Yes I know I’ve not been as active as I should be on this blog platform. There are good reasons – things going on behind the scenes that I didn’t feel I could write about at that stage.
But now I can … those of you who follow me on Facebook will know I moved in to my new studio this weekend.
So, why am I moving again you may wonder?
Fantastic as the location is being right in the centre of Hexham, where I made great friends with Lucy and the two Alisons in the shop, it soon became clear that if workshops are to be part of my business there really wasn’t sufficient space without hiring additional space from Lucy.
The second reason was physical. Frustratingly, I have inherited the family genes when it comes to arthritis. So, with a painful hip and bad back, making repeated trips up and down stairs carrying heavy boxes of materials and equipment to off site workshops or carrying frames etc, to take to galleries took its toll.
While in many, many respects I was very happy where I was, I did begin to wonder what else was out there that I could afford. It soon became clear that alternatives in the centre of Hexham were way beyond my budget. However, a chance encounter with artist, Glynnis Carter, sent me on a trip to a place on the outskirts of Hexham just a few minutes (by car) to the top of the hill and along the racecourse road to Ochrelands Farm where a series of outbuildings were converted sometime ago into workshops.
The minute I walked into the room I just knew the space was perfect. At the time it was Colin Cuthbert’s photographic studio – crammed chock-a-block with his stuff, but I could still see the potential, there is a lot of space. Last week as Colin began emptying the space of his equipment and furniture I knew my gut feel was right.
From a workshop point of view, I am confident the studio will comfortably fit at least 6 people, which for me is a great number for teaching printmaking and the room may possibly accommodate up to 8 which would be a good maximum number. Once the work surfaces and storage is installed I will have a much better idea.
The studio is in an idyllic setting just 5 minutes from Hexham. There is ample parking too. Just a 5 minute walk from the studio is Dukeshouse Wood which could potentially be a place I could take people for sketching or gathering inspiration or plant material for workshops not to mention the views.