Creative Stoke update, 26th June 2012

26.06.12   
Creative Stoke will now be taking a customary Summer break. Since January 2012 Creative Stoke has posted around 400 items on the “What’s New?” page. See you again in September 2012!

26.06.12   
Staffordshire University has made a welcome entry into the 2012 Artists’ Access to Art Colleges list. The annual national AA2A scheme offers university placements for visual artists and crafts makers. Application packs for places on AA2A (starting Oct 2012) should be available from the end of July, with application deadlines in September 2012. For details about the art-making facilities that will be on offer at Staffordshire, contact Anna Mawson at:  a.mawson@staffs.ac.uk

26.06.12   
Added to the Directory: Staffordshire University has a Staffordshire University Film Production Class (2010-2013) channel, on the Vimeo video service.

26.06.12   
North Staffordshire’s New Vic Theatre is celebrating 50 years of making theatrical works which span the generations. The ‘Our Age Our Stage’ celebration is happening on Tuesday 3rd July 2012 (1.30pm) at the Brampton Museum and Art Gallery, Newcastle-under-Lyme. This special event will…

“see members of the Ages and Stages project, a partnership between the New Vic and Keele University, join forces with the New Vic’s Youth Theatre to tell the stories of theatre-goers spanning the generations”

To book a place, contact Lynn Parry at:  lparry@newvictheatre.org.uk

26.06.12   
Submissions are invited from contemporary textile artists for an exhibition at the Shire Hall Gallery, Stafford, in January 2013. The show will be aimed at primary school children on school trips, and will show how stories are represented by different cultures. Application deadline: 16th July 2012. Full details at the Web page.

26.06.12   
The M.A. in Creative Futures at Staffordshire University is recruiting now for September 2012. Specialist pathways and awards available in: Design; Ceramic Design; Graphic Design; Product Design; Surface Pattern Design; Textile Design; 3D Design; Advertising and Brand Management; Illustration; Animation; VFX; Photography; Contemporary Art Practice; Writing; Heritage and Culture; and Applied Theatre.

26.06.12   
Added to the Directory: elloDave, a local advertising, design and marketing agency. Their recent work has included the design of the 2012/13 Newcastle-under-Lyme College prospectus

26.06.12   
Burslem’s Business Innovation Centre has a variety of business workshops in the second half of 2012. Including…

4th July: Intellectual Property Rights.
19th July: Will Your Idea Work?
3rd October: Protect and Fund Your Innovation.
31st October: New Product Development.
21st November: Marketing.

See their events flyer for full details.

26.06.12   
Added to the Directory: Ray Sheldon. Ray is an artist based in Stone, Staffordshire…


Ray Sheldon: “Tim Toft, Cello Player”.

26.06.12   
The North Staffordshire Volunteer Centres have free “walk leader training” sessions available on the following dates, which might be useful for those leading ‘arts trail’ and similar walks…

24th July 2012 – Newcastle Community Fire Station.
30th July 2012 – Biddulph Community Fire Station.
7th August 2012 – Cheadle Community Fire Station.
13th August 2012 – Leek, SMCVS, Bank House.
18th August 2012 – Kidsgrove Community Fire Station.

26.06.12   
Stoke-on-Trent’s Paul Hackney has helped to re-stock North Staffordshire with around 250 magnificent barn owls, creatures that were once close to extinction here. He’s now written and published a book on the experience, Growing Barn Owls In My Garden

26.06.12   
There’s an “Owl and Raptor Photo Workshop” at The Trentham Estate, Stoke-on-Trent. The date is Saturday 21st Jul 2012, and the cost is £99 per person. And on 16th January 2013 the North Staffordshire Conference Centre, Hartshill, will host an evening talk by Nick Martin on “The Secrets of Wildlife Photography“.

26.06.12   
Fast and affordable rural broadband is essential for the creative industries in the Midlands. Staffordshire County Council is investing £7.44m in broadband, to be matched by the Government — and you can help the Council to get the cash and spend it in the right places, by filling in a short survey on your need for broadband. Closing date: 1st July 2012.

