Tag Archives: castle

During feeds and nappy changes…

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Time is flying quickly and baby is growing fast!! Its the summer holidays and I have been entertaining my eldest with Alton Towers and Loom Bands, whilst thinking about new uniform and baby grows! It was a nice surprise to receive mail from Gareth Whitley (Bodelwyddan Castle), again offering the chance for my family and I to view the latest exhibitions in return for a few mentions right here at my blog 🙂

Just to give you a preview, here is my introduction..

Some exciting work will be shown at this exhibition during 23 July – 28 September!

Watercolours and Drawings: 18th to 21st Century

“This exhibition is the third to be brought to Bodelwyddan Castle from Hastings by Caroline Gee, a Sussex art dealer who has been specializing in Watercolours and Drawings for over thirty years. It will follow a similar format as her previous exhibitions, beginning with the early years of the watercolour school in Britain, moving through the early nineteenth century, the ‘Golden Age’ of British watercolour, and finishing with delightful twentieth Century examples.”

Thomas Miles Richardson, Landscape with Distant Hills

“Featured works on display include some of the most prominent artists who exhibited with the Old Watercolour Society (formed 1804), among them David Cox, Peter de Wint and John Varley. The Victorian Age is mainly represented by those artists who followed in the tradition of the early landscape painters, and will include two large and splendid views of North Wales by William Evans of Bristol. In the twentieth century section there will be another group of the wildlife drawings by Eileen Soper which so delighted visitors last time.

An additional feature to this exhibition will be a section of works by contemporary artists from East Sussex, which will include a few oil paintings and acrylics, with one by Royal Academician Gus Cummins who lives just down the hill from Caroline.

You have the opportunity to purchase pieces from the exhibition, as all of the works are for sale. Prices will range from £100 to £10,000, with many for under £500.  We hope that there will be something for everyone, and we will be offering various instalment plans that will help you with the purchase.”

Paul Sandby Munn 1773-1845 Bala Lake with Cader Idris in the Distance Signed and dated 1833 Watercolour

I am looking forward to diving straight into the exhibition this coming Saturday and hope to take lots of pictures whilst learning all about the history of the Artists 🙂 It will be interesting to take a close look at works that have been painted of locations that are local to me, and places that I have been to such as Bala Lake, North Wales.

I have been experimenting with watercolour to bring my latest drawings to life so I am looking forward to exploring how other Artists have used it to colour their work.

 

More exciting work showing now at Bodelwyddan castle…

 

Bob Collins: Shooting Stars

Eric Sykes, 1959 © estate of Bob Collins / National Portrait Gallery, London

“As part of our Summer special exhibitions programme, we will be showing Bob Collins: Shooting Stars inGaleri 3. This is a really enjoyable display that consists of 23 informal photographs of famous faces from the 1950′s/60′s.  As well as offering a welcome dose of nostalgia, we feel that the exhibition will highlight Bob’s skill at capturing spontaneous moments on film.”

 

After my visit on Saturday I will be blogging within a few days to tell you all about the above works..dont miss it!!

 

see you soon 🙂

Creative futures 2014 continued….

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I am now 30wks pregnant and due to that reason (and feeling like the size of a baby whale) I could only manage 2 of the 4 days of creative futures!! 😦 So I don’t totally miss out on the exciting people who have come to visit Glyndwr I have decided to have a look at the schedule and research the speakers anyway.

Wednesday 5th March/ Thursday 6th March

Bex Raven

BA (Hons) Fine Art and History of Art and Material Culture 2002

PGCE Art and Design 11 – 18 2009

MA Fine Art Engaging the public with Art 2011

Bex has always loved Art and has a wide background in many disciplines.

It was her vision that founded Funky Aardvark based on her MA research into making Art accessible for everyone. She is a great believer that Art and Craft should be inclusive and welcoming, but most importantly fun!

