Stone in My Shoe

Yup. Annoying, painful, niggling, just has to be dealt with before moving on.

Meet Wold and Vale – the latest offering from House of Brammer ( or at least – Cluttered Workroom of ‘Er on the Corner).

 

Fran Brammer_Wolds and Vale _freehand machine embroidery

This caused some real heart ache. I completely lost the vision and faith in that vision. It became a mess – bitty, dirty, un-everything,  in fact the total focus of a major grump.

Now I nearly like it, some days.    It has been  cut about, dyed, abandoned, rained on, bullied, brutalised,  and now  it is plucked, preened and pressed. It hasn’t the clarity  I wanted initially but has something else that I haven’t defined yet.  The all over composition doesn’t have the theatrical space that I usually build in – something I have been experimenting with this year. Some  look askance when I say that linear perspective is an easy composition device, but working without those zooming lines and focal points, or even a defined picture, is  still a struggle.  I look back to those happy days of abstract painting and collage, I wish I had kept that brain and not swapped it for one that now sees pictures.

The stages of making are in the slide show- click on them for brief captions, play spot the sequins.

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The surface on this one is delicate due to the extreme plucking , see detail  pics, so it will have to be under glass ( didn’t stop me hoovering it to pick of the stray fibres though….)Wolds Vale plucking detail.

Usual questions – do I take it further? Make it more pictorial?  Too obvious-  Is this piece really only a background?  I think  frame it as is but have a rework as an option – so leave on the surplus fabric and plonk it in a frame (sorry- carefully stabilise and place carefully in an entirely enchanting mount and frame).

 

 

Just  another day in textiles land –

 

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Twisting Tree demo/tutorial

This one of my favourite teaching things.  The sewing is really straight forward but the effects can be amazing.

It begins with these drawings – with and without foliage.twisted tree drawing

Drawing up is simple – trace through your fabric (lean up against a window for an instant light box)  Fancy pen required? Nope – it will all be sewn over. Lots of detail ?- nah – wriggly lollipop with a bad hair day.

 

 

First stitches set the twisting movement throughP1060987 the trunk so no worries about sewing straight – don’t even try. Layers of stitch are built up as the tree’s framework is established. A spot of stabiliser underneath if the fabric pulls may help.

 

 

 

 

P1060988The canopy starts with organised scribble in a strongly contrasting colour (purple), and extended in a glorious sludge colour.

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The stitch pattern is fairly consistent – cross hatched blocks- but varies in scale and density. Top dress with greens of mixed hues, add in sharp colour to lift if needed,  finish off the trunk with contrast tones – I used navy  and a quick twiddly bit of grass to anchor it and it is done!

A good press and…..   ta da……

machine embroidery.freehand machine embroidery sample

This is quite a simple do, yet can be so effective. It is a good learning curve  and can be adapted to all skill levels. I love that the equipment list is basically machine, foot, hoop, pencil. Materials list is also slim,  fabric (  I used a scrap of rust dyed cotton), threads – what ever you want/what ever you have got, and possibly a bit of stitch and tear.

Fun.

I have been watching craft TV again –  this is available  in four easy instalments of oodles of money,  10% discount for people I like or who have daft cats. Just quote discount code DUNKINGBISCUITS.

 

Perhaps I should offer it as a kit? Hmm. Need a new packet of biscuits to consider that one.

Self promotion spot-  Last week or so  of the Ripon Great North Art Show

Last but one week of the Knaresborough  exhibition in Art in the Mill.

First week of the Micklegate Art in the Window Trail-  You MUST go into Spelmans bookshop. I had forgotten just how fabulous it is ( think Edwardian woody splendour)

Christmas strikes early.

 

Some of the tribe at the show in Ripon Cathedral this week-  but meanwhile back at home…..

“No problem. Need samples for the December class. Shall I take one of the pre printed forest animal panels and see what I can do with it. Must showcase the fabric and engage people to come to try freehand/motion working. Not a problem.”

I do wish that when at work  I would shut up at these strategic moments.

 

2 garland ideas for a visiting group to try, a metre and a half of decorative panels strung together ( reminds me of  a pelmet crossed with a hockey skirt), quilted pictures, quilt block proposals, and a  small “quilt” later…..even did a little hand sewing…… ( I do work in a quilt/embroidery shop)….

 

VLxmasclassq

Moda, who produced the animal images, are usually a bit tight, so why did they decide to populate whole forests with just one panel!!!!

Never mind. Working with found images can be fun, and although this isn’t really my preferred style of work it should provide a bit of entertainment, technical practice, be a ‘safe’ start point and act as a confidence builder. Just got the backing and binding on the ‘quilt’ to do then it is back to my own stuff!

