David and Rebecca Lewis looking at some of the artwork
Artists will be opening the doors to their homes and studios this weekend for the start of the Medway Open Studios & Arts Festival.
The week-long event highlights the artistic talent in the area, and this year visitors can see work by more than 200 artists across 32 venues around Higham, Rochester, Chatham and Gillingham.
Among those taking part is award-winning jewellery designer Sian Bostwick, who will be opening up her workshop at the Nucleus Arts Centre in Chatham High Street.
Jewellery maker Sian Bostwick
She said: “I took part in last year’s event and really enjoyed it. It’s wonderful to have visitors in my workshop, seeing how I work.”
Sian, 27, who grew up on the Isle of Wight, came to Rochester to study at the University of Creative Arts, and has lived in the town ever since.
She started her business three years ago and opened her studio two years ago.
“There is a huge creative community in Medway which people do not know about, not just artists but musicians too. Hopefully this will make them more aware.”
The event’s founder and director Heather Burgess said: “I started the festival last year because I wanted to reach out to the non-arts community and promote the huge creative bustle in Medway.
“The best feedback is often from long-time Medway residents who have discovered new opportunities, made friends in their local community and learned about facilities they never knew existed – right on their doorstep.”
The free festival runs from Saturday, July 13 to Sunday, July 21. For more information and a full programme visit www.medwayopenstudios.co.uk