26.06.12   
Birmingham’s Grand Union is offering a writing bursary for “new or emerging” West Midlands-based arts writers. Specifically, writing about contemporary art. On offer are six half-day mentoring sessions, and a £1,500 bursary. Deadline: 27th July 2012. Full details at the Web page.

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Creative Stoke update, 19th June 2012

19.06.12   
Stoke-on-Trent’s Lumi wants to discover new writing about the real Britain…

“Here at Lumi we want to produce an anthology of writing about the many places of the UK, with the theme “Hometown”. We want people up and down the nation to write about their hometown. It can be fiction, fact, journalism, poetry. The word limit is 2,000 words, and the deadline is the 15th of August 2012. All submissions should be sent to:  editorlumi@gmail.com

19.06.12   
AmeCon is the largest UK convention dedicated to the celebration of Japanese animation, comics, culture, and cosplay. This major event will have screenings, guest creatives, cosplay parties, and more. The venue this year is the University of Keele, North Staffordshire, from 10th to 12th August 2012. Hurry with your booking, as tickets are going very fast!

19.06.12   
Stoke-on-Trent’s bITjAM is to run a Geeklab at the Burslem School of Art, on Saturday 14th July 2012 (12 noon – 4pm).

“Hack into Xbox Kinect sensors, turn an iPhone into a guitar, build a dubstep bass out of old hard-drives, or build ‘Insultabot’, a roaming robot that loves to insult.”

Geeklab also will be streamed live, on the Web…

“… with guest artists talking about their favourite gear, gadgets, techniques, experiences and also a few tutorials thrown in.”

19.06.12   
Job:  the New Vic Theatre, at Newcastle-under-Lyme, needs a full-time experienced Fundraiser.

19.06.12   
Job:  North Staffordshire’s B Arts is seeking an unpaid part-time Trustee, in the form of a “dynamic Chair”. The successful applicant will be expected to attend four Board meetings per year, held in Newcastle-Under-Lyme, in addition to any Strategic Planning Day/s and the Annual General Meeting. For an informal chat about this role, contact Trevelyan Wright on: 01782 717326.

19.06.12   
The 2012 Conservative Party Conference in Birmingham (7th-10th October 2012) is inviting Midlands start-up businesses to present themselves at the conference in a special business exhibition hub. A competition will select start-ups from different sectors. To be eligible your business has to have launched after May 2010. 12 finalists will be invited to the conference. Application deadline: 30th June 2012.

19.06.12   
The Arts Tour Programme provides funding to help people across England to bring great art to their local area. Projects over £10,000 are eligible for funding. At least 10% of the total cost of the activity is expected to come from other sources. Projects must take place over a maximum of three years. Application deadline: 29th June 2012. See the website for full details.

19.06.12   
The £4m Community Learning Innovation Fund wants to fund “new and imaginative” projects to encourage ongoing learning in adults. The maximum amount for any bid is £65,000 and the minimum is £10,000. Deadlines in June and July 2012. See the website for full details.

19.06.12   
Submissions are now being accepted for the Muslim Writers Awards 2012. The competition includes prizes for: “Unpublished Children’s Story”; and “Published Children’s Book Prize”. Deadline: 20th July 2012.

19.06.12   
Are you a member of a grassroots community group? Could you use 12 months of free Internet broadband service from BT? The BT Community Connections website has all the details on applying for this offer.

19.06.12   
Job: Staffordshire County Council and Craftspace require a West Midlands exhibition technician, to deliver their ‘Making Moves’ contemporary crafts touring exhibition, between September 2012 and August 2013. This will involve 24 days spread over 12 months @ £75 per day (inc. VAT & travel). Full details are online at the ‘Making Moves’ website

19.06.12   
Keele University’s new Nova Centre is looking for… “Businesses that have been trading for less than 12 months” and which have “big plans” for the future. The Nova Centre’s Business Growth Programme Round 1 is now accepting applications. Successful applicants will have access to a two-year business growth programme including: advice on growth, strategy, marketing, sales, and finance; opportunities to network; access to Keele facilities; and a flexible low-cost monthly tenancy on the Keele campus.

