Friday, 14 December 2012

Marlborough Open Studios Marketing Talk

Last night I hosted a small gathering of artists that are participants and associates of www.marlboroughopenstudios.co.uk in The Old Stables here at Puthall Farm.
My lovely sister Charlotte Hill-Baldwin who is responsible for the marketing at www.john-lewis.co.uk of Hungerford  Artisan Kitchens and www.hbdesigns.co.uk - Sustainable Cycle Parking joined me to discuss the different aspects of marketing.

It was great to see new faces at this winter warmer organised by Liz Moakes (ceramic artist and Secretary of MOS)
More artists talks will be held in the near future and The Old Stables are available to hire for similar events.

Monday, 3 December 2012

JHQ Rheindahlen, Monchengladbach

Here I am on a quick sortie to The Ark primary school at JHQ in the snow and looking for inspiration for an art project that encapsulates the passage of people and time in the base camp over the last 50 years. 
Ths site is huge to a civilian like me and mostly now being let go prior to the base being handed back to German authorities in 2014.
I want to capture the life here now and in the past and show a tangible link to the future of the thousands of people that have lived here temporarily.  This could be one of the most challenging projects to date that i have asked to be involved in so watch this space to see where it all goes!

Friday, 30 November 2012

November Courses in the Forge

I have had  a couple of really good days teaching this week getting the chance to 'play' in the forge myself is always a pleasure.  Monday saw me demonstrating how to split and fire weld to creat a dragon head on 12mm square bar.  I love the chance to do some creative punch work on forged animal heads.
I had Laurie Plant here for a day on Thursday, fresh from finishing his 35' mural and with a lovely selection of charcoal drawings and a large scale painting in the workshop as inspiration for his uber-wiggly poker!
I love a challenge and this was it working with two sections to create a double twisted handle that also had a pentagon shaped centre.  Making the two piece separately with lovely long tapers was a good morning's work for Laurie who was forging for the first time.  Fitting the two piece together was slightly more difficult and tested my powers of deduction!  We finally got there and wrapped the longest length loosely around the main stem, fire-welding the ends together to finish it off.
We did remember to remove the lovely canvas painting before fire welding!
Fellow student on Thursday Mike worked on some fine forged letters for fixing to a piece of oak.  Getting good traditional skills under his belt he then went on to forge another hook with no intervention form me which is a great way to send your first day in the forge.
Its always good to finsih the day without getting the Miller Welder going!

I have more courses coming up next week when I return from a working visit to Germany and courses are being booked now for next January and February 2013
You can see images of work produced on these courses at;
http://www.flickr.com/photos/melissa_cole/sets/



Check out www.laurieplant.com

Wednesday, 21 November 2012

Marketing on a shoestring for artists

I will be talking about my experiences of marketing my work over the last 20 years at The Old Stables, Puthall Farm, Marlborough for Marlborough Open Studios on Thursday 13th December. Look at www.marlboroughopenstudios.co.uk or Contact me  if you want to attend!

Tuesday, 20 November 2012

Forging in the forest- winter 2012

Forest Forge Studio is glowing warm and cosy on these dull and dank winter days.  Bookings are being taken for the one day blacksmithing courses in the run up to the Christmas period and dates are now on www.melissacole.co.uk/courses for 2013.

I am off to Monchengladbach soon for a scouting mission regarding the possibility of a sculpture for the UK JHQ Base that is closing next year.