As part of the Latest Edition project with Navigator North the group of artists visited Greenfield Arts in Newton Aycliffe.
Greenfield Arts is a creative hub used by the local community and artists to develop their creative practice. Our challenge for today was to design ideas for the merchandise that will be sold alongside the Limited Edition show at the Festival of Thrift, and other venues including Hartlepool Art Gallery, Palace Arts in Redcar and the Witham Gallery in Barnard Castle
We eagerly met up in an amazing space carpeted with fake grass and decorated with glowing cloud lighting. One of our mentor artists Alex Sickling arrived this morning with an excellent vegan Banana Loaf which got the day off to a great start. We were introduced to the centre by co-ordinator Sophie Lewis who explained to us the Greenfield’s ethos and purpose. There are excellent facilities for the community and the school next door to use. We were given a guided tour and saw some great drawing in the gallery space. This set us all up for a day exploring ideas for our own merchandise.
The artists are working together to produce a range of merchandise, including tea towels, notebooks and coasters. Much debate too place deciding the right designs for each project and with so many great ideas it was a difficult decision! We discussed pineapples, dancing bees, the colour of bird’s eyes and tips on the best way to cut paper with a bread knife – and by the time the final designs were agreed, it was time for lunch.
In the afternoon, all of the artists worked on the individual designs for the merchandise using the centre’s excellent facilities (fake grass covered computers included).
Once our ideas were completed, we were introduced to the exciting printing facilities in the centre and given the opportunity to put our work onto mugs and tote bags to give us a clear idea of how our designs would look on products....exciting stuff!
Nick Kennedy was away today but had sent his designs through for us all to see. There was some debate over which products would look best on which item of merchandise and even a suggestion that they would make great tattoos for the rest of the group!
Time for more coffee and another slice of that delicious banana bread...