Stand Up / Take Down

As with any photo or any piece artwork, be it public or private, there is a story.

Even for your next social media posts, there is a story behind it.

Be it where you re-shared it from, to how long it took to take the shot, whether it is interpreted as it was intended by its viewer or if the image even tells the “true story”.

Now on first glance, you may think this photo is to do with the current “statue debate” and only exists because of said debate, however, and somewhat ironically I guess, this shot was actually taken in London during one of many Black Lives Matter marches whilst at the same time in Bristol the already controversial statue of “slave-tradesman” Edward Colston was being toppled.

 

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I’m posting this as an output of my genuine thought process and is not representative of Jiggy Creationz as a business, but my own personal thoughts in trying to navigate the waves of emotion posed by the current incarnation of the Black Lives Matter movement. I’m fully aware that everyone has their own views but I will try to articulate mine here as a Black Man born and living in the UK.

With that said. As an artist, photographer, and creative I know my take on the world is very different to many. I’ve passed many a statue on my travels, but admittedly, if I even register them in my eyesight, I rarely enquire about the story behind the statue. Why was it made, why is the person significant, who made it, when and how? I usually look at the craftsmanship and think about the skill or creative process it took to make it, simply appreciating it’s sculptural qualities.

It’s for this reason that I really like the ‘Roller Skating Girl‘ as seen in my Instagram post.  The style, form, and structure of the character seems so strong and free, and being on roller skates meant that is a particular piece by Andre Wallace really connected with me, as I am a roller skater who believes in inner strength and freedom within movement. Who is she?

Now, maybe it’s because I live in the present more than in the past. Don’t get me wrong, that’s not to say the past doesn’t mean anything. In fact, history fascinates me and I believe in cause and effect, yet at the same time, our past doesn’t define us to the point we cant make a change. I also don’t really idolise, attach my emotions, or hold strong beliefs about material like statues. My attitude is generally, acknowledge it and use it to move forward and grow.

That lead me to ask these questions. How far back do people go to remove, hide, eradicate history? How come my focus isn’t on the ‘takedown’? and for me, this isn’t how I personally ‘stand up’?

I guess my drive and focus isn’t on those statues because I’m too busy trying to be active daily in the conversations I have and the actions I take to try and fight and break down walls for myself, for my family, and for my community.

If I detach the emotion from what statues like that of  Edward Colston in Bristol represents, I’m not sure what difference taking the down will actually make to the bigger picture. To me, the money which is now used to relocate statues or even rebrand street names could be used for other things that could go to support the BAME community through business, creative spaces, or even educational programs and resources. If it’s about what it mean’s and represents does that me I should change my names and go on a journey to trace my original African name instead of the names of my slave names?

In order for people to be able to stand up, something must fall down, right? That’s how we get harmony. But does the “taking down” of these monuments have any effect in the dismantling of the systems that hold back people of colour?

What are your thoughts?

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© André Wallace

Roller Skating Girl – Who is She

Roller Skating Girl during BLM March London
© Craig Jiggy / Jiggy Creationz 2020
I’ve passed the “Roller Skating Girl” sculpture on so many occasions and I’ve always been drawn to it.
Maybe it’s the way she appears to be calm and effortlessly frozen in motion. It makes me think of skating freely with the wind in my face. That freedom and feel of flying.
Her clench fist shows grit and determination. Strong like many of the roller girls in our team of #CreativePeopleOnWheels.
She’s even sparked of many of a creative idea in me…. #WarningCreationzInProgress.
So who is this girl? I’ve wondered for over the years and to answer the question, and the following skate by the piece during a Black Lives Matter march past, I reached out to Anderé Wallice, creator of this sculpture and “The Whisperer”  for the answer.

From André

When I contacted André, I shared my photo of myself next to Roller Skating Girl during a BLM march in London. I expressed my feeling towards the piece, and if she was (as I interpreted) possibly being of black heritage.
He responded kindly with “I’m really pleased you feel so positively toward the Roller skater especially in connection with Black Lives Matter.”
André continued
“Originally when asked to come up with ideas for the sculpture I drew on the community feel of Morton Street, the presence of the school and I wanted to introduce the notion of ‘Play’.  I wanted to create a sculpture which was positive and dynamic and reflected the youth and vitality of an urban street. I wanted to represent a girl/woman with independence and attitude. The sculpture was not based on one particular person but appeared through my imagination and past experience and observations.”

