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Despatch and Hatch.

Hurrah the first batch of work has been delivered – this was to Art In The Mill Gallery for their Summer Salon, part of the FEVA festival.

Bit of a scramble to get everything ready, onlyP1180139 picked the work up from the framers on Friday afternoon – the one opportunity to get the work across was on Saturday after work.  Rather busy Saturday morning, breakfast was on the hoof in the rush to prep, record, price  and pack,  then off to work for a rest!

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I had wanted longer to reaquaint with the work in its new clothing, somehow framing does make the scruffiest work look ‘proper’. But it is gone now – hopefully someone will love and buy! (still waiting for my millionaire to come along and insist on buying all of it- I would resist of course out of creative modesty, but after subtle persuasions ( poss invovling chocolates, flowers, etc,) I would give in  and  then live in happy self indulgence until the next P1180153one  comes along….)  Lacking a millionaire I did settle for icecreams…..  and then set about prepping the neP1180152xt idea – and as you can see the first ‘stones’ have been hatched. They are carved out of old insulation block so should be much lighter to work with now I want to increase the scale a bit.

Shame about the mess.

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Peeling II

These landscape stones are becoming a bit of a fixation. Sewing them became welcome relief from the weight of sewing the robes (fingers still sore).  The second one is painted, dry and ready to peel. This should be easy – would be if I didn’t paint it first. I literally smear base coat all over it, rubbing it into the fabric, it changes the nature of the surface, blending and pooling around the stitches and pulled details. It also stiffens the fabric and unfortunately glues it to the stone. Oops. Does make the peel difficult and destructive.

Post Peel-  It took 3 hours this morning of creative sunbathing to get it free. The peeling has lost all pretence of being precise or new, the fabric is distorted and torn, the paint has been disrupted in places and flaked in others. Flattening it caused even more damage and the whole effect is aged and worn. So much better. It does have a history now, a character, a story to tell. It has the shifts of texture, shapes, I associate with landscape, those sudden details and concentrations in the midst of big spaces, on the down side, it does make me think of roadkill.

I have been a little more experimental with this one. There are a wider range of stitches, the old favourites of chain, french knots, back, whip, seed and of course running. Some I imagined would trap more paint, others give more emphasis or surface. Totally right but not as expected, the bold stitches have become claggy  and lost definition and pattern. I think there was too much stitch, there is a lumpiness rather than a lightness.

I think I will mount this on more of the orginal cotton lawn and present it as something fragile and ephemeral, unless of course another idea occurs.

Peeled and resewn

Once it was a flat piece of cloth, then it  encased a stone, then it was broken off and made flat again, showing all the c

landscapestone peeled

First stages- tacked on and a few lines stitched.

uts, folds and pleats  as pattern and scars.

It is now being stitched down to hold its shape and its history.  The backing cloth has had its own saga,  loosely snagged up in elastic bands before tea staining and then  drenched with dilute inks.  The plain cloth was too machined and perfect, this now is offering more.

It is slow at present – hand stitching outwards, following lines and seams. I have tried to raise some, the backing is a bit thick but it is trying to behave.

I have tried various threads, matching the ones sewn with on the stone and also experimenting with the frayed threads of the backing fabric.  It may be an odd shape but I have hopes – It has a sense of landscape,  it has a sense of having evolved rather than being  designed. There are plenty of decisions still to make – blending over some of the edges to hide the fusion of the two  layers of fabric,  how neat to stitch,  how much to stitch, whether to work in some paint, how about pencil marks and shading, or graphite powder?

Some of these techniques are covered in my classes and workshops – check out the list on the Want to Try page.

Peeling a Stone.

P1170934 Landscape stones are go -ish!

I do like these, they feel right.  Forming and deforming to fit a 3d form – it does feel like creating landscapes. And it does feel like those rolling hilltops, the field patterns and plough marks.

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The fabrics are getting  flimsier, stitching is getting more descriptive  rather than pretty.  I’ve enjoyed playing with surfaces – smearing thick paint into all of those little places  and rubbing and rubbing.  The last stone I decided to strip the fabric off – this is after about 3 hrs of stitch, then painting and drying-  and then had to break the fabric to lay it flat again. WHY! Took ages to free the fabric ‘skin’ as the paint had acted like a glue and also made the fabric more rigid, So still why? playing with that flat-to-3d form  idea, wanting to see how the patterns that were a response to the individual stone, could work without the stone. Hope that makes sense.  I guess I have always been fascinated by that kind of transition, and that 3d makes me want to touch to ‘see’ it properly, while 2d I just look at, so the transition may be in my understanding and response.

I am toying with extending the stitch marks- may be quilting, or at least stitching outwards trying to match the different qualities of the stone stitches –  contrasting with machine stitch might help or hinder….

Tried putting it on a textured landscape sample – similar colour-  this could be another route or too muchy muchy samey samey.

Want to rub in more paint, and more paint (the Latex Gloves of Clamminess) how about graphite powder…….powdered pigment?  looks like an aerial photograph….. keep focus on the little details,   keep monochrome? too many ideas, not enough biscuits.

Sanity may suffer.

Remember to check out the classes and workshops-  and if local, Bridget Bernadette Karn is exhibiting in the cemetery chapel first weekend in June – worth a look.

Workshop frenzy!

landscape stones a  Meet the new sanity – these are landscape stones. I don’t understand the idea yet, but …… I enjoy doing them. It is something about fitting flat to 3D and the marks and tucks from the fitting becoming a landscape of lines, well something like that, ish.  At least they are relatively quick – emphasis on relatively –  They either are very right, or very wrong,  I don’t know yet.

