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Engageinart – A FreeTimePays community

Engage in Art is where the power of art engages the spirit of our community.  Here we bring people together to share their passion, showcase their work and inspire others to explore their creative self.

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Art, culture & creativity
21 Apr 2020 - FreeTimePays
Introducing

Introducing Creatives We Are

https://www.youtube.com/embed//Luk0Np2dN7s

Creatives We Are is the largest community-led collaboration ever launched by any city as a way of engaging and inspiring its Creative Community.  It is an initaitive of Birmingham We Are & The Birmingham Contemporary Art Gallery.

Let's collaborate! Take the article.  If you love arts and culture, connect with us. 

 

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Introducing Creatives We Are





Creatives We Are is the largest community-led collaboration ever launched by any city as a way of engaging and inspiring its Creative Community.  It is an initaitive of Birmingham We Are & The Birmingham Contemporary Art Gallery.

Let's collaborate! Take the article.  If you love arts and culture, connect with us. 

 


As well as leading a collaborative push that will benefit all creatives, the Creatives We Are programme of initiatives supports a massive drive to generate over £10 million in social value for Birmingham and the Midlands.

If you are a creative with passion, register here. 

If you love the arts, culture and creativity and you're looking to brand your business as a supporter of creativity, let's chat.  Call 0121 410 5520 or email jonathan@creativesWeAre.com.

If you're a funder of the arts, creativity or culture or you're a philanthropist we'd love to share our plans with you.  

Here's a very brief introduction to our collaborations and our programmes running online through 2020, and, when restrictions over social distancing are lifted, offline as well. 

First, our 5 collaborations. 

Birmingham Gems

In the largest community collaboration ever attempted by any city, we are mapping and tracking all that is great about Birmingham.

This digital space maintained with the help of community will continue to grow as a reference point for both visitors and residents to maximise their Birmingham experience by engaging with more places, more passions and most importantly, more people. View in development site here.

Art and Culture Trail

Imagine a trail of the city’s wonderful art and culture, with content supplied by community, mapped for ease of access and employing the latest technology such as virtual reality for maximum effect and reach.

That’s exactly what is being built in conjunction with the work being carried out in mapping and tracking our Birmingham Gems.

This totally unique collaboration involves over 100 different organisations and more than 1,000 people with creative passion across the community.

Photographers share the passion! Share yours!

Covid-19 just can’t stop people sharing their love for their City. Whether from their archive or from their restricted daily walk, we’re carrying on sharing all the great images of the City and its neighbourhoods.

Our first video in the Creatives We Are series was a huge success and now we invite anyone to send us their photos taken in or out of the City Centre. It can be of your favourite green and open spaces, an example of Birmingham’s great history or heritage, an example of modern or classic architecture, or a magical moment down along the canal.

A number of photos will then be selected for inclusion in one of our videos and following the restrictions we will be laying on an exhibition of all photography at The Birmingham Contemporary Art Gallery with some very special awards from some very special people who love Birmingham as much as we do.

Architecture and Us

Architecture And Us is the place to go to see the very best of Birmingham’s architecture. From the classics to the modern builds, we’re mapping them all, providing visitors and people who work and live in the city with a fantastic showcase of great architecture.

The site offers the huge number of creatives a place to engage and access an array of tools for sharing their passion for architecture.

View in development site here

It’s Your Build

It’s Your Build is a digital platform for showcasing Birmingham’s construction sector and its built environment and offers the huge number of creatives a place to engage and access an array of tools for sharing their passion for what is being built in the city.

Everything’s mapped from the application to the final build with content provided by and shared by people who love what’s going up in Birmingham.

View the site here.

And now our 4 programmes. 

Creatives Online

Whether it’s creative ideas you’re after or you’re just interested in joining in on a creative social, we’re building a list of all the online events run by creatives across Birmingham and the region.

Creativity and Wellness

A series of workshops and tools (online and offline) designed and delivered by our growing network of creative consultants and therapists. 

On the Edge of Art

First to run in ‘The Creative Edge’ series of community collaborations bringing out the creative in all of us is On the Edge of Art. 

Pitch Creative

Regular opportunities for Creatives to pitch their ideas or their amazing skills to those with the potential, the funding and the resources to change lives. Running on-line and off-line (when restrictions over social distancing relaxed). 

Contact us for further details on any of our collaborations or creative programmes or should you have a creative initiative you are thinking of running or have a venture you would like to discuss with us, we’d be delighted to hear from you.

Jonathan, Albert or Sarah can be contacted at admin@creativesWeAre.com or call 0121 410 5520.

