Meanwhile… Photography

by Leigh Forbes Monday, 17th August 2015 In the UK, the invention of photography is popularly attributed to Henry Fox Talbot, of Lacock in Wiltshire (now owned by the National Trust, and housing a fabulous museum). However, Fox Talbot invented only one of the many processes devised for the long-term preservation of photographic images, and …

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Meanwhile… Glass

by Leigh Forbes Monday, 20th July 2015 Following on from last week’s article about Diomo Glass, it seems fitting to focus on glass as an art medium. Glass in its natural state is formed when a felsic lava (one that contains a lot of silica) cools too rapidly for crystals to grow – the result is …

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Meanwhile… Stone

by Leigh Forbes Monday, 6th July 2015 Last weekend, while camping at Gumber Farm, we were lucky enough to try our hands at stone carving, taking turns to hack bits out of the National Trust’s Rise of Northwood sculpture. This two-and-half-tonne lump of Portland limestone is moving between various locations on the Slindon estate in …

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Meanwhile… Mosaics

by Leigh Forbes Monday, 8th June 2015 Everyone thinks of the Romans when they think of mosaics. Of course, the Roman craftsmen produced the most elaborate and beautiful floors for villas all over Europe – some of which took years to build – but mosaic art began long before the then. The word “mosaic” is …

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Meanwhile… Tattoos

by Leigh Forbes Monday, 18th May 2015 Tattoo artists have always impressed me. Not only are they highly creative with the styles they produce (particularly when doing cover-ups), but also because – on the basis that they can’t rub it out and have another go – they achieve all that while working under the pressure …

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Meanwhile… Leather

by Leigh Forbes Monday, 27th April 2015 Working as a basket-maker also brought me into contact with leather, as people invariably wanted leather straps on bicycle baskets, picnic baskets, shoulder baskets… Fortunately, I knew a brilliant saddler, who was prepared to try any ideas I threw at him, and he always came up with wonderful …

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Meanwhile… Wicker

In a previous life, I made baskets for a living, which offered yet more opportunity for personal injury (secateurs + fingers = lots of blood), but was otherwise the most therapeutic of occupations. The rhythm of weaving – whether to make snoods, blankets, or ali baba baskets for theatrical props – busies the hands and …

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Meanwhile… Metal

As well as eschewing home economics in favour of woodwork, I also managed to wangle metalwork instead of the also-compulsory-for-girls needlework class. Perhaps if I’d hung around long enough to discover embroidery, patchwork, or tapestry, I might have stuck it out; but to the 12yo-tomboy-me, needlework meant “mending”, and I rebelled on principle. Besides, Metalwork …

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Meanwhile… Wood

As a 12-year-old tomboy, faced with the prospect of Home Economics classes, I rebelled. “I don’t want to do cooking,” I declared. “I want to do WOODWORK.” The school’s response was decisive: they said, “Don’t be stupid, you’re a GIRL,” and packed me off to flipping cookery lessons. I refused to take part, and my …

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Meanwhile… Enamel

I’ve had a love affair with enamel since I was a child – maybe just because it’s shiny!! Even as an adult, I still opt for the enamel version of anything: it shouts “quality” and “longevity” and, most importantly to me, “BEAUTY”. When we talk about enamel in the art sense, we’re talking about vitreous …

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