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Stone carving workshop at Yorkshire Sculpture Park

You’d never have known it’s the middle of Summer by looking at the sky above Bretton Country Park in mid-July: a patchwork of grey to black clouds with occasional bright blue holes puncturing the otherwise oppressive weather. It was as if Summer, disgruntled by the miserable forecast, was trying to tear holes in an unwanted birthday present: a dull blanket from mother nature.

Luckily, the education team at Yorkshire Sculpture Park provided gazebos for participants at their Stone Carving course lead by Marcia Bennett-Male, which made for handy dry stepping-stones to leap between during rain showers.

Events and workshops at Yorkshire Sculpture Park are great places to take photographs, being around other creative people makes for a friendly environment where people love talking about what they are carving, cutting or welding.

Being able to talk and engage with your photographic subjects makes a job so much more enjoyable and interesting, the full set of photographs should back that statement up.

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I find talking to people first to put them at ease leads to more truthful and frank photographs – plus you can get much closer in and intimate without fear of invading personal space.

The sculptures being carved at the workshop ranged from children’s faces, bird baths, abstract work through to Dr Spock from Star Trek. Participants at the class were using sedimentary rock and Portland Stone, then shaping it with chisels and files according to some reference point such as a photograph or a clay maquette.

There were some very impressive feats being undertaken including a man with visual impairments making a bird table and a cooperative effort at a perfectly formed sphere which represented the work of two or three previous workshops.

These photographs are used by Yorkshire Sculpture Park for both print and web media for promotion and marketing, to give prospective participants a flavour of what takes place on a typical art and sculpture workshop event.

By Chris Kenworthy | Coach

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