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90 passion points
Art, culture & creativity
31 Jan 2020 - Elliott Brown
Inspiration

Festival of Light at the Bullring, from St Martin's Square to Rotunda Square

There are five artworks that are lit up after dark from 5pm each evening from the 24th January to the 2nd February 2020 at the Bullring. For the second year running. This time coinciding with Chinese New Year. Talk to the Skies in St Martin's Square. Up St Martin's Walk With Love, Neon Angel Wings and Pulse. And in Rotunda Square is Birds that Fly Around with You.

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Festival of Light at the Bullring, from St Martin's Square to Rotunda Square





There are five artworks that are lit up after dark from 5pm each evening from the 24th January to the 2nd February 2020 at the Bullring. For the second year running. This time coinciding with Chinese New Year. Talk to the Skies in St Martin's Square. Up St Martin's Walk With Love, Neon Angel Wings and Pulse. And in Rotunda Square is Birds that Fly Around with You.


Another Brumtography meet with Karl Newton and one other member of this Facebook group. It had been raining on and off in the afternoon, so wasn't many of us.

Talk to the Skies - St Martin's Square

Shortly after 5pm on Sunday 26th January 2020, a look at Talk to the Skies by ITHACA Studio. Red, blue and green colours go across the bulbs on the ground. While pink, blue or green on the tube where beams of blue light shoot out into the sky. Selfridges seen behind. Wasn't quite dark enough at this point.

The view from the balcony near Selfridges. This was by 5:50pm. On the right was With Love, the throbing red heart that plays music. More on that further down this post.

From the area behind Chaophraya Thai Restaurant looking to the left, as the beams of blue light shoots into the sky to the left of the spire of St Martin in the Bullring.

Back to the Selfridges balcony area, sometime after 6pm. The colours keep chaging down there, and the heart keeps beating.

The beams of light goes so high above the spire of St Martin in the Bullring. It is best to see from up here, although you can check it out from St Martin's Square.

With Love - St Martin's Walk

They didn't get the red heart inflated until about 5:30pm on the evening we went. Seen here from down Pulse on St Martin's Walk. With Neon Angel Wings below. It was designed by Franck Pelletier. You can hear a beating heart sound effect and they had music playing, which you could change if you pressed a button.

Tried to get some views of the With Love red heart with the statue of Horatio Nelson. Which has been at the Bullring since 1809 (sculpted by Sir Richard Westmacott), some 4 years after Nelson died at the Battle of Trafalgar in 1805. Meaning this statue is older than Nelson's Column in London!

There was also a view of the heat with Selfridges, which was lit up orange. I missed seeing it in red for Chinese New Year. I think they should have left the lights red all weekend and not turn it back to orange.

Where the heart is was where the Snow Dome was until the end of the Christmas season.

This view lining the heart up with the Talk to the Skies blue beams and the spire of St Martin in the Bullring. This was one of my Creative Effect photos (trying out different settings).

Neon Angel Wings - St Martin's Walk

Seen down the semi circle tube called Pulse is the Neon Angel Wings by Carla O'Brien. Visitors can pose for selfies with the pair of wings. From this side a bit difficult to get a clear shot without anyone in the way of them.

A bit further down Pulse towards Neon Angel Wings.  The wings to the left was near the East Mall while the wings to the right was by the West Mall.

Managed to get a clear view of the wings from the back on St Martin's Walk, looking up towards the Rotunda.

A close up look at one of the set of wings with Pulse seen behind.

From the other side. I think the Bullring malls were closed by 6pm, although it seemed like they had closed earlier than that (due to Sunday trading laws). I'm not sure if the restaurants were still open by then.

Pulse - St Martin's Walk

This semi circle tube of lights is on St Martin's Walk and is by This is Loop. The lights have different patterns. The show lasts 5 minutes, and repeats every 20 minutes.

From the top of St Martin's Walk looking down to the spire of St Martin in the Bullring. A Chinese lady had a facemask on, although that's probably common with Chinese people in this country (and nothing to do with that virus outbreak).

Caught this cyclist heading through the tunnel down St Martin's Walk.

Added a star filter on my camera (which is in one of my cameras Creative effects).

One last look at Pulse, up towards Rotunda Square.

Birds that Fly Around with You - Rotunda Square

At first they were having problems turning the lights on for this Birds feature in Rotunda Square. As you can see it is loads of birds in a circle. By 5:25pm they still were unable to turn it on. It is by Masochism Shimada.

Got several photos up here, before heading down St Martin's Walk and checking out the other light displays at the Bullring.

Later we popped back up St Martin's Walk to check if they were able to turn it on. After 6pm they had managed to get it working. If someone walks around the centre, the lights on the birds follows them around in a anti clockwise direction.

