Friday, July 10, 2020

Faces, updates, support!




Hello lovely folks!

I hope you are well. Thanks again for your support of my work during these strange days.
I have not yet been back to my studio in Leith to begin working again. I am being slow and cautious in my re-entry. 
Just a quick update to say that besides my three accidental portrait prints available in my shop, I have added more of my works on paper that I created during the lockdown time, as well as adding the remaining charity canvas panel pieces to benefit Bicycles for Refugees and our new Scots. In this shop, I have work from £45-£270. You can see these available works here. 
I have updated my other shop that has my larger bodies of work from 2015-2017. These are all larger canvas pieces, varnished and ready to hang. In this shop, I have work from £440 - £1,080. Currently, I am offering these pieces at a 20% discount and free shipping as a thank you and to offer an incentive to keep supporting the arts. You can see those pieces here:
You can also visit my website for some of my more recent works. Prices are marked, so send me a message about anything you might be interested in. Payment plans are always available for my work (even some galleries offer them- so don't be shy). I love working with interior designers, so if you are one please get in touch! 
And of course, you can find my work in the following wonderful brick and mortar galleries in England and Scotland and I know they will appreciate your business as they slowly begin to reopen and continue with online sales as well. 
Thank you for supporting my work and the galleries that represent my work. We can't do this without you. 
Be well. 
With love and gratitude, 
Megan 
Consider leaving me a £3 tip. Thank you!

Friday, July 3, 2020

I am a volcano











These are the first drawing or paintings I’ve done since June 12th. That's about a 3-week break. My skin felt like it was boiling from the inside out. You might say well then why didn’t you just make something? Good question. I think I stop to 1) rest and percolate. and 2) to remember how important this is for my life.

I am a volcano. I am headphones and joy division. I am charcoal and paper and unlimited cups of tea. I am a fever, I am electricity. It builds and builds and builds. I am a good woman until I am not. I'd like to run through the forest and throw rocks. I'd like to smash and kick the air. I'd like to scream from my guts until it shakes the trees. 

Instead, I'll draw. I will borrow your rock and roll smash it up energy safely from my sofa. I will screw up my face as I make the dark lines and I will break the charcoal instead. I will turn it up loud and I will disappear safely in your decades-old guitar sound and my heart will become the bass and I will go away in order to come back to myself again.

And each time it will be new, a revelation - a raw delight. I will close my eyes and shake my head and realise that no one gets to feel this but me. There is no way to make you understand so I don't even have to try to explain. What freedom. I'll step into your screams and take them as my own, I will wear your rage as a cloak and I will keep drawing. 

Friday, June 26, 2020

Out of sync

Darkness comes in stages 
12x48"/30.4x121.9cm mixed media on canvas
© 2016 Megan Chapman



I have a cup of tea, the window is open blowing the paper prayer flags in the wind. I am listening to the beautiful music of Ólafur Arnalds "Island songs" on my headphones and tears could easily come to my eyes, but just now I can blink them away. There is something in the air today, a cool melancholy.

There are so many things I would like to write but it is complicated as this is an art blog, it is complicated because my attention span seems rather limited and because I am not sure how to form my thoughts into words. I just know I need to write. There is so much for us all to process and everyone is experiencing some form or another of grief and it is not going away.

Racial hate and divide, xenophobic fears and hate, transphobic hate and murder, a global pandemic that isn't magicking itself away, the desperate loneliness of so many bursting to be touched and loved as they flock to the beaches and parks leaving their human mark, so much litter to say I WAS HERE. WE WERE HERE.

We are back in a celebration of trash and consumerism. We are back in a forgetful haze. We got too close, saw too many, hashtag black lives matter, can I have some of your crisps, the bin is full, just leave it.

I want to love you. I want to put my arms around you but we are out of sync. I always cheered for you, always believed the best, always hoped for the future but now I must believe what I see. I don't want to.

I am so damn tired and I am not even sure I have the right to be.

I will never understand why we can't love everything and everyone. I will never understand that there are actually greedy people, bad people, mean people, people who hate and kill, people who prey on the vulnerable, people who do not think about the animals, the earth, the air.

But then again I must understand humans and I know we are messy creatures. I have hurt and disappointed other humans. I have not done my best always. I do take responsibility, I do try to learn how to do better and I try again and that's all I can do. Sometimes it is not enough.