Bex creates work with a wide range of techniques yet the thought behind the pieces is often similar. She draws inspiration from her own life experiences to generate quirky, often mixed media artworks. Bex loves to create work which actively involves the audience and often asks them to join in with the pieces in some manner. She often generates interaction via text and encourages the viewer to share their own experiences. Look out for lots of her work in the interactive exhibitions and out on the streets.

Bex plans to further her own knowledge with another return to academic study and write her PhD. She is also working on publishing her first book that will bring out the artistic side in anyone. Most of all Bex continues to pioneer a way through the modern world of Art convincing everyone that really it should be all about having fun.

Bex Raven

I like the way Bex has thoroughly portrayed her unique style and personality within her dress sens and her artwork, she seems to find inspiration in many different areas and I really like her interest in stitching. When I sew, I tend to try and hide the stitching but with Bex, she openly displays her thread which I think gives a different feel. I also love the way she has created hearts differently above by using an actual heart aswel as different shapes and texture.

CAROL RAMSAY

Illustrator turned Installation Artist, responding to site and working with recycled and found objects. I deconstruct forms of everyday life, as such creating and fabricating unusual or delicate works of art. I have a strong belief that contemporary art can be aesthetically pleasing, yet still viable.

“I base my practice in contemporary installation and community based artworks and would call myself an accidental artist activist. I choose not to work in one media, preferring first to discover site through research then also through the art of conversation, breaking down boundaries between artist, place and people. These conversations can then define the media used. The collaboration of ideas can make creativity ever more powerful.”

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Title: It’s a Jungle out there

The exhibition title was ‘Inhospitable’ so taking a book entitled ‘It’s a Jungle Out There: The Feminist Survival Guide to Politically Inhospitable Environments’ I made a play on words and took certain quotes from the book out of context thus making feminism inhospitable.

Again, a totally different artist with another style and views on how she likes to portray art and for her own reasons, I was taken by the book page idea here as I have had a go at something similar myself. I didn’t really have anything that specific in mind, more the fact of how to use old books and incorporate them into another form, artistically, and I can safely say my outcome didn’t look half as interesting as Carols!!

TONY CLARKSON- PUSH CREATIVE

Push Creative Ltd.

“Since Push Creative began over a decade ago, we have gained creative diversity and the ability to create work that is aesthetically, physically and commercially successful. Whether we are working on large or small projects, our approach is the same: original thought, clarity of message and simplicity of implementation.

We are considered a small agency, but it feels like the right size for us to stay close to our clients and build a network of real partnerships with other creative people. All of our clients can enjoy the benefits of a project that has been tailored to their exact needs and we build our team around the project rather than the project around our team. With Push Creative, you’re only billed for what you need and we’re 100% transparent with all our clients.

We work across a wide range of disciplines and we ensure the right creative specialists are working on your project, and you can have direct contact with them, not a third party. We pride ourselves in the close working relationships we develop with all our clients, and we endeavour to make the process as rewarding as the end product.”

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“We had been working with Google on the Line of Site project, a web based architecture competition. They asked us to design an advert for them to be used in series of publications promoting the competition and their software, Google SketchUp. We were happy to oblige and used their actual software to create the 3D lettering model used within the ad. We also included one of the competition

participant’s works that was especially talented in the use of SketchUp to help promote the capabilities of the software for Google.”

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“Deutsche bank needed a series of icons that would sit within specific sections of their website. They had to be bright, busy and striking and all be of consistent size. The client was happy with the result and they were used for many years on the main Deutsche Bank website.”

From the digital perspective I respect the fact that Push Creative have met the customers needs in the above picture for the Deutsche bank. I love the bright, bold colors and also how they have merged different images into the media in an abstract style.

Whilst I was looking for information on Push Creative, I did come across a few other companies with the same name so it was slightly difficult in finding the correct one and making sure that I didn’t mix the information!! But, on my travels through Google, I found a Push Creative website that I thought was pretty cool so I thought I would share it! It is the sort of website that you can interact with, there are even actual moving people doing different things and the back ground music is fun! Ironically this is a branding and design website, check it out!!