This view of the birds with the Rotunda (I have still not been up).

One more view of the light on the birds going around in circles.

We spent well over an hour going up and down checking out the Festival of Light features. It was good but very cold. And worth seeing as I missed seeing the 2019 Festival of Light after dark (I only saw it in the daylight hours). So this made up for it.

 

Photos taken by Elliott Brown.

Follow me on Twitter here ellrbrown.

Birmingham We Are People with Passion award winner 2020

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60 passion points
Art, culture & creativity
30 Jan 2020 - Elliott Brown
Gallery

Ghetto Golf at the Custard Factory

A Brumtography photo meet on the 16th January 2020 at Ghetto Golf at the Custard Factory in Digbeth. A miniature golf course of 18 holes with graffiti, video games and horror movie references. For over 18's only. They also have a bar and areas for visitors to eat. We went before they opened, around 4 of us in the end. Thanks to Karl Newton for organising / gaining permission.

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Ghetto Golf at the Custard Factory





A Brumtography photo meet on the 16th January 2020 at Ghetto Golf at the Custard Factory in Digbeth. A miniature golf course of 18 holes with graffiti, video games and horror movie references. For over 18's only. They also have a bar and areas for visitors to eat. We went before they opened, around 4 of us in the end. Thanks to Karl Newton for organising / gaining permission.


GHETTO GOLF

A Brumtography (Facebook) group meet on the 16th January 2020 at Ghetto Golf Birmingham. Which is located at the Custard Factory in Digbeth, on Gibb Street (on the other side of the Bordesley Viaduct). A Crazy Golf course for over 18's only. We went before they opened, and was there for around an hour. They have a Cocktail bar and also serve food for paying customers from Apocalypse Cow. There is amazing graffiti and artwork all over the place, in I think what used to be a former warehouse.

I liked seeing the video game artwork of Sonic the Hedgehog, Super Mario Bros, Donkey Kong and Abe from Oddworld series. Was also artwork of horror movie characters such as Beetlejuice and Freddie Krueger.

Hole 1 to the right. Apocalypse Cow BBQ Street Food to the left. The graffiti bus behind is hole 3.

In hole 1 was this communal bin with Oscar the Grouch from Sesame Street! Graffiti all over the place.

To Hole 2 which is a Petrol Station. This sign is near a recreation of The Old Crown pub. The stairs leads up to other holes.

I would guess that this is the petrol station with all the Mobil signs. The Old Crown is to the right of here. Also near the bus. The stairs leads up to other holes.

Hole 3 is in this former single decker bus from Manchester. Now covered all over in graffiti. They built a DJ station on the roof of the bus.

Inside the bus from the main entrance. You can also get in and out via the emergency exit door to the back on the left. So much graffiti all over.

Hole 4 is this skateboarding ramp. Then hole 5 near the adult shop and red post box.

After hole 5 is a Blockbuster Video which is hole 6. Inside they "rent out" horror movies on VHS video cassettes.

Inside of hole 6 aka Blockbuster Video. Dare you rent out My Girl? Head round the corner to find Pinhead from the Hellraiser movies and see Regan from The Exorcist get lit up!

Then head out past Freddy Krueger from the Nightmare on Elm Street movies and get a Coca Cola. The door to the left exits to hole 5.

Hole 7 is a bathroom. Lots of graffiti street ar here with toilet seats used as heads. Bath in the middle.

It looks like you have to hit your golf ball up the ramp and into the dirty toilet! And put your hand in to get the ball out. Hope they provide gloves!

Hole 8 meanwhile is this chicken pen. Next up is hole 9 which is the recreation of The Old Crown pub.

At the time of this visit, the real Old Crown pub was closed for renovation works. So hole 9 as The Old Crown was the only one that you could visit.

It really looks like an old style public house inside. I've never been inside of the real Old Crown pub though, only walk past it outside (or see it from the bus). That door leads to holes 8, 7 and 6. For hole 10, you have to go upstairs.

Hole 10 on the first floor is Tony's 8 Ball Snooker Hall. Wind your golf ball to the hole like a trick shot, Big Break style.

View of hole 10 from the ground floor from near hole 1.

Next up is hole 12 which is this Dog Kennel.

They appear to be growing something inside of the dog kennel. Somehow you have to get your golf ball in there?

Hole 12 is like something from the Aztec world (I would guess).

They also have images of the Green Man on the wall leading to that creepy face in the door.

The next hole is hole 13 which is this old room. It could be from the 1970s with dated wallpaper and furniture. But the globe and portraits look much older.

Close up look at the globe.

