Tag Archives: Koos Kleven

The Nine Realms Update #7: August

10 Aug

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In the last update I said that June had sped by.  If June sped by July just disappeared.  Last month was filled with lots of work on the DVD and  trying to lay down the foundations of really good press coverage for The Nine Realms, as you’ll read below. This month all the threads of this 9 month journey are being drawn together with a heavy emphasis on getting the promtional material right for the whole event. With a bit of luck this week both posters for the events in Hanse House and Norwich should be printed along with the flyer.  

Here is what has been afoot! 

1. Press Coverage and Workshops

Next week an article promoting the poetry and art workshops is going into the King’s Lynn News. This is to consolidate interest in the two free workshops we will be running in Hanse House on the Monday of our event. Poet Rebecca Audra Smith will be facilitating the poetry workshop (for up to 12 participants) and artist Robert Fitzmaurice will be running the art workshop for up to 8 attendees. These two workshops will get people accessing their creativity within the context of the nine realms. These workshops were going to be paid ones, but after some deliberation we made a decision to make them free so that finances weren’t a barrier to participation.

Articles are also going into  your-local-paper and (excitingly) onto the big screen via the local Majestic Cinema (for a week).  We are also chasing up an article in the Eastern Daily Press (Norwich) about the poetry reading. I am  also making sure there is something in the online What’s On with the Norwich Writers Centre, the King’s Lynn On line What’s On, KLFM Radio and an established online magazine in Norwich. So we should be well covered! A further King’s Lynn photo-call will take place on the 20th August, with the press also coming on the 11th September for the official launch.

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 2. Final Greetings Cards

Here at long last is the third card  which features the realm Midgard showcasing Viking artist Raymond Bentley and Viking poet Jim C Mackintosh.

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3. Schools’ Day News

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a. Whitefriars Church of England Primary Academy:

I’m delighted to say that we’ll be having 60 year 6 pupils coming on the Friday morning of the Schools’ Day (11th Sept). They will be coming from a local King’s Lynn primary school (They’ll be coming in two staggered groups…which is no bad thing!!!). The Whitefriars pupils happen to be doing a project called ‘Vicious Vikings’ in the first half of their term and our event fits in perfectly! We’re also hoping a Year 9 class from the King Edward VII Academy will also be coming in the afternoon.

ArtiPeeps is excited to have made this new connection with a local primary school in King’s Lynn because this means we can now extend our educational reach to a younger audience. In conjunction with the year 6 teacher involved we hope to create a tailored package for them. It’s exciting!  There will be lots of photos taken throughout the schools’ day by photographer Sonja Seear which should give you a good idea of what the Schools’ day is like.

 

b. Schools’ Book

I’m pleased to say that I have completed the first version of a Schools’ Book for our The Nine Realms project. This contains the 5 stories from Millfield School that were showcased on ArtiPeeps last month and will contain the work of the Whitefriars pupils after they have finished creating in their ‘Vicious Vikings’ project. Their work will be added to the book retrospectively. As I have created the book via Lulu.com this will be an easy task.  This will be the first of our ‘Classworks series’, and ArtiPeeps hopes to create a bespoke project Schools’ book for all our large-scale work with schools in the future.

 

4. Norwich Poetry Reading

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I’ve had several exchanges with the Poetry Unbound Series co-ordinators in Norwich and there seems to be a base of around 40 people who regularly attend the readings, which sounds great for ours. They will also be encouraging some of the ‘regulars’ to write their own Norse-inspired poetry too for the open mic session in the last half-hour. I will be delivering the poster and flyers to the library this week and will be talking to the Poetry Unbound co-ordinator then.