CLARRIE FLAVELL

Clarrie Flavell studied at Glyndŵr, graduating in Applied Arts in 2002. Taking full advantage of the ideas – led course, she produced four light-emitting portrait sculptures for her final piece. Since then, having acknowledged her theme, she has based her next steps upon the chance events that have come her way.
                                                               
                                        The Blue Earthworm is a purpose built studio/workshop, owned and run by Clarrie Flavell.
Clarrie has exhibited some of her pretty artwork at Bodelwyddan castle at some point during 2013 and also has her workshop situated right next door!!

Alexander Adams and Portraiture

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Firstly I would like to thank Gareth Whitley for his kind offer of a free visit to Bodelwyddan Castle and also giving me a Quentin Blake poster AND a signed book containing the works of Alexander Adams-who is being exhibited at the castle gallery right now!!! So thank you Gareth!

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Alexander Adams and Portraiture 23 Nov ’13 – 30 March ’14

Bodelwyddan Castle and Park is rounding off the year of special anniversary exhibitions with Alexander Adams: Portraits. The exhibition is showing from 23rd November 2013 to 30th March 2014.

Alexander Adams: Portraits will be the first time that many of the works on show will have been seen in public, making this exhibition a great opportunity for people to see something new by an internationally recognised artist. Originally based in Denbighshire, Alexander studied at Wrexham Art College and now lives in Berlin.

The Alexander Adams: Portraits exhibition includes Martin Bormann’s Skull, a painting that compares a recovered skull thought to be of Bormann, a notorious Nazi official, with a photograph of him while alive, as well as, Girl, based on a picture found in an old Sunday newspaper supplement. The exhibition will also feature his first line portraits and nudes.

Traditionally working from photographs to make his paintings, Alexander has begun to paint straight from his observations of life, improvising more. Alexander says, “The exhibition at Bodelwyddan Castle is an ideal opportunity to look back at my representations of identifiable individuals and faces by displaying works which have never been exhibited before.”

I found the exhibition at the castle very interesting, by the time I had finished looking at his displayed work I felt inspired and had lots of questions to ask, for example- Why did some of the people he had pained have no faces? I came to learn, from Gareth and his oartner, that there were various reason depending on the picture itseld, it may have been that Alexander did not feel the head or face worked for the picture or even that as an artist who copied from photographs, Alexander liked to make his own interpretation on the peron he was painting and exercised the fact the he could change any part he wished to. I liked the fact that I wanted to ask questions after seeing the exhibitions, the want to knw more, I also like the bold black and white to some of the paintings, it m ade them feel strong and kind of powerful.

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And the visit is still not over!!! Check out the next post!!!

Bodelwyddan Castle family day out…

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Last year Bodelwyddan Castle held an exciting Quentin Blake exhibition to display some of his most important illustrations within their own gallery. As a huge fan of his work I took my family to visit the Castle and also made use of the other facilities available there, it really was a fantastic day for myself, my partner and the children( see the day further down my blog).

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Photo: My own photo from the exhibition

Gareth Whitley

Since the visit I decided to follow the Castle on Facebook and twitter so that I could find out about any more up and coming events. Gareth Whitley, volunteer at kids museums, editor and publicist of the sites had taken notice of our interest and has kept in contact through out the year and more recently had made me an offer I really couldn’t refuse. As he is part of a team who have been making some changes to the castles visiting facilities he has been looking for different ways to spread the word and to let the public know about the exciting new changes he has made, he also needed volunteers to test the said changes!! That’s where I come into it..Gareth kindly offered my family and I a FREE day out to tour the castle, view the latest exhibitions and basically give feed back on the new editions to the castle guides and touring system.

