Linea Art Exhibition Leeds – Amanda Burton

linea olive moo

It really has been a long break away from my blog and for that I can only apologise. However, I’m still here and I’m still spending a lot of my spare time creating, in one form or another. Last week while I was talking to a client about social media and the importance of keeping up to date with their website and blog it made me realise that I should be taking some of my own advice and keeping up with my own stuff!
Since Christmas 2014 I’ve been working really hard, slowly and steadily producing work for my show which opens Friday June 12th at Inkwell.
Linea is the culmination of months of work where I have been exploring different aspects of myself, my family relationships and my relationship with the natural world around me.

The body of work includes lots of ink drawings but some of the pieces take on a new ‘style’ where my work has changed from the ornate to the minimal. This was a very planned move in an attempt to try challenge myself and my process. Unsurprisingly drawing hundreds of circles and repeating patterns takes patience but is also very self indulgent and a move to minimalism was an experiment to see if I could show some self control.
Here’s some of the new work I’ve produced while I’ve been away..

Blue Study I

 

Blue Abstract in three parts – acrylic on canvas 2015

Mother and Child – Acrylic on canvas – 2015

Being a multidisciplinary artist does have its limits. I find that I can only really focus on one things at a time. So for the last six months I’ve been concentrating on painting and drawing. There are 26 pieces of art work being exhibited in Linea, so I’m pretty proud of the fact I’ve been keeping my creative juices flowing while holding down a fairly demanding ‘day job’. I’ve even taken to writing down art days in my diary!

If you are local to Leeds I’d love you to come to my show. There will be jewellery, wine, installation work, drawings and paintings all in the beautiful space that is Inkwell.

linea poster jewellery web

The show preview evening is on June 12th from 6pm -8pm
At Inkwell,
31 Potternewton Lane,
Chapel Allerton
Leeds
LS7 3LW

My work will be up until 14th July.

New year, New beginnings and Inkwell

Hurrahh! we got through it didn’t we? 

I’m afraid I’m not a huge fan of Christmas, I find it quite disturbing how commercial and financially driven the whole thing has become. The hoards of shoppers, the stress, the expense, the pressure to have a good time, to get it right and to celebrate to such an excess. For many people I know it is a horrible time of year, dredging up memories and negative feelings such as inadequacy, loneliness and the immense pressure to be ‘happy’ seems completely unavoidable.

So coming out the other side into a brand New Year is always a relief, especially this year as I really have something to look forward to.

Shannon Post Card Back final

2014 will undoubtedly be an exciting year for me and I am looking forward to a new chance in life. In 2009 I joined an art project called Inkwell which has offered me opportunities both as an artist and a person which have turned my life around. Inkwell surrounded me with positivity and creativity and gave me a second chance for a bright future. It’s like a beacon on a dark day, helping you find your way by offering hope, support and kindness.

I have always kept aspects of my life private, in particular my struggle with my mental health. I suppose I didn’t want to be tarnished with this label, I wanted to be considered an artist first and foremost and to be taken seriously as one. It’s sad that in this day and age that mental health still has such a stigma attached to it, a stigma that makes you want to hide the very core of how you feel or the daily struggles you may face even though 1 in 4 of us will suffer at some point.

Inkwell Arts

 So, a new future begins tomorrow as tomorrow I start my new job as Inkwell’s Development Worker. As part of my new role I hope to help others flourish as artists and individuals on their journey to recovery. There is so much exciting stuff that happens at Inkwell and to be a part of it’s development will be both an honour and a pleasure.

With my new job offering a definite weekly routine I hope to succeed not only at my job but to continue with my personal creative outlet Wire Moon. Exciting plans are afoot for my jewellery and art in 2014. On my to do list this year: approach the Leeds Central Craft Gallery and other craft retailers to hopefully feature and sell my work and I’m planning a solo exhibition in the Autumn collaborating with media artists to create an animation as well as my own installation work.

However, most importantly, I want to dedicate time to practice and develop my art and jewellery skills and to continue to gain pleasure from expressing myself in this way. Creativity is my way of coping. It helps relieve stress and pressure, taking me to a place within me that is safe and fulfilling.

A year that is fulfilling? That sounds like a great year!

Ribbon Bunting

may_day_01

So, with my £50 garden budget I have opted for bunting. That’s not very inspired I hear you cry! – but it’s bunting with a twist!

To save time and money I have been busy making ribbon bunting. I ordered a bulk of 30 rolls of different coloured satin ribbons which cost me around £20 and 100 metres of some bias binding in bright colours.

Cheap round paper lantern shades were to be hung up and decorate inside the white gazebos. To add my own touch to them I splashed and stained them with vibrant inks which almost seemed iridescent when hung up in the light.

A tin of blue fence paint added a final burst of colour to the veranda.

The ribbon bunting is so easy to make, there is no hemming or cutting out flag shapes. To make the bunting seem more organic, the ribbons were cut to different lengths. I whizzed through metres and metres of it in no time!

Here it is up, billowing in the breeze. Thankyou to Mindy for taking this lovely photo for me. Visit Mindy’ site here.

May Day was an amazing day all round with performers and stalls, children’s circus and theatre acts all adding to the colourful festival feel of the event.

 

Inkwell Garden Plan

Oh, it’s so exciting! We have a final plan drafted for our community garden at Inkwell! It was very much through group discussion and in collaboration with Maxine Nelson the designer, everyone’s ideas were listened to and included.

So, we finally have something solid to work towards, and what a magnificent plan it is! Fact is, we don’t have all the money to make this plan happen all at once. Some of it involves major construction work, but if we take it in bite-size chunks we’ll get there in no time.

The plan includes the focal to the garden – an all important stage for music performances. Perfect for Mayday, or theatre groups, even doubling up as an outdoor watercolour workshop space for our service users and the community. Individual gardens run along the right side providing everybody space to enjoy some quiet time, dream up ideas, discuss their next masterpiece or chat amongst friends. A formal garden, wildflower garden, sensual garden and veggie plots to help sustain our small vegetarian cafe and a safe play area for children. An extension to the current patio area is one of the bigger jobs and disabled access down into the main garden area is an absolute must.

As far as getting creative, I am excited about the mosaic garden. This part will have a lot of input from the resident artists, where we can create something colourful and magnificent. Now do we go Gaudi style or something a little more muted and pebbly? It will be a really fun group project to do on a warm summers day (and in true Inkwell style, involve lots of  tea breaks!)

There’s going to be a lot of digging, planting and good old fashioned good spirit!