Rubble

During a recent studio clear-out, André the original plaster for the Bronze cast was broken down.
©André Wallace
Interestingly, the timely nature of this post means this image lends itself to the debate around taking down and defacing of historical monuments. Although is post is nothing more than the story of the Roller Skating Girl.
Thanks and Blessings go out to André for his thoughts and images.
#StayHumble #StayCreative #KeepItJiggy

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Behind the Scenes: Using Google Spreadsheets to create a CSV data feed

So I have a few stores online stores and places to buy stuff on demand from various companies which create and our Jiggy Shop stuff.
From T-shirts, to bags and camera gear, there’s quite a bit in Our Jiggy Creationz Shop. So there are some systems like, our Instagram Shop which allow you to tag products and items from your shop, in the site.

So let’s look at the how to host your data feed on Google Docs. For this post, I will assume you already have a Google account. If not, you will be prompted to set one up once you go into Google Docs.

What is a CSV data feed?

CSV (Comma-Serperated Values / Variables) is a file format where you can make a list of things, which are separated by (guess what) commas. A CSV data feed uses a file save in this format to feed (send) information to another system. In this post, the system we will feed data to is Facebook Business, which then feeds to Instagram shop.

Why do I need one?

Well if you want to be able to manage, your shop links on the go, you should consider this option because once it’s set up, I can be a massive time saver. By using Google Spreadsheets to host your csv, you can update it anywhere (as long as you have internet access on your phone, laptop or desktop, and haven’t locked yourself out of your account!).

Great! Where do I go to get one?

Head of over to Google Spreadsheets and log in. That’s pretty much it. You can then create your csv file.

How do I create my own feed?

Different Systems have different needs when you create the CSV. For Instagram Shop / Facebook Business Catalogue you can download the template

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denmark life drawing

Back to the Drawing Board – Life Drawing, Denmark

It’s been a long time since I did any life drawing. In fact it’s almost 20 years ago since I sat in my art class wondering why the room was so hot and why the small fan heater in the corner was on full blast, when to me it wasn’t that cold. It wasn’t until my teacher counted down and a woman pranced into the middle of the room before unveiling her naked form by letting her floral silk dressing gown fall to the floor, that I realised why the heating was on! The class gasped before swiftly holding their head down to their paper to refocus on the task at hand… Draw the lady in the middle.

Fast forward to today, where I was invited by the #JiggyTwins Emma & Estelle Tiller to join them in their life drawing class at VIA University College, Denmark.

I was slightly apprehensive about doing it as I have lost confidence in my ability to draw over the years, as well as feeling a little bit scarred since my first (and at the time last) experience, but I did it anyway as I always say to Emma & Estelle to “just embrace it”!

On entering the studios there was no time to be anxious about what was going to happen or how I was going to perform or if my drawings would be good enough. The girls took me into the room, collected our drawing tool and into the studio where other artists were gathered awaiting the model arrive. At least this time I knew what was about to happen!

The posses started off quick with about 30 seconds given to draw the first sketch, and the getting longer towards the end of the 45 mins. This meant that my initial sketches looked more like stick men… and progressed to something which had a bit more detail (although not anatomically correct).

In the end I was so happy I did it and embraced my stick men!

Drawing Life with the #JiggyTwins

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It was so good to be in the company of such talented and inspirational artists who had come from all over the world to be there. A massive thanks to #JiggyTwins Emma & Estelle for making this happen.

You can follow Emma and Estelle’s amazing work on Instagram and Tumblr here:
Emma – Instagram @emellex06 , Tumblr @emellex06
Estelle – Instagram @esterellda , Tumblr @godgivenfox

The session lasted just under 2 hours – two 45 min sessions with a 15 – 20 minute break in the middle.

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Spiral Art – Esther’s Ridell 172

What started off as a random doodle at 3am because I couldn’t sleep, has now grown and I have now had a few commissions. This instalment shows some of my work in progress and some speed art whilst adding the digital colour for Esther’s from Ginger Skates, using Photoshop.



For more like these have a gander on my spiral art on Red Bubble.

Also, you can follow me @craigjiggy on Twitter and Instagram #spiralart

And follow our friends at Ginger Skates in Amsterdam for your Roller Skating needs!

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Steet Girl Book Launch -- Creative Jam by Jiggy Creationz | blog.jiggycreationz.co.uk

Street Girl: Book Launch

I often get invited to creative events from book launches to art private views, and have often left with a slight feeling of “Hmmmm”. I don’t really like to do to much research into them prior to the event as I like to go in without prejudice and leave being pleasantly surprised. And the Street Girl book launch did exactly that.