 

5.  Future Radio Interview Update and Severn Radio Shoutout

 
I have been in contact with the arts producer at Future Radio to see how she is doing with compiling our programme. I haven’t heard back from her as yet, but will be pursuing this next week. As long as it goes out before the 11th all should be well.
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Mystery Train Image
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Viking musician Simon (Beavis) kindly pointed me in the direction of Severn Radio and a presenter called Alex Huskisson who produces a really good music programme on the station called The Mystery Train. Simon thought he might be interested in what we’re doing. I put together a little package of the music and some information about our event and Simon has sent this to him. 
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Here is the radio programme that went out this Sunday. The Nine Realms is mentioned at around 1:16.39. A big thank you goes out to Alex for supporting us.
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More information about The Mystery Train:

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6. Multimedia DVD

We’re very nearly there with our DVD. It has taken the DVD manufacturers slightly longer to produce the DVD because they are having to put separate audio tracks on the disc as well as what is essentially a video (our combining of the art, music and audio poetry). This is not usually done on one disc/dvd, so we’re breaking new ground! All being well the disc will be manufactured at the end of this week. It now has menus and everything! It’s a 100 % testament of the high quality of the project poetry, art and music.

 

7.  The Nine Realms Soundcloud

Just in case you missed any of the poetry:

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8. Sneaky Peek at the Cover of our Ragnarök Comic

Today was the deadline for our comic for the Schools’ day to be in , and here is a taster of the front cover. They’ve done an absolutely wonderful job Illustrated by artist Koos Kleven and the story by Elizabeth Fernandez. Koos and Elizabeth have done a fantastic job of visualising the story. Everyone will love it!

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Cover of Comic

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As ever, thank you for your interest and I shall put out another update before D day on the 11th September. 

 

Nicky

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Bunny Hops: ArtiPeeps Update

1 Apr

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It’s been a little while since I’ve given everybody an update of what’s afoot with ArtiPeeps, so I’m taking this Easter Monday as a cue to do so. I am trying to embody all the energy of the hare above at the moment but not the speed- slow and steady is what I’m aiming for; trying to build something solid and meaningful in the long term. All of what you’ll find below is part of that trajectory.

Today is the launch of the new ArtiPeeps logo that you’ll see to the right at the top of the sidebar. It has been designed by artist and illustrator Gary Caldwell and Gary and I have been working on it for a number of months. The logo’s aim is to embody all that ArtiPeeps stands for in a clear and precise way and to communicate the notion of collaboration visually. There is also an explicit nod to another one of ArtiPeeps’ concerns -well-being. We’re going to use the logo on all our official documentation and business cards etc. It will also be the logo I use for my various social media profiles. It’s one of the stages in our professionalisation, so it feels good, and Gary has been a great collaborator. Artipeeps likes Gary.

In terms of present and future collaborations our Transformations Poetry Project is going on a pace. It’s our 3rd month in and the quality of the poems has been extraordinary. Long may it continue!  You can find all the poems here, here, here & here. My aim is to also bring in artists into this project to contribute one painting, illustrating one book. We have two artists so far. If you are an artist and would like to get involved with this please do contact me. The poems and art will form an exhibition/collaboration next year and this will, in real terms, move the virtual collaboration into something concrete and tangible (which is an important intent); foregrounding all the creatives involved. The exhibition which hopefully will also include the poets involved will take place in Kings Lynn late next year; I will be crowdfunding for this exhibition starting in July (that’s the plan).

Our mental health ‘Recovery Project’ is also well under way- 3 artist (Ray Bentley, Jeremy Moseley, Hugo Smith); 3 poets: (Carol Robson, John Mansell and Rebecca Audra Smith) 1 audio visual artist, (Shaun Blezard) working on the theme of recovery *. You can find full details of the project here just last week the 3 poems were passed to the artists. Indeed, the first section of our piece ‘despair’ is already complete as is the soundscape for the whole piece written by Shaun . The artwork combined with the poetty will be ready by the end of April and then it will be a matter of combining all three sections into a whole of some sort in May and releasing it to the world. It’s an extremely affecting and powerful piece we’re creating, I can feel that already. We’re getting a mental health charity involved with us and I’m working towards placing the piece in some way within psychiatric hospitals and/or like-minded organisations.

