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January 2024

I did a lot of planning this month, and applying for things. I also did a lot of etching, mainly two A4 pieces, one of Blast Beach in Seaham – County Durham and the other of Ellesmere Port Oil Refinery. The blast beach image came from a walk I took in the area straight after lockdown, the orange rust colour of the rocks tainted by all the previous industry that took place there is the reminder of the amount of pollution that took place here. It’s a fascinating place and I have been looking more into industrial heritage and history in Northern England – lots of material to cover with this but I’m excited to find where it will lead! Off to Nottingham next month for photos of the Uk’s last active coal power station at Ratcliffe-on-Soar as well se expect lots of chimneys to come!

I really feel I’m getting to grips with inking plates and getting the effects that are in my head out there on the paper, it’s very exciting. It took a little bit of figuring to get the rusty effect on the blast beach image and I feel like I got the end result I was after – Hooray!

In addition to these I met with someone from Lancaster Museums who helpfully responded to my inquiry about old photos of the Lune Mills / Williamsons factories. This proved very fruitful and there were some amazing images of the old Lino factories and the amount of industry we once had on Lancaster Quayside. I will be working through these images and hopefully including some in my summer exhibition at the Dukes, very exciting!