Q&A Mat Pickles artist

Who are you and what do you do?

I’m Mat Pickles. I’m an artist based in Sale and I am getting away with murder at the moment. I was offered redundancy in November last year. I had been there so long that I took it without any clue what I was going to do. Instead of flapping I just spent all my time being creative. Drawing, painting an messing about in my top room. I sold one picture to a mate. Then another. This thing just started rolling from there. I now do this full time its ridiculous.

Tell us all about what you do? Materials? Processes?

I use pen, Ink, water colour and gloss paint. I drip and scribble and make mistakes. The trick is to get the image looking right then make the page look interesting and unique. I squint a lot when I’m working. Its a good way of checking if it’s working. All my work looks better if you squint or look at it from far away.

What 5 words best describe your work

Scribbly. messy, dark, blagged, different


Do you have any design/art heroes?

My first art hero was Gerald Scarfe, the guy that did the art work for Pink Floyd’s The Wall. I also love Ralph Steadman who does the illustration for Hunter S Thompson’s work. And Alex Grey is also amazing. I’ve also just realised that all these examples are artists that I have found through either music or books (Alex Grey did a few Tool albums). This may be a result of not studying art.

Describe in 10 words a typical day in your studio

Alternately hard work, yoga, podcasts daydreaming and feelings of guilt.

Are you working on anything unusual at the moment?

My next piece is going to use some techniques nicked from stencil art and mix that with drip art. My next idea is always going to be the best thing I’ve done. I’m hoping to have it ready for this year’s Sale Art’s Trail.

What will you be selling at the Artist Takeover ?

A few large pieces. I have a large Mancunian Sky line that has been in a gallery. I’ve got a few Mancunian architecture examples like the one above. I have some smaller line drawn portraits and some fun smaller Mancunian pics.




Christmas Bazaar 2015


We are delighted to announce that Sale Arts Trail will be having a Christmas Bazaar on Saturday 28th November at The Life Centre in Sale.

We have a fantastic line up of exhibitors including some of the Sale Arts Trail regulars plus a few new artists all of which will be revealed this week. As always there will be ceramics, illustration, art, jewellery, knitwear, leather goods and willow weaving.

The Life Centre is a fantastic venue with free parking and Cafe56 will be open all day serving drinks, homemade sandwiches and cakes.

Keep your eyes peeled for our line up, spread the word and most importantly come and christmas shop away from the high street and support local independent business.


Q&A Sandra Robinson


Sandra Robinson

What is your practice? Materials? Processes?

I am a painter working mainly in oils and acrylics, but I also like using pastels, watercolours, charcoal basically anything I can get my hands on.

What 5 words best describe your work?

Abstract Layered Colour Space Expressionist


Do you have any design heroes?

There are many artists that I admire but top of my list would be Cy Twombly, Joan Mitchell, Roger Hilton, Matisse and Beatriz Milhazes.

Where is your studio?

I have a home studio that I share with my husband who fixes electric guitars.


Describe in 10 words a typical day in your studio

Make tea, think, make more tea, paint, think, remove paint!!

Are you working on anything unusual at the moment? Commissions? New work?

I am currently working on a year long project based around my allotment, initially exploring the themes of growth, survival, mapping, transformation and beauty.

Did you exhibit or visit last years SAT?

I didn’t exhibit last year but I did visit and had a thoroughly enjoyable day. I hadn’t realised that there were so many artists living in and around Sale.

What will you be selling at SAT15? Anything new?

All paintings and drawing will be for sale.


What venue are you exhibiting at on the trail?

The Bean and Brush.

Tell us something we don’t know

I studied City and Guilds embroidery parts 1 and 2 which is a four year course. On completion of this I went on to do art foundation with the intention of doing the embroidery degree at MMU but discovered that I preferred paint so I went on to do a fine art degree in painting instead. However embroidery and textiles are still important to me, and are definitely an influencing factor in many of my paintings.


Thank you Sandra!


