Bank Holiday weekend in the U.K and the first cycle camp of the year for me. I managed to do 43 miles on Saturday covering a rather large area of The Peaks, taking in trails, bridleways, wonderful nature and dreaded busy roads. The motion of cycling often gets my imagination fired up.. a small rest on a bench gave me a future idea towards a future photographic project that needs a lot of thought, reflection, planning and time...
Time camping was also spent in the eve around a large communal fire with some lovely folk, all sharing a mutual love for nature and music. In my mind at the moment (apart from the ABC art trail) after much discussion and thought, I am hoping to bring into fruition a small unconventional studio/nature hide/bolt hole. Indeed, when I have come to the finality of this prospect and real hope, then I shall report back.. it makes complete sense to follow this route especially as I can use the space as real inspiration for my imagination and for photography but first, I really have to look at a fair few logistics! Until further news about this, I am now putting all this week's energy into my exhibition for ABC Art Trail next weekend.. I am really looking forward to spend time around fellow artists and talking to those who manage to visit! It's going to be a good and busy week!
As always, I love spring, the flowers are coming alive and the green leaves and foliage are bearing their fantastic vibrancy.. The bright and dark greens are visually fantastic. My small lawn is bearing its wild flowers in the form of 'Wild Violets', some would argue that they are a nuisance, I would argue that they are just lovely amongst the grass. On a creative and work level, May is turning out to be a particularly busy month. I have been majorly preparing work for 2 exhibitions, Nature and Solitude - a joint exhibition with the wonderful Valerie Turton. I love Valerie's work and one day, I will definitely buy a piece of her work.. it speaks to me, the way a piece of art does, at times. We are both also adding a piece of work towards the Nepal Fundraiser as part of our exhibition. I like working alongside Valerie, there is a real sense of ease, calm, fun and appreciation of each other's thoughts around our own art and emotions, so to exhibit with another artist for a good period of time and whom you work well with, is a real bonus. It has also, been lovely to work alongside Saira Lloyd, who has been instrumental in setting up the exhibition and fundraiser. Saira has and continues to be of great support.
I have also been trying to get organised for the local Open Studios event - ABC art trail, where I will be exhibiting work at The White Lion Bar and Kitchen alongside 5 other artists, fresh new work will be added with some new additions of fine art cards. I am in dire need of getting out to do some creative photography but other work commitments have been burning into the creative realm, I know it will return when I have the peace and time to completely focus.. with all art, time, energy, solitary time to fire the imagination and inspiration is a neccessity.. as Virginia Woolfe noted, we all need space / room for ourselves to really focus. I think women often find this a difficulty, especially if they have so many conflicting responsibilities and work ties. I am glad that I am self employed and I am also thankful that I have some part time work with a local college teaching, but it is by no means, not as easy as many would like to imagine when also, you have domestic responsibilities too.
I have also found out that I will be exhibiting at the 2015 Uppsala Foto Festival in Sweden. I exhibited at Uppsala in 2013 and it was a inspirational experience. I really look forward to return to the nordic lands. I feel very much at home in the north, amongst the kindness of Scandinavians and the last time I was there, I met many lovely people who also shared a real passion for photography. This time, I really hope to spend more time cycling to the large lake area again - Ekoln and Malaren for some possible self portrait photographing toward my ongoing series of work.
Time to catch my breath with a few weeks over in Greece, part with a friend, and part alone backpacking on Naxos and Hydra. Again, this will be part work, part rest. Hopefully by then, I will have sourced an underwater camera casing or camera for some underwater experimental photography. But more about that later in the year. For now, I want to look forward to these 2 art events but also think about the people in Nepal who are really struggling right now after the devastating earthquake. I hope the aid is reaching these people and that their lives will take on some sort of normality as soon as possible.. In meditation we used to say 'Namaste' and I want to reiterate this to those in Nepal suffering right now..
Namaste - an ancient Sanskrit greeting still in everyday use in India and especially on the trail in the Nepal Himalaya. Translated roughly, it means ' "I bow to the God within you", or "The Spirit within me salutes the Spirit in you" - a knowing that we are all made from the same One Divine Consciousness.'