This was actually the Sunday before last but its been so busy this week, I’ve had to leave it until now. I ventured out on my own to Stockport, not such a big deal if you know that its not that far and very easy to get to. I’ve been lucky to have new friends taking me places so far, but this one I knew I wanted to spend time wandering and wandering, so off I went! The Vintage Village was on again, amazing! And I also went to the Staircase Museum, supposed to be really haunted, but I didn’t see anyone, shame!
I’ve been spending a bit of time at the Manchester Craft & Design Centre in the Northern Quarter since moving here, and I worked a couple of days last week in Selina Campbell‘s studio, and will be again later this week. It’s a great place to work, really lively with 2 floors of studios that are also open as shops. The makers there have been very friendly and made me feel welcome, its made my new life here very easy.
Its only about 10 months since I first visited Manchester and decided to move here, so it was strange to be actually working in one of the studios in such a short time and to be feeling so very at home in Manchester. I love the Northern Quarter too, everywhere you look there is street art, graffiti, derelict buildings (which I find beautiful!), old ornate buildings, lovely little streets, old signage, busy cafes, bars and independent shops … just love it all!
FutureEverything continued over the weekend and I went along to an event on Saturday at Victoria Baths which I had been intending to visit at some point, so perfect. There were craft and fanzines stalls and installations throughout the beautiful old baths. One of which I have just discovered was by my AWOL studio neighbour Laura Jane Blake . Really lovely piece and situated in one of the old pools. Its a gorgeous old building left to decay when it closed in the 90s but has now been saved and under renovation, while this happens its being used for events, looking forward to a couple of vintage fairs there later in the year. And I found more little clay men! … some of the rooms, were very spooky …
Spent some time this morning having a tidy of my website, getting it ready to add a shop, the collection of jewellery is growing for that. And inevitably my eyes start wandering around my flat and studio while still thinking about new ideas, falling on the odd objects and papers I gather along my way . . . and playing with combining them as I’ve started plotting some new collages too . . .
Looking through my materials and inspirations in the studio at the moment as I’m in the process of making new work to launch on a new online shop on my website. Something I’ve been using for quite a few years now are stamps! Have yet to find a shop filled to ceiling like the one I used to go to in Edinburgh here, but I am sure there will be somewhere, Manchester seems to have everything and then some more. The stamps I prefer are one colour printed oldies and anyone who has visited my studio will see I divide them into bags based on colour, perhaps a little obsessively! They are such beautiful colours, and the linear printing, words, numbers, patterns, makinge them such little treasures. I avoid using stamps worthy of a proper collectors stamp album, it just wouldn’t be right. These are ‘apparently’ not so collectible. Biased towards reds at the moment and US, Africa and Indian stamps!
Possibly a bit of an odd one . . . but I’m working on ideas for new jewellery and collages and have started by looking through groups and collections of objects I have at home and in the studio; one of which is my collection of tin types! Very intriguing things, I started to collect them a few years ago when I found them for pennies in a New York fleamarket, its not a massive collection, but I like them! . . .