In relation to the well-being aspect of ArtiPeeps, it is also my intention to create a sister site (ArtiPeeps Well-being) that is dedicated to supporting creative minds. The two sites will be interlinked, but there will be a very clear psychological imperative to the sister site using art, literature and poetry therapeutically and creating links with similar groups and organisations such as Space2Create (with whom we’ll be forging a firm link shortly).

We also have our first prose collaboration Hot Potato kicking off in the middle of April, where 8 prose writers (Ben Cooper, Gail Aldwin, aksania xenogrette ,  CJ Sullivan, AK AndersonLaura Besley, Gwendolyn S, Natalie Beech (over a period of 16 weeks, will be writing one short story sequentially). It’s going to be good. We’ve got great potatoes!! 

We have also found another visitor peep/artist in residence Kelly Occhiuzzo who will be with us for the month of May co-ordinating and taking part in a 4 artist project she has developed in which 4 separate new pieces of art will be created over the period of a month. We’re in the process of firming everything up at the moment. We’re so glad to have her with us!

My focus is still firmly fixed on building as many individual and group opportunities into ArtiPeeps as possible, and the well-being sister site will be developed steadily alongside everything as best I can. I have to admit that balancing the running of ArtiPeeps with actually doing what I need to do to develop it is difficult. Finding the time to do business plans, make connections etc. At present I am in the process of trying to find not only someone to help me with all the day-to-day computer work but also someone who can help me with the budgeting of my 5 year business plan which will act as the foundation of ArtiPeeps’ business equity and project crowdfunding plans. I am approaching CamCreative in relation to this….

In terms of individual opportunities, ‘Weekend Showcase’ is running smoothly every Friday with a new creative featured each week. Every creative showcased is then offered the option of taking up ‘FreeSpace’ (3 separate slots which can be taken up in a cluster or spread across months for mini-projects or for further platforming). James Knight has already done so and Koos Kleven (cartoonist) is also taking up this offer as has poet Oregon McClure. I am also starting up another mini-opportunity called ‘FullSpread’ which will offer creatives: a showcase, ‘FreeSpace’ and a guest blog. This could work particularly well for groups and organisations that want to not only communicate what they do but also want to foreground individuals and projects. We are in fact in the process of offering this to Space2Create.

In terms of features our usual ones,Frenzy’s Flash Feature’ (Greg Mackie), ‘Flash Fortnightly’ and ‘Classic Friday’ ( Nisha Moodley) are going strong, and we have now introduced a new monthly ‘writerly’ feature ‘The Tiniest of Things’ with poet Tiffany Coffman.

Last week ArtiPeeps was nominated by Ant DiMartino for the ‘Very Inspring Blogger Award’ which caused me a bit of concern because it’s not me that does all the writing and the contributing it’s you. As I said to Ant I’m thinking hard how best to handle this and I will only proceed if I can foreground creatives from within ArtiPeeps and its environs… and they might not want to participate…so we”ll see.

As you can see there’s a lot going on; things shaping and shifting in every direction. It’s all really exciting but there’s such a lot to do so it’s about being slow and steady whilst embodying boundng hare-like energy that moves us consistently forward. It’s a matter of stepping forward each day and leaning into every opportunity I can to develop ArtiPeeps and all those who sail in her.

I thank every single contributor and supporter of ArtiPeeps. You are growing ArtiPeeps by your sheer presence and that is an amazing gift, and if you want to get involved just contact me!

