Recently we went on an art studio hop!
Open studios West Gippsland runs some weekends where some local artists' studios are open to the public to come and see creative people in their spaces. We chose three to visit, although there were 18 open studios over that weekend.
First up we visited Helen Timbury's bright and inspiring studio. Helen is a printmaker who is in love with colour, just like me. I loved all the beautiful old furniture in her studio and left with total antique-look paper drawer and studio lighting envy! And oh so inspired, of course!
It's always fascinating to me to peer into artists creative spaces. To see how they organise and store items, and how they choose to decorate them.
You can see those paper drawers up the back there that I am envious of! And those studio lights made the whole place look like naturally bright daytime light, for a studio that apparently was quite dark before.
We watched as Helen inked up a wombat lino cut, and the kids got to turn the big wheel on the press.
Turn, turn, turn...
The finished print
I'm a big fan of Helen's vibrant work. Miss 6 said that Helen's studio made her feel like doing paper mache :)
Next up, we went onto Wendy Hitchin's (aka Beady Wendy's) studio space, where she makes glass beads and jewellery.
Some of her gorgeous handmade beads
Interesting explosion of colour with the necessary supplies
Wendy wears special goggles to make the beads, as the flame is quite bright. She heats up the glass and rolls it around a metal rod, turning and turning as she goes, to make the beads. The kids were quite happy to wear the glasses and see a bead being made.
I love seeing the processes of all crafty things being made, it's so interesting to watch. Her beads are so colourful, and the kids got inspired watching one being made. (I didn't get a shot of the bead, it went into a kiln after she made it; if you leave them out to cool down in the open air they will crack.)
Our last studio visit for that day was Russell Lilford. His studio was situated at the side of his house in a converted garage.
Studios that have a couch as part of the set up get a big tick in my book; I think to sit and contemplate in a comfortable seat is a luxury in a creative space; and I say if you have the room, totally do it!
This was one of my favourites of Russell's artworks. I like the contrast between the small brushstrokes and the bigger blocks of colour
Candles, feathers, shells and vessels adorned some of the shelves
Russell is a printmaker too, and has a press in his space
There is something special about jars of paintbrushes and gatherings of art supplies
It's really great to get out and about to see some art in real life. You tend to give pieces more of your time and contemplation than if you saw them on a computer screen. Creativity is contagious too, and getting out to see some art gets the motivation and inspiration flowing.