April has been a busy month here at Wavemaker, not least because we launched our new Maker Days, every Tuesday and Thursday 10am-5pm.
These two days give established makers and those just starting out on the road to makerdom the brilliant opportunity to come into our space, here on the top floor of the Mitchell Arts Centre in Hanley, and take advantage of our equipment, resources, great humour, fantastic hosting skills and modest nature (cough, cough!)
This month we have had a steady influx of makers and creatives, faces both new and also well established. We have had the pleasure of hosting the boys from Design by Weather as they wait to move into their new studio space at Spode. Our breakout space has doubled as a temporary office for the Weather team, and come rain or shine (Weather…get it?!) they have been steadily creating various website and graphic designs for local businesses and national projects.
Getting to grips with the laser cutter are our new members, Bret and Emma. Both working on different projects, Bret has been using the equipment to further develop ideas around creating 3D Minton tile designs for the visually impaired and Emma has been putting her Surface Pattern degree to great use by exploring different etching designs and effects. Both have been great additions to the Wavemaker space and we look forward to seeing how their research progresses.
Already established makers and creators in the city have also been in to try out our space. Local artists Deb Rogers laser cut some fab stencils for the new Art Stop in Stoke, which is a new creative co-working office and studio space for local arts organisations, The Cultural Sisters and Letting in the Light. If you haven’t had chance to get down there and check out Art Stop, you should do, it’s fantastic!
Another local artist who has been experimenting with the laser cutter is the lovely Nicola Winstanley, who came in to trial some ideas for a new art installation in the city. It has been great to start the first month of Maker Days off with artists from the city, using the equipment to benefit arts within the city. Long may it continue!
We have also had first year Birmingham City University student Liam in constructing his end of year design for his architecture degree. Liam, originally from Snyed Green, used plywood to create a model following his viewing platform brief. Through using the precision and speed of the laser cutter, he was able to start assembling something pretty amazing…let’s hope his lecturers feel the same way!
Another group who have been in to explore their creative flair, were the lovely ladies from the YMCA North Staffs based in Hanley. The girls created some fabulous pieces of jewellry and crafts during their maker session. We even saw some of these being sold at the monthly Community Meal hosted at the YMCA and sponsored each month by a local group or business. Alongside the meal, residents sell different items from knitted hats to ceramic crafts and CDs of original music. It was brilliant to see the things they created here at Wavemaker being sold to the public and they enjoyed their time so much, that they will be back every fortnight to carry on creating!
With a new sewing programme about to start here at Wavemaker, alongside our other offerings and Maker Days, April has definitely been a busy month and May is shaping up to be even more active. We have half term activities about to be revealed for the end of May, a new Code Club soon to be announced and yet more sessions to run with the truly talented people of Stoke, it’s definitely put a spring in our step.