Sunday, 16 September 2012

Fun with patterns - Sketchbook Challenge and beyond.

Another week has flown by, but here in Bedfordshire it has been a mostly glorious week with my favourite weather - beautifully sunny, but not too hot. I have mainly been having sketch book fun this week, although I have done some work towards my  C&G.  My tutor,  Laura Kemshall,  has managed to give birth to her rather gorgeous daughter a month early, so I don't suppose she's hanging about waiting for my next submission!!!! Congratulations to her.

So here are some pages from my sketchbooks for a change.
This month's theme for Sketchbook Challenge is pattern - which is really open to almost any interpretation you care to give it. Here you can see two pages which have merged.  
I long to be able to throw together an abstract pattern and on the left, underneath the circles you can see an attempt I made some months ago.  It has been lurking and unloved - a page I quickly turned over, until I saw a little demo on the Sketchbook blog when I though it was time to do something about it.  On the righthand page you can see a print of a repeat pattern lino block I made after  watching a DMTV demo from Laura.  I also bought myself some glazing medium to use with acrylics which I used in this to modify my original page.   I can now linger a little longer on this double spread, without feeling it was letting the side down.

When I made the leaf block I tried it out on some newsprint which I then flooded with some orange and yellow washes.  Black acrylic acted as a resist and the back of the paper had some interesting patches so I tore up the print and used it here, some showing the back and some the front as a background below. The sunflower image was made from different stencil techniques, including gold Markal stick and some bottle top prints.

Here a completely different pattern.  I used to make pattern an art topic with my seven years olds when I taught.  I feel it is very empowering to young artists who maybe frustrated by their inability to draw.
A good old favourite was to fold a sheet of paper into rectangles and use these to create a repeat pattern. This could be a very tedious task, but I would encourage my class to use large shapes, rather than trying to draw a robot or princess in each square!  Here's my attempt - not as impressive as some of my classes' used to be - it may need rescuing one day with an abstract over painting!

Here's another page - inspired by a post on the Sketchbook challenge - more of an elaborate doodle, but fun.

I couldn't go without sharing some stitching with you.
Below is the Rising Star block I quilting with free motion machine stitching.  Practice is definitely the key to improving this skill and I found this wavy line quite soothing.

My Courthouse bock has some straight lines which have also improved.

And finally my rather wonky Rising Star block got the hand stitching treatment, to add to the rustic look.

I'll leave you with a few close-ups and hopefully I will by playing with a few more patterns during the week ahead - have a good one yourself,