Bristol art for your new loft conversion
Art by a local artist makes a fabulous Christmas or birthday present for anyone. Local artists are inspired by the area you live in and often depict some of your best-loved places too, in interesting and different ways.
And when you’ve had your loft converted you’ll have new wall spaces just crying out for something striking to hang there.
This month we chatted to native Bristolian artist, printmaker, facilitator and mother of two girls, Amy Hutchings. As well as creating her own portfolio of work for sale, Amy undertakes commissions, runs workshops and is frequently involved in school and community projects around the Bristol area.
Printing is my absolute favourite thing to do… Lots of it relies on great preparation – but there is always an element of luck and how things go on the day.
While working mainly with silk screen printing, Amy loves to explore other media and is constantly thinking about the impact and accessibility of art.
I enjoy mixing techniques and approaches. My work has increasingly seen the use of paper stencils and mono-printing in conjunction with silkscreen and occasionally etching. I love to see how the different approaches change the final look of the piece, building layers of colour and texture that no process would achieve on its own.
What’s your Bristol history?
I was born and raised in Bristol and it is still one of my favourite places. The scale of the city, it’s creativity, its proximity to open, green space and alternative way of doing things – of always finding a better solution – keeps my home city very close to my heart.
What do you love specifically about Bristol?
I love going for walks around the harbour – the light reflecting on the surface of the water and its movement are good for the soul. No matter how many times I walk along the harbour side, there is always something new to see – cormorants drying their wings, a new boat moored up, the colours of the changing seasons and the impact of this on the environment.
Another favourite place is Ashton Court. It’s somewhere that I frequented as a child and it still retains the same magic and beauty that it always has. I was privileged to be an artist in residence at Ashton Court Mansion this year, participating in a heritage project there with Artspace Lifespace and Historic England. It’s such a great venue and needs to be saved and protected – currently the mansion is under threat and its future is uncertain.
What inspires you in and around Bristol?
I’m a huge fan of the Bristol Museum and Art Gallery and enjoy going along, either on my own or with family, taking my sketchbook to record what I see. The changing exhibitions are always a pleasure to view and I can while away my time happily marvelling at the wonders the building holds.
Another favourite place is the Arnolfini. I particularly love the light and dark studios and the inspiring, changing exhibitions on display there. As I print at Spike Print Studio, the gallery at Spike Island is a place I frequent. No matter how different the creative discipline to my own, there is always something new to learn and admire.
What are you focussing on at the moment?
As we approach Christmas, you’ll find me exploring open studios and the arts trails around the city, picking up gifts for loved ones and meeting with designers and makers. They’re a great place to find unique gifts.
I’m participating in two arts trails this year – The West Bristol Arts trail (which was in October) and the Front Room Art Trail in Totterdown, which runs over the weekend of November 16th and 17th. I’ll be displaying prints, enamels, cards, hand-printed compact mirrors and framed art at Alma House (which used to be the home of the Thali).
As a result, I am concentrating on new work to suit the different places in Bristol where I’ll be selling this Christmas season – so I have days of going out and about with my sketchbook ahead of me (fingers-crossed for some warmth and sunshine!).
I’m also beginning to gather ideas for a private mural commission later in the year. It’s always an honour to be approached to create to commission, whether as a print or mural – or something entirely different! It’s a brilliant way to work and gives me great satisfaction helping to realise someone else’s vision and help them create an environment that truly reflects them.
Where can we see more and buy your work?
My work can be found via my website, www.amyhutchings.co.uk.
I’m currently working on an online shop – something that I have been meaning to do for some time! However as I’m always creating, not everything will be visible. If you’re interested in a particular piece, which is not displayed online, do get in touch.
Equally if there is a scene you’d like me to capture, or perhaps a unique artwork of – or for – your home, please contact me via my website – I’m always open to ideas and happy to take on commissions.
For loft conversion inspiration, take a look at our gallery, where you can view photos of Jon Pritchard’s work in terraced, semi-detached and detached Bristol homes.