Guest blog: Artists at forefront of Paisley’s bid are key to changing perceptions of the town

Paisley is inspiring to me as an artist. There is so much history and heritage in our town that I draw upon when creating my art - including the Paisley Pattern that inspired the trompe l’oeil created to mark Glasgow Airport’s backing of Paisley’s bid to be UK City of Culture 2021.

Paisley 2021 is building a new chapter in art and culture for the town. It is going to be a fantastic opportunity for talented and emerging artists to get involved and rewrite the narrative of Paisley. It will put a spotlight on the diverse range of cultural practitioners and fields of art that happen in Paisley just now, but also bring in new forms of artistic expression by younger and contemporary artists just starting out.

Getting involved in the creative process is a big part of the bid. Most people are involved in some form of art, but might not realise the connection to culture. They are all part of Paisley’s kaleidoscope of artistic talent and I hope to see more people getting involved.

It’s been interesting working on the trompe l’oeil – I was on my own, but I didn’t feel isolated. Together with all artists from the town, Renfrewshire and the surrounding area, we are a community that’s connected on our mission. It’s time the town had a new perspective and art is an incredible way to do just that.

When I think about Glasgow’s transformation over the years, it is amazing to think how far the city has come from the 1980s and early 90s. Paisley is so close to Glasgow and I believe that Glasgow artists share a common approach to art that is rooted in place and makes people think.

So I believe this is Paisley’s opportunity to show what great things the town has to offer. Getting involved in the bid as an artist and showcasing everything that happens in the town is central to this aim. We aren’t short of things to shout about and this is the right time to do it.

It’s an exciting time to be an artist.