Nicky 

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* “Recovery is being able to live a meaningful and satisfying life, as defined by each person, in the presence or absence of symptoms. It is about having control over and input into your own life. Each individual’s recovery, like his or her experience of the mental health problems or illness, is a unique and deeply personal process.” Scottish Recovery Network 2009

Recovery is not about ‘getting rid of problems’. It is about seeing people beyond their problems – their abilities, possibilities, interests, and dreams and recovering the social roles and relationships that give life value and meaning”Julie Repper and Rachel Perkins, 2002

The Tiniest of Things #1

19 Mar

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Welcome to The Tiniest of Things, A Monthly mix of writerly observations and poetry from Tiffany Coffman

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 My name is Tiffany Coffman, and I’m a poet.  I know.  It sounds like quite the declaration of an addiction, and in some way I suppose it is.  I have no formal education or a degree hanging on my wall, but what I do have is the breadth of my life experience and the appetite for creativity that drives me to write.  Poetry has been with me since childhood, a curious cohort that has permitted me to get absolutely lost in imagination and disclose what I absorb through the senses, through memories.  As a creative, the ability to bend words to my advantage, whether in rhyme or by natural flow, then revel in the middle of it all is the stuff of magic.  I write from an organic place, a place of fidelity, wherein I attempt to gift the reader with imagery and storytelling so inviting that you’ll have felt you’ve shared something with me.  I don’t write for myself.  I write to take you along with me on a ride of emotions and confessions, whether they’re mine or yours.  So we’ll take the top down, throw the map away, kiss the asphalt, and roll. 

140 Characters Does Not a Poet Make

Haiku.”

Gesundheit.”

Tanka.”

You’re welcome.”

It wasn’t until July of 2012 that I decided to take my longstanding twitter account to the next level with the intent to immerse myself inside the poetic community.  I’d just recently gotten back into writing after taking 5 years off with the fierce determination to share my work and that of others, with Twitter being the perfect venue.  It was love at first sight you could say.  I was lured in by the tasty little micropoems of various flavor and form, relishing how others’ words danced on my tongue inspiring me to follow.

And follow I did.  Not just those I admired, but followed suit by beginning a life of microtweeting my own delicious amuse-bouche for others to savor.  This form of 140-poetry offered a great opportunity for me to get my name out there as a formidable poet as well as tap into a sort of stream of consciousness writing.  The brilliance in this for me was the ability to write immediately what I saw and felt in the moment which often captured a concept that I was then able to expound upon at a later time.  It was also a way to hone my word bending skills and get automatic feedback from others which acted almost as a compass for me with regard to the direction I wanted to take my writing.

So, off I went into the poetic sunset with tiny little micropoems at the ready, firing them off and into the twittersphere, and then situating myself at the helm where the real writing began.   My micropoetry became infectious to me as I began tweeting from odd locations: darkened streets on Halloween night, side of the road under lamplight, during breakfast with a friend, an ATM, etc…  Ideas flying from every direction allowed me to write deeper, fuller pieces.  Now excited and ready to move beyond the sole need of micropoetry, I tweeted full pieces of my work, sat back, and waited.

And then to quote Philip Larkin, “Nothing, like something, happens anywhere.’

While I found some positive response, I quickly realized that Twitter is not designed for much more than the 140 character attention span.  Instant gratification rules the land as far as reading, retweeting, and favoriting poetry goes.  The idea that I’d get more response to my work if I tweeted Instagrammed fruit arrangements as opposed to full length poems was disheartening to say the least.   I was writing for my life, literally writing my ass off, while others were getting recognized for microtweeting endless bits about snow and sky.  If done uniquely it should be recognized, but often there was no creativity in it.  Micropoetry had either become so average or so affected and contrived, with each word so cleverly but unemotionally placed, that I became discouraged and even incensed.

What had become of writing?  Not that I even knew what writing truly used to be in the time before I was born, but I was fairly certain it wasn’t about writing what amounted to a descriptive sentence and thereafter labeling it poetry.  Poetic in nature, perhaps, but not poetry.  Random thoughts and outward thinking suddenly became the poetic norm as I watched the craft of poetry being diminished singlehandedly by Twitter.  People with no real interest in poetry were now deemed twitter poets by throwing out descriptive sentences and tagging it as micropoetry or even ineffective Haiku.  Things like, “She walks around the room / slippers on feet / battling the cold” became officially notarized as legitimate poetry by virtue of a few forward slashes and a nifty hashtag.  Ah, the true hallmark signs of a poet.  If I’d known writing was that simple, I would’ve been forward slashing my way into fame since the age of 10 and humbly grabbing the title of #PoetLaureateoftheUniverse.

