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A R T F A G


I N T R O D U C T I O N ARTFAG

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I N T R O D U C T I O N ARTFAG

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C U S T A R D F A C T O R Y Birmingham offers a wealth of

vintage stores in the centre of town, and also several visiting and resident fairs. Digbeth is the heart of Birmingham’s ever expanding Creative Quarter, featuring a variety of independent stores and small business’, catering for those of us interested in vintage fashion,craft and all things creative. Just a 10 minute walk from the Bullring, off Digbeth High Street, is the Custard Factory. Built by Sir Alfred Bird, of Bird’s custard powder, over 100 years ago, it is now home to Birmingham’s many independent creatives and businesses, all designing, producing and selling a whole host of different crafts.


F

rom vintage apparel to beads, book binding to screen print, the list goes on. All things crafty have taken a massive increase in popularity over the past few years, and the Custard Factory has definitely taken that in their stride. The Birmingham Bead Shop, which opened in the summer of 2009, is the only one of its type in Birmingham and a must for any aspiring jewellery maker or embroiderers. Not only do they sell beads but also charms, jewellery making kits and equipment, they also offer tutorials and classes for anyone wanting to learn how. Another store offering a similar service is the Stitch Perfect Yarn Shop. Dedicated to all things knitting, sewing, crochet and contemporary craft (to name a few,) this is the place to go if you are curious about any of the above, or wish to further your existing skills and knowledge. Stitch Perfect offers a huge range of classes, from basic techniques to fully fledged projects. Their small classes emphasise hands on learning and the pursuit of a thoroughly good time.

Vintage has also dramatically increased in popularity in a small period of time, and in the last few years the number of stores providing this second hand luxury has more than doubled in Birmingham. The Vintage Fair, which visits the city twice yearly, is a mixture of all things old, selling handmade goods, house hold wares, clothing and even cupcakes. It never fails to create a buzz with up to 70 stalls of vintage finery. Probably the best for a cherry picked, higher quality source of vintage attire is the appointment only Frock On Boutique, located in the newly refurbished Zellig building of the Custard Factory. Set up and ran by Pam Cheema, it is a cut above the rest for those looking for something specific. In an interview with Pam I found out why, where and when she finds time to single handidly find stock, and also how she managed to get a concession in Birmingham’s Topshop store.


Frock On Vintage Boutique, situated in the heart of

Birminghams creative quarter, is ran by 29 year old Pam Cheema. Selling cherry picked vintage pieces from a pristine white space in the Custard Factory’s new Zellig building, Pam offers an appointment only, unique shopping experience.


I N T R I N S E R T O D U C T I T L E T I O N H E R E ARTFAG newest

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Nowadays the cult oF Ipsa con porIdest re voluptam, personality arises cusam exerisi mendic on individualism and temperitias alicae pa dest, uniqueness. The quantity of ipsaeritatur sequissed que people, who dare to speak out of the crowd, increases each ilicieni doluptat est volut day. delis Regardless aci utaquam of ea whether sit, si people are bringing out optae volor autem. Ommoloreror issue, or simply need to be aceraec eperiat ommossendae heard, their communication ommodia nihitent voles approaches getfugia drastic autemporis eum of volorerspedi sometimes.One the most exiting conveying aliqui temways fugitof a voluptium ut a thought or simply expressing nossus nostionsequo cum estiis yourself is Street Art. This eaqui doluptibus aliandit que phenomenon is slowly taking ipsam sim dolori nos aspellum over the world faccus sitiam doluptatur?.


I N T R O D U C T I O N ARTFAG

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I N T R O D U C T I O N ARTFAG

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What

Birmingham is no exception.

The Metropolis provokes and inspires. A strong mixture of cultures, lifestyles and ideologies stimulate artists. There are few zones that bound to draw attention: typically urban pockets that could use a bit of life. They’re easily visible and the locations don’t harm businesses or homes. However, the real variety of “masterpieces” is usually hidden under the bridges, in subways, warehouses and other abandoned or derelict areas. You get a sight of interaction with the space, as well as the overall feeling. One of the artists that has been around for more than 20 years, named Title, agreed on giving a sneak peak on his personal thoughts and views.

drew you to graffiti at first and what motivates you on staying in this sphere up until now? Like so many other young impressionable kids in the UK during the 80’s, I was drawn to all the new stuff that was being imported from the States around that time... Skateboards, BMX, Hip Hop etc.... But I guess it was the fact that I had always been good art and drawing had always been something that I enjoyed that got me thinking that graffiti could be my thing. I was really into racing BMX then so it took a while before the art of writing my name took over as my favorite passtime. As far as my motivation goes, other than painting... I’d have to say its my family and in particular the smiles on my children’s faces that makes me want to get out of bed every morning.


Can you share with a couple of personal process details, such as: What comes first, the idea or the surface to work on? Improvisation or well thought through and planed pieces, which do you prefer? Preferences in terms of subject matter? Whether it’s a character, letters or any other theme, it’s always the idea that’s most important. I usually like to plan things first, particularly if I’m planning a production wall with other artists. But that’s not always the case, improvisation can be fun and I’ve had some great results from completely freestyling stuff... I’ve no preferences in terms of subject matter. It’s all good! In which cities have you painted? Which one is your favorite? Why? I’m not too well traveled and I’ve only been outside the UK a handful of times so I’ve never had the luxury of painting abroad. But I have painted in quite a few cities here in the UK...London, Nottingham, Leeds, Blackpool, Leceister, etc... I’m not sure whether I have a favorite, but I guess it’s the Capital that stands out to me as a place that has a good scene. People talk about Bristol, but I’ve never painted there.

What is your opinion on street art in Birmingham? Are there any specifics, principles in this area that artists prefer? I’m not too keen on the street art thing... Stencils and Childlike Characters don’t really do it for me, I prefer freehand letter styles and quality well painted freehand characters. There are a lot of good artists here, but the scene isn’t as big as one might expect from a city the size of Birmingham, probably down to the fact that there aren’t any decent legal spots which is pretty poor considering we’re supposed to be the second city! Some of the younger guys have got permission from local businesses or claimed there own walls in Digbeth and I’ve been hearing whispers of other spots cropping up here and there lately so hopefully things will start to change. Maybe you could give any advices, tips or thoughts to newborn street artists? The only advice I’d give to the young up and coming is stick to the rules... If you can’t burn it don’t go over it! Respect other peoples work, but never try to copy or emulate it... So never bite! Biting is rubbish and you’ll never develop your own style that way. Keep don’t

it

real and smoke

definitely crack!!!


I N T R O D U C T I O N ARTFAG

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ARTFAG3  

BIRMINGHAM BASED MAGAZINE

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