Nicola Davidson Reed (Focus Photography exhibition)
Nicola is a Photographer because she has a drive to capture raw moments in time a compulsion a need, a passion.
Nicola feels as fulfilled taking a snap shot as she does photographing a structured set with a model, although it is the spontaneity of the street which is so exciting. When working with photography, Nicola is reminded that she exists, conversely she also disappears into a monochrome world with occasional visits to colour.
Nicola's work finds her, through so many avenues and alleyways. Inspiration is the biggest driving force but so are dreams, time, emotions, patterns, ideologies, expectations, roles in society, affluence and the absence of it, textures, family, towns, cities, the countryside, photographers of the past but above all love and all that comes with it (including the not so cool emotions!)
Nicola's photography work is her own take on the world its strengths and fragility.
Nicola Davison Reed | Photographer/ Mother | Nottingham
Karoline Rerrie (Portfolio)
Karoline is an illustrator who creates intricate and delicate images by hand using drawing, painting, silk screen printing and Japanese Gocco printing.
Karoline does not see her work as art but sees her work as a craft and strives to maintain a handmade element which is what initially led her to explore printmaking. She now designs, makes and sells a range of multiples including greetings cards, small books and prints.
Collaboration and participation are also important elements of her creative practice; and are key elements of craft as a whole. She shares her skills and ideas with others through a variety of projects. These include co-ordinating group exhibitions and the publication of limited edition postcard books, fanzines and colouring books featuring her artwork and that of other women illustrators. Karoline also has considerable experience of facilitating workshops in a variety of settings such as schools, galleries and libraries.
She works with a wide range of ages and abilities including children, young people, adults and people with learning disabilities.
Roman Sakovich (Half | FOUR - Barnaby Festival 2013)
London based photographer Roman Sakovich has received publicity both sides of the Atlantic for Half. A photographic project highlighting the drastic physical effects of substance abuse and the tale of two half in a person’s personality.
“These photos are not a merge of two images into one” Sakovich explains, using top make up artists and stylists, Roman has kept his project in camera rather than post production, with chilling results!
Roman Sakovich born in 1986, studied photography at the Arts University College at Bournemouth (former Arts Institute at Bournemouth) graduating in 2011 and residing in London at the moment.
The majority of his work investigates the development of an evolving post-Soviet society and the attendant cultural changes in a progressive world.
Capturing it in the way he sees it, shaped by his multi-cultural upbringing.
Frances Seba Smith (Cheshire Open Studios)
Frances Seba Smith is an artist, and printmaker trained in Canada and the UK. Exhibits worldwide and in Manchester at the Wendy Levy Gallery. Her recent work consists of drawings, paintings and prints of Cheshire and Anglesey.
Matthew Spencer (Portfolio)
Matthew's focus is our landscape, our everyday environments, how our world is represented to us through visual information and how this influences our comprehension of the world around us, including the processes and materials that we form our landscape with and in turn how this forms our sense of identity.
He sources his materials from large DIY stores, to ensure that they have a soulless feel to them, cheap mass produced things are bought and sold in bulk, going on to form our everyday environment. Matthew takes them before they go on to that stage and transforms the raw material into something that questions soulless bulk mass producing.
Old abandoned buildings, vehicles, sometimes vandalised or burnt out amidst woods and forests are some of the subject matter that occupies Matthew's disenchanted landscapes. They originate from images of man-made structures and trees found online. Visual information in the online environment forms a large amount of how we now come to experience things. Matthew is interested in how this visual information can be altered and manipulated to form alternate interpretations of our world.
To explore this, he projects multiple numbers of these images (for a single painting) onto MDF, these images become the foundation for the drawing process, partly an accurate representation and partly from imagination. Premixed shades of matt monochrome household paint contribute to the raw, abandoned, gritty aesthetic of the landscapes which stems from his cynicism of utopian notions surrounding our relationship with the natural world.
Matthew cuts them with an electric jigsaw and uses fretsaw blades between his fingers to produce the fine detailing in place of using a CNC laser or router machine for the outlines of the trees and braches.
Matthew's current paintings, displayed here, have stemmed directly from earlier work which involved the same painstaking hand cutting of very detailed tree branches in MDF, often taking hundreds of hours but without the use of any paint. This element of his work was/is a response to the effect mechanical production is having on our landscape and the alienation to the natural world it produces when our everyday environments loose resemblance to nature and become based on themselves.
Ben Thompson (Portfolio)
Steve Thornhill (Focus photography exhibition)
Steve Thornhill - Lives locally in Macclesfield with fellow artist Carol Hutchinson. Self-taught and with no formal training he has developed his own style of photography as he sets his own rules and follows none.