The ripple effect of such micropoetic tweets rears its ugly head most notably during a holiday or change of season.  During the transition into fall, for example, it seemed everyone was talking about Autumn – that kicky little chick that turns heads, changing minds, changing moods, breaking hearts, and falling away leaving Winter to clean up the mess.  It was all about leaves.  Their various colors, their falling, their crunch underfoot, but it was repetitive and ad nauseam with nothing original being said.  Everyone was duplicating everyone for a try, a stab, a right to claim this unoriginal micropoetry.  It’s Autumn.  Leaves change colors.  They make a crunchy sound.  We get it.  No one is saying anything outside of the ordinary, and no one is noticing anything beyond the obvious.  But isn’t that a poet’s job?  To notice what others can’t see?  To say what others are afraid to say, and to be brave enough to tear an ideal, a place, or a belief apart?  What has happened to the fearless poets of yesterday who worked hard mastering their craft, line by beautifully placed line?

It is in my frustration that I eventually mourn the loss of such great poets as Sexton, Larkin, Rilke, and Bukowski to name a few as there seems to be a lack of ordinary genius in the world of Twitter.  Poets who are passionate about their craft, wrangling words and putting forward an emotion for digestion into a soul, are becoming endangered by the likes of social media outlets such as Twitter where you’re forced to define yourself as either a poet on Twitter or a Twitter poet.  The distinction should be clear.  Unfortunately, those of us that deem ourselves poets on Twitter may even fall into the trap of instant gratification with forced micropoetry perpetuating the illusion that Twitter is the place where poetry happens.  Poetry happens in your soul, sprouted from an idea that travels to heart then hand and spills onto a page carefully scribed for a shared world.  It does not necessarily reside in the 140-characters that take less than 140 seconds to type and the blink of an eye to release into the atmosphere as an alleged reflection of ordinary genius.  The world is ordinary enough, isn’t it?

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Please take the time to click, and then click again to zoom into the cartoon so you can see the artwork in all its glory and detail. Thank you!

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The above cartoon was specially commissioned by ArtiPeeps for this post and was drawn by the artist and cartoonist KOOS KLEVEN.  DO check out his work here, and on our ‘Weekend Showcase’ here.

You can also follow Koos on Twitter here.

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Tiffany will be back with her next entry on Tuesday 16th April. 

Meanwhile you can read more of her work here: http://tlcoff.wordpress.com/ 

and follow her on Twitter here: https://twitter.com/tlcoff

Weekend Showcase: Koos Kleven (Artist and Writer)

15 Feb

Spotlight

Under the Spotlight 

Every Friday, 1 artist/painter/poet/writer, letting their work speak for itself.

Do get in touch if you would like to be showcased.

 

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KOOS KLEVEN

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Hi, I’m Koos Kleven, the writer and artist of AnotherWebcomic.com. I’m not actually an artist, at least not professionally, in fact I’m a software engineer with an art habit; being from Seattle, it turns out that isn’t too uncommon. Getting into art and design has been and continues to be an awesome challenge, but so time consuming.

One of my favorite activities is borrowing the style of other artists. With the theft of others’ style, I hope to gain some better techniques and slowly evolve a style of my own. While my style drifts through most of my work, I try to keep style consistent within story lines.

There are too many artists who inspire me to ever list, however here’s the beginnings of a list of those artists:

Kali Ciesemer (http://kalidraws.blogspot.com/)

Asaf Hanuka (and his brother Tomer Hanuka too) (site: http://realistcomics.blogspot.com/)

Danielle Corsetto of http://girlswithslingshots.com

– Zach Gorman of  http://magicalgametime.com

 

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