19.06.12   
Advance notice of the date of the annual “Let’s Do Business” business showcase event at the Britannia Stadium in Stoke-on-Trent. This year the date is set for 8th November 2012, and the organisers are hoping for… “95 exhibition stands and 600 visitors”.


Creative Stoke update, 16th June 2012

16.06.12   
Cre8net 3: the ‘Fringe Festival special’ is happening this coming Thursday, 21st June 2012! This event is one of a series of four creative industries information/training evenings happening in the city of Stoke-on-Trent…


Click on the picture to see the large version of the flyer.

The venue for this third event will Staffordshire University’s main Stoke Campus, from 5pm. The first hour will be informal networking and showcasing, followed by a routine by stand-up comedian Tony Vino, then more informal networking from 7pm-9pm.

16.06.12   
Added to the Directory: Bespoke Birdhouses is a crafts business run by Nigel Green who is based at Stone, near Stoke-on-Trent. Nigel recently created his “Peckingham Palace” bird-house for the Queen’s Golden Jubilee, which has been showcased around the British Isles by the sponsors Cuprinol.


Above: ‘Peckingham Palace’ bird-house by Nigel Green, seen in front of the real Buckingham Palace.

16.06.12   
Added to the Directory: Stoke Edits, a Stoke-on-Trent video specialist in producing BMX bike and skateboard films.

16.06.12   
Creative Stoke now has a ‘taster’ gallery of 10 pictures from Staffordshire University’s “Show and Tell 2012” art & design graduation exhibitions. The shows run until 23rd June at the main Stoke-on-Trent campus.

16.06.12   
Creative Stoke now has a ‘taster’ gallery of 10 pictures from “Firing Up”, a children’s ceramics showcase exhibition. This is the culmination of a Crafts Council project to boost interest in ceramics education, involving four Stoke-on-Trent schools. The “Firing Up” show runs until 23rd June 2012, at the main Stoke-on-Trent campus of Staffordshire University.

13.06.12   
There are now a total of six Business Enterprise coaches across North Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent. The free personal service is…

“available to any resident who is looking to explore the idea of working for themselves … from an initial idea through to setting up a business.”

Here are the June 2012 contact details for the various coaches…

* For Bentilee contact Gaynor Parkinson on 07834 657828 or e-mail: gaynorp@enterprisesupport.org

* For Burslem contact Gayle Jessiman on 07969 557915 or e-mail: gaylej@enterprisesupport.org

* For Hanley, contact Mark Edwards on 07972 083318 or e-mail: marke@enterprisesupport.org

* For Longton, contact Julie Holmes on 07866 807134 or e-mail: julieh@enterprisesupport.org

* For Newcastle-under-Lyme, contact Gemma Kirkland on 07875 418968 or e-mail: gemmak@enterprisesupport.org

* For Leek and the Staffordshire Moorlands, contact Sharron Freeman on 07834 031997 or e-mail: sharronf@enterprisesupport.org

16.06.12   
Artists are being invited to exhibit work at The Famous Lion pub in Stoke town, Stoke-on-Trent. Interested? Contact manager Nathan Williams via the pub’s Facebook page.

16.06.12   
“Making Money From Your Photography” is a training event set to happen in Stoke-on-Trent on 1st September 2012 (provisional date). Cost is £195. See the website for details.

16.06.12   
Stoke-on-Trent ceramics firm Potclays is hosting a series of hobbyist and crafts maker training events in 2012…

* 7th Aug 2012: Raku Kiln Building with John Wheeldon.

* 18th – 19th Sept 2012: Ceramic Relief Sculpture with Neil Dalrymple.

* 17th – 18th Oct 2012: Pot Throwing with David Frith.