The last hole on the first floor is hole 14, which is a 10 pin bowling alley.

6 pins in position while the other 4 is behind the barrier. Downstairs next to four 16 bit video game inspired holes I think you will love (if you grew up in the early 1990s).

The first video game hole, is hole 15. Based on the 16 bit Super Mario Bros from the SNES (unless it's based on the 8 bit Mario Bros from the NES).

Head past Mario and Bowser (also known as King Koopa). Mario would also have been on the Nintendo Game Boy.

Hole 16 is this Pinball game. Next to the Gameboy saying "Sicker than yo' Average.

At least I think it's pinball and not Space Invaders. Donkey Kong is next at hole 17.

Almost near the end. Hole 17 based on Donkey Kong, which is an 8 bit game from the NES.

There was later a 16 bit game on the SNES called Donkey Kong Country with better graphics. I think you can tell that Sonic the Hedgehog is next!

Finally hole 18 is Sonic the Hedgehog from the Sega Mega Drive. The 16 bit game that was released in 1991 and will soon get his own live action movie!

It is based on the Green Hill Zone that famously opened the classic 2D side scroller. Also featuring Dr Robotnik (who Sega now called Dr Eggman). Game Over Man Game Over!

Now for some bonus photos to finish this post. Near the entrance was this artwork of Beetlejuice (from the 1988 movie directed by Tim Burton and starring Michael Keaton). But will they make Beetlejuice 2?

One of my favourite video game characters was Abe from the Oddworld series. First appearing on the Playstation 1 (32 bit console) and PC CD Rom in 1997 in the game Oddworld: Abe's Oddysee, and it's follow up game in 1998 which was Oddworld: Abe's Exoddus. Later Oddworld games were on the original XBox. Abe was known to ask his fellow Mudokons: "Follow me!" and they would reply: "OK!".

Near the Apocalypse Cow area was this logo from Mortal Kombat. The original game I think came out on the Sega Mega Drive. They are still making Mortal Kombat games to this day and Mortal Kombat 11 is on the Playstation 4, XBox One and Nintendo Switch (they are very violent).

More seating here probably for Apocalypse Cow BBQ Street Food near what looks like to be a heavily gratified train!

Karl Newton keeps setting up these photography meets in the Brumtography Facebook group. If you are a Birmingham based photographer, please request to join. Karl or one of the othe admins may accept you. There is now regular meets and Karl sets up the tickets on EventBrite. It is private group, so you have to be a member to see the posts.

One of our recent meets was at the Electric Cinema on the 20th January 2020. We also met up for the first time at The Eagle & Tun pub before it closed for good by HS2, this was on the 11th January 2020.

I most recently joined Karl and another member of the group at the Bullring for the Festival of Light (on the 26th January 2020). Watch this space for an up and coming post!

 

Photos taken by Elliott Brown.

Follow me on Twitter here ellrbrown.

Birmingham We Are People with Passion award winner 2020

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60 passion points
Art, culture & creativity
29 Jan 2020 - Elliott Brown
Gallery

Chinese New Year around Birmingham, in 2020 it's the Year of the Rat

The annual celebrations are being prepared for in Birmingham City Centre. They dressed up the Bull. The Chinese dragons is going around, but I've not seen it yet this year in 2020. Missed it in the Colmore BID, and at the Bullring. But saw a dragon at the Custard Factory, and caught some of the dancing at the Bullring (but crowded and hard to see anything). Plus not waiting around.

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Chinese New Year around Birmingham, in 2020 it's the Year of the Rat





The annual celebrations are being prepared for in Birmingham City Centre. They dressed up the Bull. The Chinese dragons is going around, but I've not seen it yet this year in 2020. Missed it in the Colmore BID, and at the Bullring. But saw a dragon at the Custard Factory, and caught some of the dancing at the Bullring (but crowded and hard to see anything). Plus not waiting around.


Here's a quick brief post on Chinese New Year in late January 2020. The Year of the Rat starts on Saturday 25th January 2020. And there will be the annual celebrations in the Chinese Quarter on Sunday 26th January 2020. I did pop through Southside on Saturday, but could not see much more than them setting up the stage, and I wouldn't want to be around there on Sunday as it will be way too crowded for me.

The Bullring bull seen on the 23rd January 2020 in it's latest costume for Chinese New Year. Which starts on the 25th January 2020. A yellow and red outfit completely covering the bull, apart from it's feet.

Think I prefer this outfit to the one they used in 2018. Best to get it as early as I'm aware of it, before it gets too crowded around here (especially at the weekend).

The bull from the back. Festival of Light event to the right.

