Added to Creative Stoke, 25th January 2010

New! 25.01.10    
Job:  British Waterways is seeking a creative community artist to design site-specific art pieces to be located along the two canals which run through the City Waterside and Middleport areas of the city of Stoke-on-Trent. Through a series of workshops, the successful artist would be required to involve, engage and consult the remaining members of the local community in these areas. Consultation and workshops would start in February / March 2010, with the finished design completed in May 2010. Artist Fee: £7,000 to include all development work, workshops, workshop materials, production of designs, installation supervision and expenses. Application deadline: 8th February 2010. Full details from: louise.north@britishwaterways.co.uk

New! 25.01.10    
Added to the Directory: Chris Hepburn is a talented young photographer from Staffordshire. He has a special talent for making stock images, and his work is for sale at iStockphoto and Getty Images.

New! 25.01.10    
Added to the Directory: Staffordshire Moorlands photographer Chris Lees has a new website for his special boudoir photography services.

New! 25.01.10    
Added to the Directory: Klair Scattergood is a local children’s artist and illustrator. Klair also has an Etsy shop selling her unique artwork, jewellery pieces, journals and cards. Klair can also teach workshops in creative bookmaking and bookbinding classes for adults, both online and in the classroom.


“Time for a brew” by Klair Scattergood.

New! 24.01.10    
Job:  Over in the East Midlands, Nottingham Castle is offering a £9,000 Fellowship for a 6-month guest curator. This is timed to coincide with the re-hanging of the permanent collection at the Nottingham Castle Museum & Art Gallery. The Curatorial Fellow will work with the team to plan the new installation of the collection and devise a new exhibition for the Museum and Art Gallery for the 2011 programme. Application deadline: 8th February 2010. The start date is negotiable, but is anticipated to be in September 2010. More information from:  nationalprogrammes@contemporaryartsociety.org

New! 22.01.10    
Want to do a professional Masters degree in a creative subject? There may be a rare funded opportunity at Lincoln. The Arts and Humanities Research Council are currently offering funding to universities which do not hold a Block Grant Partnership (BGPs are allocations of postgraduate studentships in specific subjects). The AHRC states that it…

“expects the majority of successful proposals to be in the area of Creative and Performing Arts, and that the awards will tend to be Professional Preparation Masters Schemes.”

The deadline is 6th May 2010, but there are likely to be internal application deadlines before that. All eligible universities have been capped on the number of submissions — many will only be allowed to submit five applications to the AHRC, making this scheme as fiercely competitive as other AHRC-funded funded studentships are. Currently, from the West and East Midlands only Lincoln University is known to be bidding. Lincoln is somewhat accessible (2hrs 50mins) via train from Stoke-on-Trent station — and the main Lincoln campus is right next to the train station.

New! 22.01.10    
As of this week, all of the DAZ 3D human base-models are now free. These are add-on packs for the free DAZ Studio 3.0. DAZ Studio has proven to be very useful human-figure reference software, used by figurative artists ranging from painters to graphic novelists.

New! 22.01.10    
Added to the Directory: University of the Third Age branches in Alsager, Congleton, Crewe, and Leek — several of which offer many affordable (£1 per session) classes in crafts and creative activities. Sadly, there doesn’t appear to be a UTA branch in the Potteries?

New! 22.01.10    
The best young crime writers in North Staffordshire are being sought in a national micro-story competition, organised by the Crime Writers’ Association. The competition is open to anyone aged 18. Deadline: 19th February 2010. Stories can be up to 1,000 words, and can be submitted via any of Stoke-on-Trent’s local libraries.

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Added to Creative Stoke, 21st January 2010

New! 21.01.10    Crewe Amateur Dramatics Society is looking for young male actors (17 years and up) for a production of Hello Dolly (Crewe Lyceum, 16th-20th March 2010). Rehearsals are on Thursdays from 7.30pm, at St Michael’s Church Hall, Ford Lane, Crewe. More details from: 01270 763837 or 07850 185860.

