‘Super Flats’

Still walking to work, I am drawn to these buildings. Apparently these were termed ‘super flats’. Part of the St. Mark’s Redevelopment program, these flats were built in the 1950s to replace the old terrace houses within the Laygate area of South Shields.These flat, centrally heated, were three stories high. These flats of the future split up communities that had lived together for generations.  Close families and friends were distributed between different new developments of the area.

Further research is needed, but while passing by this week, it looked like at either side of this glass passageway doors had been opened. Doors I hadn’t noticed before.

I’ve also going in for a closer look by exploring the doorways, steps and the concrete underpass/bridge under this glass passageway. This building holds my attention and curiosity and make a monotonous walk more enjoyable. The work will continue.

Artist on Hiatus : Update 

So things have started with my self-imposed residency of being an artist on hiatus. The aim is not to engage in anything creative. To try and not feed my artistic tendencies but to focus all my attentions on my paid work and not my creative work.I am finding this residency difficult as I realise I need colour in my life daily in order to live. In order to get out of bed and feel alive, I need colour within my life. It is my buzz. So deciding to wear a different coloured nail varnish each week to work is I think exercising my creative gene ever so slightly.

This colour fix is also evident within my work planner. So that every day is not a dull day, I pre-prepared each page within my planner with paint, with colour and inspirating images. I did this so that even if I am locked into the system, working 9 til 5, I can still dream, I can still scratch my creative itch.

All this sounds as if I’m not trying in this hiatus residency. But really I am. But at the same time, I am finding out more and more about what makes me tick, what makes me happy, what makes me, me. And I’m okay with that, with this residency. I am taking each day as it comes, and I know I am happy in what I am doing each day. So I am going to continue as I am doing.

I have even inspired others to re-engage with their creativity, with their dreams, through just showing up to meeting using my self-created planner. This colour focus is catching.

When the sun is just so …

On the way to work each day, I pass this concrete construction. I try to just walk on by and not look, not take any images. But at certain times of the day, when the sun is just so, it illuminates this rundown place. It becomes golden. I try and capture this transformation. And even though I’m an artists on hiatus for the next few months, I can’t help but itch this creative spot, can’t help but point the iPhone and shoot.

I’m interested in how this develops over the next few months as I continue to walk by. I’m interested enough to start looking into these buildings further. There are people living here in the flats either side of this glass enclosure. But this linking section seems rundown, vandalised and why is it there if not to allow a thoroughfare? Decoration, a special design feature?

This is a little golden nugget which will keep me going during the long, tiring days of work. A little creative well upon which I can draw inspiration and energy from. Please keep checking back and see the process.

Dreaming of Iceland

I’ve started a portfolio for Iceland. It seems an age since I was last there, but I am making plans to return. Bubbling under the surface of everything else that is happening in my life, is the body memory of how I felt while I was there. How I felt I opened up like blossom  to who I really was inside. That I thrived on the silence and solitude and the beauty of the landscape. Some how the serenity and honesty of the landscape, reflected something inside me. I recognised myself there, and I want to capture that feeling again as well as replicate it here, in my every day life.

How is the question?
I need to return to find out.

On My Way

I love starting new projects. Even more so when I say to myself that I’m on hiatus from any kind of creativity. But sometimes that itch comes along that you just have to scratch.

While working full-time, on my way I pass, in my opinion, some iconic buildings; a housing estate that speaks to my soul. I have taken to photographing these blocks of flats, more so, a single glass passageway which links one block of flats to another. This glass corridor seems to be neglected, blocked off from the flats either side. Windows have been broken, chip boards are up at others. But it definitely appears to not be in use.

Until this week, when I noticed doors either side open. Had they always been open? Did I fail to notice this?

Bear with me as I attempt to find out more about these buildings, this area through further research and reading. As I said I do enjoy starting new projects. This one, I have no way of knowing where it will lead. I just know that I am enjoying the process and progress.

 

 

 

 

 

 

‘Super Flats’ continued

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During my hiatus from social media, I’ve been enjoying some much needed ‘me-time’. ‘Me-time’ consists of long soaks in the bath, walks along the sea shore, cooking family meals, dreaming on paper as well as reading novels.

For some reason, I never seem to have the time to read for pleasure, unless I take time away from social media. Getting through the pile of books that are at the side of my bed just illustrates to me how much time I waste refreshing my twitter feed, pressing hearts on Instagram and commenting on stuff on Facebook

I know I need to find a way to have a much healthier relationship with these means of contact with the outside world, but as of yet I haven’t found a viable solution except from turning them off for weeks at a time.

It’s not an ideal situation, as I do miss the connection, contact and opportunities they present but I’m prepared to take this hit if it means I turn them off in order to hear my own voice again.

I do find social media very noisy at times and distracting. As well as enriching and inspiring. Still a work in progress I think; my relationship with the beast.


But one book that I’ve been engrossed in for the last couple of days is The Miniaturist by Jessie Burton. I’ve has my eye on this debut novel for a few months now, but haven’t managed to read it until now. And it’s such a good read.

It’s historical fiction and very poetic in it’s descriptions of people and places. Based in Amsterdam in 1687, it follows the progress of one family as they thrive through the trade routes opened up for merchant explorers. A new bride receives a cabinet sized replica of her new home as a wedding gift. Upset at first, she soon becomes involved in decorating this house through a mysterious miniaturist. This book weaves a magical spell as I’m drawn into this family’s world were secrets and lies are the currency of exchange as money and sugar takes a backseat.

If you can, read it, take a break from social media if you have to in order to do so. It’s well worth it!