timothy wells photography

THE OFFICIAL WEBSITE OF

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    Sign on the gallery door #tellmeaboutpaducah

    #tellmeaboutpaducah

     

    I am working in the A.I.R. Studio for the month of July.

    I am making work inspired by the history and culture of Paducah.

    I need your help.

    Please come inside and talk to me about Paducah.

    The open hours are Monday – Saturday 2 – 7 PM and whenever the “Open” sign is out.

    Come in, head down the hallway to the studio, and let’s talk. I want to learn about Paducah and bring that information to life in my work.

    I’ll be posting information on facebook and instagram using #tellmeaboutpaducah.

    I also have a daily projection story every night. The ongoing story is taped onto the studio windows and each night’s projection will be on from dusk until around midnight.

    You can follow along with my adventures in Paducah on my website / blog

    www.timothywells.com/blog

    Step inside and let’s talk!


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    Asking for help

    As I prepare and plan for each day's Daily Projection, I know I need to start moving the focus to the installation part of my residency now that I've introduced myself to the community via the projections and meeting people. It has been interesting in talking to folks and mentioning I'm the artist in residence at the A.I.R. Studio and I'm doing nightly projections, how many of them have seen the projections and stopped to read them.

    One of the many books I am reading is Amanda Palmer's "The Art of Asking". I've never been fond of asking for help as I have that mid-west work ethic of "if you want it done, do it yourself" and "don't bother people" (over-simplifying things a bit for the sake of blogging), but Palmer's book has inspired me to ask people for help when I need it. I used what I've learned from that book in getting the exhibit for my students' work in Michigan and when I needed help for the frames and matting, and help getting the work finished and delivered to the gallery since I was going to be out of town. And you know what? I asked for help, and people helped. And now 13 students have 38 images hanging in a gallery in Michigan ready for an opening reception on Friday.

    I decided and discovered I can't do this Paducah installation come together in less than a month without some help and input from the community, so I'm asking for help.

    Last night's (Tuesday, July 5th) Daily Projection set the stage for me asking for help.

    Tonight's projection, I'm letting them know how they can help.

    I'm going to start to have daily open hours where the community can come into the studio and #tellmeaboutpaducah. I'm hoping to gather stories, history, rumors (not about people, but about ghosts, speculation on historical events, etc), where to eat, where to visit, what to see while I'm here, etc that I can somehow use to pull together ideas for a mural I'll be constructing on the studio wall.

    I'm planning on having an open door/open studio time of 2 - 7 PM Monday-Saturday, and by appointment (ie, if the lights are on and the closed sign is up, knock on the door and let me know you're here. Let's talk. I may work while we talk, integrating the conversation into the mural or I may sit down with you and have a conversation.

    I'll be using the hashtag of #tellmeaboutpaducah on facebook and instagram throughout the month to post about progress of what's growing in the studio.

    Plus the #dailyprojectionspaducah will be used to continue posting the daily projections as that story evolves.

    So, Paducah come by A.I.R. Studion at 621 Madison St and #tellmeaboutpaducah

     


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    Branching out

    As I've settled into the space and getting things set up, I decided it was time to start branching out and exploring Lower Town. First stop was the David Carson exhibit at the Paducah School of Art and Design.

    http://paducahschoolofartanddesign.org/paducah-school-of-art-design-presents-space-cowboy-the-grafik-design-of-david-carson/

    I've been a fan of Carson's work since I first started my creative journey 13 years ago. His work had fallen off my radar over the last few years and I was excited to get a chance to see his work in person (vs online and in books) and the gallery is in easy walking distance of the A.I.R. Studio.

    It was a great inspiration for me to see his work. Even though is work is partially based on collage and photographs, and those aren't the focii of my time and work while here, I still walked away inspired and seeds and nuggets of ideas for other projects.

    I then stopped by a few of the galleries in Lower Town and meeting some of the local artists to discuss art, Paducah, business, etc. Paducah's Artist Relocation Program is such a great idea and a wonderful way to inject and support an artist community.

    http://www.paducahmainstreet.org/artist-relocation-program.htm

    I really enjoyed meeting Michael and Victoria Terra and chatting with Michael about art, the world, Paducah, and so much more. You should check them out if you're in town or at any of the art fairs they are part of.

    http://terracottageceramics.com/

     

     


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    Start of the first Paducah installation

    My first day in Paducah, I wanted to get started on things. 

