“We don’t really want a petrol driven vehicle going on there…” thought Seaford-based illustrator Sally Elford when she first received the ‘road trip’ brief for this month’s cover design. “I thought we’d better have something sustainable. But that meant drawing one of the most difficult things: a bicycle.”
Sally, who graduated with a degree in Illustration from Brighton University in 1998, created the image on her iPad using Procreate software. It’s technology which, she says, has changed her life, freeing her from desk-bound backaches and clunky vector points. “It has so many realistic effects. It’s like working with paper, pencil and ink, but with the option of undoing your mistakes really easily. I’d forgotten how much I enjoyed drawing.
I’ve given the cover design a bit of a coastal theme, with a beautiful landscape and some wildlife dotted in. It’s my favourite kind of drawing – doodling leaves and bugs and different elements of nature.”
The family on the cover could easily be on their way to Seaford Head: the site of The Green Show, which Sally has been organising alongside Josie Swan, Alice Carter and Sophie Peerless. Together they make up Seaford Contemporary Illustrators and Printmakers (SCIP). Billed as a ‘celebration of landscape and nature’, The Green Show will be held at South Hill Barn later this month – a building that has, until now, only ever been used for farming. It’s a spectacular place: sitting high on a clifftop, with panoramic views out to sea and across the county.
It’s SCIP’s most ambitious project to date and they’ve put together an impressive line-up. The main barn will house an exhibition of works by 30 leading contemporary artists and illustrators, including Sir Quentin Blake, Graham Carter, Donna Wilson and Owen Davey. Alongside there’s a pop-up cinema, free children’s workshops, a nature trail and a community art installation. Plus, there’s a programme of adult workshops featuring ghost net weaving with Kittie Kipper, a (wild) life drawing session with live birds, and a free evening lecture programme with talks from South Downs National Park ranger Tim Squire, local author Giles Paley-Phillips and Simon Armstrong from Ticktockrobot animation studios.
Parking is available onsite, but – if the green theme strikes a chord – you can walk up from the station. It will take the best part of an hour but it’s a picturesque walk along the beach and up Seaford Head. Alternatively, get off the number 12 bus opposite Chyngton Lane (ask the driver), and walk the final ten minutes. If the show leaves you feeling inspired, continue on down to the iconic Coastguard Cottages and on to the dozens of other Artwave venues open across the district this month. Or just take the moment to breathe in all that fabulous scenery and thank your lucky stars that you live in such a beautiful part of the world.
The Green Show, South Hill Barn, Seaford Head, 10am-5pm, 15-18 & 22-25 August. Visit wearescip.co.uk to see the full programme and to book events.