Shed Stories #8 ‘Heaven in a Wildflower’

Nature is holding our hand through these days. I feel as though this is the first newsletter I have written where the rain is not my main memory of the previous month!

May opened with bluebells and wild garlic and is closing with a profusion of comfrey, campion and hedge parsley. The latter abounds everywhere in frothing profusion, and when the sun shines through it it seems to create a hazy glance of an imagined heaven.

This month I have been busily making work for the forthcoming exhibition at Tinsmiths in Ledbury, Herefordshire (our local town) which opens on June 21st. Although it was to have been loosely based around the themes of poetry and ballads (because it coincides with the Ledbury Poetry Festival), my muse has taken me off in many different directions and so it does not really have a specific theme. I feel as if I am searching for the good and positives in life and our human existence. Tough at times like these.

Not only have I been making glass for this exhibition but I have also been working closely with Martin Clarke of Tilley’s printing, Ledbury, to create a couple of letterpress posters. Both posters are designed by me, with lino cuts made by me, and letterpress set by myself with help from Martin.

Martin has been working at Tilleys for sixty years since he was apprenticed there when he left school. As you can imagine he has an incredible wealth of knowledge and is also great fun to work with. It has been a breath of fresh air going in to Ledbury to work and spending the day in a different work space. The prints will be released on the day that the exhibition opens and I hope that people will love them. I am delighted with the results and it felt important for me to make something different in this present climate of gloom and fear.

I am also excited about progress for Wild Folk. We finally have a designer and I have done all the illuminations for 6 chapters. Just the final chapter to do which I need to finish by early July. I have also found a way to photograph the images using natural light. Thanks so much to stained glass expert, Simon Howard, for the tip!