I was over the moon with his offer, obviously as I got to have a free day out with my family at an educational venue but I also felt very grateful for his offer, I could see that Gareth was keen to update the castles visiting facilities, had a general interest in the public’s views and he was willing to do what ever it took to meet both needs of the castle and the customers I thought it was very refreshing to be part of that and hopefully help him on his mission.

So what are the changes??!!

The first thing I noticed when I entered the reception was the ‘Children’s Explorer Tools’. The brightly colored tools have been specifically introduced to enable children up to age 5 to explore each historical room easily whilst having fun interacting with them, and whats more is that whilst the children are having fun exploring, Parents and guardians get their time to join in with them or take in the sights themselves. The explorers tools include magnifiers, torches, toy cameras and tape measures. (To be returned after use)

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(Photos were taken by me unless stated otherwise)

*Getting the children involved*

There was lots of other ways that Gareth and other members have thought about to encourage children’s to become involved in the gallery and history of the castle and so he has introduced drawing and coloring sheets designated for each historical room. (might I add that it is not just that children that enjoy drawing and coloring 🙂 .)

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Whoops!! I don’t have the best camera skills!!

Whilst at the main entrance, children can take some pencils and a clip board so that they can take their activity sheets along their journey with them or even fill their sheets in before they set off.

Activity and Educational Booklets

Cute little activity booklets have been created to specific parts of designated rooms for children to enjoy and to easily learn about the works and history of the castle.

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Mini Signs

Something else I noticed on our tour was the really cute illustrated signs which have been placed around the building, illustrated to tell a cat and mouse story for the very young children (just the right height for them too!!) to enable toddlers who cannot yet read or write and take part in the activity booklets, to feel part of the experience.

At this point I was wondering if there was anything that hadn’t been thought of! I felt that lots of different areas had been explored within the castle personnel to ensure people and children of all ages were considered to maximize an enjoyable and educational visit.

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Extra fun

So there is already a few new changes to aid children on their visit but there is more! More educational features have been placed in the historical rooms themselves just waiting to be discovered!! They have been carefully selected to tie in with the room itself for example, the library has been adjusted to enable visitors to access some drawers and also toys have been placed in there, like prisms and looking glasses to show what kids of historical people are associated with that room. People such as scientists and astronomers. I think the Library was just one of my son’s favorite rooms, as you will see in the following pictures.

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The following photos will show what is new in some of the other rooms for children  to get hands on with 🙂IMG_5870 IMG_5871 IMG_5895 IMG_5896 IMG_6041

Guided tours

Bodelwyddan castle have recently updated their touring system so not only is there some lovely people spotted about during the tour, who are fully educated within the history of the castle itself, and the younger generation are covered with everything I have talked about so far, they now have some really cool handheld media guides!! iPod styled media guides that are packed with everything you will need to learn about the castle and aid a relaxed tour environment!! My son was very excited about having the use of one of the new gadgets and even more so that he could wear one around his neck leaving his hands free to interact with all of the activities.

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The red media guides are available at the main entrance for a deposit, which is understandable considering the cost them, and they give access to the new app which is also downloadable from your own phone or device!!! I was curious about the app so I downloaded it to my own iPhone and I have to admit, as somebody who grew up in Bodelwyddan I was surprised and very interested in the past history of the village and castle!! Do check it out!! And don’t forget to leave a review!!

All of this wasn’t just down to Gareth, The deputy director, Morrigan Mason was responsible for the trails and toys and the coloring in sheets, Whilst the visitor services manager, Laura Verga-Birtles was responsible for the media guides. Gareth Whitley, whose job role within the castle is also directed at Learning and audience development, has been busy researching visitors comments, how they use everything and finding out views and people’s opinions for future services. Further aid came from CyMAL, Museums Archives and Libraries Wales, providing funding/money from the Welsh government.

