My Landscape Artist of the Year experience!

So excited as I arrive at just before 7am for the competition to begin in earnest.

A great welcome from everyone involved in the filming and a chance to meet my wonderful fellow competitors. I race out to capture the bridge in the background as it tilts to let through a passing vessel. This is a sight to behold as the Millenium Bridge rises to the sky and it is that moment that changes my day and the thoughts I had ahead of the challenge.

I loved chatting over breakfast with my fellow artists and I listened intently as they discussed their thoughts on the day. With 5 professional artists in the pods today I decided I would create a semi-abstract/contemporary artwork, fuelled by the dramatic shape opposite and the wonderful Baltic Contemporary Art building in the background.

We start by filming our ‘walk on’ as we are led to our pods to unpack our materials. The day actually passes as pretty much a blur as I have my head down carving the artwork and not paying much attention to what is going on around me. At one point I looked up and saw two cameras in front of me and one behind plus the time-lapse in the pod itself. It’s a good job I don’t scare easily.

I had tremendous support from all the StoryVault team with George on hand at all times to bring me anything I required. Cora too was most helpful but they are all a credit to their industry. I have had experience in front of the cameras previously when I travelled to Cape Town for 6 days to film an advert for Flora but this is far more important to me personally.

Previous heats to date had had poor weather so I was well and truly wrapped up according to the sound man as he tried to wire me up. Yep! you have got it … the sun is out and in great form.

So many lovely comments as people pass by to view the work of the artists and great support from the Sky Arts team filming the day. I have to say I was really looking forward to meeting Kathleen Soriano and Tai Shan Schierenberg as I am a great fan of the show and admire their commitment and encouragement they give the artists. True to form they were extremely complimentary about my work and really supportive of me personally with the challenge I, and my fellow artists, have in completing our work in just 4 hours. I was a little sad not to meet the wonderful Kate Bryan but she was just a little involved elsewhere [#bump].

It was getting hotter and the inks were getting stickier but, no excuses, it was just great to be here!

Kathleen Soriano captured when we visited the filming at Herstmonceux …

The day progresses with a host of wild card artists spread across the quayside producing some wonderful colouful work, a compliment to the area we were so lucky to be capturing on the day.

Lots of interviews and chats with the very entertaining Stephen Mangan and the great British treasure that is Joan Bakewell as the time passes really quickly. At this point I should ask Stephen ‘where have all my winegums gone’?

I am keen to not say too much at this point as there will be many people who are not aware of who wins through to the semi-finals in Scotland.

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