Squam Art ::  The magic of Nicola Taylor

I really can’t tell you when I first learned of Nicola’s ethereal images, but they captured my imagination from the first time I saw them.  I had decided to go to the fall Squam Art Workshop partly for scheduling and partly because the workshop offerings were not really fiber-based (the June Squam offerings skew much more toward the fiber arts in general) but collage, and mixed media and jewelry making and photography.  Things that were not in my comfort zone.  At.  All.  Time to experience something new.

I was soooo excited to see that she was coming all the way over from North Yorkshire in  England to teach at Squam and I was fortunate enough to take a workshop with her.  “Finding your Inner Muse”.  Que the hand clapping and jumping up and down.  If that wasn’t enough, there were two of us in the Thursday class so we got to spend loads of time on our projects.

First up… Finding our muse.  We had brought/collected items that had some meaning for us, that we were drawn to….of course we had each brought many things, so we had to whittle them down to 6 (ok, 7 snuck one in ) write about each of them, create kind of a collage and then form a statement to guide our work.  (It was really much more in-depth and thoughtful, trust me this is the cliff-notes version)

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After lunch it was time to take the photos that evoked our muse.  Let me just say at the outset that I love to take pictures but I am in no way a professional photographer.  I couldn’t get my (just purchased and taken out of the package) remote shutter release to work, my camera was a little wonky on the tripod (which I had used several times before ) and my long lens decided to stop working… oh and did I mention that it started to rain…and Nicola had to tutor me on the proper way to fling fabric to make it look effortless

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…in the rain, when you’re on the dock in your bare feet and a nightgown and a prom dress rolled up underneath for a petticoat…It was fun anyway and Nicola and our helper and my classmate were lovely and encouraging and so so patient with everything…and I’m very happy with my images… just a little bit of magic and a whole lot of learning.

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When we were done with my photos, we worked on several photos of my classmate who was expecting her first baby and wasn’t sure she would ever have a photo of herself expecting.  We made the most beautiful photos for her and then we all had a good little weep.

Sublime.  Divine.  Nicola’s magic on the moors transferred to a lake in northern New Hampshire.  Thank you Nicola for your grace and generosity in sharing your work and yourself, it was a day I won’t soon forget  xo

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