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Paul's Art Blog

Paul Liptrot's thoughts and musings!

This is the place to find out what I'm working on or researching at the moment. The blog is split into my inspirations in art and science, and my work and my current thinking.

03-07-2017 by 
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I had the great pleasure of running a Petri Latex workshop at the first Bilborough Arts Festival over the weekend. The festival is about bringing the community of Bilborough together with a fantastic array of arts, music and other great activities.

I ran a drop in workshop over 4 hours and during that time I worked with over 50 young people and adults to get them to try making their own petri dish using ink, latex and chemicals. It was amazing to see so many people engage so quickly with a material and process I use on a regular basis.

Various people making petri latex dishes

What I love about running workshops like this is that it’s a learning process for those involved but also me, I get to see how different people approach the task, how they work, what they hope to achieve and how they react when they see the results. The mix of people means that each interaction I have is different, sometimes people just go for it and others they need to understand it first.

some completed dishes

The process was much improved by my new food dehydrator which has cunningly been repurposed as a petri dish dryer, it enables me to dry dishes so that people can take them away in about 20 minutes. This is a big change as on a mild day it can take about 24 hours for them to dry.  

This reduction in drying time also changed the results as the drawn elements were set much more quickly so the results are in some ways more definite. When I’m doing it myself I usually like them to dry more slowly so that some more blending takes place, the ability to more closely control will hopefully mean that I’m able to extend the range of work I can make.

Its now Monday and am heading back to Bilborough to work there as one of 3 Artists in Residence. It’s going to a challenge for me to work so publicly but hopefully the process will be a positive one! Sometimes its good to push yourself outside your comfort zone. Today I’m taking my sketchbook and will see what happens!

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