Will admit, cutting the hedge is starting to look like an attractive option.

I gave in. Used about half the panel – the rest has been divided up and is on sale in the shop as smaller blocks.

 

Please Ask!

Well it is done.  I rough framed it on Wednesday and so far have not wanted to tweak or alter it in any positive way, so it is declared ‘finished’.

fran BrammerWalking in the Wolds

Quite like it, more in some areas than others, but that will true of everything I do.  The leaching of the colour out of the shiny yellow is still a niggle, The  upper sections are duller (more subtle) than intended and the patterns fainter (more sophisticated and delicate). A  general ‘PAH’ is warranted.

I think is does have some of the qualities I was after, it isn’t a single image but a story of many places, a path through the dry dales, seeing the harvesting patterns curving over the hill tops, the paths carved into the hillsides.  The colours aren’t as strong as I initially wished, Pah about the yellow, the orange and blue/green are  softer and perhaps too close in tone. The purple line works wonders, it wakes up these colours and helps to bring the disparate shapes together. All carefully planned  of course. Well, nearly planned. Rather more just hoped for. The questing line wandering through

layerwolds

A quick go at layering photos from the walk, just to see which shapes and patterns dominate. Is it similar to the textile version?

the landscape is a bit of a recurring theme, it is nice to have it back, even if this time it is flat across the picture rather than seeking distance.

 

Shame in a way, it has missed going to Knaresborough, Ripon or into York.  It shall have to sit on the wall for a while and wait for its first public appearance.

I have a strange compulsion to call it Bruce.

Oh dear.

Do not ask and gallery page.

do not askThis is the do not ask.  The posh term is responding intuitively and instinctively  to a walk  along Horse and Holmdale and then along some of the tops.  It feels more like fishing at the moment. There are elements I want to include- the warmth, the light, the textures, the stillness, but not  any specific picture of one place.  It is more a response to the fabrics chosen  at present, I will have to be more brutal to bend it to my will!  Need to be braver, or dafter.

So far I have made apple and blackberry crumble, dismembered various buddleia, etc, etc. Also experimented with adding an informal gallery page to the blog site….. please take a look. Good idea or not worth it?

This is in a state of undone and pending. How it will end up I do not know, so please don’t ask.

 

Spam List Awareness Update!

I have just checked the comments stored in spam. I can see why half of them are there, it is nice that someone feels I should join them for aquarobics, but not today thank you. But others seem more genuine – I wonder why they are there. I am doubtful about interfering with the settings – I have had struggles before getting away from spam demons, and the first contact is usually so innocent!

If you have posted a comment without any response, I do apologise, and ask that you try again. Or perhaps cut straight to email – link is on the Me page or use the dread facebook if that is easier, each blog is automatically posted onto my artist page, again link is on ‘Me’.

As to the idiosyncratic approach to spelling, I usually blame the twitchy laptop keyboard, or point out the deliberate bits are the product of a slightly deranged imagination.  Currently I am blaming the neighbourhood cat for this, the stress of seeing it sleeping so luxuriously in my garden while I am inside slaving over a hot sewing machine is more than mind and body can bear!

Cat lifestyle envy. Happy Wednesday.

Website Woes. No Stitching!!!!

What a week.

Decided to rehash the website.                                                                                                 Um.

Different web builder – looked fab, all modern and shiny. Very nearly achieved slick.  Then continual problems with the programme.  Scrapped the lot. Ouch.(general ranting)

Back to the old site ( a short term trial just to see if I could ( now ancient)). Having to relearn where, what and how to. We seem to think in different ways.                             Pah.

Have now linked to a calendar.                                                                                           Oooooh.

Have now added animation because adding a slideshow seemed to open access to anyone to play with my files. Gnashing of teeth. (quite like the idea but cannot control the speed! Is driving me to drink)                                                                                       Grrrrrr.

It is better than it was. Honest. The idea of setting it up as an on line shop etc frankly terrifies me. There is a sales page but people have to contact me to arrange – so old fashioned!                                                             Wibbly noises – don’t know how to spell them.

See what you think : https://sites.google.com/site/franbrammer/

Next is buying a short and snappy domain name for it. And working out how to …………

Is it too early to go back to bed? Have good book about Henry VII – mass extortionist, remover of heads, political conspirator, generally very dangerous to know.  May consider a career change.

Never mind. It is only frustrating, aggravating, painful, non-productive,

but I do have icecream.

Did have fun at the Knaresborough Feva festival. The work looked great and is still up until mid Sept. Now in final prep mode for the GNAS show at Ripon!