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Any fellow Mumsnetter artists?

(47 Posts)
ks Thu 12-Sep-02 14:27:50

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Alley22 Thu 12-Sep-02 14:43:01

Ive just gone back to College this week to re-discover my creative side, I left school 6 years ago and wanted to pursue either graphic design or art and design and never did.

Ive just started an Interior Art and Design Course and doubted my ability for a second at the beginning but am loving every minute of it and would love to change my career but its difficult as I only work three days a week to change what I do, I gained a secretarial diploma and NVQ in Admin when I left school and I have been a secretary ever since. I went back to work, as I had financial problems when my son was only 6 months old, and I admit Im a little bored of the job.

I would dearly love to do it as a career, so Im doing different things to see what I like the most. Good luck with everything! I bet its nice to do some art again after all this time isnt it?

ks Thu 12-Sep-02 19:53:31

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anais Thu 12-Sep-02 20:25:41

I recently studied A'level art and I am hoping to sell some designs soon. Don't really get much chance to paint any more...might do if I didn't spend so much time on here....

FrancesJ Thu 12-Sep-02 20:28:55

Well, I am (ish), but probably fairer to say that I was - before dd arrival (and boy oh boy did I get a shock to my little system, having happily believed that I'd be able to continue producing work whilst looking after a baby!) I work(ed) with textiles, the occasional picture commission, but mostly sold one-off painted/embroidered cushions and small pictures through craft galleries. I'm still doing the occasional commission, but recently have been trying hard to build up a new portfolio - yes, and with another baby on the way very shortly am soooo not sure of how I'll manage it.

Think a support/discussion thread is a wonderful idea, even if all you'll probably get from me is lots of moans about how I can't get the work done. I'm totally stuck on the idea of 'magical fruit' at the moment - like in the fairytales where the peasant girl breaks open a pomegranate and finds a silk dress inside. What sort of 3d stuff are you doing ks?

Your course sounds interesting, Alley. It must be lovely being back at college. I remember it as one of the happiest times of my life - all that worry-free experimentation

susanmt Thu 12-Sep-02 20:33:57

I am as well - sort of. More of an artisan than an artist really, I think.
I do celtic designs from scratch which is complicated but very satisfying. I also make cards - mainly wedding stationery/birth announcements/invitations etc and one off bespoke birthday cards.
Like the rest of you, though, I have very little time with 2 kids to do any of it at all!

star Thu 12-Sep-02 21:31:26

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sml Thu 12-Sep-02 23:58:31

An art thread, how exciting. I studied fine art for a couple of years, and did quite a lot of work after that, but guess what, the last paintings I did were just before my second baby was born, and before I went back to work!

I'm currently trying to de-rust my artistic experience to do some illustrations for some children's stories that I've written and hope to get published, but it's going quite slowly at the moment.

ks Fri 13-Sep-02 08:21:19

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Philippat Fri 13-Sep-02 09:17:15

I work in an art gallery, does that count?

Actually, DH is the artist in our family and I know he's found it tough looking after dd and working from home. Poor love has just been thrown out of his studio too because dd needs her own room. Don't know how he manages to continue being creative but the cheques are still coming in!

Alley22 Fri 13-Sep-02 11:09:44

Hi, the course is very interesting, Id love to change my career to something art-based. But Im not sure what yet, I dont know whether to go for Interior Design or Graphic Design. Ive just made my little boys birthday invitations on the computer, all personalised with a lovely picture of Noddy in the background, and I was very proud of them, they looked brilliant.

I went for the Interior Design course because apart from being v interested and because I am decorating at home and thought it might give me some ideas - part of the course is colour schemes, designing and dressing a window etc. its part time on a Tue night. I find Art a lovely escape - bit like reading a book.. and my head was swimming with ideas when I came out, so much so that I was up re-arranging my living room until 2am! I hope it doesnt do this to me every week!

And I thought going to College perhaps Ill make some new friends, perhaps find a man!!! as I spend all week in with my little fella that I dont seem to meet anyone.

I have just bought a christening present off a friend of a friend sort of thing, my friend bought one for my little boy for his birthday and I fell in love with it. Its a clay plaque about 2' square with a cute face and his name and DOB, decorated with a little glitter and rope. When I spoke with her on the phone she says it takes her a couple of days as she hasnt a kiln, she does it in her airing cupboard. How fantastic! and believe me they are beautiful, and Im buying one for £7 and am very happy with that. I would love to do something like that part time, might try and sneak a look when I pick it up!