A keen film photographer in his 20's he fell out of favor with the expense and slow processes of the time. Fast forward 25 years and he re-discovered his love of the still image and fully embraced the digital age. Buying a pocket point and shoot in early 2008 he was amazed by the shots it could produce.
Upgrades followed and kit now includes Sony A550 and canon 7D cameras.
Hooked again and with the added advantage of digital, instant results and the ability to manipulate images how he wants to see them he found himself lost in a world of 'digital artistry' sometimes spending hours manipulating the same image.
No subject is taboo and he likes to explore a darker side.
Steve Thornhill | Self Taught Photographer | Macclesfield
Full Leather Jacket
"Full Leather Jacket, features Steve's own vintage biker jacket from his old motorcycle days and takes its name from a spin on Kubrick's cult classic, Full Metal Jacket.
Steve said that the exhibition explores our urban landscape with models from all walks of life, though all of them are connected by a common bond: the same leather jacket.
"I personally have a lot of empathy with the jacket having owned it for the last 20 years.
"I kept seeing my jacket (no longer worn) hung in the garage with lots of happy bike-riding memories attached to it, so I'd never throw it away. I'd been thinking about using it in a shoot for some time, but never knew what," he added.
The idea for 'Full Leather Jacket' was inspired by seeing a fellow photographer stopping random people in the street, asking each one of them to pose in the same way.
"This gave me the idea to shoot different people but to link them together in some way and 'Full Leather Jacket' was born."
You can expect to find muted tones and a very gritty style consistent throughout the exhibition. No subject is considered taboo.
Steve likes to explore the darker side to life's situations in still form, often leaving the narrative of the images open to interpretation, encouraging thinking and debate from his audiences.
Several models helped bring the concept together with some images purposefully reflecting the passions and lifestyles of the models themselves"
Wesley Young | Freelance Copywriter | 2013
Adam Quinn (Macarbe Macclesfield & Portfolio)
Adam's layered and instinctive paintings are a development of his ideas, processed through painting, printmaking and sculpture. Often a piece of Adam's work is an expression of all three processes.
The way in which Adam approaches a piece of artwork is very instinctive with an inventive use of colour, line and composition, often using found objects as a starting point.
Adams work is currently inspired by Klee, Basquiat and Gary Hume and his Artist studio in Congleton is truly worth a visit to understand the workings of an artist!
Sean Roh (The Collection)
People can read the point of view between the manipulation Sean would like to tell and reality after watching the photos without the manipulation which seems to be manipulated. There are the events people don't feel them at all though they always happen around the world, on the contrary, there are the ones they think they happen due to the several collected evidences though they don't happen actually. Those two phenomena look like very opposite, but they look like very similar to people. And, whatever the truth about those is, it is difficult for people to feel the event because it is so unrealistic or they behaviour more than necessary because they know that based on intelligence. Anyhow, those two have something in common which is felt like unrealistic though they are real.
Such things are felt like trivial though they are really great like the air that performs the thankful works enabling us to breathe and live and on the contrary, they are felt like so great if they learn it from the knowledge though it is very natural if following the origin of life on earth.
Such thing is shown to the people who are experiencing the global warming, however, it influences on the ecosystem of earth as a lot of media already insisted on the phenomena of global warming and its risk and it is the scaring phenomenon that risks the existence of human seriously as well as other animals on earth if it lasts for long time. On the contrary, there are people who say that it is not big problem realistically because the time of measuring data so far is terribly shorter than the whole life of the earth, but how do the ordinary people who accept such phenomenon recognize that assuming those are all true? If they are not some of scientists or the people who are interested in ecosystem of nature, it is difficult for people to feel it directly because this phenomenon is so abstract and unrealistic and also hard to find the people who are really concerned and afraid of it because there are many more realistic and serious prior tasks to be resolved. All the more the people are concerned about it extremely are rather called as paranoid often. Of course, it is true that the waste is separated and collected owing to the frequent promotion and national policy or people's interest are raised a lot, but it is difficult for them to the basis of the insistence saying that people's concern over the global warming is not abstract.
Like this, though the certain issues are sometimes so abstract that people cannot feel it as they are, it is hard to disregard them because they are so realistic. This project was begun to show the gap between such reality and recognition, however, it shows the reality we are facing and another reality which is difficult to forecast or accept it as it is because it is so abstract by showing the unrealistic shape which there is nothing to be melted down in reality but the unhardened paint flows down on the surface, all the more which the paint gets hardened in reality.
