Traditional Irish Music Session
The Fleadh Cheoil is an international traditional Irish music and dance festival and competition that takes place every year in different counties. In 2014 half a million visitors descended upon Sligo to enjoy the week long festivities, with teams of competitors from Britain, Europe, United States, Japan and Korea taking part. Needless to say it's a mammoth event on the Irish calendar. I had been asked to exhibit my work in Pollexfen House Studios at the time, where a multi-artist pop-up exhibition that coincided with the Fleadh festival was being held. In honour of such a huge event coming to my hometown, I chose to illustrate a piece that captured what I believed to be the very essence of a traditional Irish music session.
Concept, Sketches & Layout
"Craic agus ceol" (fun and music) beside a turf fire in a warm, traditional Irish pub where the drink flows as well as the conversation. Setting the scene of this piece was a lot of fun, imagining what might be included, drawing on my experience of being in similar places! A huge inspiration was recalling elements I saw in my Grandparents' house when I was young; suitcases, ceramic jugs, horseshoe and the shillelagh (a walking stick made of blackthorn). The cap on the fireplace is my Dad's which is my personal little tribute and a lovely way to remember him.
I made the final piece available for sale as a mounted and framed print which was sold through my online shop and also picked up by numerous stockists.