After major knee injury my resolve ran thin after so many repetitive exercises. I needed new impetuous and accountability to push on with vigour.
As steps on my path back to skiing I created exercise boards to inspire me and illustrate the exercises that will help strengthen. I’m studying illustration at present with Bill Wright, from Central St Martins.
Now I really have no excuse… I’ll schedule it in my calendar to try to get to it regularly. Maybe stating my intention here to do this 5 times a week will spur me on…
I’m delighted that the Sheffield Star newspaper have covered my exhibition on page 12 of today’s paper.
Here’s the press release issued about the project:
Designed to Inspire – Art Exhibition
Kimberley Kay, working as ‘Inspire by Kim’, has developed a range of ‘Everyday Inspiration’ products – exhibited at The Workstation Gallery in Sheffield this week.
Kim explained, “I create to inspire and uplift people, with bright designs and delightful fabrics that add colour to everyday routines.”
“At Sheffield College I’ve explored creative ways to communicate, studied textile techniques and developed pattern designs. I honed manufacturing skills to make a delightful product range of bags, clothing and accessories. The products come together in a catalogue to engage retailers and customers.
“I share my work in progress through my website, Facebook page and Instagram feed, which provides feedback for the development of my products. The digital world means its possible to reach out to people globally, if people can feel a little happier from seeing my work that’s a wonderful thing.”
“My goal is to have a successful art business of commissioned work, illustration, products, and inspiring, creative workshops for local people. I’m determined so it’s a matter of keeping going forwards, step by step.”
Kim has been studying with Design & Visual Arts Department at the Hillsborough Campus of Sheffield College. The end of year exhibition covers Art & Design, Games Design, Graphic Design and Photography and takes place at The Workstation, until 8pm on Thursday 15th June.
Kim’s cheesegrater Sheffield souvenir idea received acclaim from Sheffield Design Week in November 2016.
Here are latest highlights from my Instagram feed. I like Instagram as I can send my work across the planet and people near and far can see it, maybe in far flung places that I can only imagine. From my life to theirs in an instant. Shared interests found.
It’s been a busy time with my Foundation Studies final exhibition. My products exhibited for the first time after months of hard, but enjoyable, work at The Workstation in Sheffield City Centre.
I remembered my intricate paintings of the white dog Sam, completed a year ago, on his journey as he hoped to fly. I shared a previously private video of the ebook. You can watch this, 55 seconds movie, here.
Work In Progress – A rare sunny no breeze day meant I was able to work outside on my next intricate paper cut picture. This imagined scene is inspired by the Brighton’s seafront, with a tearoom, vintage style dress and ladies wear shop, and next a beach goods shop. This is the latest in my series of paper-cut pictures.
For a family birthday for an avid French Alps skier I turned a microfibre glasses cloth into zipper bag on my wonderful Bernina sewing machine.
I hand painted, printed and sewed a shower cap as my final exhibition product. Wipeable lining from my friend’s Sheffield haberdashery emporium Direct. Loved the pink satin binding – a beautiful find from Berwick Street, London.
I made a video of my recent work to promote my exhibition.
And finally my dress design fabulously modelled by Lucy.
My largest artwork in 2016 is a commissioned artwork which I’ll be revealing here very soon.
I’m astounded that my blog has been viewed in 82 countries in 2016, I love the idea of my art reaching out across the globe. Thanks to everyone who followed, Liked, commented, bought and visited my art in 2016. I appreciate everything.
I dedicate this post to my dear Grandad who left us this year.
The next post will be looking forwards to 2017. Follow my blog to see that post when it is live.
The feedback was very positive for the tips and learnings I posted around my first solo art exhibition. So here are tips from learnings at my first group exhibition.
Tips from group exhibition learnings
Be clear on what you want your display to look like. Mock up a photo or draw it so you can show and explain this to organisers.
Frame pieces – display them however they will look best.
Think about lighting, if you’re not sure it will be light enough then work lighting and power into your display and state your requirements in advance.
