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We are very pleased to have a new inspiration post from Art in the Park artist Bill Hudson!!

I am seeing…. more art, in gallery/studios around New Cross and Deptford on the SOUTH LONDON ART MAP tours on the last Friday of the month.

I am reading….about worm drives and centrifuge machines mostly driven by hand on the internet, I need to get one for my paint machines project.

The Elephant and Nun Festival 2011I am visiting…. Footscray Meadows in Bexley when I can.

I am thinking about…. designing and building 2 more paint machines for Elle Salt and my show, “AUTOMATE”  at  Talla Solais at Ullapool Visual Art, Ullapool  in their Project Space starting In early September this year.

I am cooking….more homemade Scotch egg, pea and mint croquettes this summer, great for picnic.

I am hearing…..a lot of helicopters going over London with the build up to this very busy summer in London.

I am making…. plans for printing some art books is summer, I want to start showing my drawings in book form and I should be doing more printing like screen printing of my art.

We had such a wonderful day on Sunday at our Art Extravaganza. As part of The Big Draw and Flock Project over 100 people visited Art in the Park to support the national campaign for drawing and explore the theme of migration. Visitors were invited to produce their own unique works of art on two of Bill Hudson’s fantastic paint machines and learn to throw a pot on the wheel in our pottery workshop.

Taking inspiration from the birds found in Burgess Park – pigeons, crows, herons, swans, woodpeckers and more! – visitors drew and cut out a silhouette of a bird of their choice. They then had the chance to paint it using one of the paint machines – either squirting paint at it from a distance, or operating a paintbrush held on the end of a 6 foot arm using pulleys and levers! Great fun!

The lovely Leyla, Art in the Park’s resident ceramicist, was also running a free workshop where people could learn to throw a pot on the wheel, and then decorate it with marks and stamps.

It was a great day and so many beautiful pots and colourful birds were made. The birds have been fixed to postcards and sent on a flight to the Ullapool, before they continue their migration to the Outer Hebrides!

More photos of the event to follow….!

You might have heard about the Big Draw, a national campaign with the sole aim of getting people to draw. This year a new project has emerged under this campaign called ‘Flock’ which seeks to connect people across thousands of miles using, you guessed it, drawing!

Using birds, stamps and people’s own messages and pictures, each person will draw a bird on a card and write a message with their thoughts about migration, travel or distance which will then be sent around. It will begin at the Equator in Uganda, flying north via Camberwell (London), Ullapool (Scottish highlands) and eventually arriving en masse in Stornoway (Isle of Lewis, Outer Hebrides).

Art in the Park is just one of the organisations involved with this. Acting as the London (Camberwell) stop-over, we will be running an open workshop on Sunday 9th  October themed around ‘BIRDS OF BURGESS PARK.’ Participants from our 4 Corners and Heart Garden project will also be contributing to the ‘flock’ of postcards.

Open to all ages, the open workshop will allow participants to contribute to this unique Big Draw project by creating stencilled postcards using paint machines which were designed and crafted by Art in the Park’s artist Bill Hudson. In addition to this, there will be pottery, still themed around birds for those wanting a piece of craft of their own.

Camberwell Flock Workshop

We will provide reference material on the birds seen around the park and the lake (Art in the Park have previously worked with Cobourg school to produce a stunning, circular bronze of birds on the lake).

Stencilled Postcards

Participants will:

  1. Create stencil of a bird using paper
  2. Place on top of the postcard
  3. Put it on the painting machine and paint it thus creating a printed bird

They can make 1-2 to keep and 1 to post onwards through the project.

Bird themed Pottery

Participants will:

  1. Make a pot using the potter’s wheel
  2. Decorate it with a string stamp that they have created, still continuing with the bird motif

You can follow progress of the Big Draw’s Flock project on their blog.

Fire-Etching WorkshopsWe recently ran two ‘Fire-Etching’ workshops as part of our Service Level Agreement (S.L.A) with Southwark Council. Southwark needed us to brand some signposts for Southwark Park but with the collaborative efforts of the local community.

Initially marketed as ‘Branding‘ workshops, we found despite a healthy turnout on our first session that many people were confused with the word ‘Branding’, associating it with the kind of branding you refer to in the marketing world. Our workshop was definitely much more exciting and hands on than this!

So, the workshop was rebirthed (over soup, bread and other grown tidbits from our garden) into ‘Fire-etching.’ I don’t like to brag (maybe just a little) but I came up with it thinking along the lines of scorching wood with fire.

The first session was held on Thursday 24th February and we were blessed with a rare day of sunshine (some warmth) and a bucket-loads of children to the playground. Easing participants to our outdoor fire-etching setup was then a question of safety as we could only have a maximum number of people etching at a time.

Our second session on the Saturday 5th March (you can’t have the same luck twice) was a gloomy and chilly day with not as much people turning up as the previous session but still a pretty healthy turnout. However, a more manageable number meant you could spend more time on one signpost, giving way to much progress that day. All in all, the two sessions bore very healthy results and participants found themselves intrigued and hooked onto ‘fire-etching.’

“What the heck is fire-etching?”

Here is a brief lowdown on ‘fire-etching’:

  1. Trace your design onto the wood using carbon paper,
  2. The carbon paper should be put under your design while you trace on it. Once done, it should leave a clear impression,
  3. Many iron rods with different types of heads are then left in the path of a live blow torch,
  4. Once heated enough and wearing very heavy-duty gloves, carefully and with a firm grip hold onto one end of the rod,
  5. One glove should be more heavily padded than the other, this hand should be the one holding the middle part of the rod (never hold the end which is heated up, it will be extremely hot and even with padded gloves, you will end up getting burnt!),
  6. Angling the heated end of the rod into a comfortable position, you can then ‘etch’ the design by carefully placing it onto the wood, essentially scorching the wood.

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More Fire-Etching pictures and narrative

This is part two of a series of sculptural drawings, as promised a few weeks ago.

I am still in the process of tidying up, sorting out files at the studio and home and I keep coming across portfolios of art, mostly drawings. A lot of these are getting recycled in the paper bin, others are filed away again in sets. Few are looked at more in-depth and this set is one of these.

All these drawings are from 2002 and cover a 6 month period during the time when there were a few commissions I was applying for. I was just getting ideas down as fast as I could so some have been worked on and developed and  some have a particular site in mind.

When I start to make a sculpture, the drawings are put aside and are very rarely looked at. I need to start thinking in the round/3D and not in 2D as the drawings are.

Look out from my next set of drawings in a few weeks.

For more of my work go to www.wmhudson.com