks made up and they were the very first things to go in my very own kiln, I carved in to them a bit to make them custom for tuttii as she wants to put them up  in her hair salon caravan. We decided she would have them after the first firing without a glaze just raw clay so she can paint them and decorate them in her own unique way being that she is also an artist who enjoys a bit of paint!

masks drying out ready for firing
side view, clay drying out ready for kiln
my kiln
Kiln
ready for kiln

The masks are put in the kiln ready for their 24 hour journey of heating up and cooling down.

actual size

Masks are made and ready to drop to Deptford. I catch up with tuuttii and finally get myself a fresh new hair cut! Cycle is complete.

fresh cut

 

So now things really take an upgrade on the clay masks! I dabble with some metallic glazes.

An old mate from uni days in Portsmouth and super talented tattoo artist Ronnie Cyndi had some how synchronised with me and we both contacted each other and wanted some work from each other, so we done some trades.

I started off getting some script on my arm from a red hot chili pepper lyric ‘can’t stop the spirits when they need you, this life is more than just a read through’ as these lyrics stuck with me from teen years, so we traded up a slip cast sculpture I had just updated by displaying it in a beautiful cage, I also threw in a ceramic pipe for good measure as the sculpture was a bit delayed.

baby head pipe

 

 

lryic tatt
happy customer, happy art trade
baby sculpture in cage
dark angle

I decided after seeing some more of ronnie aka whirl wind ronnie tattoo art on other people in particular her portrait pieces it got me hungry for more of her work, she is amazing at portrait tattoos and she really enjoys doing them so I wanted to have something done by her which she enjoyed to do on me. I put some thought in to it and the only person I could really think I would want tattoo’d on me who has actually made a difference in my life from a young age is bob marley, I would listen to his cassettes as a teenager out and about on my cassette walkman and his music would heal me. So thats who its got to be and I contact her right away, Ronni is keen to do the tattoo and I tell her about these new masks im making and would she want to trade again, shes well up for it, happy days!

sinade galvin eminem tatoo

I was inspired by this eminem tattoo ronnie done one a friend and singer song writer sinade galvin aka rumour talks

progress shot

Masks are crafted and drying out ready for kiln

bob
my bob

 

So so chuffed with my bob tattoo and my fav lyric from redemption songs ’emancipate yourself from mental slavery, none but ourselves can free our minds’

My ceramic metallic masks are fresh out the kiln and attached to this beautiful framed mirror I found.

 

finished piece
side view

 

hanging on ronnie art wall

This has been a long blog, but it has been a gradual process of development and learning over the last few years and I continue to thrive to learn new ways of making my ceramics and evolving my work.

Next place you will see my masks at the upcoming show in Deptford Birds Nest ‘A doll a day’ all female artist exhibition showing puppetry and dolls in a way you have not seen before. Watch this space……………

doll a day flyer

Celebration of the rise of female skateboarders and graffiti artists at The Skatehouse

 

skateboard-quote-you-dont-have-to-be-great

Since I moved to Lewes in late 2013 and became involved with the indoor skatepark community skatepark project The Skatehouse I have seen a girls skate scene evolve and had the pleasure of watching female graff artist Weardoe use The Skatehouse as a platform to paint and progress. Local female Artist Rose aka R.A.W has also been able to use the walls to expand her sketch book drawings to large scale pieces. This blog is a celebration of female participation in skateboarding and graffiti as well as my own personal journey within it.

skate jam
skate jam 2014

 

10409755_10152382303236736_8879615152273904601_n
Braving the spray paint for my first time

 

spray
Rainbow jellyfish, my first ever spray piece

 

raw buddha
spray by RAW
raw
spray by RAW

I have been able to pick up a skateboard again after 10 years thanks to our awesome skatecoach Jordi aka jordieodie and Jay aka chief master advisor who both spent time and arm aches helping me learn to be confident on a skateboard again, it took weeks to be able to drop in from the ramps and use the bowl!! I have sworn to myself I will never to stop skateboarding again, to re-learn to be fearless is such a challenge, skateboarding is so much more than a sport its physically and mentally engaging, you have to trust your body and be confident your going to land okay, its somewhere between science and self belief.

never stop pushing
me and my colleagues getting ‘never stop pushing’ tattoos, never stop skating!
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Me and my board
halloween
me at halloween skate 2014