Think big when you’re creating, big is bold and does attract attention.
Intricacy can be beautiful but think about what it looks like from a couple of metres away, consider impact, eye catching and the experience.
Labelling is important, succinct information about your works.
Identify your invite list in advance and if you can access flyers and leaflets then give those to people you would like to attend.
Think about what people might take away, an attractive postcard can serve as a way of someone taking your contact details and reminding them of your display post event, increasing the impact and the possibility of other opportunities.
When deciding on whether to commit to the exhibition ask the organisers how they will be promoting the event as that is key to its success and value to you.
Even if it’s not an exhibition where the pieces aren’t on sale have a think beforehand what prices you would wish or need to achieve so you’re ready if someone is keen to buy.
If you are selling have a clear record of the advertised prices.
Think sensory, what fragrance/ smells would aromatise your work, consider adding scents. Our venue had a glass ceiling on a hot day, making it like a greenhouse, I was glad I had taken an aroma spray for the fabrics in my work.
Have a run through of possible questions about your work so that you can give clear considered answers if asked.
Be enthusiastic, be yourself.
I mentioned copyrighting in my Solo Exhibition blog posts. You can see those points and more useful exhibiting tips at these links:
I’m delighted that I’m all set up for this group exhibition at The Gage Gallery in Sheffield.
My exhibited work has not been displayed publicly to date, the work has been created in the past twelve weeks and includes Acrylic Paintings, Lino prints, Sewn Artworks, Fabrics, Ceramics and my new Oil Painting. The work has been created since my first solo exhibition was hung at Airy Fairy in Sheffield. Watch the Virtual Exhibition Video here.
The exhibition was a wonderful experience, being in a room with my art on each wall, brought together in one place creating an environment, an experience. It was a great way to reach people and hopefully, as is my aim, to inspire them.
Ready to hang the exhibition…
My exhibition in place…
Many friends and family came to see the exhibition which was wonderful and for which I am grateful. I also wanted to create a Virtual version for friends and family who live farther away. The video can bring the exhibition to them.
I learned a great deal from my exhibition, which I have written at these posts these may provide some useful tips and advice for those looking to exhibiting.
Inspire by Kim is now one year old. it has been a heck of a first year and culminated in my exhibition launch evening last Thursday. Friends, family and art buddies came together to see my artworks including oil paintings, Collograph, Lino prints, digital and paper cut pictures.
My exhibition lasts for the month of April at the Airy Fairy Cafe and Gift Shop. I feel blessed to be holding this exhibition and accomplishing this big step with my art.
For me it’s about reaching out to inspire people, to add a splash colour and energy to counter some of the darkness of the news media and world events, to brighten and hopefully uplift someone’s day. To raise a smile, to evoke a positive feeling. To spark a memory, spread a little nostalgia which could become seeds of hope. To reach hearts and minds with possibility of a better world, one artwork, one day at a time.
Not everyone will like what I do, but if it makes someone feel a little brighter then who knows where a small ripple could lead. This is why I create and share.
Here are some images from the Exhibition launch evening.
Prior to the exhibition the highlights of the past 12 months were:
Later today I am opening my first art exhibition so here is the post I would have liked to have read before I started out. Here’s what I have learned so far and what I wish I had known.
1. Create in standard proportions
Do this right from the start. This will make it easier when framing, reproducing and packaging your artwork and prints. Otherwise you’ll have to lose some of your image, have white space or have to use more expensive customised fittings.
When creating something that you may wish to reproduce on canvas have enough space around the main subject (s) to wrap around a canvas frame, this means that you needn’t lose any of the work and will avoid time spent stretching or mirroring the image to make it cover the frame.
2. Learn how to scan, stitch scans together and colour match/adjust.
Find someone to teach you, this will save time, money and give you more control.
