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On Wednesday 5th June, 6 artists started a week’s residency at the Dove. They are Fiona Hingston, Kathryn John, Sue Palmer, Shannon Leah Watson, Sophie Willoughby, and host/instigator Bronwen Bradshaw. The idea is to spend time together to create site specific work for the Dove meadow, to be show during SAW ’19 this Autumn. Collaboration is our aim, and that extends to making lunch – here we all are.

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And here Sue is displaying the ‘theme’ for Wednesday morning. Though we are supposed to Start by not Knowing, so had to be reminded by a biscuit tin that it was indeed Wednesday morning.

 

After quite a bit of talking and then walking round the site, we made a start and got to work. Including the bumble bees: Bombus hypnorum, who have a nest in the Door House verandah, and provide a companionable background buzz to our activities there.

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The Door House is our meeting place, library and cafe. It’s been a lovely comfortable space for inspiring and  revealing discussions, including help, ideas and support for each other.

Day Two: a beautiful day which Sue and Kathryn kicked off with some meditative activities, followed by most people spending time outside.

 

Day Three felt like we were starting to get into our stride. We were mostly in the studio as the weather wasn’t so good. Shannon came back from a day’s absence during which she had taught herself to knit dishcloths. She has a plan involving dishcloths – more on this later.

 

And day four, today, is a home day of rest and reflection. Everyone comes back tomorrow for the final two days. This project has been so enjoyable and challenging that I can’t wait. Watch this space.

 

We are offering two courses at the Dove in August this year.

August 7th & 8th Mokuhanga This course is suitable for beginners in the technique, and also for those who want to refresh their skills. Robin Frood is a very experienced tutor, and, in addition to this course, she will be offering one to one Mokuhanga tutorials by appointment.

August 21st & 22nd  Letterpress  Following on the exciting first Letterpress course this month, Robin will be back with another one; you will learn basic compositing skills, and also be encouraged to experiment freely with the lovely wooden type we have here.

Fees: £120 for each course, which will include basic materials.

Times of course: 10 am – 4 pm

Please email bronbradshaw@yahoo.com if you are interested.

Playing with letters, or as tutor Robin Frood said, ‘Giving new life to old letters’. This was the first letterpress course at the Dove, using some of the treasure trove of carved Victorian type donated to the Dove Centre in the early seventies, which was found later in a damp shed and rescued by Bron Bradshaw. Also using metal type and an Adana press donated by Fiona Hingston, which had come her way when her neighbour, printer Jock Ferguson, of the Millfield Press,  died some 3 years ago. Robin is right: there is something deeply transformative about using all these letters for new words. And I would add, also something humbling about dipping our toes into a tradition that changed our civilisation.

Further workshops will be planned for next year, and we are on the lookout for a bigger proofing press or even a full size press such as an Arab….

Screenprinting with Faye Suzannah, April 13th & 14th

Faye's wall

Faye Suzannah screenprints Amazing Space II 2017

Faye Suzannah made some wonderful work for Amazing Space II a couple of years ago, and she has been invited back to teach a Basic Screenprinting course this April. As she says: ‘Join me to explore a variety of exciting mark and shape making techniques, through the graphic medium of the silkscreen. Using water-based inks, autographic AND photographic stencils, we will cover the basic processes used to make original artworks, or we will make editions of identical prints.’

Letterpress with Robin Frood, May 4th & 5th

Paper Heaven detail

Victorian letters with collograph print (detail)

This is the first time Letterpress has been offered as a course at Dove Studios. We have an extraordinary collection of Victorian hand carved alphabets and extensive sets of metal type; an Adana press and the use of an etching press as a proofing press. And now at last we are making a start, to incorporate letterpress into the printmaking techniques that are already on offer here, such as etching, collograph and woodcut. An adventure, in fact, with tutor Robin Frood, who says: ‘This workshop is particularly suited to artists who want to work with text, or writers/poets wishing to work with image. In the two day workshop, we will cover the basics of traditional letterpress, as well as exploring its creative possibilities. There will be a chance to combine letterpress with woodblock printing, to use the book format, or simply to create text-based artworks.’

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Course participants in the Print Room with Robin Frood

For further details of these courses and to enrol, please contact Bron Bradshaw at bronbradshaw@yahoo.com.

This course took place in mid February, and was especially designed for students who had attended Robin Frood’s Mokuhanga course in August; to build on what they had learnt then, and in particular, to do lots of printing in order to start to master the technique. As you can see in the pictures above – lots of printing  did indeed happen, and participants agreed helped them move on a stage. There will be another Mokuhanga for beginners (or repeaters) in August: details of that will be posted soon.

Nature into Print (Aluminium etching)

July 3 – 5,    10 am to 4 pm

Tutor : Jenny Graham

Fee: £180

Using aspects of the landscape surrounding Dove Studios, students will explore different etching techniques. Discussions about creative interpretation of the landscape will be combined with practical exercises on how to create line, tone and texture using a variety of etching processes.

Microsoft Word - nature into print copy.docx

Aluminium Etching by Jenny Graham

 

Making Prints for Books (Various printmaking techniques and simple book binding)

July 10 – 12,   10 – 4pm

Tutor: Bronwen Bradshaw with Pennie Elfick

Fee: £180

The aim of this course is for participants to make a handmade book containing printed images and maybe words too. Drypoint, collagraph, relief printing and monoprint can all be used, with plenty of wide ranging tuition on hand to help with the different techniques, including basic bookbinding.

Lauzerte book for FB

Fold book of etchings by Bronwen Bradshaw

 

The Handwritten Word (Free-wheeling calligraphy)

July 14/15,   10 – 4pm

Tutor: Kathryn John

Fee: £120

At a time when our lives and lists exist in a digital world, we will spend a weekend together getting back in touch with the flow of the handwritten word, with full permission to get it wrong and to make a mess, using a variety of writing materials – including vegetable and oak gall ink – and experimental processes.

KJ for blog 2

Writing by Kathryn John (Beetroot ink)

 

Mokuhanga Stage 1 (Japanese water-based woodblock printing)

August 8,9,10,   10 – 4pm

Tutor: Robin Frood

Fee: £180

This 3-day workshop will explore the Japanese art of woodblock printing, known as Mokuhanga, with participants producing a final series of prints on a theme of their choice. This water-based technique is very ecological in its use of materials, and is currently undergoing a great revival in contemporary art worldwide.

Robin image

Mokuhanga print by Robin Frood

 

All courses include basic studio materials in the fee, but paper and plates (aluminium, wood blocks, acrylic sheets etc) are extra at cost.

If you would like to enrol on a course, please download the application form here:

Application Form for courses

and email to bronbradshaw@yahoo.com, or send to Bronwen Bradshaw, Dove Studios, Butleigh, Glastonbury, Somerset BA6 8TL, together with a deposit that will secure your place on the course. All deposits are non- refundable, unless we can fill your place from a waiting list. The full fee will be due by June 1st 2018; you will receive a reminder about this.