Finally we have had nice sunny weather in this wretched land. And how fortunate for the heavens to pour their glorious-shinny-rays of glittering-luminescent-joy all over a May Bank Holiday weekend. And what did we do? We went to Weston-Super-Mer of course. Superb.
I have not posted for a while and this if for two reasons: 1. I have been terribly lazy *slaps wrist* and 2. I have been working on a very exciting live illustration project called Storybooth.
The idea for Storybooth has grown from the desire to create collaborative illustrations and collective stories. It will be an experimental installation, where illustrators draw from participants’ ideas, thoughts, dreams. Live. *live*. Our first outing (of many I hope) will be at The Parlour Showrooms between Saturday 18th and Tuesday 22nd May (in just over a week!!!). We will be making illustrations inspired by your dreams, and these drawings will be archived to a collective story “cloud”, then documented to form a story of their own in a beautiful book. It will be fun, and somewhat surreal. Please come and take part!
So it may only be my third, but yesterday was the last Dibujo Madrid for me (for now), because I return to UK on the weekend. This is sad because they are such a great group, and it is such a wonderful event. The theme this week was “DESPROGRAMADOS” which was the scene of a battle to save the common man from a post-digital-clockwerk-evil-ring-leader. Some peeps from the group suggested that we should start a Dibujo Bristol. This could be a good idea, except with an english accent it would be di-boo-joe bristol, which sounds funny!
I’ve really enjoyed the freedom in making marks with such a restrictive material as cut-up-bits-of-paper. I shall continue going to the traditional life drawing classes is Bristol, and be that annoying “wacky” person that sits at the back making a big old messy collage. And when I have time, I’ll think about taking Dibujo Madrid up on the suggestion to start a new group, because (despite popular belief) drawing from scenes with narrative is way more exciting than drawing someone in the tod.
Oh la la. It was Semana Santa last week, and I was in Salamanca. For those of you who have not experienced such an absolutely mental phenomenon as Semana Santa in Spain, it goes a little something like:
All the “brotherhoods” of all the churches in the village process with massive floats (pasos) with statues of JC and our lady of loneliness (Nuestra Señora de la Soledad). It is like being transported into the medieval times, everyone wears medieval cloaks, and usually cover their heads with bandanas, and wear pointy hats and cloaks (called nazareno), and some don’t wear shoes. Our lady of loneliness has the biggest float. It is HUGE, our lady of loneliness sits on a great big bed of silver, crying, surrounded by candles and flowers and about 50 men carrying it. All these procession happen at night, by candle light. It is intense.
After the processions we went to the top of the cathedral to see the view, and on the way I saw this little statue of JC from the 11th Century. Then we had a coffee and ate flan. I made up a poem about flan. It goes a little something like:
you sound like flange
you wobble like jelly
you are not quite caramel
or crème brulée(ee)
And this is an old lady who sits in the local bar. She sits there all day every day, and smiles, and looks out for people in the bar (and in our case kept an eye on our friends baby).
Last year I worked with Watershed’s producer Hannah Higginson, and Fresh Flix to develop workshops for their engagement programme.
In October 2012 I facilitated a Day of the Dead shadow-puppet-stop-motion-animation workshop, held after a screening of Corpse Bride. The workshop was a lot of fun! There were about 20 creative small people between the age of 4 and 12, and also a great team of helpers from Fresh Flix, who curated the event. This is what happened when we made a creepy-techno-shadow-puppet-animation music video for Paddy Uglow’s weird and wonderful sounds:
…And, even before that (we are talking last summer here), I worked on Flea to the Circus, which was the Watershed’s summer programme for 4-12 year olds. The theme was insect-circus. The kids participated in a week-long programme of workshops (there were circus skills, musical soundscapes, puppets, and theatre skills). At the end of the week they performed their new-found skills to parents and friends, before a screening of the film A Bug’s Life. This all happened in the temporarily permanent big-top circus by Temple Meads station. How awesome is that? I wish they had this kind of stuff going on when I was 7!
In our workshop we made a mini-circus and insect puppets from card board boxes and sparkly bits. Then we used a webcam to make a “live animation”. You can see the “live animation” projection of Sammy-the-snail-cannon-ball below.
Waaaaaaay back in June 2012 I was part of a wonderful collaboration. It was for a performance called Through the Nostrils. It went something like: folk meets punk, meets puppetry, meets a host of weird and wonderful stories, meets a 20 piece community choir, and we all have a big-cinematic-gig at the Cube, Bristol. (Link to the event here and to a rather good review of the event here).
Well, recently, my long term collaborator Corina Bona and I were asked by award winning folk musician Emily Portman to make the Stick Stock part of the showinto a music video. Here is the result:
Did I mention in the last post that dibujo is Spanish for drawing? Probably you knew that already, or you did a google search to find out, or you are like me and have a super-spanish-english-translator-app on your very clever telemaphone and you used voice recognition to have the translation instantly flash on your screen in front of your very eyes. (Gone are the days of trawling though the dictionary: errrr….does h come before or after g? argh, what’s the infinitive again?…oh blooiming heck, I’m looking in the wrong language bit…!).