Stuart Royse (The Collection)
Themes such as frost, sand, ice, woodland, rock structures and the effects of water in the natural environment have always held great interest for Stuart. He endeavours to keep the image very simple, concentrating on formal aesthetics such as form, colour, tone and texture. The work is very specific, showing close detail and often the images are made in a series, in order to represent a more complete experience of a place - which perhaps could not be conveyed in a single image. Some of the work can be subject to chance or opportunity, especially the frost and sand work and it is exciting to witness something that is so transient and will cease to exist even minutes later.
With 'Flooded Woodland' Stuart explored an area of 'wet' woodland located on the edge of a reservoir in the Peak District, and documented the seasonal changes over the period of one year. This series shows the visual transformation throughout the seasons of just one small area and highlights just how different the same place can appear when viewed over such an extended period of time.
In order to produce this project he had to draw upon not only the traditional skills and values as a photographer, but also embrace new digital technology. To achieve such a wide view he took 14 separate frames horizontally. Even specialist software could not cope with the fine intricacies of the twigs and leaves, so he had to 'manually stitch' them together to form one complete image.
More detail of Stuart's projects and professional reviews of his work can be found at: www.stuartroysephotography.co.uk/personal.htm
Will Sharpe (The Collection)
"… In the ancient caves of Lascaux, France, for example, the reason for mankind to make pictures was to ''bannen', to fix it, to bring out, to capture the demons, because when you name them, they'll lose their power. That was the first reason people started to paint…. I think that is a lot like film, because cinema is like a modern cave, people come together - that's why the darkness is so important - and you have a screen like a wall in caves. And the aim is to put a spell on demons. To exorcise, if you want. But we have other demons today, because our civilization is different from old cultures."
Will has been studying photography at Manchester School of art for three years and during his progression he has developed a great fascination for the Grotesque and the constructed image. His pictures illustrate how the grotesque and the monstrous body are disclosed in physical representations of the invisible and the unseen. Filmmaker Fred Kelemen states the art of image-making is to "capture the demons", however in Will's work, his images evoke the idea of unleashing the inner demon, constructing grotesque scenes that illustrate worlds of the unconscious mind, the spiritual world or the internal body.
Subjects like anatomy, the spiritual world, the supernatural, unconscious, divinity and demons are inclusive to the idea of being invisible or unseen, and are all associated with the grotesque.
As a result of creating tableaus for photographing, Will's work is notably multidisciplinary and he considers himself not only to be a photographer but also a set designer, sculptor and draughtsman; working in the disciplines of photography, 3D and drawing.
Julia Snowdin (Abstracted) & (Barnaby Festival)
According to the eating disorder charity Beat (2009), there are 1.6 million people suffering from an eating disorder in the UK, and the majority are adolescents, adolescents who spend more time watching television than any other activity, apart from sleeping. (Cash, 2002, p.91)
• The average model is 20% underweight (Byron, 2008)
• If a person is 15% under-weight they are considered Anorexic (Morgan, 2000, p.4)
Has the media created a thin, unhealthy ideal? Are adolescents influenced by commercial media and advertising strategies? Do celebrity trends glamorise thinness, making it seem virtuous and desirable? How are we shaped by the media?
A Beauty Disaster responds to these questions. A hanging installation made from 160 spirals represents 0.01% of the people suffering from an eating disorder in the UK. Each downward spiral comments on the emotional and psychological impact of having an eating disorder, and the winding layers of the spirals allude to the secrecy, vulnerability, and fragility of the condition. Out of 1.6 million suffers in the UK, only 8% decide to share their problem, 92% (1.5 million) of sufferers choose to keep it a secret. 92% of the spirals in this installation stand in the dark, hiding their secret in shame. (Beat, 2006)
Lucy Sparrow (Pop, print & stitch)
'Lucy Sparrow is a roaming artist (she lives in a caravan). She works mainly with felt and wool to create over-sized soft versions of existing objects which, when placed in different surroundings, convey an altogether fantastical approach to life. This playful affection she has with her work relieves the conditions that are often put upon artists to produce something deeply profound and monumental.
Lucy's 'Feltism' plays on the distorted scale of childhood and the dreamlike quality to textures. Whilst taking a walk through the surreal fabric landscape where giant sardines lollop next to an innocently blunt pen-knife, the land of the soft conquers the harshness of a sharp edged reality.
The subject matter that she uses with her work is often one that provokes nostalgia and a wish for all things to remain unharmful; a kind of felt Utopia if you like.'
Ritty Tascum (Pop, print & Stitch!)