Q&A from Jen Orpin


Jen Orpin

What is your practice? Materials? Processes?
I am a painter. Oil on canvas and board.

What 5 words best describe your work?
Romantic. Selective. Composed. Aesthetic. Nostalgic.

Do you have any design heroes?
Many, including: Marlene Dumas, Gerhard Richter, Richard Diebenkorn and Lucien Freud.

Where is your studio?
Rogue Artist Studios. Chapeltown. Street, Manchester


Describe in 10 words a typical day in your studio
Radio, coffee ON! Get sucked into painting time warp – AGAIN.

Are you working on anything unusual at the moment? Commissions? New work?
This year my work has mostly focussed on the disembodied head and the beheaded body – with flowers.


What will you be selling at SAT15? Anything new?
I’ll be exhibiting and selling all new work.

What venue are you exhibiting at on the trail?
Waterside Arts Centre and The Bean & Brush cafe.

Tell us something we don’t know
My work is regularly hired by TV production companies for their set design; most famously, ‘Queer as Folk’ series 1 & 2 and most recently, on all three series of BBC1’s ‘Last Tango in Halifax’ (Caroline’s House).


Thank you Jen!


The Grotto Project with Lucy Harvey Sat 6th June




The Grotto Project is a collaborative project and sculpture inspired by the romanticisation of heritage. The Grotto Project will gather together historic objects and stories from around Sale to create an immersive installation inspired by archaeology and museum collections. Artist Lucy Harvey is working with local residents to create the sculpture inspired by the social history of Sale in The Square Shopping Centre as part of Sale Arts Trail 2015.

Get involved with the project by joining Lucy on a free Art and Archaeology Trail to collect objects for the final installation for Sale Arts Trail 2015. The trail starts outside Waterside Arts Centre Saturday 6th June, 11am, reserve your place on Eventbrite: http://bit.ly/grottotour

A Family Art & Archaeology Trail runs from Sale West Community Centre on Saturday 13th June, check out The Grotto Project blog to find out more information: https://thegrottoproject.wordpress.com

The Grotto Project is supported using public funding by the National Lottery through Arts Council England; and with kind support from Sale Locality Partnership with funding from Make Sale Smile.


http://www.twitter.com/lucyowl http://www.pinterest.com/lucyowl




Just over a week to go @SimplyCheshire @ArleyHall

Over a week to go to the first Simply Cheshire show at Arley Hall and Gardens.

Arley Hall posh frocks

Come along to the Sale Arts Trail stand and meet and chat about this years trail with Louise Dewsnap, Mitch Canvas, Sarah Malone and Jo Lavelle four of the Sale Arts Trail exhibitors 2015.

Don’t forget to watch out for even more Sale Arts Trail exhibitors at the show including Dionne Swift TextilesTone Von Krogh Ceramics, Alasdair Nelson Ceramics, Juliette Hamilton Willow, Lucy Elisabeth Metalwork, Mike Burgess Chainsaw Carver and Rebecca Lawley Silver.





Whoop! Whoop! Exhibitors list #SaleArtsTrail2015

So here we have it! Finally the exhibitor list for this years trail.

Please click on Exhibitors 2015 for the full listing and watch this space for more news on the open studios and venues involved.

Here is a quick selection to keep you going!

See you at the trail 10th-12th July!

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Sale Arts trail prize giving at ‘Emerge’ Exhibition


The Sale Arts Trail team were out and about on Friday night for the launch of ‘Emerge’ at the Craft Shop at The Royal Exchange Theatre. ‘Emerge’ exhibits work from the first ‘Open Competition’ by the Craft Shop including jewellery, ceramics, textiles, print and more from emerging craft makers from Greater Manchester.

Sale Arts Trail last night awarded a prize to an ‘Emerge’ exhibitor of a free place at this summers Art Trail and are delighted to announce that the winner was Scott Millar and his ‘bird hangers’.

Watch this space for more news on Scott Millar and his birds!

Pictures below of Scott Millar’s work.

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