New! 21.01.10    
The Performing Rights Society “Awards to Promoters” scheme is now open for 2010 applications. You can apply for £3,000 if you: have at least one year’s track record of promoting events; will be promoting at least eight events over a 12 month period; and will be programming new British music of any genre. The first deadline is 12th February 2010. Full details are available at the website.

New! 21.01.10    Job:  A musician or music industry professional is being sought to establish a pilot record company at a school in nearby Telford, Shropshire. This project involves a core team of 10 children and supporting staff, and will support school-based musicians to develop their understanding of the music business and also offer opportunities for career development. The position is paid at £220 per day, for an inital contract of up to 12 days (with the possibility of further days pending) between January and July 2010. For further information about the school and project contact either Felix Pepler (Creative Agent) on 01562 700400 / 07967 364315 or Andy Calderbank (Head of Music) on 01952 387400.

New! 21.01.10     In the 2nd Annual Stoke-on-Trent Ceramics Lecture, Terry Woolliscroft will tell “The Tale of the Toilet”. Delving deep into the city’s archives, the talk will trace the milestones in the history of this vital element of bathroom product design, and the role of the Thomas Twyford’s famous factory at Cliffe Vale (Stoke-on-Trent) in inventing and designing the flushing toilet. The venue is Stoke-on-Trent City Archives (Hanley public library) on Weds 10th February 2010, 2pm. Further details from: natalie.baker@stoke.gov.uk   Tickets cost £4.

New! 20.01.10    
PiCL (formerly Creative Partnerships Stoke-on-Trent) is offering a series of seven free learning events to local creative practitioners in Stoke-on-Trent and Staffordshire. More details from the web page above, or from Programme Coordinator Iain Perry at:   iain@picl.uk.com

New! 20.01.10     Job:  An experienced West Midlands Film Producer is wanted for a short film to be made in association with Screen West Midlands and the UK Film Council. An award-winning Director and Cinematographer are attached to the £8,000-£10,000 budget project. The Producer fee is negotiable. You need to start as soon as possible, and be available until the film’s completion. Filming will take place in the West Midlands. More details from:  ryan.vernava@googlemail.com

New! 20.01.10    Keele University is to provide up to 30 PhD studentships across the four research Institutes that make up the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences. Expressions of interest for these highly competitive awards are now invited, for research proposals in the following areas: cultural and social history from the local to the global; musicology since 1900; creative applications of music technologies; and interdisciplinary approaches to life-writing. Application deadline: 28th February 2010. Full information from:  h.farrell@ilpj.keele.ac.uk

New! 20.01.10    
The Coalfields Regeneration Trust is inviting applications from local groups in North Staffordshire to apply for up to £30,000 capital or revenue funding. This is a one-off opportunity. Grants will be paid on 1st April 2010 and will run for a maximum of 12 months. Projects should address a need arising from the current recession. Applications deadline: 5th February 2010. Full details from: neil.topliss@coalfields-regen.org.uk

New! 20.01.10    Keele University has launched a new graduate internship scheme in the West Midlands, called “Project Future Industry Training” (FIT). FIT will provide unemployed graduates with six-week work experience placements in local firms in the digital industries, professional services, and the ceramics industry. Formal applications are not yet being invited, since these industry placements will run from April and September 2010. But companies and graduates can register their interest now, by emailing:  internships@uso.keele.ac.uk

New! 20.01.10    There’s to be a second Pecha Kucha night at Fat Cats bar in Hanley, Stoke-on-Trent (7-10pm, 11th March). Each participant will give a short presentation (20 slides in just over 6 minutes). If you’re interested, please email: stokepechakucha@yahoo.co.uk

New! 20.01.10    
Stoke-based Anna Francis is inviting all photographers to obtain one of her “There is Beauty In The City” magnetic labels, and to photograph your magnet in a beautiful location in Stoke-on-Trent or any other city you may visit. Send the photo in to thereisbeautyinthecity@yahoo.co.uk (as a normal .jpg file, no more than 2Mb). You can get your magnet by emailing your postal address to the artist Anna Francis, and she will send you one; alternatively, you can download the template from her blog and print out your own ‘There is Beauty’ sign. In 2010 the project aims to exhibit in the UK and beyond, and is also considering a publication.


