Chris grew up in Seaford and studied fine Art at Brighton followed by taking an MA textiles at the Royal College of Art. He was a fashion textile print designer for 17 years producing work for major fashion houses some of which has been collected by the Victoria and Albert Museum. During this time he exhibited surface inspired mixed media paintings and also won the Formica Design a laminate competition in 2004. Chris also worked for 25 years as a senior lecturer at Chelsea College of Art and Design.
Firing up your creative thinking
Chris told me, his objective for the afternoon was to encourage people to think (well) outside the box and to look for inspiration that so often remains hidden in all sorts of everyday objects and surfaces. Chris has had extensive experience in the world of fashion and textiles and was able to show us part of his extensive and eclectic collection of photo’s, press cuttings and materials, comprising different surfaces, colours and textures, all aimed to help fire his creative thinking. Chris described how we might benefit from doing something similar ourselves.
Chris creates 'sketch books' that are not exactly the norm. He suggested we should try sketching or making work on unusual formats. Not in a standard sketch book full of plain rectangle pages, that can be too restrictive. Why not try adding sections to an existing sketch pad, perhaps concertinas of paper, in fact, anything to make you think (outside that box) and take a fresh approach to drawing. Among other things obtained to create unorthodox sketchbooks, Chris has even used an old poetry book by Keats and glued, stabled and attached items of reference onto the existing pages. All this is aimed at moving your creative mind onto a different plain.
Maybe his talk was not what some of our members where expecting. But Chris certainly seemed to have made his audience think again, and without doubt generated a lot of interest.
Draw on something different
My personal gain from the afternoon was to have a go at something different. Enjoy some exiting experiments making drawings across a surface made up of different textures. I hope some of us, even if perhaps we prefer to paint and or draw on a conventional even and rectangular surface will also have a go at something different. Let's try putting into action some of Chris’s ideas. ...Jeremy