Category: Events and Outings

A Start Not The Start (by )

There is so much awesome stuff happening for me right now that I am not even sure where to begin with telling everybody about it, it is over whelming and wonderful and also twinned with my grief and health issues which affect me and the family in general. I have lots of back blogging to do - I have the photos and even stuff written but I have in general lacked energy.

But I need to make a start and this month was the one I chose as the starting point. It is not The Start but rather a start and it is the start of many things.

There are many projects a foot and some in the pipe line, some have been dormant for too long. I feel scared that another curve ball be thrown to us and I am currently typing at half speed having managed to mangle my finger yesterday - I dislocated the top of it but it popped back in ok - it was a searing scream of pain but I often dislocate things - it has gotten worse over night which sucks. I am hoping it will settle down and I won't have to bother the dr with something they really can do nothing about - hyper mobility sucks - mine has gotten a lot worse since the miscarriages - I have devised work arounds so I can get on with everything.

SO life is challenging, life is scary and life is rich.

From Spring time I have been in the midst of Moon Mania, I went on library tours with Space Craft and the Cuddly Science Puppets, I did the online Art Blast for the actual Apollo 50th celebrations, I did numerous activities for the Earth and Moon Festival including sitting by an giant inflatable earth getting people to join in with a community textiles project. I did poetry events and run creative writing workshops, I even got my rocks out at various museums.

Thanks to the Heritage Hub and Gloucester Archives I had oral history training to help me collect as many Moon Memories as I can - I have a lot but I want MORE!

I am compiling a book called The Moon Miscellany inspired by the TV celebrations centred around the actual moon landings - it was my dad's idea and it does hurt that he isn't here - even his moon memory is half written - it shall go in the book anyway. I did talks and came up with other things that I just could not secure funding for but which I hope to take forward over the next few years.

Also I thought artists where bad at sticking to deadlines - but I am still pretty much waiting on ALL bar one of the science and tech folk who were going to write me essays - blooming academics!

The fantastic thing about Moon Mania was that it contains lots of other smaller projects and I got my own funding to take the Moon Maker Meets and Moon Mega Make forward and that is something I did not believe I could do at the beginning of the year.

Everything was themed on space and I even snuck it in with an art exhibition at the Museum of Gloucester as part of the Gloucester Poetry Festival - I could not have done with out friends and strangers alike who volunteered their time. I gave everyone Moon Mania t-shirts.

I've done a huge photo study of the moon using camera and telescope and upped the astrophotography game - I ended up missing the science of it all very badly but also got to share that science with people.

Yesterday Alaric came home with a crunchy bar for me - the chocolate had been given to him as a bribe because someone I have never met wants to see my rocks - my SPACE ROCKS! This pleases me probably far more than it should.

Moonmania has been fantastic with fabric artists, Lino print makers, steampunk, poets, storytellers, comic book artists, glass workers and photographers jumping aboard. And it is not the end of that but a beginning!

My living room is full of crates of meteorites and paintings of space and little origami stars and I need to work out what other art spaces it can go up in! I was very lucky that the community textile project got to go up over the summer as part of Art In The City.

This summer I also won a traineeship with the Carnival Arts Partnership and got to work on the Gloucester Carnival - I learnt so much stuff and made a lot of different types of dragons including getting to go and work with the amazing Matt West at his workshop seeing how larger structures are put together. I discovered a new pair mache technique, how to make giant puppets, and was rather envious of Charles vacuum former. Cheltenham Hackspace helped me through all the Moon Mania and the the Carnival Madness - we were also having work done on the house so that my mum could move in properly at the same time - there may have have been more tears and frustration than I would have liked.

From this I know that I want to do bigger pieces of art and it has fed back into the science and the craft and the performance side of things.

I want to make things with metal and wood - and resin.

This is a beginning.

During the summer and autumn I also got to attend some free business and fundraising workshops with Jolt and the Culture Trust, this was incredibly helpful in building up contacts and directly lead to a group of us story tellers finalising a dream we'd been working on. Gloucester now has a story telling night and that is fantastic! More than fantastic in fact and I hope we can get it self sustaining.