The Festival of Lights at the Bullring is back. In 2019 I only saw it in the daylight, and so far in 2020 also in the daylight. This is Pulse of St Martin's Walk.

Birds Fly Around With You in Rotunda Square. Seen them again since, but holding off taking more photos until I possibly head back when it gets dark. It opened on the evening of the 24th January 2020 and should be there until early February 2020. Spire of St Martin's Church down St Martin's Walk.

I went to the Colmore BID on the 24th January 2020, but did not see the Chinese dragon dances (had no idea at all where they were). So walked to Digbeth via the Gun Quarter and Eastside. Saw this Chinese dragon in the window of Ridding and Wynn at the Custard Factory in Digbeth.

Saturday 25th January 2020 at the Bullring. Was hoping to see some of the Chinese dragon dances, but when I got to the West Mall only saw this. DANS Dance. Taken from the top floor balcony.

Was a bit crowded on all floors to get decent views here.

Just caught the end as they walked to the Chinese arch made out of balloons.

I later popped back into the Bullring but could not see any dances going on, nor nothing around the Bull, I did not want to wait about. The City Centre around the Bullring was way too crowded for me. Nor did I see anything in Grand Central.

 

Photos taken by Elliott Brown.

Follow me on Twitter here ellrbrown.

Birmingham We Are People with Passion award winner 2020

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50 passion points
Art, culture & creativity
27 Jan 2020 - Elliott Brown
Gallery

Introducing The Birmingham Contemporary Art Gallery at Arena Birmingham

The Birmingham Contemporary Art Gallery opened during early December 2019. I first spotted them above the Legoland Discovery Centre near the end of last year. Popped back on New Year's Day 2020, but they were closed. So returned several days after that and met the couple behind The BCAG. At Arena Birmingham.

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Introducing The Birmingham Contemporary Art Gallery at Arena Birmingham





The Birmingham Contemporary Art Gallery opened during early December 2019. I first spotted them above the Legoland Discovery Centre near the end of last year. Popped back on New Year's Day 2020, but they were closed. So returned several days after that and met the couple behind The BCAG. At Arena Birmingham.


The Birmingham Contemporary Art Gallery opened on the 5th December 2019, in the units above the Legoland Discovery Centre Birmingham, at Arena Birmingham. There are steps to the left to get up there. Or use the main steps from King Edwards Road and walk all the way around.

First spotted it on the 27th December 2019, on a photo walk around town with Karl Newton.

Found them on Twitter The BCAG and Instagram The BCAG. And they are now following / liking my photos. Thanks very much. They now have their own People with Passion page at The Birmingham Contemporary Art Gallery.

New Year's Day 2020 on the 1st January 2020, I decided to find where they were, and how to get to them. Got on from the Arena Birmingham steps near King Edwards Road. But you have to go around to the right, as no access to the left from there. Just headed all the way around until I found them.

Found these steps nearby, which would be easier for future visits.

Sign in the door. BCAG. But they were not open this day.

The BCAG with LDC Birmingham below.

View from the canalside on the Birmingham Canal Navigations, with the Lego Giraffe.

View from the other side of the canal. The BCAG above LDC Birmingham.

Tried again visiting on the 4th January 2020, and this was when I met them in person. Sarah Wallace & Albert Wallace. First off, a look around the gallery.

Metal figures, not sure what to make of them. Prefer the paintings on the walls though.

Art of the Bullring Bull.

Painting in a gold frame near the window. Another pair on the floor.

Metal vase on a glass topped table.

Was a lot of bright sunshine, leading to shadows that day.

More shadows over the paintings and figures.

BCAG sign near the entrance with pictures nearby.

White leather sofa in the corner. The Lego Giraffe outside looking in.

Lampshade with a curved arm. With bright sunshine outside. They have a nice view of the canal and Brindleyplace from here.

One last look at the gallery before I left.

Before I left, they wanted me to take a few photos of them. Near the Bullring Bull but a lot of shadows here.

More shadows and light, a bit better in this direction.

One more with the BCAG sign.

14th January 2020 and at the Birmingham We Are event. Jonathan Bostock introduces the Lord Mayor of Birmingham (for 2019-20) to the team behind The BCAG.

These artworks were at the Council House during the BWA annual event, I think they might be from BCAG (but am not sure). Near where Gloriana was.  This painting reminds me of Gozer, the evil ghost from the end of the original Ghostbusters film.

These little trees in frames are definitely from The BCAG. And the other figures. Plus they had their card on the table to the left.

This one also near the Gloriana sign. Looks like a bald African girl.

Photos taken by Elliott Brown.

Follow me on Twitter here ellrbrown.

Birmingham We Are People with Passion award winner 2020

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