* 13th Nov 2012: Glazing & Firing.

* 14th Nov 2012: Electric Kilns, Operation & Maintenance (in-depth).

16.06.12   
Crossing Frontiers in Music Education is a national conference set to happen on 5th – 6th October 2012, at Stone town (just south of Stoke-on-Trent).

16.06.12   
The first issue of Stoke Rocks! magazine is now available online, covering the thriving Stoke music scene…

16.06.12   
Staffordshire University’s annual creative writing publication Indent: a journal of new writing should be available very soon, in a £6.99 print edition at the university’s Fringe Festival.

16.06.12   
Stoke-on-Trent’s BitJam and Letting in the Light are teaming up to run animation training workshops for young people with learning disabilities. No dates yet, but it’s ‘one to watch’ if you know someone who might be interested in participating.


Creative Stoke update, 13th June 2012

13.06.12   
Innovation and Growth 2012 is a one-day event to be hosted by Staffordshire University on the 4th July 2012. The venue will be the Ruxton Technology Centre, at the Beaconside Campus in Stafford…

“how businesses across the region can engage to access finance and funding opportunities [via] Knowledge Transfer Partnerships, collaborative R&D, SMART Awards, and SBRI [the Small Business Research Initiative]”

13.06.12   
Digital Cultural Heritage Demonstrator: the Breakfast Road Show is an event happening on 21st June 2012, at Light House in Wolverhampton (a very short walk from the train station). The times are 8.30am – 10am and the event is free…

“The new £2.4 million ERDF-funded West Midlands Digital Cultural Heritage Demonstrator project is now underway. The project aims to demonstrate how collaborative projects, exploring the use of digital technology with the Cultural and Heritage sector, can develop new markets and increase profits for business. […] The project will offer tailored support from a wide range of experts in the field of digital technology and innovation and [at Birmingham University] will provide access to a suite of innovative multi-user, 3D multi-touch technologies, mobile devices and tablets, advanced user-testing facilities and augmented reality tools, all integrated into a unique digital prototyping lab.”

13.06.12   
Small “CommUni Action” grant of up to £50 are available to individuals and groups in Stoke-on-Trent. Anyone can apply to CommUni Action for help with a project idea. You can apply for support and advice from University staff and students, use of buildings and equipment, and for up to £50 in funding. The project is being supported by Staffordshire University and Student’s Union, Stoke-on-Trent City Council and the Hanley Building Society. Forms can be obtained directly from Staffordshire University by contacting Janet Hetherington at:  J.Hetherington@staffs.ac.uk

13.06.12   
Added to the Directory: UK Film Location is a film and TV location finding service based at Blythe Bridge near Stoke-on-Trent. They offer a directory of 600+ locations, spanning the Midlands and the UK.

There is also another service called the Stoke Film Office which can offer local locations advice, and which now has a new Facebook presence.

13.06.12   
Added to the Directory: the website for the Staffordshire University Film and Animation Society.

13.06.12   
News that the Black Country Reinvestment Society’s Small Business Loans service…

“plans to raise its lending limit to £100,000 this year [per business]”

The BCRS celebrates its 10th anniversary this April, and it makes loans to small businesses in the Black Country and Staffordshire. They now also have a new Stoke-on-Trent Business Loan Fund.

13.06.12   
There’s a new free photobook available, created by Mark Treacey, called The Gritstone Trail: a photographic ramble from Kidsgrove to Disley. The book creatively documents the famously tough ridge-and-hill walk called The Gritstone Trail

The Gritstone Trail currently terminates at Kidsgrove rail station. But this week your editor has also produced a new free ebook (PDF link), which unofficially takes the Trail from Kidsgrove into Stoke town. This extension is in keeping with the tough terrain of the Gritstone Trail, since it follows the ridgeway and offers sweeping views over Stoke-on-Trent.