I'll keep loving you because shame never fixed a damn thing. Protests and boycotts do, voting on your ballot and with your money can, making the personal political can help, dedicating yourself to creating tiny changes in your community (it starts with you, then your household, then your friends, then your associations) and that can help a lot.

I developed this quality slowly over time where I come to the table with problems and then I think about all sides and then I shift my perspective and then I think of positives and ways to change, ways to help, and ways to make a difference. So I came here to write from deep sadness and some rage but by the end of it, I stop myself and hope rears it's head again. Hope doesn't stay down for long.

I wish this was true for us all but I know some brains don't work that way. Some have been hurt too deeply, bruised, abandoned, and let down too often.

Collective hurt hurts us all.

Deep in our veins, it flows through us and we change shape. We flow through our cities' arteries spreading, spreading, spreading.


Friday, June 19, 2020

Studio Visits, Exhibitions, Prints, and More!

I haven't drawn or painted since last week. I did walk to my studio on Tuesday and had an emotional re-entry and then gave it a deep clean and filmed my Tuesday Studio Video Visit. If you missed it you can see it again here.


After I recorded that video and moved some furniture around and regained my composure, I recorded a second video in my studio that you won't see for a while yet. Earlier this month, I applied for and was accepted to participate in a paid project with Leith Late, a virtual open studio a digital project, which will create a virtual map plotting studios in Leith. At each point on the map, there will be one video per selected artist showing their workspace within the studio along with a gallery of still images of their work. Leith Late is working to deliver the project with academic partners from The Science, Technology, and Innovation Studies at The University of Edinburgh. So as you can imagine I was very excited to be accepted into the project with a lot of other wonderful artists and makers from around Edinburgh. I can't wait to see what they do with all the videos and materials gathered from the various participants. I will keep you posted when the project officially launches! 

This week included more good news and opportunity: 
Two of my paintings have been accepted into the Paisley Art Institute 132nd Annual exhibition! This year due to Covid-19 the exhibition will be online, so now everyone can enjoy it! I am delighted to be part of it this year!

The Paisley Art Institute (PAI) has been at the forefront of promoting and supporting Scottish artists’ work since 1876.

The exhibition will be launched on 25th July 2020 on their website. http://www.paisleyartinstitute.org 


These are the pieces that were accepted.

I Carry The Light
Mixed media on canvas
2019 Megan Chapman
80x80x4cm
£1,450
The Anchor Holds
Mixed media on canvas
2019 Megan Chapman
80x80x4cm
£1,450

In other news, I launched my prints this week in my new Ko-Fi shop! The only place you can purchase the new limited edition prints of my accidental portraits! https://ko-fi.com/meganchapman/shop I am delighted that six prints have sold so far! You might imagine which one is proving the most popular just now - shocking! 


COLLECT

COLLECT

COLLECT

Dear patrons and collectors of my work during the lockdown: Thank you all for your much-needed support and encouragement. Your want of and belief in my work really kept me going. I have started preparing your work for the post today and will let everyone know as soon as I have posted your work to you so that you will know when to expect it roughly. Please keep in mind the postal service is still running a bit slower than usual and it may take me a bit longer to get everything organised again, but today I shall start the process! Thanks so much for your patience and again for your support!

And that's all I have for you this week on this Juneteenth. I will leave you with the powerful voice of Mahalia Jackson. Here's a petition to sign to make Juneteenth a national holiday. Click the link to sign: http://chng.it/vX95jbdqyf




Friday, June 12, 2020

Auction, Art, Action

I am catching up after a bit of a pause and delay, so if you missed the past two blog posts they are here and here.

A good reason to post a blog this week is to promote an important auction I am participating in. The benefit auction has been organised by a friend and fellow artist from my school days back in Fayetteville, Arkansas, the brilliant jeweler Flannery Grace Good who is now based in Kansas City. The auction is supporting two charities, the ACLU (American Civil Liberties Union) and the NAACP Legal Defense Fund (
The premier civil rights law organization in America). The winning bidder will get to choose which charity they will donate to directly, with 100% of the funds going to the charity. 