Thank you for your support at Open Studios. Another year of interesting and interested people.  One day soon the house will be back together but in the mean time has anyone seen my cache of acrylic paints – colourful messenger style fabric bag?    One of the great things about doing a meet your public event is that it focusses the mind quite effectively.  The work has to be finished of course, but also if somebody asks about workshops it is probably best to have some  organised.

It did take much longer than expected (sorry first weekenders) but a whole new schedule is now together.  The grand plan is a  series of classes and also one off complementary day workshops.  That was the plan…….  hopefully folk will like this flexibility,  only a fortnight to the first intro class so I guess I will soon find out!

Classes, Summer 2018.    Each is 10-1pm, £15,

Introduction  May 4  /  May 6   Setting up, the machine, basic equipmentP1070027 equipment, getting stitching. Trouble shooting

Making Lines Work  May 11 / May 13  Controlling and exploring how to make and use lines to develop character and style in your work. Start to draw with your machine.

Lines- And now to make pictures  May 18 / May 20green lane fran brammer tmb Using lines in different ways in your designs and pictures.  Work with positive and negative ideas. We will go through creating your own design from idea to completion.

Experimenting with Applique  May 27
Different ways of adding fabric shapes to your work- simplehands raw, using precut shapes, stitch patterns, edges. An effective way to add colour, motifs, pattern or textures.

and this is only May.……… deep breath because there are also day workshops,  buttons/badges, twisting tree card makes, and water soluble day, and, and, and… the complete lists are on the Me Page.

I can not recommend freehand machining enough – it tickles the inner anachist and releases a little of that risk taking rebel – all with out wearing lycra or needing a special set of underwear …. unless of course you want to.

landscape stone 3a  Do they look like crop marks, plough patterns, trackways and field boundaries yet?   Will rockeries, riverbeds or beaches in N and E Yorkshire ever be safe again…..?

The ghost, a sad, sad story.

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muslin panel in the early days of goo.

 

 

 

Once upon a time there was the embroidered Muslin Panel. It was a very nice embroidered Muslin Panel, a proud metre by 60cm. It was  wafty and ephemeral and above all, delicate.

A bright idea occurred. Rather than having to dangle, Panel wanted to be able to stand up. Enter Evil Goo. Some of the lightness  would be lost but Goo promised great things such as rigidity and independence.   (didn’t mention the smell.)

Days later  and Goo had dried.  But Panel was unhappy, stiffer yes, rigid no. And so plasticy  and heavy.   It took a tall wooden pole at either end to hold him up.  Little Pet’ ( the part jacket) came

franBrammerWolds and petdrying

Little Pet doing her thing.

to help support Muslin Panel in its hour of woe.  Valiantly Little Pet’ held up the panel as strongly as she could but the top section kept flopping over  – first this way then that, until a tear formed and the floppy bit had to be amputated . The tall wooden pole at that end became short wooden pole. Tall  wooden pole  attached to the other end   tried hard but the weight was still too much,  so Tall Dress was introduced to hold the trees section up.  (still don’t mention the smell) .  This new element caused great jealousy and tensions between Little Pet and tall pole.

 

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The first cut, Tall Dress and bending pole.

It all proved too much for Muslin Panel-  it began to split.   Oh no! cried the  tall pole and bowed in grief. It bowed and bowed until it could not take anymore and split.

 

What happened next was too brutal and distressing to relate. It involved terminal surgery, boiling water, blades, two pairs of scissors and a bin.

So where are they now? This once proud and happy  Muslin Panel has been torn in two. One part stays with Little Pet’, a mere shadow of former glory: the trees section has proved to be a right flirty piece, having made promises it couldn’t keep to aluminium pole, it is now cozying up to Tall Dress again.

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the chaos that is the work room and schedule

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trialling trees and tall dress

 

 

 

 

 

Moral of the story – if you are meant to dangle, be happy to dangle. And of course – do not put your faith in Goo. ( have I mentioned the smell?)

 

 

 

 

As for the second muslin panel – that was a complete disaster – the evil goo did not bind onto the surface evenly – it was like terminal dandruff crossed with very nasty skin disease.  The second little pet still exists but is currently homeless and purposeless.  Her life in goo is over – it will be straight PVA from now on.

Come see what survives –  April 14 and 15,   21 and 22.  Bring tissues.

YOS Logo Short_CMYK 2018

The ghost of a landscape

Battles traumas, wrong decisions, naughty scissors and wrongheadedness, but here it is!  What is worse is that I think I like it.   It doesn’t have the delicate ephemeral  lightness I wanted but it is getting close.  The big panel had to be cut as it could not support its own weight even when dry ,so it is not exactly as I wished.

fBrammerwritten wolds standing  The idea is good but composition and execution need to be pushed further.

 

No2 is under way.   Another  muslin panel has been sacrificed but  reduced in height  and dried with a ripple to make it more stable.  The excess landscape is layered behind it.  The proportions are wrong – dumpy.  Rather than rush in with the scissors it is going to have a day’s grace.  The text garment is made – more of the garment this time. Again reservations. The pet en l’air has minimum seam, maximum sacque backfabric but achieves this through layers of pleats at the hip and back- maybe too many,  It doesn’t sit comfortably with the rest.  I could add details such as furbelows  ( only frilly bits, but a great word) to the pet and trail them into the landscape panels.     The  dark tree taking centre stage  is one done on water soluble fabric.  It is an open lacy thing that could be placed anywhere or not at all….answers on a postcard please.  . It is  too cluttered?  so it will spend a day or two extra festering before it is decision time.

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wwstanding2detailOne key problem is that the detail photos are stronger than the whole view. Should these constructs be parts of  not wholes?

Oh well – back to making the whole   house smell again.  This goo is so bad that I even went for a 6 mile walk in the cold and rain , just to get away – it was more of a squelch actually.