Added to Creative Stoke, 19th January 2010

New! 19.01.10    
The Crafts Council is undertaking a major national research project ahead of the 2010 General Election, to help make the case for public-funding of crafts in the UK. The project is titled Making Value : the economic and social contribution of craft makers, and for it the Council is now seeking to profile: independent crafts makers who have a portfolio practice; makers who apply their craft skills in community arts activities and workshops; crafts makers in industry (e.g.: ceramics, architecture); and back-stage crafts workers engaged in set-design, model-making or prop-making for films and TV. They also want to hear from people working in ways that are ‘off the radar’ of official bodies. A key element of the research will be short telephone interviews. Research documentation, including case studies, will be launched at a Crafts Council conference on 22nd June 2010. Interested? Please contact research@craftscouncil.org.uk by 15th February 2010.

New! 18.01.10    
“The Art of Microbudget Filmmaking” is a rare West Midlands event on the topic. The day of screenings and seminars will be held at The Electric Cinema in Birmingham city-centre (at the back of New St. station) on 25th January 2010, from 9.30am until 4pm. Members of Birmingham’s Producers Forum get a free ticket, and for everyone else the cost is £80 + VAT for the day. More details from:  info@producersforum.org.uk

New! 18.01.10    
The first national conference for Creative Partnerships schools, of which there are many in North and Mid Staffordshire, will be held on 3rd March 2010, at the ICC in Birmingham city-centre. The registration form is here.

New! 18.01.10    
The Victoria Mill Art Centre is a new arts centre in Congleton. The Centre is now seeking tenants for the few final remaining studio-spaces, before the opening day. The new centre will be launched as part of Cheshire East Council’s Artsweek (from 20th February 2010).


Added to Creative Stoke, 16th January 2010

New! 16.01.10    
Job:  Moorlands Radio, based in Leek, Staffordshire, require a full-time Station Manager to lead the team of paid and voluntary staff. The successful candidate will be an experienced radio professional and will have worked within community radio, commercial radio or the BBC. A good knowledge of the Staffordshire Moorlands is essential, as well as good editorial judgement. Deadline: 24th January 2010.

New! 16.01.10    
Local product designers may be interested in the “How To Design and Market your Electronic Product” seminar. This is an IET event in March 2010, at the Ruxton Technology Centre, Beaconside Stafford Campus, Staffordshire University. More details from:  s.o.wane@staffs.ac.uk

New! 16.01.10    
It’s short notice, but there’s a Therapeutic Creative Writing course at Hartington Hall in the nearby Peak District, from 20th January 2010. Local writer Kath Morris is offering workshops as part of a “Wonderous Stories” retreat in the beautiful setting of Hartington Hall. Workshop price includes lunch and refreshments. The retreat price of £160 includes full board, with three-course dinner in the award-winning restaurant. More details from: kathmorris100@tiscali.co.uk

New! 16.01.10    
Added to the Directory: Rising Brook Writers. The group is based at the Rising Brook Library in Stafford.

New! 16.01.10    
Added to the Directory: Moorlands Radio, based in Leek, Staffordshire.

New! 16.01.10    
Added to the Directory: No Redemption, a gothic / industrial-metal band from Stoke-on-Trent who have recently written and recorded the music for the Philip Gardiner/Warner Brothers’ film The Stone. Their MySpace page has links to recent press coverage and to the BBC Radio Stoke interview. The band also have a YouTube Channel.

New! 14.01.10    
Job:  Artists are invited to submit an expression of interest in relation to a Research Residency in nearby Derby. This is intended to lead to a commission of temporary art to celebrate the regeneration of Derby city centre. Fee: £6,000. Deadline: 27th January 2010. The full brief is here.


