I have yet to get to core of blogging – really should be blogging more when busy not leave it unblogged. Oops.
The exhibition at the Chapel went well, most enjoyable, sold a couple of pieces, nattered alot and met a lot of people. That feels like ancient history now. The existance of an artist seems to be very complex, there is no single timeline, no single goal or agenda. It is the time of year when I want to hibernate, or at least eat crumpets ( with ginger jam) (or even marmite).
I am trying to focus on getting work together for an open call and for Open Studios while trying to get little things made for my selling days in the Christmas market – ha hah- low wattage lightbulb moment- use the offcuts and samples to make badges etc. I reaaly don’t want to go down the crafty maker route – I am a thwarted perfectionist- the role doesn’t sit comfortably. So the badgey things are quirks and favours, a little daft, a bit me and very not precise. Spot the ones that were originally trying out ways of showing reflections of autumn leaves, frosty rough ground and landscape as colour.And the birds- I think I was having a Rococo moment. The mini trees are try outs for some transfer designs. At the moment I may like them more than the ‘proper’ work….
and as for the main piece still part done- feel like leaving it in baby bio overnight to see what grows. Need to find the sharp tweezers and get the extra strong colour threads out.
The next 2 weeks are to be spent exploring textures in the workshops- looking at raising and lifting surfaces, adding in and taking away. Mixing techniques and combining processes to make that shift away from craft into art textiles. Workshops will run on Wednesday and Friday of the following week.
Contact if you are interested.
Up comong events –
York Textile Artists at the Cemetery Chapel, York,
Askham Bryan event
Standing in a hut in the middle of Middlesborough in December
Also breaking-ish news – will be doing the YOS19 next April.
This is a record of this way of working with colour in its most simple form.
- Select subject – clear shapes and lots of tonal contrasts. Colour palette is restricted, so is the texture. Should have photographed without the front stuff and before the sun went down!
- hand stitch. This is the main source of colour, but can not be too dense or the machine will grumble. Use direction to give ideas of form and textures.
- Threads – muted range, chosen more for tonal value and warm/cool values than hue. (the purples were far more brown and dull, the end colour is dark olive!)Aviod plain grey – too stark, use more sophisicated colours. One or two stronger colours for get out jail free cards, but to be used sparingly.
- First layer- establish main tonal zones, vary stitch patterns to create more separation.
- Second layer – highlights and shadows, working in a variety of ways to build surfaces.Spot the vertical lines, cross hatching, wriggly squirms and zigzags.
- Top dressing – final tweaks, adding details, evaluating and finishing. This style has to be at a distance- pin up, make coffee and walk towards it to make sure the contrasts and values work.
- Drink coffee. Still need to press it. Later will do.
These method at this scale is relatively quick and surprisingly effective. This mini series is part of the Falling Light family of woodland studies so this style which encourages me to emphasise tone works well. This little beastie was done in a morning – or would have been if I remained focussed (blame Wimbledon and the Tour de France). I find it quite limiting so the selection has to be strong enough but without too much fuss. The limited palette range could be expanded at will though I like the simplicity of focussing on tone – been doing a lot of pencil drawing at the moment so I guess the two disciplines are cross pollinating again. Scale is a problem – bigger means more time hand stitching and the need for more complex stitch patterns.
Thank goodness that is the end of June. Far too much going on. July looks like a just getting on month… fewer workshops and classes, and major deadlines looming.
I have proposed the evolving landscapes and the Falling Light series for Knaresborough, they are now at the framers, but still want to make more. I am applying for the Great North Art Show again, that will be the Written Wolds series – I want to re frame one or two of those but haven’t decided how exactly, what ever it will be mega bucks. Also got the Staithes Festival at the same time – hmm……
So, just got myself a little bit of stitching to do.
Can you tell what it is yet? I went back to an older technique with the hand understitching (Roger Federer was playing at Wimbledon). It gives a structure, some bulk, a bit of texture and colour to work on. The flatness of fabric can be just too flat some days. This was from a 5 minute pen scribble sketch – took an awful lot
longer to stitch. Not yet entirely sure it is done – the machine stitching has lost the energy and directness – might be the addition of colour and a bit of the tonal range. There are lots of tweaks to do now I look, – the right side of the tree does look a bit too Harmony hairspray, the path is too stark, could do with a dull tone in the distance. Maybe a leaf layer in the foreground in a contrast green? Just in line to keep that Summer undergrowth jungle theme going. The tree trunks to the left have disappeared – subtle I wanted, not invisible.
May be try a more monochrome one over understitching?
And as for the last landscape stone – mounted onto some more fine cotton, glued to make rigid, painted and stitched…. the frame is temporary.
A strange month. Trying to be busy but not really feeling that smug glow of achievement at all.
Done list –
Finally finished cutting privet hedge, in time to start again at the other end.( much like Forth Road Bridge but it grows faster)
Completed repairs to Merchant Taylors ceremonial robes. Look smarter but to get them perfect would need major reconstructive surgery. (V sore fingers)
Finished quilting previously ‘finished’ works. Can’t do anything more to them. Still not framed, so haven’t made decent photos to make submissions for exhibitions.
Arranged to share venue at Staithes Festival in September.
Hosted some classes at home.
Enjoyed front garden, flunked the back garden- now invaded by triffids and hedgehogs. (Discovered reason for lethergy and dislocation – took 2 of these pics this morning – but the download registered as taken in 2008. My house is in a time warp – time travel must be very tiring.)
Been doing more landscape stones and rust/tea staining.
STILL to be done list.
Everything else, and more of the above. And then some.
June means ‘ get over yourself and get on’ or ‘Help! it’s mother’s birthday!’.
Fun to do, Multi coloured layers of spirals in top of blue, and then variegated green on the leaves.
In response to the second – I ‘ve been playing with simplified and stylised flower forms – this is her card, loosely based on hollyhocks. Couldn’t deny the need for bright with the leaf stitch round the edge. Pink and yellow always makes me think of fruit salad chewy sweets from my childhood, but the Mother likes bright.
The stones progress, and to counter balance all of that ethereal stitching this has been developing –
It is based on sunlight light through trees, not quite done – the bottom section isn’t quite strong enough yet. May be a bit of quilting? Not as defined as I want yet, the rich blue swallows colour as soon as tones get similiar. There is deep red, purple, deep navy, brown and green in those shadows! But it is all stitch…. a lot of stitch, but I like the areas left open in contrst to the density of the light. Must remember that I don’t want to do needle painting.
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.
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….
with texture background
the stone’s ‘skin’ with quick pencil ideas
the stone’s ‘skin’ with quick pencil ideas
with texture background
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.