I received a nice email from the Marburae Art Gallery, Macclesfield today, saying that I had been chosen for the Barnaby Festival exhibition 2014 (2013 info: http://www.barnabyfestival.org.uk/ )

It was just one of the three proposals I sent off a couple of weeks ago, so it was nice to get a response so quickly. They do seem to be planning this event incredibly early, so it will be good to see how things go with it.

No other news from the other proposals I sent yet, so I don’t know if that’s good or bad. I do know though that I will have to seriously start looking towards cutting back my work hours.

I had a bit of a wobble the other day after receiving the emails from the Chapel Gallery. The thought of using up my precious leave to work rather than going out and enjoying myself, made me feel really low.

I hadn’t really thought about how poor my free time was getting until I’d written it down in blog form. Things will have to change.


Under pressure

I’ve had a couple of emails from The Chapel Gallery this week, asking for images of my work for the Land Sea Sky exhibition, opening in September. Although I’d already send them images of the prototypes and a full description of how the installation will look, they want to see the work NOW so that they can plan the layout.

This has been such a stressful week trying to get something together for them.

What I normally do before I install something like this, is take a full week off work about a month before, so that I can work continuously on it. Unfortunately, my ‘scheduled’ week off isn’t for another 9 days and I REALLY can’t take an extra day or two off now.

Since getting the emails off them, I’ve spent every night this week, after work, cutting out and putting pieces together in the hope that I would have something to show them today. I made five ‘hot air balloons’ and everything that could gone wrong, has done – probably because I’ve been rushed. I’m hoping by showing images of those 5, they can sort of imagine what 100 would look like.

Although working on them now has made me aware of the design problems ahead of time, I’m not sure how long I can keep going doing this while in full time employment. There must be an easier way!



At last, two consecutive days off work… this heat has been unbearable and I’m sure I’m not the only person who has found it difficult to get motivated.

Its seven weeks until I install my new work at the Chapel Gallery in Ormskirk for the ‘Land Sea Sky’, but before I can even think about making another installation, I have to create extra storage space for all of my work from past exhibitions. I have so much stuff and am fast running out of storage space.

I spent yesterday knocking down my old leaky shed and sorting through the junk inside, thankful for the hot weather so that I could spread everything out without worrying about overnight rain. Everything will go into my new plastic shed, which hopefully will be dryer.

The problem with working with recycled materials is that I always think something ‘might be useful one day’ and am reluctant to sling it. Watching ‘hoarders’ on TV helps put things in perspective, but I still have a stack of stuff that I can’t get rid of.

I don’t want to store the paper outside, but it gives me more options to move things around.

After the Chapel Gallery exhibition and unless anything comes back from recent proposals I sent off, I will have a bit of a break from exhibiting until April next year. I will be in a group exhibition in the 3rd on 3rd Gallery in Jamestown, New York and I’ll be going across for a short residency there.

This week has seen the start of applications for funding. I know how difficult it is to get funding, but I least I have last year’s experiences to go by : www.a-n.co.uk/p/983947/


The perils of the opens

Tomorrow, I will go to pick up my reject from The Jerwood Drawing Prize. The odds against getting accepted were pretty high, so it wasn’t too much of a blow, but I was completely taken aback when finding out that the work went entirely without packing for the whole journey.

I did read that packing will be removed, but in my naivety, I thought that meant that it would be removed when it actually reached its judging destination – not before! It was only yesterday, when an employee from one of the collection points was complaining about the amount of packing they had to dispose of, that the penny dropped. She had seen my work, but wouldn’t respond when I asked its condition.

I’d made a paper house with a drawing on it. No frame – its only protection was the box I’d made especially for it.

With ten collection centres and hundreds of artworks being delivered to and from each, what chance of survival would a paper house have?

So that was it. I’d made a vow not to enter anything that you pay for and I broke it. Serves me right.

It was quiet in work today, so I scrolled through all of the many pages of exhibiting ops in a-n. I crossed off all of the ones with a charge. I then dismissed the ones that would cost too much to travel to, to deliver work. I was then left with three. The deadlines were fast approaching on two of them, the other had a week or two left. With having little time, and even less enthusiasm after my recent reject, I sent the same proposal and images to both.

Open exhibitions just suck. The big ones cost too much, and even the smaller ones have started doubling their entry fees. I know of two opens this year that cost a lot more than they charged last year. Because less people entered, they accepted virtually everything.

I’m not sure I would want to be in an exhibition with such low standards. I’m better off with what I’ve been doing I think.


My Website/s

I’ve got that sort of feeling at the moment that’s like when you come back from holiday and everything feels kind of flat.

Although there’s nothing on the immediate horizon, I’m reluctant to start on my own work again or start applying for anything either just yet as I need to recharge.

On Sunday, I went back to the church to meet and greet a few people that had come to see my installation, and then I had to dash off to the exhibition at The Williamson Art Gallery across the road to pack up my shoes. I haven’t even packed them up properly – I just put them all in two big plastic tubs, thinking that …one day… I will sort them all out and repack them properly.

It won’t be this week though.

This week, I had feedback about my website from a Curator.

Well….it wasn’t what I expected. I don’t think she liked it really. I was given a big list of suggestions from changing the font, layout and colour….to having something that changes monthly and includes a blog.

It kind of shocked me, because I always put a link to my site on things I’d applied for in the past, but no one had ever commented on it. No wonder I’m not getting anywhere : (

I don’t have the time (or more importantly, the technical know how!) to make these changes just yet, but I’ll certainly give it a lot of thought and look at other artists sites to get some ideas.

What really surprised though is that she did like my word press one: http://wendycwilliamsdotorg.wordpress.com/ I use this one just for myself really as a kind of diary. I don’t advertise it, have it on my business cards or anything – I thought it was too simple and a bit…amateurish…for want of a better word. How odd that this was thought more ‘expressive and energetic’ than my ‘professional’ one.

Also, what I found really surprising is that I pay for the Mr Site one that she didn’t like so much (www.wendycwilliams.co.uk ) and its a pain in the backside to make changes to, yet the wordpress one is totally free and takes 5 mins to update.

Hmmm…maybe when the renewal date is up, I will save my cash.

post script. Hmmm…reading over this post again today, I think I came across a little ungrateful for the feedback, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. I am more than happy about it! Thank you VERY much Mrs Curator : )