I have been to the Art Materials Live show at the NEC, Birmingham today, courtesy of my daughter at straightstitching who purchased the tickets and took me there and back. I never had a game plan, I just went with the intention of seeing what is on offer and could I see something that would inspire me? I was amazed how busy the place was, it was more or less packed to the rafters. I sometimes think when I’m alone with a pencil that I’m the only person in the world who draws and paints. Apparently there’s a whole lot of us by the amount of people here!
There were demonstrations all over the place, watercolour painting, pastel landscapes, acrylic portraits and even some pencil work. I didn’t attend any of these classes, I have a very short attention span, although they looked excellent. I browsed through the dozens of boxes of crayons, oil paints ink pens and the amazing amount of various papers. I already have a lot of this stuff so there wasn’t anything I needed. Before I knew it, I had dropped into people listening mode. It can be fascinating, especially in large crowds.
We came across a stand full of pens, long ones, short ones, blues ones, green ones, all hand made and to a high standard. The owner of this wonderful array of writing implements was chatting with a customer and as we were passing, I heard him saying this:
“There’s some strange people in here today, I’ve just had a lady ask me if I make my own ink. I told her of course I do, I’ve got an Octopus in my bath!”
At another stall, a guy was bemoaning the fact that he’d been asked if he made Cloggs despite the fact that it was obvious he was selling craft materials! The best comments I ever overheard were a few years ago in London, I was passing by two elderly women and the one said, “he lost his teeth after he had an accident with a chainsaw!” It’s been a fun day with plenty of walking exercise. The Art Materials Live show is on until Sunday, 8th November, 2015.