From photographers and painters to printmakers and glassblowers, the artistic community on the Isles of Scilly is rich and diverse.
Wherever you look, you’ll find inspiration, studios and galleries- it could be the polished gallery on Tresco, a gig shed on Bryher housing a painter’s studio or deep Scillonian history stained into the glass windows of a church.
Image credit: Oriel Hicks
This small collection of islands are surrounded by big skies and dramatic seas, the landscape here is diverse and beautiful and whilst it’s defined by nature it’s the local residents that illustrate daily life through the medium of art.
There are so many different artists on the islands, we couldn’t list them all, but we wanted to find out from a couple, just what inspires them.
John Bordeaux- Potter St. Mary’s “I have been a practising potter and artist in my barn studio at old town since May 1978. During these wonderful years I have been privileged to meet so many fantastic visitors, this year we have had some fourth generation. Scilly is a wonderful place to work. Having so many talented colleagues on the Island is truly inspirational.”
Vickie Heaney- Printmaker. “I’ve enjoyed family holidays in Scilly all my life and made the move to live here full-time in 2004. My passion is the natural world and I combine scientific study of seabirds with creating artworks inspired by them. Working in my studio by Porthmellon Beach I specialise in making linocut prints. I like that lino printing is quite an ‘old-school’ technique with an honest hand-made aesthetic. My designs employ clean stylish lines and vibrant colours to explore the bold patterns and images abundant in the islands wildlife and maritime heritage.
I’m a Doctor of Birds – that’s not to say I can fix them, I just spent a long time studying them. Using this zoological background as a starting point, my artwork employs clean stylish lines and vibrant colours to explore the bold patterns and images abundant in the islands wildlife and marine heritage. Living in Scilly I combine working for the RSPB counting the seabirds with creating prints of them.”
Image credit: Rachel Lewis
Tom Holland- painter. “The Isles of Scilly never fail to inspire me to paint. The constant change in the mood of the isles provides an ever-evolving palette of colours for me to work with. I can look at the same view over and over again, yet I will always find new inspiration. There is no other place I’d rather be. This is what I want to convey to the viewer, a wonderful feeling of peace, warmth and sun.”
Image credit: Tom Holland
Emma Eberlain- “I make recycled beach plastic jewellery and paint on driftwood, so do art using found objects. I have opened up a little gallery called ‘Pot buoys’ on St Agnes, where I sell not only my work but work from around Scilly and Cornwall. All is handmade and unique. I love searching on the beach and finding cool bits, wondering where they came from.”
Wherever you are on Scilly, if you aren’t gazing at a blue horizon, you can usually hear the sound of the tides lapping against the shore.
From May 10th – 22nd a new cultural festival takes place on the islands; celebrate all things arty, meet local artists join in with hands-on workshops, enjoy demonstrations and comedy events.
For a full schedule of events, visit Creative Scilly.
Travelling over on the Scillonian passenger ferry is a great way to start feeding your imagination – draw your inspiration from the blue expanse around you and iconic landmarks you’ll pass on the crossing. Or travel by air for panoramic views of the islands that’ll inspire you before you’ve even touched down on land. We’re offering 10% off Scillonian and Skybus travel between 08/05-24/05 2019, just quote CREATIVE19 when booking over the phone.