SOLIHULL TATTOO ARTIST JOINS THE BIG SLEUTH

Local tattoo artist Megan Evans is set to make her mark on Birmingham this summer as part of The Big Sleuth, a free public art trail which is set to get its paws into the region from 10 July.

A full time tattoo artist at The Ink Shack on Station Road, 24-year-old Megan is one of almost 100 artists chosen to design and paint one of the trail’s giant bear sculptures. She has cleverly transferred her detailed artistic style to the 165cm tall bear blank canvas to help raise vital funds for Birmingham Children’s Hospital Charity.

Megan who has worked at the Ink Shack for two years also has interests in photo realism and hyper realistic art which she uses to create pet portraits. She has used this skill to create her highly detailed design with each hair on the bear’s head carefully painted on taking Megan two days to complete.

Presented by Birmingham Children’s Hospital Charity in partnership with creative producers Wild in Art, The Big Sleuth will see up to 100 beautifully designed bear statues appearing throughout Birmingham over a 10-week period this summer with satellite trails in Solihull, Sutton Coldfield, Sandwell and at Resorts World.

Megan’s design called The Gas St Bearsin takes inspiration from her favourite programme, Peaky Blinders, and incorporates Birmingham’s industrial work and transport system in the 1920’s.

She didn’t want her bear to just be a character, instead she wanted it to tell the story of Peaky Blinders and of the city.

At the end of the 10-week trail the bears will be auctioned off with all proceeds going to Birmingham Children’s Hospital Charity.

Megan said: “I feel privileged to be a part of The Big Sleuth, so that I can showcase my artwork in a different way. The designs that I usually tattoo are 2D and they’re often someone else’s vision and story, so I’m enjoying transferring my own design and my own inspiration onto a 3D canvas and seeing my bear come to life.

“The Gas St Bearsin celebrates Birmingham in the 1920’s, both through his top half as a Peaky Blinder, and his bottom half as the heart of the transport system including Birmingham’s famous canals. The different sparks over the design represent the industrial work going on at the time.”

The Big Sleuth comes hot on the heels of The Big Hoot which attracted more than 800,000 visitors and in total raised over £625,000 for Birmingham Children’s Hospital Charity.

Sally-Ann Wilkinson, Director of Wild in Art said: “We’re delighted to have incredibly talented artists such as Megan involved in The Big Sleuth and we’re so excited to see her creation on the trail. Streets, parks and public spaces will be transformed into a fun, free art gallery this summer taking people on a creative journey around Birmingham.”

Elinor Eustace, Deputy Director of Fundraising at Birmingham Children’s Hospital Charity said: “The Big Sleuth is really important to Birmingham Children’s Hospital as we know it will encourage residents and tourists to get active, enjoy being outdoors and explore parts of city they may not have been to before. We also hope to raise over half a million pounds to support the pioneering work we do here every day.”