We’ve come to the final day in this first chapter of the Watching the Sun Residency, and what an incredible week it has been all round.
Today brought a wonderful talk from artist Peter Beeson about his practise and the #seventeensuns project he worked on in the first lockdown, but which has now turned into over one hundred paintings of the sunrise. Following this we had a sharing of materials from the RAS archive from Librarian and Archivist Sian Prosser, which was fascinating. And finally, a wrap-up meeting, of goodbyes, but also not, as we will keep in contact with our residents over the next few months and together create a folio that will be lodged into the RAS archive and library. So carry on watching this space…
From Austin Taylor:
A movie I’ve made from a series of stills I took on my solar system walk. I set out from Pluto and recorded each planet on the way to the Sun; I altered each image to give the effect I imagined of the light becoming brighter and clearer as we get closer to the Sun.
From Susan Mannion:
I decided to use materials that I would not normally use and to play with shadows and light. I decided to go for a walk in my local forest park. I came across a fungi circle and as the light faded, the fungi circle became almost luminous. Next day I discovered a length of moss and bracken that had fallen from a dead tree. I formed it into a circle and photographed it. I then looked for shadows cast by the low winter sun amongst the branches of different trees.
From Liv Gravil:
I’ve been staring at the solar weather images on https://www.spaceweatherlive.com/en/solar-activity.html and making copies and wondering why it’s not working. I think the photographs are beautiful but I don’t properly understand what they’re showing, so trying to make observational drawings of them is sort of just repeating back stuff in a language that I don’t speak. I made this drawing in the past hour to try and shove all the things that interested me about what Carolyn told us about the new sunspot – the movement, the energy crashing outwards very ordinarily that we just happen to be in the path of, the push-pull of gravity – and start to figure out how to put all that into lines somehow.
From Lucy May Schofield:
Spending the day thinking about colour. I’ve always been so drawn to red but so afraid of it too. Thankful for a lovely morning talk with Carolyn Thompson which made be feel braver and finding out about red dye possibilities from some lichen? I played around all day printing layers of red, orange and gold suns and moons. I am increasingly fascinated with the newly observed sun spots and potential solar flares in combination with our current waning gibbous moon. Lunar phases and solar phases, 1 month, 11 days, 11 years. So much more to play with tomorrow. Will the red pigment stay alive in the paper…
From Carolyn Lefley:
Pebbles planets/stars/moons with branches as constellations – The sun has finally come out! I’ve been playing today with pebbles as stars/planets/moons. I love the long shadows. I also took too double exposed Polaroids (using a Mamiya RZ 67 with Polaroid back)… double exposures of tree branches (as constellations) and pebbles (space/suns/galaxies)
Test print on fabric made this morning. And then playing with circular constellations maps and seeds/plants. Will add more over the weekend.
Day 5 (Friday) of a five day cyanotype – it’s now been washed and it’s drying so I’ll take a final photo tomorrow morning. It has faded and taken on more of a green tone. The circle was originally painted months ago to be a ‘moon’ but I repurposed it on Monday to be a ‘sun’. It’s turned out to be more like an ‘Earth’, our (green and) blue planet.
From Becky Probert:
Responding to Liv Gravil’s creative provocation about doing something that scares you a bit – I haven’t attempted to draw anything in a long time! These were inspired by the photo gallery of the surface of the sun on the Solar Dynamic Observatory website.
From Molly Budd:
Pinhole pictures took yesterday using a homemade seaweed developer!
From Steve Cussons:
My drawings from yesterday using paint, iron and magnets. I was trying to capture that explosive energy but also the magnetic fields.
From Gigi Salomon:
These are some little test pieces of projections I made about tides and moons.
And David also filmed this incredible moonrise on Thursday night:
From Lisa Pettibone:
Finished last night but photographed this morning after glue had dried (to keep thread fixed). Used two different cyanotype prints and played with construction. Can’t wait to make more with new images and or bigger scale.
From Helen McGhie:
A new experiment – illuminating rocks with a blacklight. Thinking of taking my torch to Kielder to illuminate the trees!
From Josie Purcell:
Very quick final layer to cyanotype and some rather quick through-the-lens pics taken handheld to try to mimic looking through a telescope at another planet.
From Carolyn Thompson:
A couple of quick walking drawings done whilst watching Jo Mayes and Carolyn Kennett on their instagram walk yesterday. Getting lots of ideas to do with walks as pilgrimages.
The first 4 dawn acrylic sketches. Done at dawn, facing west. You have to work quick!
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