An artist’s project
Painter Carolyn Blake has created The Unchanging Traveller, a collaboration between herself, fifteen poets and one graphic designer. Carolyn welcomed all on board to use her paintings of scenes through a train window to spark ideas.
The book moves us from station to station, the route typically from Birmingham to Euston, London and back again. Through the train window Blake captures sunlit platforms, telephone wires, industrial buildings, water towers, bridges, fields, trees, clouds. Sometimes trains, sometimes just a blur. Blake’s paintings have vitality, time is woven into the fabric of the paint.
The book makes a wonderful reason to make a train trip, spot where the paintings were made and read poetry en route.
The cover is where the collaboration finds form. The book is a train, windows an iPhone. Blake’s iPhone is her digital notebook which she uses as the starting points for her fluid and atmospheric paintings back in her Birmingham studio. Jeffrey Tribe, a Graphic Designer with 35 years of design and lecturing under his belt, places The Unchanging Traveller neatly inside a conceptual train carriage – the book is a work in itself!
Now for poets!
The Biggleswade Poetry Table is run by Leah K Stewart, writer, speaker and coach. Leah gathered her collective and invited them to write or select a poem already written that chimed in with the Blake’s paintings. One of the poets is actor Natasha Anne Kelleher, here’s an extract of Reminisce Youthful Bliss.
Let’s go by train!
Who doesn’t love settling in a window seat with a coffee and a good book, glancing up at the passing scene, people come, go, brief exchanges happen…the train is joyfully slow travel and it’s sustainable too. Don’t forget, book tickets ahead of time to save money, sit back and let the landscape roll on by.
The spirit of community
The achievement of The Unchanging Traveller is it’s a collaborative process, it forms ‘social glue’. As ‘build back better’ flounders, The Unchanging Traveller signposts a new direction, that we could do projects in the spirit of community – making time for each other and the world outside the window.