Oksana Veber (Abstracted)
There are different sources on which we feed in our quest for peace, equivalence and harmony. Artist Oksana Veber founds harmony in the beauty of the landscape, still life, woman's face, which, transferred into the harmony of colors and forms continue they life in art work. Guiding her through the need for equivalence and exploring themes like peace, harmony and emptiness, the artist - influenced by the ideas of Taoism and Eastern philosophy - transferred her longing and revelation on the canvas. From her first works to the present days she developed her work relayed on that same philosophical thought, developing her work by changing it through different styles and exploring the medium of painting and yet modulating it according to her spirit and inspiration she founds inside herself. Female portrait is main motive in most of the paintings. It is usually shown as sensual figure, with full lips, almond eyes, and slightly tipped head, that leads us in world of dreams and fairytales. Two paths lead us when we follow this mystic. One has roots are in Jugendstil (Art Noveau) and further in art of Japan that was inspiration to Jugendstil, and in Russian fairytales that we can find in work of Chagall, and the other in tendency toward harmony in choosing colors that evoke Kandinsky and Marc. Artist settles her characters on the background defined with colorist effects, that are, unlike in her early works when they were much expressive and with vivid tones, tranquil and given in pastel tones of blue-gray combination and beige in gradations. Colors, painted in wide brush-strokes combine anintrusivly and melt one in another, making abstraction that in some works could be defined piece in manner of abstract expressionism. On that background painter successfully adds figuration with tiny, playful black lines that give sparkle to meditative tranquility of background and open space to a new story. Much more than in early works now appear double portraits or even more characters on one painting. To former motifs of landscapes and dreamy female figures author adds new inspiration - motif of birds, fishes, music instruments and pottery that she brings in correlation with main subject. She paints them like the main motif with the same, almost calligraphic, brush-strokes and intensifies some silhouettes fulfilling them with color. In adding those motives, although they bring their own poetry, we can feel transfer to greater opening to the world. Now characters are not so alone, closed up in their dreams and wrapped in shroud of mystic, on contrary, they have opened path forward observer through subtle communication with objects it is surrounded with.
Mike Von Nixon (Macarbe Macclesfield)
Mike likes to explore ways in which to use objects in new ways and to find avenues with which to transform everyday familiar objects into something entirely new and unique. He finds his inspiration from a variety of sources , such as steampunk, humourous things, classic cars and his own overactive imagination!
Mike works in range of media, does not limit himself when it comes to what he uses to make art, always trying to incorporate a high level of experimentation and a willingness to try new things.
He paints, sculpts, builds and draws, but most of all he is guided by his imagination and desire to create something that provokes a reaction, wherever that be laughter, reflection or any number of emotions.
John Walter (Focus photography exhibition)
Keith Wright (Focus Photography exhibition)
Keith's photography is inspired by industrial landscapes and the built environment.
Drawn to marks and patterns that have been created naturally or by mistake. Even the most mundane road, wall or pavement can contain beautiful colours, patterns and design. In situ these can be missed or ignored as they form only a small part of the visual information our eyes and mind experience. Keith wants to share the hidden natural beauty created by use, the elements and passage of time.
After spending some time seeking out and mentally recording these marks, he realised that some of the most fascinating sights were of a temporary nature and when he visited again they had been changed destroyed. As a result Keith began to capture these markings photographically and began to create a series of work based on these images.
He closely crops and carefully arranges these images into grids removing all context, scale and location. The resulting artwork is often visually abstract but with the contrast and accessibility of a geometric composition
Keith Wright | Photographer | Nottingham
Marc Yeats (Sound As I See It | FOUR - Barnaby Festival 2013)
Marc has a special interest in communicative, challenging work that pushes boundaries, including immersive installations combining music, visual art, dance, word and digital media.
For sound as I see it Marc will be showing works that employ methods of painting that investigate chance and random effects. The works have been created through glazes and tonal densities, so as to explore the relationship between time, event (subject material), and space. The installation will also have sound loops and Marc states that in music, all elements are set in time and against a background of silence or non-event. The paintings therefore visualise the sound loops that Marc has composed.
Marc is currently Chair of DIVAcontemporary in Dorset. DIVAcontemporary is an artist-led organisation committed to creativity and experimentation in the arts and practice-based research, working internationally, nationally and locally.
With a core development team of practicing artists, producers and curators, DIVAcontemporary has extensive expertise across the creative and cultural industries.
Marc is also a founding partner of SATSYMPH, (composer and visual artist Marc Yeats; poet, writer and context-aware media director and producer, Ralph Hoyte; and coder, composer and audio engineer Phill Phelps). SATSYMPH compose 'context aware soundworlds' - located high quality contemporary soundscape experiences outside in the real world triggered by GPS (satellite) signals.
Marc is composer-in association with Thumb Ensemble (Birmingham) and Manchester Pride.
His visual art has been exhibited and collected across the UK and abroad. He has paintings in the collections of several public galleries in Scotland including An Tobar, An Tuireann and The Pier Art Centre, Orkney. The Swiss art dealers Stampfli and Turci represent his work.