For this event, I donated an artist's proof of my (soon to be released) limited edition giclee print of my Accidental Portrait #17 (Fuck) on heavyweight archival matte paper (220gsm/81lb) signed in pencil. A3 sized/11.7×16.5" The bidding started at $65. The auction started Thursday, June 11 at 8pm CST and ends Sunday, June 14 at 8pm CST. So there is still plenty of time to have a look at not only my work (which as of this writing is currently going for $150) but also all the other wonderful items offered by artists all around the world. 

The auction is happening over on Flannery's Instagram page with instructions on how to bid in her feed. Please go check it out and support these vital organisations. Well done to Flannery for organising this, no small task at all. I am honoured to be able to participate. Let's try to raise as much money as we can. Thank you. 

My offering. I am very pleased with the colour and quality of the reproduction.
Stay tuned for more information about my upcoming print release!

In other news, I have been doing a bit of drawing and a bit of research for a new body of work or at least some preliminary sketches towards something new... only time will tell if it fully materialises. 











In continuing actions, besides signing more petitions and having more conversations, reading, researching, and listening, I participated again in the UK wide call to action to protest wherever you were, doorstep, street, garden, or a socially distanced group protest to take the knee and or stand in solidarity with the Black Lives Matter movement. I took the knee and stood outside on the road with my hand-painted sign Wednesday night at 6pm and was approached by a bewildered and slightly confrontational "all lives matter" white man. We talked for a while and then he seemed to understand and peacefully walked away. I thanked him for coming to talk to me.



Go check out the auction. Next week, we will talk about the print release among other things. Keep fighting and talking. Thank you.

Friday, June 5, 2020

Action and Art

I am posting this two weeks later than the actual date, filling in gaps where I have been silent. I am doing this mostly so I can remember what was being created at this time. This blog often serves as a record for me in the future.

For the past two weeks, I have been quiet and listening, outraged and sad, and holding space in solidarity with black people around the world. It didn't feel like the right time to record a chirpy Tuesday Studio Video Visit, nor did it feel right to write another blog on Friday as if it was business as usual in the world. I haven't painted much since the last portrait (FUCK - that I shared on this blog last week and below) but I have been looking at a lot of art, reading, researching, donating, and being as politically active as possible and protesting from a safe distance and attending online rallies and discussions on racism offered through a black-led organisations.


Here are the organisations I have been able to aid in some small way so far thanks to my art patrons.
Showing up for Racial Justice
https://www.showingupforracialjustice.org/
Organization for Black Struggle
https://www.obs-stl.org/
Family of George Floyd
https://www.gofundme.com/f/georgefloyd
National Lawyers Guild Mass Defense Fund
https://www.nlg.org/massdefenseprogram/
The Bail Project
https://bailproject.org/
Stand up to Racism UK
http://www.standuptoracism.org.uk/

Action for Breonna Taylor:
1) Email Mayor Greg Fischer to demand that the LMPD fire and revoke pensions of the officers who murdered Breonna; and arrest, charge, and convict them for this crime. Email: Greg.Fischer@louisvilleky.gov
2) Demand that special prosecutor Daniel Cameron comport with full transparency and accountability. Email: attorney.general@ag.ky.gov
Please join us in this fight by making your voice heard now. Further information is at FightforBreonna.org

Defund the Police: 

UK Actions:
Action for UK Government Stop Arming US State Violence with Exports:
Justice for Sheku Bayoh:
10 petitions to sign today that support Black Lives Matter in the UK:
On Wednesday, June, 3rd at 6pm there was a UK wide call to action to protest wherever you were, doorstep, street, garden, or a socially distanced group protest to take the knee and or stand in solidarity with the Black Lives Matter movement. I took the knee and stood outside on the road with my hand-painted sign. 

We must show up where we are, it might feel performative at first, scary, or odd. I had to examine that within myself. I had to look back at my white life and privilege, acknowledge my mistakes and missteps, talk about racism and bias, and ask questions of my friends and family. Why is my Instagram feed so white, why are the cities I live in so white? Why is the art I see so white? What can I do about it? What do I need to learn? What do I need to change? This is on us as white people. I might get it wrong and when I do (not if) I will take responsibility and listen. I'd rather get it wrong and be corrected and learn than stand back in silence. We have to keep talking and taking action not just this week or the next, but for the rest of our lives.


Now to the art, I made around this time and the last studio video visit I recorded. 