Rose and myself were invited down to Brixton’s Upstairs at the Ritz performance space, to support our girl Elisha (Venus Vs Mars), who announced she will appearing in the stage version of the book.

The Struggle, The Book, The Play

The event was hosted by Nequela Whittaker the creator and inspiration for the story. Nequela gave us a compassionate welcome and emotional insight into the real life struggle which lead to the creation to the book, the play and her work with the often neglected communities across South London.

Street Girl is a gripping biographical account of a young black girl from South London, raised by a single mother and older sibling, this young girl unfortunately becomes a product of her environment.

Street Girl, Directed by Donna During, is a raw adaptation of the girl gang culture that society seems to turn a blind eye to. We aim for her story to be heard offering a lifeline to young girls and boys, or vulnerable youths who are living a similar lifestyle; or are thinking about entering such a world, to hear a first-hand, credible narrative about the street and ultimately getting them to make the right decision.

‘She’s a terror she creates havoc everywhere she goes’

Mouthie, the main character,  experiences Sex, violence, and drugs all in the mix as she embarks down the root to become a young offender.

 

Street Girl Rudely Interrupts

During the speech, a phone went off and girl started screaming at the top of her voice right next to us. As I looked in disgust, the girl dressed in a school uniform charged to the front of the stage, only to be met by two other ‘Street Girl’ types! Our vexation quickly turn to tears of joy as we noticed Elisha WAS one of girls now on stage. We  had been treated to an except from the up and coming stage production!!

Yep I’m there! Book me a Ticket  – Rollah Rose

 

Not only were we blessed by this flash mob style entrance, we heard new music from Alicai harley and poetry from Emanuel.

See The Show

 

Show dates for Street Girl with our Elisha  are Friday 27 & Saturday 28 May, 7.30pm with a FREE matinee on Friday 27th.

Tickets are available now from the Albany Theatre.

 

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Summer Fate BTS ©Emmerdale / ITV Studios

Emmerdale’s Summer Fate – Behind the scenes

It’s time for another epic soap land disaster, and this time is over at Emmerdale.

So take a look behind the scenes of the creative little promo trailer. I personally love the contrast and use of black juxtaposed with the happiness and light portrait by the some of the characters, not forgetting play on words in #SummerFate.

Nice one Emmerdale!

Head over to itv.com to watch the behind the scene vid for the trailer.

#SummerFateThe choices we make are the paths we take. Who will meet their #SummerFate? Watch #Emmerdale from 7pm all this week (3 – 7 Aug) to find out…

Posted by Emmerdale on Monday, 3 August 2015

 

The choices we make are the paths we take. Go behind the scenes of the mysterious promo to learn more on what’s to come…#SummerFate

Source: Summer Fate – Behind the scenes

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Petition · European Parliament: Save the Freedom of Photography! · Change.org

On 9 July 2015, the European Parliament might destroy photography. The Freedom of taking photos in public places is under attack. Until now, in most countries in Europe you were safe to take and publish photographs that are taken from public ground – This is called Freedom of Panorama. When you were on vacation, you could take a photo from the London Eye and share it with your friends on Facebook*. If someone wanted to pay you for using this photo, that was okay as well. Both is about to change may destroy photography as we know it.   Julia Reda, member of the European Parliament, tried to bring the Freedom of Panorama to all countries of the EU , as few countries like France and Italy don’t have such law yet. In the majority of countries such as the UK, Spain, Portugal, Germany, Netherlands, Poland, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary, Austria and Croatia, you’re safe to take, publish and sell photos of public buildings when taken from public grounds.   However, the current draft turned the proposal upside down .  Instead of bringing the Freedom of Panorama  to the few countries that don’t know such law yet,  it would take it away from all those who do . With this, Street-, Travel- and Architecture-Photography would be dead as we know it. It is impossible to find out the architect of every public building in order to ask for permission before you can publish and possibly sell the photo.   I therefore call on the members of the European Parliament to Not limit the Freedom of Panorama in any way and instead to Bring the Freedom of Panorama to all member states of the EU so that the European Citizens can be assured to act within the law when taking and publishing photographs from public buildings anywhere in the European Union. This is necessary to embrace our European Culture and Art!   For the media, please see:  https://www.facebook.com/Sumfinity/posts/502360496584684 *As Julia Reda, member of the European Parliament, points out, even the private upload of a photograph on Facebook would need the consent of the architect, as with the upload you grant Facebook a license to commercially use the photograph.

Source: Petition · European Parliament: Save the Freedom of Photography! · Change.org

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