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Adventures in Cornwall

I've just spent a fantastic 10 days in Cornwall, focussing on my art. Here I'm sharing a few images of the larger pieces of work I produced, but I also came home with many sketchbook drawings for inspiration. I arrived at Newquay by air and had a couple of days there. It was very wet, but I did manage a few pages in my sketchbook. Here are a couple:

While I was there I discovered the marvellous bus services. As long as you have plenty of time you can travel some fascinating routes - sitting on the front seat upstairs you will see much more of the countryside than you ever would driving! There were many narrow lanes and villages where the bus driver had to turn around in a tight space and then head back out the way we came.

I spent most of my time in St Ives, where I was going to spend 5 days on an artists' retreat at the School of Art, working in the studio and around the town and beaches. It amazed me how much work I completed while I was there and it will provide me with lots of ideas in the weeks and months to come. The studios are right next to Porthmeor Beach, so a lovely place to go to work! I found that there were only 5 of us plus lead artists Ilker Cinarel and Camilla Dixon. They were both totally inspirational and forced us all out of our comfort zone while being very supportive. Back home I'm working on my art alone, so it was great to be able to discuss our work and also to be encouraged to talk and write about the processes of being creative.

The photos I'm sharing are just a fraction of what I produced during my time there. We were encouraged to work on large sheets of paper - for instance, one morning being sent out with 10 sheets of A2 paper clipped to a drawing board, a bottle of black ink and a stick. The image on the right was a result of one of our outdoor drawing sessions, trying to use traced lines and shapes from our drawings to find interesting ways to fold, scrunch or cut a single sheet of card to make a free standing 'sculpture'. I can think of many ways to take this exercise further and this is really what the week was all about - lots of starting points and ideas.

The other artists were also inspirational and good to work alongside. We went off and did our own things, or worked quietly in the studio, but in between there was lots of debate and we went off at 4pm and found an exhibition every evening, followed by drinks and then a meal together some evenings. I hope these become lasting friendships and we are sharing our progress since we all went home.

I have to visit artist Steph Norman to pick up my folio. There was so much art by the end of the 5 days that I couldn't possibly fit it in my suitcase to take on the plane! Luckily Steph lives about an hour away from me and offered to take it all in her car. It's a good opportunity to meet up and go out sketching and painting as well. It will be lovely to catch up.

It was very sad to get to the end of my stay, but it's always nice to get home and I arrived fired up and ready to be creative!

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Looks as though you had a really interesting time and lots of inspiration for the future.

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