Accidental portrait #15, mixed media
20x16" on heavyweight 250gsm paper.
It has a fine-grain linen-textured surface that has been double-primed and is acid-free.
£270

Accidental portrait #16
mixed media 20x16" on heavyweight 250gsm paper.
It has a fine-grain linen-textured surface that has been double-primed and is acid-free.
Sold

Accidental portrait #17
mixed media 20x16" on heavyweight 250gsm paper.
It has a fine-grain linen-textured surface that has been double-primed and is acid-free.
Sold


Until next week, I hope you are staying safe and well. Thank you. Keep fighting!

Friday, May 29, 2020

Funerary potatoes for a nation




I wake up at first light. I stand in the tiny kitchen in front of the window with the morning sun. I peel potatoes, they had eyes and were sprouting, but if I do this now I can save them. I am not sure what I am making. The sun continues to shine and the cool breeze enters the window. I feel fortunate to know that I can save these potatoes and that I can avoid waste. I assemble ingredients I have on hand and look up a recipe to confirm my instincts. I am making funerary potatoes for a nation. I didn't mean to but here we are, my eyes fill with tears when I realise. Hell, I might be making funerary potatoes for the world. I would share them with you and your family, you and your community, you in your time of loss, and you in your need for comfort. You with your rage, I would share with you too. 

Friday, May 22, 2020

Overlooker (you don't need to think on it)

Overlooker (you don't need to think on it)
mixed media
A3 size/11.7x16.5”
150gm acid-free smooth cartridge paper















The wind is rattling the blinds against the window frame and my peony tumped over on the patio. The neighbour's laundry runs parallel with the ground while my wind chimes are caught in the vine I am training to take over the landlord's house. 

The sun hits my hands and I am warm but I take comfort under a brightly coloured and stitched blanket. I am a sunflower along the highway as I move my yellow chair to face the light. I had to broker a deal with my cat.

Such a cautious display

Friday, May 15, 2020

I'll send myself a post card to remember

Headphones on. One song on repeat."So long, bad feeling..." the voice of Paul Banks hits the spot it has hit repeatedly, this time not with Interpol but with another new project, as a member of MUZZ. I find it auspicious that Paul Banks has been on lockdown in Edinburgh since March 12th. If you have followed this blog long enough, you know why I am even mentioning this or even seriously using the word auspicious. 

Good luck charm. Good Omen. Wake up call. A voice that fit into the receptor site in my brain that was looking for something in my thirties and now here I am in my late forties, and it still works. Like some old memory that isn't mine, the vibrations continue to propel me forward to unlock my secrets clothed in his vagueries. And this is good for THE ART. 

I was unwell this week, dizzy and strange, mostly exhausted from Sunday night through most of this week, however, I am happy that I am seemingly well again. 

I finished a couple of pieces this week, thanks to Paul of course. I smile to myself and I wish you knew my sense of humour better. I'm one of those funny women and I laugh a lot. 

I started sending myself postcards of my art. Pieces I don't want to forget, pieces from this time that are keys to something more. Notes to myself as I am working. Remember this. This is good. Trust this. 

Here are this week's works. 


Solidly in the centre (not moving)
mixed media
A3 size/11.7x16.5”
150gm acid-free smooth cartridge paper
£125

Imaginary traits (you brought me here)
mixed media
A3 size/11.7x16.5”
150gm acid-free smooth cartridge paper
Sold

Thank you. Be well. I appreciate you and all your love and support. Thanks for being awake to all that it is beautiful and divine. It's easy to lose that, and I never want us to lose that.

Friday, May 8, 2020

To lean away from a black hole

Accidental Portrait Number 14
Mixed media drawing 20x16" 
on heavyweight 250gsm paper

I am always a bit hesitant to share my "accidental portraits" as they are a sideline expression and one that I have less confidence in so I will always feel more vulnerability towards showing them. This piece, as it is topical, I didn't want to be careless with it. I didn't start out to draw a person with a mask, but it showed up of course since this is our collective consciousness right now. I started this piece last Thursday but it wasn't quite right so I scrubbed it down and turned it away from me and it bothered me all weekend. On Monday morning I returned to it with a bit of a calmer mind and tried to resolve it. I shared it with two trusted souls privately before I shared it publicly. It is a moment in time that I decided needed to be. 


I recorded my Tuesday Studio Video Visit about the piece as well. If you missed it on Facebook, you can see it here. 