Between the story telling and popping out to do a little bit more comedy I want to resurrect my radio or podcasting and maybe even mix it in with the oral histories stuff. I definitely want to do more acting - I have just finished my Frightmare run and it is still THE BEST JOB EVER!!!

I have been making dragons, and been part of goblin markets, performed and reviewed and created zines. Though my foray into the world of comic books has halted somewhat and I can't really see a way back in - we are now firmly entrenched in the cosplay side of things but again this was really my families thing whilst I sat at the stalls - I need to sort out more things for the zines and books and oh boy is the publishing stuff zooming off ahead!

The cosplay has kind of morphed into historical reenactement which is interesting.

And of course it's been 10 years since I started the insane writing challenge NaNoWriMo - so this month marks the beginning of me pulling the big over all project I have been creating into some sort of shape. The Punks Universe - it is more than that - it is the story I was writing with my dad when I was a kid and it is the story my kids make characters for and it needs to be out in the world properly and not scattered here there and everywhere with half of it hidden.

This is more than enough to keep me busy and sometimes I am too busy and I am also a worried mummy - Jean appears to have inherited the hyper mobility though is one joint short of a diagnosis of the syndrome but also needs to now go to the Dr with her back and hip. This I am fearing will put the kibosh on some of the dreams and hopes and it is a sucky condition. Mary is very flexible but is a dancer, an acrobat so I think she'll be fine she just has horrendous melt downs and though excelling at maths is struggling so with reading and writing (though she has drastically improved over the summer thanks primarily to the Library and their Reading Challenge that she loves - it was space themed!) - considering again my own issues with dyslexia and ADHD I am worried.

But we will adapt and try not to be sad and angry but sometimes that is hard.

This is a beginning, a start - this year has been an upheaval and a transition - the last two years have been a personal trial of pain and suffering and yet I have created, my family have achieved and we are Polyps together against the world - and we need to be because - even the good things are hard to be enthusiastic about and I very much love the good things.

So I shall end with some good things - I was offered a place on a song writing workshop - I attended and worked with musicians and made a thing and the thing is on an album and I am even doing the word bit and that is an AWESOME thing I have always wanted to do. I ended up performing at the 3 choirs festival.

Alaric loves working with physical things - metal work is his main thing and he enrolled on a welding curse and he has done all his exam pieces already and it has bought him much joy.

Jean re-sat her radio license exam and passed and has been enjoying radioing Alaric and they did their first Raynet event - this is a voluntary organisation that provides comms support for community events ie radioing through accidents or where crowd control need to go and work as a back up network for emergencies and disasters like the floods in 2007 when all the phone networks went down.

Mary has chopped all her hair off to donate for wig making for those kids who have lost theirs due to cancer treatment, also Mary can read... Mary read out a poem at the last poetry event, Mary has worked very hard on this.

Nanny has started making a Harry Potter cover for the cot settee.

Moving Story Telling Cafe (by )

Over the last year or so I have been working very hard with two amazing story tellers to bring story telling to Gloucester and finally we have arrived - our first story telling session is on Thursday 21st November 2019 at The Cafe Rene - this was the first pub I ever went in around here back before we even moved to Gloucestershire. The pub has some amazing history including a well inside and is next to a glorious grave yard and ancient ruins. It is a fantastic venue.

This is the first of four nights though we hope to get it running on a permanent basis.

Gloucester Moving Story Cafe

Aural traditions such as singing and story telling are the basis of our modern literature and novel reading not to mention the theatre and even film. The tradition has held on by it's finger tips but now it is time for it to be once more!

Come and share with us 🙂

It is for grown ups only and sadly due to the antiquity of the building it is not wheel chair accessible though the other venues are.

Protected: Moon Mania PechKucha Talk (by )

This content is password protected. To view it please enter your password below:

Gaia – Llanthony 2019 (by )

This weekend starting tomorrow there is going to be a giant Earth floating in the grounds of the historical site Llanthony Secunda Priory and Moon Mania Mega Make my community textiles project will be there with it 🙂

Scout Sewing MoonMania

It will be there from 10 am till 5 pm for three days:

Friday 28th of June Saturday 29th of June Sunday 30th of June

I will be there from 1 pm on the Friday, 2 pm on the Saturday and all day Sunday. If the weathers nice I will be outside by the coffee van if it's bad I'll be inside. This will also be the first proper outing of Moon Memories where I hope to snag people and get them to tell me their tales of the moon landings and space race or what their aspirations for the future of space exploration is. This is for a legacy piece which will result in a book and website and my hope is to archive these stories properly so that they are not lost to the sands of time (or moon dust!).