3. Be open to opportunities
In July 2015 I hobbled painfully on my recovering leg on a journey I had planned since the previous December. Whilst skating in the Christmas Show at Ice Sheffield Anwen, owner of Cafe and Gift Shop Airy Fairy, had seen my art on a cosmetic bag and suggested I visit her shop to discuss options for displaying my work.
Major knee injury just days after first speaking to Anwen had delayed my visit to her shop; but on meeting Anwen we discussed my work and she offered a five week exhibition in the cafe.
As my art is bright and sunny so I felt that it suited the month of April, so we scheduled the exhibition. I had seized the opportunity that arose through the chance encounter. I knew I would learn a great deal through the preparation process and would be able to show my art to a wider audience.
4. Measure and photograph the exhibition space
Don’t be shy about getting a measure of the exhibition space. Measure the space, take photographs.
Decide roughly how you will exhibit in the space and then curate from your art. I had lots of doubts, “do I have too many pieces” or “too few”. A scale drawing of the space would have enabled me to visualise the exhibition better, sooner and saved me time on the long run. Ask for a floor plan, your venue may have one.
Visit the venue to see how other artists have worked in the space and consider what works and what you might like to do.
5. Edit your collection
Deciding what to include is difficult, I thought about what would be popular, what would people like, what would suit the customer base. What I should have thought from the start was – which artworks do I like best, which show my skill/ability and are my greatest accomplishments. Those are the pieces to include. I came to under stand that we cannot control other people’s interpretations or how they will respond, not everyone will like everything as art is very individual.
6. Ask for supplier recommendations
I wanted to do as much as the process myself, so that I cold maximise the learning and my understanding of what goes into producing canvases and prints. I learned a about paper stock, print colours, calibration, image resolution, file format, scanning, canvas quality, canvas frames, hanging fittings, fishing wire, labelling, packaging, copyrighting and my nemesis… pricing.
7. Research and Read
I referred to Lisa Congdon’s Art Inc, Kelly Rae-Roberts Flying Lessons and Lila Rogers Make Art That Sells throughout the process. If anything I wish that I could have had a knowing artist buddy by my side who had been through a similar process.
8. Log all component costs into a spreadsheet as you go
Log all the artwork components and packaging elements so that you have your cost prices per artwork calculated well enough in advance. Pricing is challenging, so the baseline cost price is important.
9. Have someone to bounce off
A friend that can give a second opinion and to help you set up the show will calm your doubts and make it more fun.
10. Enjoy the process – stay creative
An exhibition is very personal and is you showing the fruits of your creativity and hard work. I found that when I wasn’t enjoying the preparation process it was because I wasn’t being creative enough. I learned to stop and think of a more creative approach which enabled me to be the artist, to be innovative unique and original. I also liked it when things were more personal and quirky. Our printer decided not to print anything in black ink just days before the event, but I have to say that I am pleased with the results and glad that it challenged me to find other ways and colours to express in.
11. Accept that there will be admin tasks
Spreadsheets, contracts, insurance documents, inventories, price lists, advertising, press releases, invitations, briefing notes. It’s all part of the process, it can be fun when you find a creative approach and know that this is to celebrate your work and give the art the chance to breathe and be seen beyond your home or studio.
12. Don’t over complicate, don’t stress
This is art, it’s not definitive. Focus on showing the best you can, what happens from there is out of your control.
13. Appreciate your followers
Their belief and support is infinitely valuable, remember that when feeling doubtful or confused.
14. Keep going and believe in yourself.
If it is, like me, your first exhibition this is totally new and so it will be challenging but keep going and believe in yourself, who knows where it will lead. There will be set backs, just now I’m waiting to pack the artworks into the car but I can get through the hall as there is a man working on our broken boiler. Hopefully the boiler breaking is the only setback today. Lastly, celebrate how far you have come and be open-minded about the future.
My art exhibition runs for the next five weeks until 2nd May at Airy Fairy, London Road, Sheffield. The exhibition comes after a journey into art, see the blog posts about the 52 Art Challenges that I completed on the way.