Added to Creative Stoke, 13th January 2010

New! 13.01.10    
The European Entrepreneurship Video Award 2010 is now inviting entries. The deadline is 9th April 2010. Simply produce a short video (one to two minutes, animation or camera-based work) that deals with the following questions: What is entrepreneurship about? What could encourage people to become entrepreneurs? What could counteract old prejudices and offer new visions of entrepreneurship? Prizes of up to 3,333 Euros are available to the winners. There are also special prizes are reserved for film-makers aged 25 or younger. Entry is not limited to schools and universities — business and management schools, members of business networks and associations, entrepreneurs and professionals, and intellectuals are all are invited to portray their own experiences in the field of entrepreneurship. Full details at the website.

New! 13.01.10    
At the start of a year which will see huge funding cuts to the arts and their supporting public services, it’s probably useful to point out that the National Campaign for the Arts now has a newly-launched revamped website.

New! 13.01.10    
Tickets are now on sale for the two-day professional animation conference in Stoke-on-Trent. The conference is part of the Stoke Your Fires animation festival and will happen from 26th – 27th February 2010. Leading industry speakers include Christian DeVita (lead storyboard artist on Fantastic Mr. Fox), and professional voice artist Marc Silk (Roary the Racing Car and Fifi and the Flowertots). To book you place email:  info@stokeyourfires.com

New! 12.01.10    
‘Ears Wide Open: a creative adventure in sound’ is a rare funded opportunity for a creative from the West Midlands to collaborate with someone in the East Midlands. Two writers (one from the West Midlands and one from the East Midlands) will be selected to collaborate and write a series of short plays in response to locations in Birmingham and Nottingham. There is a bursary of £2,000 to each selected writer, aiming to make a series of recorded stories/dramas/narratives which will be experienced by listeners in locations in both cities as part of the Birmingham Book Festival and the Momentum New Writing Festival. Expressions of interest are invited from East or West Midlands -based writers. Send your C.V., a sample of your writing (no more than 15 pages), and a side of A4 which outlines what kind of sound piece or radio play you would like to create to be heard by a listener in a city centre location of your choice. Deadline: 28th February 2010. The working/writing period will be March to June 2010, with publication later in the year.

New! 12.01.10    
The Prince’s Trust Business Programme can provide support to people aged between 18 and 30 who are unemployed or working less than 16 hours a week. The type of support available includes a low interest loan of up to £4,000 (up to £5,000 for a partnership); ongoing advice from a business mentor; access to a wide range of products and services. This includes a free legal helpline sponsored by Barclays Bank; a grant of up to £1,500 in special circumstances (subject to local availability); and a test-marketing grant of up to £250 (subject to local availability). Applications to the programme can be made at any time.


Added to Creative Stoke, 11th January 2010

New! 11.01.10    
Staffordshire University has launched a series of guest lectures, aiming to inspire greater confidence and collaboration among North Staffordshire businesses. Stoke-based entrepreneur Mark Lewis, CEO of the MSL Adventure Group, will be the main speaker at the first event of 2010 on 21st January. John O’ Reilly, Managing Director of Ladbrokes Online and a former lecturer of Staffordshire University, is to speak on 15th April. Anyone who wants to find out more can contact Jodie Cochrane at:  business@staffs.ac.uk

New! 11.01.10    
Added to the Events List:  The Design Council is running a “Designing Demand” free half-day workshop on 25th February 2010. It’ll be held at the Wedgwood Museum, Barlaston, Stoke-on-Trent — from 8.30am to 1.30pm. The aim is to help local businesses discover how to become more innovative, more competitive and more profitable by using design. To book a place please visit the website and book online.

New! 11.01.10    
Added to the Directory: The New English is a design-based ceramics firm located in Stoke-on-Trent. Their aim is to be “the Vivienne Westwood of the tableware world”.

New! 11.01.10    
The West Midlands cultural sector recession survey for the October–December 2009 quarter is now live. Cultural venues and heritage organisations based in the region are invited to complete the survey. Deadline: 13th January 2010.

New! 11.01.10    
Job:  Staffordshire University Business School require a full-time Projects Officer, Enterprise & Entrepreneurship (ref: BS09/6). Based at the Stafford campus, you’ll develop facilities for local entrepreneurs and business start-ups, specifically the Student Placements for Entrepreneurs in Education Project (SPEED). Deadline: 25th January 2009. For full details, email: jobs@staffs.ac.uk quoting reference BS09/6.

