Making Meaning. A podcast by Ruth Singer exploring the meaning behind what we make.

One of the things I love most about my working life is talking to other artists and creative people about what they do and why. I love delving into the stories behind theirwork, hearing about what matters to artists and how they choose to share their thoughts through their creative practice. I am fascinated by research-focussed work and what goes on in the creative brain to develop artistic or creative work from concepts, ideas, research and thinking. The artwork I love most has a complex, often personal set of stories and narratives behind it, and often we don’t talk so much about those deeper meanings.

Since the start of the pandemic, I’ve really missed conversations with creative people about why they make what they make. I haven’t been able to visit other studios, to chat over tea about what matters most, about what inspires me, about what story we might be exploring at the moment. I love bouncing ideas off other creative minds. So I have created a podcast so I have the excuse to talk to artists and creative people whom I admire and who have fascinating stories to tell about the meaning behind their making.

Making Meaning is now available in all podcast apps, on the link below and on Apple podcasts.

“I also wanted to say thanks again for the wonderful podcast.  I started listening to series one earlier this year to boost myself to do more creative work, and it has been really inspiring.  I really appreciate the conversations you have with different makers, and the connections you make between meaning, process, materials, and place.  Wading back into embroidery and book arts has been helpful for me in creating a sense of balance. Listening to your podcast feels like I’m getting that part of myself back.”

Liz Winchester

Series Two

The new series is out now! This series has been supported by over 50 crowdfunding supporters as well as series and single episode sponsors. Thank you so much for helping make this series possible. If you are interested in sponsoring an episode, please get in touch. If you would like to support the podcast with a donation, use the PayPal button below.

Series Two Sponsor

I’m delighted to have the support of Studio Flax for the new series of the podcast. Studio Flax is the new name for Linladan linen embroidery threads who many of my textile friends will know. Studio Flax supplies high quality vintage and modern linen thread for embroidery and textile projects. They also have a new studio shop in Bristol. You can also find them on Instagram.

#26: Making Meaning with Gillian Lee Smith Making Meaning

In this final conversation of the series, I am talking to Gillian Lee Smith, a Scottish painter based in Northumberland. Gillian and I first met as members of a designer-makers group in the English midlands but we reconnected over Zoom during the pandemic and have had some wonderful conversations about our practices, our mentoring work and our creative ideas. In this conversation we focus on mentoring and talk about how both supporting others and being supported ourselves helps our practice. We talk about the zigzag journey of creative practice and how reflection and talking things through with others really helps to clarify things, to open new doors and to inspire. Find out more at ruthsinger.com/podcast
  1. #26: Making Meaning with Gillian Lee Smith
  2. #25: Making Meaning with Mandeep Dhadialla
  3. #24: Making Meaning Live Gathering Highlights 3 with Maker Membership and Charlotte Bilby
  4. #23: Making Meaning Live Gathering Highlights 2 with Amy Twigger Holroyd, Claire Wellesley-Smith, Lokesh Ghai and Charlie Birtles
  5. #22: Making Meaning Live Gathering Highlights 1 with Michaela McMillan, Wendy Ward and Kathryn Parsons

There are blog posts about each episode below including links to the guests, images of their work and anything of mine I discuss.

Making Meaning is edited by the brilliant Making Space VA.

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Help support the podcast by making a one-off or regular donation here. Thank you

Episode blog posts with images and links

Crowdfunding supporters

Claire McNamara
Laura Gladwin
Carol-Anne Savage
Victoria Belcher
Frances Tobin
Yvonne Dixon
Teresa Parkins
Claire Kent
Nicola Thomas
Jennie Hollier
Lucie Dutton
Sarah Feinmann
Emma Williams
Grace Whowell
Connie Wan
Alison Foster
Beth McLaughlin
Alison Jackson-Bass
Michaela McMillan
Jennie McCall
Jane Burns and Neil MacKinnon
Lynn Sullivan
Mandy Pattullo
Carol-Anne Savage
Lesley Wood
Gillian Cox
Emma King
Josslyn McAuley
Leslie Bixel
Gesche Santen
Ben Goodstein
Caren Garfen
Mandeep Dhadialla
Lucie Dutton
Susi Bancroft
Linda Florio
And another 18 who prefer to remain anonymous. Thank you