Weekly Art Fix : Bridget Riley

I've been quite fascinated by the artist Bridget Riley since discovering her work as a teenager studying GCSE art. I'd always been a fan of pop art and was a huge Andy Warhol fan already by then. But this was different, I was impressed by her as she was a prominent woman on the pop art scene who had created such vibrant and bold paintings which lure your eye into the mix of lines, stripes, circles and colour.

I admired her strong visual style and upon discovering that we share the same birthday and she was born in Norwood where I was also at school in South London. I'd always seen her as a role model and inspiration.

These photos are from the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art which we visited on a day off from the Fringe Festival (which was amazing!). The gallery was a beautiful space which takes you through the ancient architecture of Scotland to the modern. With its oh so trendy logo and scattering of beautiful sculptures - I was truly impressed. Upon discovering they had a Bridget Riley exhibition I was so excited (nerd alert!). Enjoy x

Art Class Update : Week 4 - Measuring & Tone

This week I wasn't too thrilled at the start when given a still life to draw. I often get impatient and my attention span wavers when having to concentrate on odd objects! This week was learning about measuring and tone. I often sketch quite quickly and then with a big huff and declaration that i've had enough move on before really working into tone. 

Our tutor this week Isabell advised on the importance of standing back, taking a look and asking the questions; is that the right size? Which is the lighter tone? The darker tone? She also showed me how to translate the quick sketch I'd made into a much deeper tonal piece. 

Art Class Update : Week 3 - Drawing in 3D

Week 3 was a blast! A little un-nerving to start with as the prospect of making a sculpture from wire was a first for me.

I've been doodling some lips for a while now and thought immediately that the curvy lines that build up 'my' lips would transfer well to a wire sketch. Drawing in 3D is how Saskia described it - this opened up my thoughts of how I can translate my 2D graphic designer background and doodles into 3D sketches. So much fun... and I was quite pleased with the output! 

Art Class Update : Week 2

Week 2 at the Art Academy in London bridge.

This week felt a lot more fast pace... The sculpture needed to be completed by the end of the session as next week we'll have a new challenge!

I found myself again really enjoying working with clay. This week I had to refine the body I had started to mould last week. 'Make the legs and arms less sausage like' was the advice lol! I also had to try and mould the face - she looks a bit scary and modernist now!

 It is really interested how working with clay to build the human form really gets your brain wired into thinking in 3D rather than the 2D world of graphic design. You really start to appreciate the structure of the human form and observe the details of the body's muscle and bone from all angles. I am hoping this will help with my sketching and painting when we move on from clay in a few weeks.

Weekly Art Fix : Making & Unmaking

This week's art fix comes from the Camden Arts Centre on Finchley Road. Inside this Victorian fronted building which doesn't look like much from the outside is a modern and bright space which was refurbished in 2004 by Tony Fretton Architects. The light modern airy space inside contrasts with the smoggy Finchley Road outside. It has a lovely garden space, cafe and bookshop and is free to visit! 

Making & Unmaking is a curated exhibition by the designer Duro Olowu. It features over 60 different artists who have all been selected by Olowu. Art, design, photography, jewellery, sculptures, fabrics and ceramics are all exhibited in an inspiring and colourful display which feels like a beautiful slice of inspiration from Olowu himself.

I found the exhibition really inspiring and it made me think of the inspiration that I have here in my family home. We were not allowed to take photographs as a number of the artworks are from private collections so I have taken some pictures of artwork around my family home which reflects some of the themes seen in the exhibition. Photos above are from the Camden Arts Centre website. Photo credit: Mark Blower.

Lisa from #blackbritishart advised me that I need to 'just do you' so thanks for the great art fix this week! 

Art Class Update

Summer is here and i've started an art class at the Art Academy in London Bridge. Oh what fun! Having met Saskia Gall in India at the art retreat I thought i'd expand my art learning in London where she is teaching this summer and have some fun creating something new! 

Week 1 - Sculpture

The last time I worked with clay I was probably about 10 years old at Clapham Pool where we did pottery every saturday morning. I loved it then and think i'm now realising that I still do... I was late for the first class (bloody typical!) so had to shamelessly interrupt the intro session as I walked in. It's a class full of women and one man! Do men not do art classes mid week then? No problemo as I'm here to learn and express my creativity not to look for a potential date (lol). 

I loved the first class and was surprised at my starter effort - I was quite pleased with myself and here is the result of week 1. I will continue to update with each weeks art efforts! Ciao x

Weekly Art Fix : Jeff Koons

In an effort to stimulate my creativity and to take advantage of the vast amount of accessible art around us in London (and the world) I have decided to make this a new feature of my week and blog.

This week I visited the Newport Street Gallery in Vauxhall, London. The gallery is owned by Damien Hirst and is part of the regeneration and re imagining of Vauxhall from an old and sightly forgotten part of central south London to this clean cut, arty zone with contrasting old buildings and swish sharp lines of modern London architecture. The gallery is lovely, beautifully designed inside and out and it's FREE!!!! 

The exhibition : Jeff Koons - Now

Time Out Bar Awards : Matugga Rum

Coming home from 4 months of travel to receive an invitation to the Time Out Bar Awards was a nice touch! It is really encouraging and satisfying seeing designs you have personally developed from the start being served in top London locations. 