I have also been able to experiment with spray painting which has been so much fun thanks to my good friend phil aka Weardo who has inspired and encouraged me to be creative using spray paint! Phili done a graffiti workshop within the viewing at room at skatehouse where she engaged the skaters to create the space using spray paint, acrylics and marker pens, it looks fantastic and really brings the room to life and in return giving the skaters a sense of ownership by creating it.

graff workshop
successful graff workshop by weardoe
workshop
one of our young volunteers arwyn getting creative at the graff workshop

 

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Chill out room graff workshop

 

spray
my peas in a pod contribution
spray
my second go at spray painting
weardoe
Weardoe 2nd piece
weardoe
weardoe epic double door piece. latest!

Female skateboarding is on the rise and it is welcomed and treated as equal within The Skatehouse. The girl skate night aka skate like a girl has been running since 2014 as a group of women who wanted a space to themselves to be confident in their skateboarding away from the crowds. Over time younger girls have been picking up skateboarding as the sport has been expanding nationally and become popular with all ages and genders so we now have a variety of ages of girls using the girl skate night which runs at The Skatehouse on the first Monday of every month 6.30-9.30pm.

girl tee
skatehouse crest

Young skateboarder and volunteer Arwyn has started from scratch within The Skatehouse and is now totally an ambassador for girls!!

girl skate
Arwyn on the pyramid

 

girlskate
arwyn on the pyramid

 

The Skatehouse sponsors two girl skateboarders Arwyn age 12 and Ruby age 6 who are both outstanding skateboarders who really push themselves to the limits in learning new tricks! They inspire many other girls to get on a skateboard and show that girls can skate just as well as boys.

 

grl skate
ruby on the mini

 

girl skate
ruby on the mini ramp

 

The Skatehouse is so diverse and such a friendly and nurturing atmosphere which really separates it from a public skatepark and it is so awesome to see so many girls skating as when I was young there were few and far between and no local indoor skateparks. I hope this is something which keeps growing and young people and not so young people have places like The Skatehouse to go and learn, socialise and be creative!!

 

 

 

 

 

Anti-Slavery week – 2014

Breaking the Chains
Breaking the Chains

 

A close friend and artist Jo Tidey told me about this show coming up for Anti-Slavery week. I still had mosaics around the theme of the sex trade and human trafficking which I was eager to exhibit and continue to raise awareness for, I applied and heard a reply pretty instantly from artist Chris Simpson. They were keen to have me be a part of the show which made me happy as it has been a while since I was involved in the campaign of anti-trafficking.

 

This is England = Claire Heath ART
This is England = Claire Heath ART

 

table
table

 

I asked my old colleague Jess Gelear from The Medaille Trust if she would like to attend the opening night with me, like old times when we used to do a lot of fundraisers and awareness campaigns together.

 

claireandjess
claireandjess

 

I was asked if I would do a radio interview around my mosaic pieces, I was happy to be asked and felt it would be a honour to talk about such sensitive issues in Anti-Slavery week you can listen here:

Scroll down to find the correct show, you will see my mosaic piece.

http://radiopete.org/radio-archive/2014-features/

‘The Tower Gallery based at the Memorial Community Church on the Barking Road is hosting an art exhibition called Breaking the Chains.  Looking at the issues of human trafficking and modern slavery, NuSound Radio 92FM went down to the opening night.’

Broadcast 23/10/14

 

antislaveryday
antislaveryday

 

The show was successful and I was so happy to be able to be a part of the movement to end slavery again as it is an issue I hold close to my heart after my years of working as a support worker in a safe house with vulnerable women and children, you can see a blog I have written in the past about my work for The Medaille Trust in the archive on this sites homepage.

 

BAAM – British Association for Modern Mosaic  

 

baam
baam

 

Tiki Love Truck
Tiki Love Truck

There is also an amazing talk by Carrie Reichardt around ‘The Disobedient Objects’ exhibition which was in the Victoria and Albert Museum. Here she is at the British Association for Modern Mosaic talking about the rise of political mosaic making and mentions the pieces I have shared on this blog which I am so thankful for. Watch the talk here:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mvKcFMfp3Zk

Bless The Medaille Trust, The Salvation Army and all the other charities, organisations and campaigns which exist to stop this cruel trade of humans for slaves.