On Wednesday, I attended an online meeting hosted by Scottish Artists Union featuring Amanda Catto, Head of Visual Arts at Creative Scotland who was there to listen to member concerns and provide more information on changes to the Open Fund. It was very helpful to have direct access like this and learn more. It was a really informative and enjoyable meeting. I would encourage all union members to tune into future Wednesday meetings as there will be many more in the series. If you are not yet a member, consider joining.

On Thursday, I shared my Ko-Fi Fundraising page to highlight the fact that I am trying to create some additional funding for myself during these strange days.

As you know, I am paying for a studio I am currently unable to use during the COVID-19 crisis. The galleries I have work in are currently closed and exhibitions are canceled (except online!!). I am selling bits and pieces online here and there (THANK YOU, PATRONS) but your additional support of £3 could really help fill in the gaps. I have offered some images available for download in exchange for your support. Thank you! I have set a goal to raise 1 month's studio rent to start. It's about buying time to work without worry. Imagine what would be freely created in our society if we didn't have this strain? Thank you. https://ko-fi.com/meganchapman 


As I am writing this blog, I can gratefully report that 98% of my goal of one month of my studio rent was raised by your generosity! Thank you! I have applied for some additional arts funding as well, so hopefully, I will receive some relief in that form as well, but every little bit helps especially as I wait to be notified. 

With my spirits boosted, I was able to return to a painting I had started last week and I was able to finish it last night. I am really excited. I love painting on paper and I am enjoying working with pastels and more traditional drawing materials during this time. This process has created a spark in my work. 

To lean away from a black hole
mixed media
A3 size/11.7x16.5”
150gm acid-free smooth cartridge paper

Until next week, take good care, and thank you.

Support these galleries. 
Velvet Easel 
Solo Gallery
Irving Gallery (instalment plans available and a 15% discount with code until May 25th)

Friday, May 1, 2020

Mark making, podcasts, videos and more!

Happy May Day!

Here we are, we've made it to another Friday. I hope you are staying well. It just occurred to me that I didn't promote last week's blog post so if you missed it, you can read it here.

This week has been somewhat productive but also a bit pensive and introspective - more on that later.

I did make some work this week.

Something so awful in the beauty (temporary space)
mixed media 41x51cm/20x16" on heavyweight 250gsm paper. It has a fine-grain linen-textured surface that has been double-primed and is acid-free.
£270
Your sad parade (subject to change)
mixed media 41x51cm/20x16" on heavyweight 250gsm paper. It has a fine-grain linen-textured surface that has been double-primed and is acid-free.
£270

I also worked on a couple of other pieces and an accidental portrait. I recorded my Tuesday Studio Video Visit with a verbal walkthrough of some of the most recent works on paper.



I also recorded a new podcast to walk you through the seven works I have available through Solo Gallery in Innerleithen in the gorgeous Scottish Borders. You can view them all in a previous blog post here https://bit.ly/2Sdpxrr or just listen to the podcast here https://bit.ly/2KEzASk. You can now view and purchase them directly from the gallery from their new gorgeous website.

To the introspective part. This morning I woke up and thought about the just over five and a half years I have lived in Edinburgh and what all I have accomplished with my art during that time. You can read all of that here. It's a quick 4-minute read and it helped me put some things in perspective. Thank you for supporting my work, checking in here, and enjoying the other content I provide. Your support keeps me on the path.

Thank you.

Friday, April 17, 2020

Work, Space, Words, Breathe

The ease of being seen
mixed media, A3 size/11.7x16.5”
150gm smooth cartridge paper

To be made uncomfortable (you’re so dynamic)
mixed media, A3 size/11.7x16.5”
150gm smooth cartridge paper
Tuesday Studio Video Visit:



I was asked to share my thoughts about a couple of the paintings in the current exhibition at Irving Gallery and how the series came about and developed. I recorded a short podcast about this and I hope you will find it interesting. I suggest visiting the Irving gallery's website to look at my work while you listen. Thank you!

Listen to "Megan Chapman’s Favourite Mistakes | Irving Gallery Oxford" on Spreaker.

Support my work:
Building a community around art is an essential and joyful part of my process. Every £3 donation helps to support my ongoing practice as an artist and enables me to share my passion with you. Your donations keep me working. Thank you. Until next week, stay well and safe. The world needs you.