13.06.12   
Creative Stoke doesn’t usually list arts and crafts exhibitions, but makes an exception for the end-of-year student shows:

  * Staffordshire University Show and Tell 2012 is the main arts and design graduation show. This huge show is spread over the ground floor spaces of the main Stoke-on-Trent campus, and opens on Friday the 15th of June 2012, from 6.30pm.

  * Inviso Exhibition: Staffordshire University’s 2012 photography graduates — including
Robert Simms: independent shops in Leek, and Ian Hilditch: Neolithic and Early Bronze Age sites in Derbyshire and Cheshire among others.

  * This year there is a Fringe festival based around the main Staffordshire art and design shows. These include: a “Gothic Storytelling Night”, Tues 19th June, 7:00pm at Spode in Stoke town; and a free talk by Nick Clements on ‘The Artist As Entrepreneur’, also on Tues 19th June 2012, 7:30pm, at the Staffordshire University Stoke campus.

  * Staffordshire University students have spent 12 weeks on making a Lego movie version of Christopher Nolan’s dream invasion movie Inception, now available for viewing online.

  * ‘Astound’ is the exhibition showcasing the work of students completing the Foundation Degree in Contemporary Art Practice at Leek College. The show is on now at the Nicholson in Leek town, until 23rd June 2012.

  * ‘Made’ is the Newcastle-under-Lyme College media, art and design final show, running from 23rd – 29th of June 2012.

13.06.12   
The Guardian newspaper has an obituary for North Staffordshire artist Jack Simcock (1929-2012), as does The Sentinel newspaper.

13.06.12   
Staffordshire County Council is currently consulting on its volunteering strategy. Deadline for responses is 8th August 2012.

13.06.12   
Local historian Fred Hughes has a new video online, in which he talks about the May un Mar Lady dialect comic strip published daily in The Sentinel newspaper…

The May un Mar Lady strip is also set to be made into a series of short radio performances, on Burslem’s 6 Towns Radio.

13.06.12   
The ATG Foundation’s ‘Ripple Effect’ project is set to happen at the Regent Theatre, in Hanley, Stoke-on-Trent. Local…

“young people from diverse backgrounds with limited experience of arts engagement”

…will work with playwright Ursula Rani Sarma, to make a new 15-20 minute play. Performance Date: Friday 6th July 2012. Full details:  karentownsend@theambassadors.com

B Arts also has a couple of places available for practitioners on a Ripple Effect developing professional-practice weekend, set for 16th-17th June 2012. Interested? Contact B Arts at:
info@b-arts.co.uk

13.06.12   
An innovative new pub game called ‘Librium’ has been invented / designed / produced from Stone, near Stoke-on-Trent. Kits for playing the game in your pub are now on sale online.

13.06.12   
The English Folk Dance and Song Society (EFDSS) has…

“launched a new scheme offering creative residencies at its London HQ. Open to individuals or groups who want to explore their creative potential and the English traditions, by undertaking a residency at Cecil Sharp House to research and develop new work. Bursaries in the region of £2,000. Application deadline: 30th June 2012. The residencies will run from September 2012 to March 2013. It is envisaged that three awards will be made.”

13.06.12   
Up to £2,500 Community First grants are available for community activities in four Stoke-on-Trent Council wards. There are various deadlines in June 2012. See the websites for each area, for details:

* Hanley West and Shelton (inc. Etruria, part of Cliffe Vale, the Staffs University campus and halls, and the river area);

* Fenton;

* Burslem North and Burslem South.

13.06.12   
Your editor’s JURN search-engine can now have its search results sorted by date, as well as by relevancy. JURN searches and delivers the full-text of articles from over 4,000 ‘open’ (free) arts and humanities academic journals.

13.06.12   
Photo sets of the Olympic Torch children’s carnival parade and the evening Torch Celebrations performance in Hanley Park.

13.06.12   
Finally, also of note is the Digimark Discover (PDF link) service. ‘Discover’ does away with ugly QR Codes. You can now invisibly embed the same ‘info trigger’ for a mobile phone, into any picture.