Scenery

FB_IMG_1562887764375

This is a papier mache hill I made out of willow withies covered in newspaper and glue. The idea was to depict the last ice age. I painted a couple of wolves in the distance. This was another mystery play a few years ago. Set in the area which then became Penkhull. It was about the way the village evolved and the town surrounding it. I don’t remember much about the play except it had Romans and Celts in it, then victorians and a riot. We seem to riot a lot in the plays!

I wonder what we will be doing next year.

X

Middleport

I’ve got lots of images to show you but I’ve run out of space on my plan. I have gradually deleted old photos from posts but my camera takes pictures in megabits not kilobits so it eats memory. I shall probably pay and upgrade because I use a lot of images in this blog. Anyway Middleport pottery is hidden in the backstreets of middleport in Stoke-on-Trent. It is interesting to visit as it not only makes pottery but also sells it and is home to several craft shops which make studio pottery, sell photos and other craft ware.

If you are not doing a tour of the museum entrance is free. We went in the cafe then sat by the canal for a while. There is a boat tour that called at the pottery and we may go on it soon.

There is also Clay college based there where you can learn the craft of throwing pots, and it is the setting for the TV show the great pottery throw down.

Worth a visit.

X

Forgotten?

Sandstone is a beautiful stone, soft and porous, it can be carved into fine shapes. But as this gravestone shows it also dissolves, especially in out acid rain environment. In this case the stone has turned black, probably from pollution, as Stoke-on-Trent was a very smoky place, due to the coal fired potteries. And yet the church is clean. I don’t know if it has been cleaned but it has had some restoration.

The lettering on the headstone is almost lost. Its almost as if a layer has peeled off. Gone but not forgotten? It depends on whether the family still exists, and whether they still live in the area.

Other stones in the graveyard are in worse or better condition. Some have been turned into steps, gradually wearing away under foot.

 

Cherished Chimneys

I finally got into Cherished Chimneys in Longport, Stoke-on-Trent. Its an Aladdins cave of Chimney pots. Small, short, long, tall, fluted, straight, curved. Dark, light, terracotta, superb ceramics. The shop restores chimneys for buildings where the original pots have been lost, but also sells to the public who use them as ornamental sculptures and flower pots in their gardens. It’s worth taking a look if you are ever passing.

Art at the Villas

DSC_1997

I was going to get up early today and going on a community walk along the local canal, but I got up late. I also considered going to an Urban Sketchers event at the Chatterley Whitfield nature reserve. But again I was too late. In the end we went to the Villas which is just down the road. There was an event called art at the Villas. The show was almost at the top of the road on the right hand side. The road is unadopted so go carefully driving up there. We parked at the bottom and walked.

The house we went in and its garden were full of interesting art. There were prints, original tee shirts, paintings, ceramics and a warm welcome. They were also accepting donations for charity. If you feel like visiting its in the Villas up the hill on the right off London Road, Oakhill , Stoke-on-Trent.

Since I was there and had missed other sketching opportunities I did a quick drawing of the garden and summerhouse in the distance.

X

X

Middleport photos

We visited the Middleport pottery a while ago on a rainy day and I took a few photos. I liked the atmospheric lighting, the sheen of water on the cobbles and the model of the pottery that is in the museum. I hope to visit again soon.

Middleport pottery is next to the canal in Middleport, Stoke-on-Trent, Staffordshire. It has a museum, a cafe, a shop where you can buy pottery and various events. There are also studios and workshops which make for an interesting place to visit.