Tuesday, 13 December 2011

Christmas Exhibition

Hello lovely folks,

Now who doesn't end up in a little bit of a panic at this time of year? Well, we can solve your problem with some lovely artworks and home-made gifts. And here are some of the works and some of the artists...

Graham Dean

Graham has been taking photos since he was 12 years old and was a junior member of Darwen camera club. At that time Graham worked in black and white and used a darkroom but he often wanted to manipulate the pictures to tell the story he wanted.

(I sincerely hope you are imagining the music off the hovis ads to this bit…)

When digital came along Graham started to scan slides and make them into different images, Brief Encounter is an examples of this!

Brief Encounter by Graham Dean

It was five years ago when Graham had his first exhibition and when he started to sell his work; he enjoys digitally enhancing and changing the images – sometimes this more than taking the pictures!

Time for tea is one of his newest works. This particular image was 3 years in the making. Graham did have a clear idea of what he wanted to achieve but he didn’t get the image right until now.

Brief encounter is one of Grahams bestselling works; he took the image years ago for a competition about photos that depicted film names and at the same time the café on Carnforth station where they filmed Brief Encounter was to be reopened. It took Graham two visits to get the exact image he was after. At the time, he had to wait for his pictures to be developed to see what he had captured.

(That is a great idea; can you see Star Wars next to Toy Story and Angels and Demons all depicted by images? Potential future exhibition here…).

I asked Graham about titles and how he chooses them; Graham explained that sometimes he begins with a title; it can be easier that way.

Setting for a Saucy Rendezvous
(told you it was coming back!)

Graham usually works on a laptop in his living room, and he works in 10-15 minute slots per image as he has a short attention span! But it does mean that he has time to develop his ideas. He does however have an office where he keeps all his printing equipment.

West Pennine Winter

View to a Stream

Under the Rainbow

Crispy Couture

Crispy Couture is a new enterprise from Lorraine Dickinson. She has started the business this summer after finishing at Nelson and Colne College. The course she has just finished was a BTEC National Diploma in Art and Design, and the last project was all about recycling.

For her first try at the recycled materials project; Lorraine tried making an outfit out of packaging materials (you know, the ones that look like wotsits) and investigated lots of different materials. Lorraine settled on crisp packets as she needed something with longevity. She really liked the colours and the fact they stitched together well. For the project Lorraine made a dress and as she had lots of leftover pieces she made a clutch bag to accompany the dress.

Close up of the materials

People then kept asking Lorraine to make them a bag and the business began then!

A selection of Lorraines purses which are currently selling very well, so hurry if you want one! They are only £10.

How are they made? Lorraine talks us through the process…

“First I start with washing the packets by hand, there isn’t any wastage, I use all the bits. Each purse takes an hour or so to sew and each bag takes around 3 and a half hours worth of detailed sewing.”

I asked Lorraine where all the packets come from; does she just eat lots of crisps? She said that she does now buy crisps specifically for the packaging, so it has had an impact on her shopping habits. Giddykippers do give Lorraine all their old crisp packets. So it is possible that the bag or purse in question was first used at a children’s birthday party. Now isn’t that a lovely way to recycle?

For more information go to Crispycouture 


Viridian are a group of three ladies who all met while doing a HNC at Craven College (I used to work there! Lovely place). They exhibit together a couple of times a year and only meet up occasionally as they all create work individually. They like to exhibit together as most of their work is inspired by landscapes and flora and fauna and so the works 'work' together.

I chatted to each artist and here they are with some examples of their work...

Denise Wheeler says "a bright sunny morning where I wake up refreshed" is her inspiration. Poor Denise this week - dark, grey, hail and wind! Denise generally sits in the conservatory to create work and she is very ordered and organised. I asked her about her titles and she explained that she is generally descriptive with her landscape work, she likes people to recognise the places although with her other work she tends to create and name them more emotionally, as they are feelings based works.

Blue Delphinium



Adrienne Cole is the messy one. (Ah, after my own heart). She describes her work as "expressive, gestural brushstrokes. I am a gardener and have an allotment and am inspired by the weather and the environment, the changes in seasons and the changes in colour this brings and overall the atmosphere." Adrienne tends not to include figures in her work, she likes landscapes to be empty and isolated, and dramatic.

Summer Moor

Shore from Boat

Winter Scrub IV

Susan Duffey is again inspired by the natural world, particularly trees, rocks and flowers. Susan is also a gardener and finds flowers a source of infinite pleasure, providing a feeling of joy. Susan likes to work in printing and mixed media and finds herself drawn to texture and colour. She explains "I like to experiment, although I start with a suject and then see where it takes me. I am always drawn to colour and texture".

Heather Moor

I grew up near Ilkley and still have fond memories of the Cow and Calf rocks - and the heather is great to fall into as a kid!

Bluebell Wood, Ilkley

I used to go on School trips to the Bluebell Wood in Ilkley
(happy memories - thanks Susan, wish I could afford this one!)

Scarlet and Cream Tulip

The price range is from as little as 60pence. The exhibition is on until Christmas and The ACE Centre is open 10-4, Monday to Saturday until 23rd December. Come along and treat you family, or your friends or treat yourself!

Ta Ra


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