Talent Development - Artist catch-up with Nathan Evans

Back in 2019, we awarded 11 artists from the SO postcode area a bursary as part of the Talent Development bursary scheme which invites artists to propose and carry out a six month project of support and activities to develop their work and career. We’ve been catching up with the artists to find out more about their experiences and their practice post-lockdown.

Nathan Evans is an Illustrator, Artist and Graphic Designer specialising in hand-drawn and hand-painted lettering. You can see Nathan’s vibrant work across the city from the Arches Studios mural to the benches in the City Centre. As part of his Talent Development bursary, Nathan used this to explore new ways of producing works.


What did the Talent Development bursary enable you to do?

The Talent Development bursary afforded me both the time and freedom to explore a new way of producing work within my creative practice. The majority of my previous typography projects have been two-dimensional, but the Talent Development bursary gave me the opportunity to explore a more three-dimensional sculptural approach to working with letterforms. This is something that I had been hoping to explore for a while, but the reality of keeping up to my paid client work meant I wasn’t getting around to it. The funding connected to the Talent Development bursary meant I could explore this process without the concern of it not being financially viable.


Where are you now / what’s happened since?

The most notable thing to have happened since the Talent Development project is that I’ve been selected to create a temporary installation as part of LiT, a light festival in Bradford. Although this commission wasn’t a direct result of the Talent Development bursary, the experiments into the physical building of letterforms gave me the necessary confidence to realise how such forms might occupy a space in a more permanent way. This will be the next step in my creative growth, allowing me to produce a physical installation with a higher level of production and fabrication. Aside from that I’m also continuing to work on a range of commercial projects for a range of different clients in both illustration and mural painting.


What has the impact of the bursary been?

Over the years I have realised that potential commissioners want to see proof of concept and evidence that your ideas will work before they choose to collaborate with you. This hasn’t been a problem for me in the past because over the years I have completed a number of creative projects and built up a portfolio that can show potential clients this proof. However, with the new sculptural installation approach that I hope to develop moving forward, I didn’t have any images to visualise my ideas and had to rely on sketches. However, the work I carried out as part of the Talent Development bursary allowed me to create a series of striking images that act as prototypes of what a final installation could look like. I have already started to use these images on proposals for sculptural installation projects and believe that this will stand me in good stead to eventually be commissioned to create a permanent physical typography installation within the public realm.


You can see more of Nathan’s work here

Find out more about our Talent Development bursary scheme and it’s recipients here

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