Friday, April 24, 2015

Keeping on running, Workshops and an apple a day

I have been adding to my cloth with more running stitch.  It has been a slow task as I have been busy with other things - run off my feet one could say :-)

I have been preparing for another  garden art workshop at Azures Den on the 16th May and we will be making a moon maiden.    Above is a photo of Io (named after a moon of Jupiter) .  I have also made a faceless version for those a little intimidated by the thought of putting a face into their work.

I have had a happy time introducing a new student to fabric sculptures over the the last 3 weeks. Wei was a lovely student with a visual arts background looking for something different to do.    We made a siting lady, a tall elegant stuaue and a bird with some chicks.   I felt a bit in awe as I went to her house and was surrounded by her wonderful art on the walls.  We had fun and Wei made me think outside the square a little with how she went about creating her statues and ideas she had on the way.   I am sure I learnt as from form her as she did from me,   Thanks Wei.  

I also met with my stitching mates at the Embroiderers Guild last Saturday  - I got heaps of stitching done on my cloth then and chatted and shared.  I have it linked it here so you can see some of our show and tell from March.

Cheers all

Thursday, April 9, 2015

Running Stitch and Learning from Others

I am still exploring running stitch.  At the moment I am stitching into a small cloth that I found at the local op shop when I was on holidays recently.

The fabric started life as an old linen tray cloth or napkin with a small amount of clumsy embroidery on it.   I have pulled the embroidery out and been stitching tea dyed gauze bandages over the surface.  With the wisdom of hindsight I realise that I should have left the embroidery in and just stitched over it – well, maybe next time.  It is a sample or prototype for a larger work  I am planning to make for an exhibition in November.  I will have to get cracking on that larger work soon as time is slipping by, and as time passes,  that larger work is getting smaller.

Because the cloth has is old and has been wahed many times it is soft and supple to stitch.  It is very cathartic just to put a needle into same fabric and turn the conscious brain off.  In fact any art exercise turns into a form of meditation for me.   I am sure it is the use of my hands and the sole focus on what I am doing that quietens my mind.  There are times when what I want to do doesn’t work out and I get frustrated and toss it aside but I try to go back to it and work on it again later.   

I have learnt to accept that some things don't work; either because of bad design and planning or it is just plain wrong!   But also that also I have learnt that I need to push through frustration and keep working on a project.   For this I have to thank  textile artist Jean Draper.

I was very fortunate take part in some workshops with Jean in late 2000.  Jean herself is very inspiring and I have linked to an interview on the web here for you to read at your leisure.  Jean was very generous with her time and mentoring during the few days I spent with her.   During the course of the workshops Jean told us about artist JasperJohns and quoted him:  Do something to it. Do something else to it.  

Jean has given me the confidence to strike out and strive for my own voice, to look properly and learn from others and not give up.   As I work I am sure I sometimes hear Jean whisper ‘Do something else to it.’

Jasper Johns - Cicada 700 x402

Sunday, April 5, 2015

Learning from others - Interviews on the world wide web.

Isobel Currie, Or NuĂ© Re-imagined, I2x17x21cm See link below to Isobel's website
Though I promise myself I rarely get to galleries but I do make up for it by subscribing to a number of e-newsletters and blogs which range over food, architecture, gardens and of course textiles.  I don’t always read them in depth – they are a bit like the magazines in doctors waiting rooms – I skim through them and read if something catches my eye.

This week I stopped and read an interview with Isobel Currie published by  Isobel is a three-dimensional embroidery artist who hails from the UK.   

Isobel sees and uses the form of the stitch over 3 dimensions; she works on and in a Perspex ground. Her work is really interesting. Read the interview and see more photos here.

I am interested in process and how and where artists get their inspiration and arrive at their design. Isobel talks a little about this in her interview - as well as resources that are important to her.  

Most importantly - the interview led me to more images of Isobel's work. Click here to visit Isobel's web site and take virtual visit to a gallery.

Not quite a self portrait

Not quite a self portrait
small 8' quiltlet with embroidered hair

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