Its nice to have ideas flowing and ideas and inspirations again, it doesnt seem too long ago I was questioning whether I could function again at work! I felt a bit like a vegetable after having him and spending day in day out with him!

sml Fri 13-Sep-02 22:24:53

ks,
ha ha, I remember thinking that sort of thing too! I also felt pretty drained, but about 18 months ago I started getting creative twitches again. Writing poetry is excellent, as poems are short and don't need any resourses such as paints etc. But I still hope to go back to painting one day.
I think you're right about drawing every day. I always found it slightly artificial to maintain a sketch pad in the art school style, but ANY drawing and painting will do for me. I did some of my best serious work while I was painting and selling bits and pieces like flower pots and glass on a regular basis.

bettys Fri 13-Sep-02 22:57:36

This thread is either going to make me feel guilty or get me painting again. I'm a graphic designer, although I studied Fine Art, and when I went part-time at work the theory was that I would get back into painting/drawing/ doing proper pictures. Hum, hasn't quite worked out that way .

ks Fri 13-Sep-02 23:37:56

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bettys Sat 14-Sep-02 08:51:54

ks - I love Posy Simmonds too - am v v impressed you can do cartoons as I'm v crap at them. Mind you at the moment I think most things I put on paper are v crap. Not enough practice, I suppose.

ks Sat 14-Sep-02 08:59:27

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sml Sat 14-Sep-02 16:18:36

ks, am v impressed that you can do cartoons. I can draw them, but can't think of any funny ideas! I only once got published in a short lived newspaper called the Cartoonist - remember it, anyone?


I got really disillusioned with the whole British art scene. It seems to be controlled by several cliques, and I will be accused of some form of -ism if I identify them, but they are VERY cliquey. I'll only go back into art when I can afford to market my own work, how I want and where I want.

When seeking career guidance, I was once introduced to a tutor at one of Britain's leading art schools by a mutual acquaintance. After I asked him about my career plans, he appeared to be reflective and then commented how unusual and bizarre it was to meet an artist who actually intended to sell their work! Earth calling the British art establishment??

My own experience of art school was pretty mixed. I was fortunate enough to attend North Oxon School of Art when it was in a transitional phase under George, Trevor et al. IMO, their foundation course (which has since been changed beyond recognition, I've been told) was one of the best that has been offered in Britain in recent years. My subsequent year at a well known art school was a big disappointment, as it seemed completely to lack focus, any sort of dynamic teaching or inspiration.

The wider art world didn't really provide any more reassurance, as anyone with half an eye can see huge techical flaws in much of the stuff that's sold in London galleries, and as for conceptual art, well, put any group of reasonably intelligent people together, they could churn out witty, sensitive, meaningful stuff like that til the cows come home. I know I could.

Willow2 Sat 14-Sep-02 17:33:49

Can you guys do caricatures? Just a thought, but might be a fun thing to do for your kids' parties (if they're old enough to appreciate the idea). Who knows - you could end up being hired at great cost. I will only take 20%

ks Sat 14-Sep-02 17:41:35

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Willow2 Sat 14-Sep-02 17:56:30

Do it as a xmas card for them.

WideWebWitch Sat 14-Sep-02 18:01:10

There seem to be quite a few artists here, good luck all, hope you manage to motivate each other...

I'm not an artist but my bed is worse than Tracy Emin's, should I enter it for a prize?

ks Sat 14-Sep-02 18:03:35

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susanmt Sat 14-Sep-02 19:34:02

I am most impressed with people who can do cartoons (and perspective lol). Is it actually fun doing cartoons? I get a great sense of acheivment when I have finished some big celtic knot thing I though up myself, but the actual technichalities of drawing it is sometimes pretty tedious! Ah well, they sell (sometimes) so I shouldn't complain.

ks Sat 14-Sep-02 19:46:59

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FrancesJ Sat 14-Sep-02 20:11:06

Gosh, wish I could draw the human form well enough to do any sort of caricature (always my weakest point, the human body - well, that and perspective, which is probably why I ended up hiding behind multi-media).

Interesting points about the 'cliquiness' of the 'fine art' world. I've personally never really subscribed to the school that says art necessarily has to be 'fine art' - find categorising things like that terribly difficult anyway - I mean, how can one, really, distinguish between really original stimulating so-called craft-work, and something labelled 'fine art' merely because it's self-justified itself as 'conceptual' or is a large oil painting (not that I hate all large oil paintings, it's just that you see so many truly horrid ones pretending to be good! Don't personally hate all conceptual stuff though - love things like Louise Bourgeois and her installations - but then, is she truly conceptual - I'm floundering with the labels again.

Anyway, I was well and truly told that fine art wouldn't suit me because my thoughts about my own work weren't 'deep' enough so maybe it's a chip on my shoulder? I honestly don't think so, though - I always wanted to make small, beautiful things but this just wasn't cricket according to my old fine art tutor. Too much in love with artists like Chagall, and Kandinsky, me.

Anyway, I'm v impressed with cartoons and celtic knots, both of which seem terribly complicated and must call for incredible precision, not to mention draughtmanship. Oh, and defn think (on the clique thing again) that it's not what you do, but who you know. Sad fact, but true. On the positive side, I think that attitudes can get less like that the further you are from London - I seem to often see truly stunning work from local artists in less London-centric galleries - lots of it underpriced too, which is a shame, but good if you're buying, I suppose. I shouldn't be posting this, really. I should be doing some work. Oops

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