I have pretty much covered what’s new at the castle where guides and children’s learning is concerned but our day didn’t end there!! My next post covers the rest of our visit, the latest exhibition and what’s coming up. I will always be talking about the illustrator behind the new children’s activity books so keep a watch out very soon!!!!!

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Bodelwyddan Castle

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I will be taking my family to Bodelwyddan Castle this week as we had such a fantastic time when we went to see the Quentin Blake Exhibition.

What’s on?

23 November 2013 – 30 March 2014 Alexander Adams and Portraiture

5 April – 13 July ARTIST ROOMS: Francesca Woodman, the STUDENTS STUDIO and Liberated and Lost (Vivienne Rickman-Poole)

23 July – 28 September Bob Collins: Shooting Stars (NPG) and Watercolours and Drawings: 18th to 21st Century

4 October to 14 December Fire and Fibres by Anna O’Higgins (fibre art), Sue King (pottery) and Ruth Bitowski (watercolours)

That is just a small portion of thing that are happening at the castle,

Bodelwyddan Castle and Park presents a series of special exhibitions throughout the year.

Admission to these exhibitions is included in the cost of a Castle and Park ticket.

For people who live locally, or other people who enjoy visiting us from further away, an annual ticket is a great way to see all the exhibitions at a low cost.

The castle also covers weddings, occasions, learning workshops, gallery, hotel and much, much more. take a look on their website for more information and exciting events or contact them via email or even twitter and facebook!!

Find the castle here.

 

Remember to keep an eye on my blog to see my report after visiting the venue this week!!!

Where has the time gone??

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It has certainly been a while since I have blogged a post!!
In my defense, I am a mum studying for an illustration degree with a new addition to the family on the way!
Although it has been some time since I have blogged, I have got lots to catch up on over the next few weeks including what I have been up to at Uni-how my drawing style has shaped and lots of new stuff I have leaned, creative futures has come around again so there will be some interesting and exciting new people to type about and also the dissertation! I think that there is a lot of speculation about the big D (dissertation) and hope it will be helpful to others to blog about how I tackled it.
Uni aside, I’ll be visiting Bodelwyddan castle again next week as they have some exciting events coming up so keep an eye on my blog!

Bodelwyddan Castle

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I went to visit Bodelwyddan Castle recently as the work of Quentin Blake was being displayed there. I took my family along too, as not only does the castle have its own gallery but also caters for a good family day out with activities for all.

We had a lovely walk through forestry, the maze was fun and my son and niece loved the park the most!! (I think that was my boyfriend-mikes favorite part too!!)

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The zip-lines are for ages 14 and under and for uses of one person at a time. It wasn’t until we had been on the lines that we read the sign so I strongly advise that these guidelines are taken seriously as injuries and faults will not be held responsible by Bodelwyddan castle.IMG_0990 IMG_0991 IMG_0987

There is a lot more to the castle, as you will see if you check out their website and one day wasn’t enough to cover everything but still, we had a fantastic time. Inside was even more interesting and fun, we enjoyed the children’s room, looking at historical paintings and spending time listening to the tour operators who gave us very interesting insight to the castle as it was in its day many many years ago.

The children’s room was very educational, my favorite part was the drawing apparatus, as you will see in the following photos.

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Saving the best until last, and my utmost favorite part of the day was seeing the work of Quentin Blake. For me, the most remarkable illustrator of all time, his work has always been there in my life from a small child and to this day I still find myself fascinated when I look at his illustrations.

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I love the use of water color, and how Blake uses it to display his color within his vision, I also like the way he uses the center on the page not using the full canvas when he illustrates. His unique style grabs my attention, his scatty line work that isn’t perfectly formed is perfect to me.

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And there you have it, some of the amazing works of Quentin Blake. Over all we had a fantastic day at the castle and I look forward to keeping up to date with what they will have to offer in the future!!

Bodelwyddan castle can be found online on their website, facebook, twitter, and is just off the A55 at Bodelwyddan, north wales, UK.