Crit and Cake Artists Community

by Amy Whittingham

One of the things I’ve missed about being a student – apart from the access to awesome studios, specialist equipment and expert knowledge on tap – is the group critiques that were a standard part of the course. As a practitioner sometimes you get feedback on a project at the end or even when the work is on display and as much as this is gratefully received, whether it is good or bad, it’s often then harder to act upon than if you’d had comments during the process.

I really wanted to set up an inclusive and welcoming critique group for myself and my fellow artists and craft makers in Plymouth, so that whilst ideas are still at a ‘work in progress’ stage we can gain feedback and discuss any challenges that may surface along the way. Initially I wanted to call the sessions, ‘Critique and a Pancake’ but I soon realised that although memorable, it was a bit of a mouthful and making pancakes every month might become tedious. So a simplified ‘Crit & Cake’ was born. Now held on the fourth Thursday of the month we meet up at ‘Flameworks’ in an informal positive setting with a maximum group of 20 people to keep the critique on an intimate level (and ensure there is enough cake to go around).

Bakewell Tart

We regularly welcome between 8 and 15 people who come along to show their work or just to chat and be part of a supportive community of makers.
Alongside Flameworks studio holders and associate members, recent graduates and current students have also benefitted from the supportive and honest get together to discuss art and craft work. Bringing along a piece of artwork, sketchbook or even an idea can encourage the imagination in various directions, or open new perspectives. Topics can cover anything from a practical point of view with questions about making, to getting some advice on your business, galleries or contacts.

Sometimes a fresh pair of eyes on a project is all you need – and cake is pretty important too! The next Crit & Cake will be on Thursday the 23rd of November from 7pm to 9pm, I will bring cake, and have suggested a donation of £1 each to cover the cost of this, payable on the night. If you would like to bring something to add to the mix you are welcome. Please book your free place on Eventbrite if you would like to come along or for more information contact me amy@amywhittingham.co.uk