Matugga Rum was created just over a year ago by good friends Jacine and Paul Rutasikwa. Working together with Errol Donald we created a brand to reflect the British rum with an African soul.

Photo credit www.davidtett.com/timeoutbarawards2016

Photo credit www.davidtett.com/timeoutbarawards2016

The awards were held at the awesome Rumpus Room at the Mondrian, London. I absolutely love the interior of the space and the roof top views are great.

www.matuggarum.com

Abu Dhabi Sights

Visiting the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque was an illuminating experience. I didn't expect to be so amazed by the beautiful architecture and lighting which changed throughout the evening over sunset. 

The mosque was constructed from 1996 to 2007. It is the largest mosque in the United Arab Emirates. I was in awe of the intricate beautiful detail throughout the Mosque's interior and exterior which use materials including marble stone, gold, semi-precious stones,crystals and ceramics.

After our day visiting the Sheikh Zayed Grand Mosque we did a classic sand dune adventure. This was fun and also showed a different side of the Abu Dhabi lifestyle. The tour included a visit to a desert 'village' where we could sample various UAE cultural dress, food and entertainment!

Pink Skies & Purple Huts

Starting my sunset obsession on this trip were some amazing pink skies in Goa...

Patnem - Goa, India

Patnem - Goa, India

Later in my trip when I met up with my good friend Latoya, she kept quoting 'Rose Quartz and Serenity' to me every time we saw a sunset. I had no idea what she was on about until she updated me to the Pantone colour of the year... The most beautiful combination of colours which for me have been the theme of many an evening.

After the jungle retreat I stayed in the most basic of huts on Patnem beach, Goa. I'm the kind of backpacker who is most comfortable when things are super basic i.e a small family run shack on the beach, a jungle retreat or the complete opposite - luxury accommodation! It's the in-between I'm not so sure about... I love the simplicity of having nothing but the sound of waves and the quiet hum of beach life. This hut called out to me and I was fortunate to have stayed here for a few nights before moving on. The fact that it was purple and called Fun-ta-stic was just the icing on the cake!

Fun-ta-stic Purple Hut

Fun-ta-stic Purple Hut

Patnem Beach

Patnem Beach

Beach Life

Beach Life

Jungle Art Retreat : Goa, India

28th February - 10th March 2016

Arriving in India from Abu Dhabi was surprisingly chilled out. Not sure what chaos I was expecting, but arriving in Goa to see a man holding up a lovely yellow hand written sign with 'Welcome Carolyne Hill' was the best feeling ever!

After driving through various towns and villages to get to Khhaama Ketna retreat I arrived up a dark dirt track and at the bottom of a small gate which looked like the entrance to the jungle, I was left with my rucksack to make my way up (glad I didn't take the suitcase!). At the top I was greeted by Saskia, Sandra and Tiago... what gorgeous people I thought! Then I met David who was also so handsome, looking like Mowgli from Jungle Book! I was shown to my hut which was the furthest out into the jungle... OMG Its proper jungle out here... they were not joking! The jungle backed onto my open air bathroom... WTF...I can only laugh at this point as i'm not sure what i'm more scared of; the Indian clay hole in the ground toilet or the thought of monkeys or snakes or what ever else is in the jungle jumping on me while I shower or sleep in my hut with open windows. Turns out I was just fine and this was the most amazing place I've ever stayed in! I loved my open air shower and the feeling of taking a midnight shower with the trees and stars above my head became the best end to a day ever.

My Jungle Accomodation

My Jungle Accomodation

The art retreat was an amazing experience! There were 8 of us in total including David's Mum Suzie. Bev, Lisa and Kat from the Art Academy in London Bridge, Nicky a exec from the TV world, Andrea from Hungary and Alex who both live in London. Such a lovely and varied bunch of people. We had  a great time, full of art adventure, beach visits, jungle spice farm tours and lots of eating!

Amazing food prepared for us at the Khhaama Ketna Farm

Amazing food prepared for us at the Khhaama Ketna Farm

Every day we'd do some artwork under the banyan tree which was a beautiful and perfect setting. Who can draw? Who is really good? I was nervous to begin with, but very soon under the banyan tree we were all getting stuck in and enjoying the adventure!

A moonlight life drawing session under the banyan tree

A moonlight life drawing session under the banyan tree

For me this was a chance to leave the mac behind and remind myself that I can draw and paint and that I enjoy it... I was surprised by some of the work I produced and also felt at times that i'd not moved on much from A-level art! Over the 10 days we were guided by Saskia and David through various activities of painting, drawing, jungle foraging, sculpture as well as various tours to the beach, spice farms, waterfalls and more.

The palm weaving workshop

The palm weaving workshop

Life drawing under the banyan tree

Life drawing under the banyan tree

Saskia and David were the perfect hosts and friends to have made. Such inspiring individuals who decided to set up this magical art retreat in the jungle!

My exhibition!

My exhibition!

Chillcreate Blog : What Next...

Hello this is my new blog dedicated to whatever comes next...

I quit my job as a creative director in December 2015 having decided that although I love being a graphic designer I was bored of the London design agency scene. It was my goal 15 years ago to be a director and I achieved that a few years ago and recently found myself thinking 'what next?'.

Travel has always featured highly in my life so that has been my dream which i have embraced again. This blog is a body of work in progress; a platform to document my travel, art, design and other creative interests from this amazing world we live in.