Gaia is part of Gloucester's amazing Earth and Moon festival which will be going on through out the summer and autumn and includes events at the Libraries including their annual reading challenge which is space themed, cinema at the GuildHall, the accompanying Moon to Gaia will be in the Cathedral later in the Year, and of course last but not least there is the Museum of Gloucester which has a Moon Exhibition which is opening this Saturday (29th of June 2019) starting with a kids craft corner focused on International Asteroid Day. I myself will be doing talks, creative writing that's moon themed as well as rock handling at the Museum.

MoonMania Talks and Rock Handling

Some of the events can be found in the SoMac brochure, some in the museums and libraries and Guildhalls own brochures 🙂

I also have various poetry, arts and science talks planned starting on Tuesday with a little PechaKucha talk at Liquor and Chow.

Moon Mania Creative Writing and Spoken Word

Now back to Gaia - this is an amazing installation that is going on a tour around the UK and is made by Luke Gerram with imagery from NASA. I am very excited to have the chance to be involved for Moon Mania!

Gaia is the name of the Greek Goddess who made/is the Earth, that which gave birth to everything, in Earth and Planetary Sciences we have the Gaia Hypothesis which takes the planet as a kind of mega organism with each part - trees, animals, sea, weather - all being part of the whole and what affects one affects the other. Computer Gamers will also be well aware of these concepts!

I have a mini obsession with Gaia so here is one of my favourite art making and concept creating videos about another fabulous art inspired by Mother Earth:

Rebirth of Gaea

Oh and I am looking for as many people as possible to be involved with the Mega Make!

Moon Mania Mega Make community textiles project

Moon Mega Make – Update! (by )

Creatives Sewing Celestial Montage

This week the Moon Mega Make community textiles project has been out twice in both Gloucester and Cheltenham 🙂 Someone even started stitching the Sun which made me very happy!

Stitching the Sun

Part of the outings was also to put up posters and give out flyers and have further meetings about Moon Mania. This lot of flyers cover the Spoken Word and Creative Writing aspect of Moon Mania which currently comprises 4 events, the first of which also includes the Mega Make at the First Thursday in Cheltenham - an Arts Quarter event that happens once a month unsurprisingly on the First Thursday where the Wilson Museum and Art Gallery is open late and July's event is Moon Themed for the 50th anniversary of the first human on the moon!

There is lots of awesome moon themed stuff happening 6-9 pm 🙂

Moon Mania Spoken Word and Creative Writing line up

Cookes Coffee and Curios is also supporting the Moon Mania Mega Make giving us a space for the Moon Meets and popping my posters and flyers up in their wonderful coffee shop! The photo below is of my mum stitching away over a coffee.

Mum stitching Celestial Montage in Cookes Coffee and Curios

And last but certainly not least - Gloucester City is having a wonderful Earth and Moon Festival opening with Gaia a giant inflatable Earth that is going into one of the loveliest historical landmarks around - Llantony Sucunda Priory. This amazing artwork is by Luke Jerram and is open to the public on the 28-30 of June 2019. Check out the Facebook event here. To my utter joy I get to take the Mega Make along to this event - extract timings for me are yet to be called but I am hoping to make an appearance on all three days so if you are local come along see the art and add a stitch!

Large Celestial Montage Banner

The Moon Mania Mega Make even ended up at the Gloucestershire Steam Punk Society's get together this month where there were cogs and moon chatting and much much more!

Mr Cogs

And last but certainly not least my prototype t-shirt has arrived - I don't like the black rectangle around the moon so am attempting to get rid of that in future prints but this one shall be mine for events to go along with the space dresses, moon skirts and leggings 🙂 I am hoping to sell these to help fund some of the other Moon Mania events and I would like to be able to give these to all the poets and story writers who are providing works for the Moon Miscellany!

Moon Mania t-shirt

WordPress Themes

Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.0 UK: England & Wales
Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 2.0 UK: England & Wales