    Based on a conversation I had with some of my new neighbors as I was unloading after a long 8.5 hour drive (that the GPS promised me would only take 6.5 hours), I realized that the neighborhood knew this space was used by visiting artists but there wasn't a good or easy way to introduce myself to the community. So I decided that the first installation would be a series of night-time projections on the inside wall of the front part of the space to introduce myself and my work to the community. Thus started my "Daily Projections" project.

    Each night, I create a new transparency in a series of transparencies and project it on the wall. I'm taping the series of previous days' transparencies on the front windows so people who have missed a day can catch up on the story.

    I'll post snapshops of each day's "page" on my facebook and instagram pages.

    https://www.facebook.com/TimothyWellsArtsStudio

    https://www.instagram.com/timothywellsphoto/

    So, feel free to follow along as the story evolves.

     

     


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    ISE - Immersive Studio Experience

    I was spending time in bed this morning debating getting up versus rolling over for a quick nap. Ok, so not sure you're allowed to call it a nap if you haven't technically actually gotten up yet, but you get the idea.

    I'm wrapping up my four month artist in residency and it's been weighing heavily on my mind about the whole experience. Honestly, I'm not ready for it to be over. And I've been spending time contemplating those thoughts and feelings and I came up with ISE - Immersive Studio Experience.

    My time at the Mayflower Arts Center weren't your typical or classic artist-in-residency experiences. It could have been for anyone looking at applying for an AIR there. However, I didn't have a current project that just needed some concentrated time to focus on and finish. Nor was I looking for a chance to sit down and begin a new series. Those are typically how people use AIRs.

    What I was looking for was a chance to really immerse myself in a studio practice. Over the last few years, I let everyday life and other distractions fill my day, time, calendar, to do list, and mind. I really wasn't doing the "artist" thing full-time like I wanted to. And this residency opportunity came along at the just right time with the right setting.

    As mentioned in earlier posts, I took the opportunity to have no TV and very minimal access to the Internet (the only Internet I had was via my cell phone and had a 10-gig data limit per month. I'm contemplating adding another sub-title for my residency to "Living on 10-gig a month".) And it's only been this month that I'm actually coming close to hitting that limit (mainly because I'm spending a lot of time online preparing for things after the residency.) I've learned I don't miss or need TV. I can limit my Internet needs and access to concentrated bursts on my phone and more leisurely stints sitting at Panera doing things like redesigns and updates to the website and more carefully crafted emails.

    And I've made a lot of work. I was doing the first go round of edits last night of the photographs I've taken this summer. Over 10,000.  (digital only, haven't processed film yet and didn't include the Polaroids). I have over two dozen new paintings leaned up against the wall ready to head back to my home studio. Some assemblages and mixed media pieces. A few minor installations and experiences.  Workshop curriculum for photography courses. And oodles of new ideas and materials from local thrift stores. 

    Not a bad tally from four months. Way more than I've been able to accomplish in 3 years of working at my studio at home.

    Which brings me to a point. I've always thought, "I need a studio away from home." I said it a lot and it started to sound like an excuse as to why I wasn't producing. And then after this four months, I'm pretty sure it wasn't just me making excuses. It was me voicing a real need but one I didn't act on. And one I need to act on.

    I've created, explored, and examined things like I wish I had done in grad school. I tell my friends who are looking at going to grad school that I'd love to do it all over again. Having been through it once, I look back on it and go, "Man, I would do it so differently next time."

    And that's how I feel about my practice in general after the four months I spent in ISE. 

    I highly recommend it for anyone who is stuck.

     


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    My summer without A/C (a work in progress)

    I'm working on blog posts.  The theme for this summer's posts mostly revolve around my experiences during my artist-in-residence at the Mayflower Arts Center in Troy, OH.

    The studio and apartment are great for my intentions to dig into doing work and getting around to doing some of the "roundtuits" that have been hovering over my creative head for a few years. This is largely due to having no access to internet (other than my phone with its limited monthly data plan) or TV. Removing those distractions from my day has really forced me to focus, versus getting lost in internet or TV things.

    I also decided that since I'm roughing it to also try to refrain from using air conditioning in the studio and apartment. This mentality has also extended to trying to minimize use of A/C as much as possible. Driving with the windows open, picking outdoor eating options over sitting inside, etc.  Hence the working title and theme for this summer's blog posts: My summer without A/C.