Bishop Street Methodist Church

Art at the Chapel Explorations into Art and Spirituality

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Contemplative Photography Experience in Western Park


contemplative photo western park April v3PHOTOGRAPHY IN THE PARK

Western Park
Sunday 24th April 2016
3 – 4pm

We would love you to join us for our free Contemplative Photography event. Learn how to use your camera as a meditative tool to experience the world around you in a fresh way. Suitable for all ages and abilities. All types of camera are fine including camera phones.

How to book a place: Please email Ruth at [email protected]. She will need to know how many places you would like to book .

Workshop leader: Ruth Joy is a professional wedding and portrait photographer who also has a keen interest in contemplative photography. With over ten years of teaching experience Ruth enjoys sharing her passion for photography with others.

What to expect: Ruth with explain the principles behind contemplative photography with visual examples and short practical exercises. You will then have some time to explore the park with your camera before the group gathers together to share their experience and images. Ruth will be available throughout the workshop to answer questions and offer advice.

What to bring: A camera. This can be anything from a camera phone to a compact point and shoot to a DSLR . Appropriate clothes and footware for the weather – we will be outside so make sure you stay warm. Some areas of the park may be muddy.

Where to meet: We will meet at 3pm in the car park accessed from the main park entrance off Hinkley Road. Click here for a map

Sharing our photographs: Please upload your favourite 3-6 images from the event onto our contemplative photography facebook page   You are also welcome to submit  1-3 images into our summer open art exhibition to be held in the gallery at Bishop Street Church


Creative Retreat and Exhibition by Jaime Poole

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Contemplating the word final poster

ART EXHIBITION BY JAIME POOLE – 7th – 20th March 2015

Paintings inspired by the British landscape together with intricate colleges formed of poetry sit side by side in this visually stunning and thought provoking exhibition.

CREATIVE RETREAT  – Saturday 7th March from 1.30 – 5pm 

An afternoon of reflection and time to grow closer to God through art and poetry. The retreat will include times of quiet contemplation, creative worship and practical creative activities including making 3-D poem pieces.

There is no charge for the retreat – we will simply put out a bowl for contributions towards materials (suggested £1 – £3) if people feel they would like to pop something in it.

Please contact Ruth at [email protected] or call the Bishop Street Church office on 0116 255 4111 for details on joining us for this creative retreat day. 

See more of Jaime Poole’s work on his website here:

Retreat Leaflet



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How to make Vinyl Banners for Churches



Our second workshop was led by Steve Hammond Evans who has worked as an artist in residence at Bishop Street and is experimenting with a range of techiques to create Vinyl banners which are used in his Church at Blaby Methodist.

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The first technique Steve demonstrated was how to turn a drawing into a huge banner that the whole congregation can get involved in. The initial drawing needs to be converted into a jpg file which is sent to a printing company to convert it into a vinyl banner. This can be done by either scanning the drawing or taking a high quality photograph of it.

Once back from the printers Steve used framers tape to ‘mask off the main area of his giant vinyl banner to ensure the border was kept fresh and white. He then armed members of his congregation with ‘sharpies’ a high quality brand of permanent coloured pens and set them to work colouring in the sections. According to Steve people really enjoyed the chance to do the colouring in even if they hadn’t done anything artistic in years! Everyone had a go and the result was a true collaboration. See the handout below for more info!

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Next Steve went on to tell us about how he creates the artwork for his vinyl banners. Working on A3 (which he later reduces to A4 so it can be scanned)

Steve uses a range of materials including Pan Pastels which give him the rich bright colours and quick background coverage he is after. Pan Pastels come in round pots and Steve used a makeup sponge to apply them to a piece of thick, good quality paper. He then dazzled us with his electric eraser which he used to create designs in the pastel ground he had laid down! We also learnt how to use framers tape to mask off areas which could then be filled with pastel colour to create borders.

The next art product Steve demonstrated was Brusho. I have used this myself for batik work and love the intense colour it gives. Steve used a pipette to transfer a small amount of water into a bowl before adding some brusho powder and mixing whilst warning us to be careful not to drip the mixture on surfaces or get it on our hands or clothes as it is very permanent!

Again it is important to use a thick, high quality paper to apply the brusho to. The colours mix well and you can see the result in the background of the  ‘Morning has Broken’ image above which Steve is holding up with the assistance of Esther!

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Finally Steve spoke about how he loves to use Celtic inspired knotwork in his designs as they not only tie the work together well but people like to ‘follow’ the lines with their eye which then ‘lead’ them around the image.

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You can see some of Steve’s banners currently on display on the Bishop Street Cafe walls.

Here is a copy of Steve’s handout from the session.

Steve handout You can see more of Steve’s  work here:

Celtic Christian Banner

Banner by Steve Hammond-Evans

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How to make a Spray Paint and Stencil Banner


A big Thank you to everyone who came to the banner workshop last night and to our wonderful workshop leaders Steve, Chris and Miriam. It was a fascinating evening jam-packed with great ideas and inspiration.

Thanks also to Dave my husband for taking these photos during the evening.

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This workshop led by Miriam taught the technique I learnt from the wonderful Anne Thalmessinger who uses it in many of her own banners.  When I wanted some special banners for our wedding last year Anne showed  me this techniqueand helped me make some like the ‘love’ one in the photo which hung above the place we said our vows.

Modern Church Banner


The banner on the right is one of Anne’s which shows how she often combines the spray technique with painted elements.

This technique is a quick and effective way to cover large areas of fabric in an eye catching way. It can be used to create backgrounds, borders or whole banners. It can also be used on paper and to decorate things like t-shirts or bunting.



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If you want to create stencil lettering or other drawn elements you first cut them out of paper and use double sided tape to fix them to your fabric. This ensures they don’t get ‘blown away’ with the force of the spray paint.

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Our table of treasures, flat things make the best stencils, especially natural objects like leaves and grasses. Lace, paper dollies and bits of rubbish such as bottle caps all work well. Lighter objects such as feathers will need a spot of double sided to stick them down.

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We used boxes to place our fabric and objects in to help prevent spraying the walls and carpet!! Our fabric came from our local scrap store. Its important to spray directly down to avoid moving the objects. Don’t spray too close put leave above a 15 cm gap between the spray and the fabric. Build up your colours gradually in layers. You may like to move some objects in between colours. We used enamel craft spray from wilkos but any spray paint e.g. car spray paint will do. Why not do a call out at church for any unwanted cans?

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As each workshop was only 20 minutes long including the demonstration the above pieces were made in just over 10 minutes each! If you want a quick and very effective banner making technique why not give it a go!

Modern Church Banner

Banner by Anne Thalmessinger and Sally Clarke showing the spray technique Ruth will be demonstrating.


Love Banners web

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Creative Workshop, Art – the healing spirit

Using bottle paints, lolly sticks and wax crayons this creative and colourful workshop was designed to complement the remit exhibition. The freedom and playful nature of the technique allowed the pieces to come from the heart rather than the mind.

Once the pieces had been created we spent some time reflecting on what they could tell us which allowed us all to make some interesting discoveries. The colours we had chosen, different ways we had worked and the resulting images varied greatly for each person even though the materials and instructions we had used were exactly the same.

We hope to repeat this workshop in October so if its something you would like to participate in keep an eye out for it!

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Art- The Healing Spirit Workshop leaflet a4 (1)