New! 10.01.10    
“The Right Funds for You” is a business event to be held at Acton Trusell near Stafford, on 26th Jan 2010 (3.30pm – 7pm). If you’re a small to medium sized firm based in the West Midlands, and are seeking to fulfil high-growth potential through investment, then this is the event for you. The seminar is fully subsidised for companies in the West Midlands and will be presented by four industry experts who will cover grant, debt, venture capital and business angel finance options. There will also be an opportunity to network over light refreshments following the presentations. More details from: helen@connectmidlands.org


Added to Creative Stoke, 9th January 2010

New! 09.01.10    
Added to the Directory: Lampros Kalfuntzos is a digital fantasy artist based in Stoke-on-Trent. He has a new website, and his work recently featured in Advanced Photoshop magazine…

New! 09.01.10    
Added to the Directory: Revive Creative is a newly-formed freelance graphic-design and creative artwork service in Stoke-on-Trent, with over 13 years of studio experience in marketing design.

New! 09.01.10    
Added to the Directory: The West Midlands Golfer magazine, edited from Leek in the Staffordshire Moorlands and published from Stoke-on-Trent. Issues can be read online

New! 09.01.10     Added to the Directory: David Lawrence Barber, a painter from Newcastle-under-Lyme.

by David Lawrence Barber

New! 09.01.10    
Urban Vision North Staffordshire is holding its 5th annual photographic competition and exhibition, and is asking people to visualise “What’s New? in North Staffordshire”. Competition entries will be exhibited at the Burslem School of Art from 19th March 2010, and awards for the best photograph in each category will be presented at the exhibition launch event. Deadline: 26th Feb 2010. Creative Stoke has the entry form here (PDF link, 1.2mb)…

New! 09.01.10    
The Light House in nearby Wolverhampton is running a free five-week course in video editing, starting on 2nd February 2010. The course runs on Tuesdays & Wednesdays, from 10am – 4pm on each day. For more information, or to arrange a time to attend an informal advice and guidance session on Fri 15th January 2010, please contact Kelly Jeffs at: kelly@light-house.co.uk

Also at the Light House, on 12th Jan 2010, is Screen Forum’s free premiere of film produced on the Digishorts scheme. Digishorts is an annual production scheme that offers film-makers the chance to develop and produce a short film with support from Screen WM and the UK Film Council — and a budget of up to £10,000. The six films funded in 2008/9 will be shown, and fter the screening there will be a Q&A with some of the filmmakers who will be offering insights into their experiences. To reserve a free place, contact: info@light-house.co.uk

New! 08.01.10    
There’s a new freelancers social network on Ning. Freelance Local aims to support Staffordshire-based creative freelancers.

New! 08.01.10    
With Avatar in the cinemas, your editor has been asked to research and recommend a complete and affordable suite of “virtual movie-making” software for schools. This isn’t about cameras, lenses and costumes — these movies are computer-generated using videogame-like tools and advanced audio-generation. My costed briefing on the topic is available here (PDF file).

New! 08.01.10     Stoke-on-Trent’s Stoke Your Fires Festival of Animation now has much of its 2010 programme online — and has confirmed the VFX Tutor at Escape Studios, Lee Danskin, as leading a masterclass on 25th February 2010.

New! 08.01.10    
“The Engine Room Pitch” is an intensive two-day proposal development and pitching workshop, to help documentary film-makers prepare for UK and international funding. Applicants must be West Midlands-based film-makers. The cost of the workshop is £30 for all attendees, and it will happen at The Bond, Birmingham, from 23rd – 24th March 2010. More details from: charlie@sidf.co.uk

New! 08.01.10    
Are you a design-based business, exploring the use of new advanced materials? Midlands’ universities have a new £20m scheme to open up their labs to small and medium-sized firms. Contact Birmingham Science City Advanced Materials for full details.

New! 08.01.10    
The Central Youth Theatre in nearby Wolverhampton are seeking an experienced part-time Freelance Theatre in Education Director in arts and health. Deadline: 15th January 2010. More details from Jane Ward at: twwajane@aol.com