East Neuk Artists Show Their Work Again
Article by Elizabeth Shepherd
Artists in the “East Neuk Open Studios” are looking forward to meeting the public again in the lovely Bowhouse, St. Monans, on Saturday and Sunday the 26th and 27th of June from 10.30am to 4.30pm. Also some artists are opening their studios – all details are in the website at https://www.eastneukopenstudios.org/.
How have the artists coped during the Covid lockdown?
We have been showing our work on the internet and one artist Brad Eggleston from Kingsbarns turned his front garden into an art gallery. Many artists I talked to lost their motivation at the start of Covid with all its worry and isolation.
Sheila Caldwell, Pittenweem, told me “I had lots of paintings ready for the open studios exhibition last year, which was cancelled, and I spent my time gardening and tidying the house during the lockdown – I lost my inspiration.”
Others found being at home gave them a chance to learn new techniques and experiment.
Louise Stocker of Beach Crafts said “Like everyone, my initial feeling in lockdown was to panic! However I soon began to find the lack of distractions and relative quiet that came with it, quite peaceful. I found I had a lot more time than I was used to and signed up to several online courses to learn new skills and rediscover old ones! My love of both watercolour and graphite drawing are things which have lain dormant for many years due to lack of time! When the world does eventually find normality again, I’m determined to remember to set time aside for experimenting and having fun with my art!”
Leonie Siri MacMillan said “During the lockdowns, with no pressing deadlines I have been able to experiment more. My main focus is ceramics, but when I was ill with Covid I found painting whales comforting. Each whale that emerged on the board seemed in some way to show me a benevolent force exists. Also, on the worst days of my illness I was able to release my fears into the paint.”
Dave Smith, from St Monans said “The pandemic has meant fewer opportunities to sell my prints, but on the plus side, it has given me a lot of time to sort through the hundred thousand plus photographs stored on my laptop. When the first lockdown came and we were restricted to one hour exercise very locally, the subjects for my photography became delineated by the routes that I walked.
“The coastal path became very busy, so we often went to Ruddons Point and the nearby woods, which with the local caravan site being closed, were relatively devoid of other walkers. We watched the changing seasons there, and the development of the flora and fauna of the area, often walking just before dusk, watching owls hunting and sunsets filtering through the trees. For several weeks, trying to capture those provided the focus for my photography.”
There will be something for everyone at the East Neuk Open Studio exhibition in the East Neuk of Fife, which is the most beautiful coastal area, at the end of June.
For more information, visit https://www.eastneukopenstudios.org/ and follow the ENOS social media: