Tuesday 4 September 2012

Tell All Tuesday ~ Featured Artist: Nigel Roberts

Hey guys, happy tuesday =) I'm so glad you're here so I can share this weeks artist, I first 'met' Nigel doing AEDM last November I think it was and really enjoyed his work and personality, and though I do not get to spend as much time blog hopping as I did last year (sorry Nigel...and other blog friends!) when I do get the time waiting for things I whip out my phone to check on my fav blogs; and his is one of them. I hope you enjoy the interview =)
Tell us a little bit about yourself & what kind of artist you are.
My name is Nigel Roberts, although many people will know me as Freebird or Free (online & in Real Life™). I grew up in Cheshire (UK), and after 23 years in uniform I’m back where I started. I have 3 daughters, 6 grandkids and I’m not as old as that makes me sound! Apart from art, you’ll also find me drinking coffee & eating cake at the Cubby Hole, baking bread, helping to run a pagan online forum, making marmalade gin, or wandering around the country visiting gatherings & camps in Vivian (my van). My background isn’t the arts, it’s engineering/science. Art was a complete non-starter at school, and for most of my life everything was very structured, I could appreciate art, but had no urge to make anything unless it was functional. In 2006 life turned upside down, and I started dabbling with beads, which led me to a craft forum and card-making, which led to scrapbooking, and that was the start of a slippery slope. I’m now an eclectic artistic crafter; or should that be a crafty artist? I’ll have a go at anything; journaling, altering, painting, mixed media and more. In the few years since I first picked up a broken necklace and some beads, I’ve gone from a complete novice to running workshops at camps and the Cubby Hole, even though I’m still very much a beginner. I’m not sure if I have a style, although some of my work is probably quite recognisable to those who know me. Inspiration can come from anywhere; my beliefs, people I create with, a snippet of a song on the radio, a word, a phrase, other people’s blogs….. 
What is the biggest challenge you personally face as an artist and how do you overcome it? 
Apart from the usual lack of time/mojo/inspirationthat we all suffer from, I guess my biggest challenge is getting the ideas out of my head and onto paper/canvas. Sometimes a piece just happens (such as the steampunked butterfly). But I frequently know exactly what I want to create and that’s when I tend to hit a problem, which is a lack of ability (or should I say experience). As I said before, my background isn’t in the arts, and most of what I know is either self taught or comes from craft workshops, which means there’s big holes in my ability. I’ve never used oils; I struggle with faces, and so on. And it stops me dead in my tracks. No matter how much we say it’s all about the ideas, or the inspiration or whatever; at the end of the day if you’re missing a basic skill or technique it’s a problem. Thankfully, there is a solution; it’s called learning. I’ve now learnt how to do eyes, and I can do hair so only noses and mouths to go. I’ve got to grips with watercolour and acrylics, next up is gouache, and then it’s on to oils. It’s hard work sometimes, but I get there. 
What do you most wish your art to achieve? 
It probably sounds clich├ęd, but mostly I want it to lift people’s spirits, either by making them smile, or shining a light in the darkness. Some of my pieces are created for specific people, but most is just me being creative, but they frequently end up being given away to somebody who needs it. One thing is for sure, I’ll never get rich through my creations. 
What is the best thing / worst thing that art has brought into your life? 
Best thing - People, without a doubt. I’ve been very lucky to get to know some very talented, and very wonderful people. There are some amazingly talented people out here on the interweb thingie, who are quite happy to share their creativity, and mostly without any bitchiness (or maybe I’ve just been lucky). But, even better, there’s a great bunch of people at the Cubby Hole who can be relied on to offer some useful advice/criticism when a piece isn’t going well. Alternatively they’ll offer cake. 

Worst thing – frustration! ;)

Tell us where can we find out more about you & your art? 
You can take a look at my blog http://freebird795.blogspot.co.uk/ and you’ll also find me lurking on FB, G+ & Twitter (links on blog). 
You’ll sometimes also find me on http://cubbyholecctvs.blogspot.co.uk/ which is our local art & craft shop, and a thriving little community, full of wonderful people. 

Thank you Nigel, after reading your interview I like to think of your can of worms page as your introduction into crafts - starting off on one thing, then finding another and another. I think that's many of our stories upon discovering our creative side, usually forged through seeking the therapy and peace creating something brings, which in turn takes us down a rabbit hole until we discover our niche. And don't count your chickens re: not getting rich from your creations, I know that's not what creativity is about but none of us can predict the future ;)

Want to be an artist on the Tell All Tuesday interviews - just click the TAT icon on the right for the info =D


  1. I quite like your cliched wish for achievement, Nigel and I love the girl with the enamelled leaves.
    Maybe art can solve the frustration we all feel as long as the frustration isn't holding back creativity...though I suspect it does.

  2. Love the butterfly piece...one of my favs! I enjoyed reading this interview--I first met Nigel during AEDM last year, too, and always enjoy reading his blog. And his sense of humor. p.s. Hi, Nigel!

  3. Thanks for sharing. The bright colors are wonderful! Thanks again for introducing us to all these new artists Jennibellie

  4. Great interview! I love the description "eclectic artistic crafter." I, too, struggle to describe what I do to others. Heading over to check out Nigel's blog. Thanks for another inspirational/motivational TAT, Jennibellie! Christie

  5. Thanks Jennie for the chance to prattle on about myself, and thanks for the lovely comments - it all helps to keep me going :)

  6. *waves* at Nigel, and I hope you are enjoying your quest to learn new skills. If that amazing painting of the Morrigan last week was anything to go by, you're getting very good at this whole arty farty stuff!!

  7. Great interview but most importantly - a great talented man behind those words! :))

  8. great interview... Nigel was one of my favourite "meets" from AEDM last year as well...xx

  9. Thank you for interviewing Nigel...
    it is always fun to learn more about people you feel connected to without ever meeting them in person even.

    I enjoy his art, views on life and great sense of humor

    I am also grateful to him for introducing me to your blog...round and round we go!

    Brightest of Blessings from Virginia, USA :)

  10. Blimey, I'll be going all bashful if this carries on ;)

  11. YAY Nigel!!! So happy to see you here.. ;-) I think you're a wonderful artist and what i love most about you is your willingness to try something new. That butterfly piece is beautiful and that leafy/purple-y/woman's face piece is AWESOME. I don't remember having seen that one... Yup, you're definitely "one of us" Nigel...xox
    (thank you Jenniebellie, for another wonderful interview!!)


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...