December 16, 2009

Owning My First Original Johanna Basford: Art Made By Twitter

Johanna Basford TwitterPicture
TwitterPicture was quite a feat for a young artist: Aberdeen-based artist Johanna Basford made £15,000 (about $892,000 ;-) in the space of 48 hours of twittering, by inviting normal untalented folk like me to suggest what they wanted drawn by her famous black pen.

The lovely Damien, Suzy and co at the wonderfully cool, hip and talented ISO Design thrust a stocking filler under my arm this evening. And I'm now the proud owner of Twitter's first piece of crowdsourced art, made by Aberdeen-based artist Johanna earlier this year.

In theory, at least, I've also helped make this masterpiece, as mine was one of 230 tweets that fed the end-result - an A3 line-art collage, of the distinctive style that will make Johanna a Turner-winner one of these days (I hope). It now takes pride of place in the living room, where I am reminded of contributions made by quite a few of my twitter buddies.

At the end of Day One, the Central Station arts platform, on which I've been working with ISO, joined the push to get as many people as possible to promote the project and chip in with their own ideas for inclusion. The result is fascinating and beautiful, with "any dinosaur in casual attire" resting next to my own "a baby's first laugh". You can see all 230 suggestions on the artists' certificate of authentication, and come around to mine for a cup of tea to find them all.

IMG_9533 It's a beautiful living room piece, and the first original artwork I've ever owned. But it strikes me that this could be an almost weekly occurrence in art and design classrooms around the world - it's Twitter storytelling for artists.

Catriona's already started trying to emulate Johanna. She's got a bit to go, but she'll get there one day. You can see some of the detail in it on my Central Station art profile, and follow CenSta on Twitter to catch the next time there are fun happenings like this.


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About Ewan

Ewan McIntosh is a teacher, speaker and investor, regarded as one of Europe’s foremost experts in digital media for public services.

His company, NoTosh Limited, invests in tech startups and film on behalf of public and private investors, works with those companies to build their creative businesses, and takes the lessons learnt from the way these people work back into schools and universities across the world.

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