Sunday, 16 June 2013

Still wandering, still wondering...

I think this has been the longest I've gone between blog posts for sometime.  Maybe some of us feel we have run out of interesting things to say ... many of my early followers and followees seem to have trailed off too, or maybe we just haven't the motivation to say it. However a move to Facebook and the ease of using the iPad from my armchair has meant I have spent less time at the computer, and writing a blog post from the iPad is not so straightforward. I do intend to write a meandering post today so switch off now if you haven't the inclination. Many of my dear regulars will be familiar with this story, so please bear with me.
I set out  when I retired from teaching to explore my creative style in greater depth, and photography got me started. Studying with OCA enabled me to get to grips with a digital SLR camera and master the basics. However although I love taking photographs I realised my desire to create was not fulfilled by the photographic process.  Textiles called and I determined to teach myself the basics.  Having been on several workshops  I realised I needed a more structured approach and have just completed my City and Guilds, level 2.  So what next? Somehow I feel in just as much of a sea of uncertainty as when I started the course. Have I got to resign myself to the fact that I am just a dabbler with no particular place to go? Just a lucky lady who can indulge her love for acquiring art materials.
So here I shall share with you what I have been indulging myself with in while waiting for something to strike!

First of all this is my desk.  I do keep clearing up, honest!

I have a couple of sketchbooks on the go which I am using for some foliage studies at the moment. Coincidently DMTV has been featuring leaves too, which has been very useful to remind me of some techniques. This is what I think I want to use in some textile work...

 I have also been revisiting the course I did with Ruth Issett on colour, 

Seeing a couple of posts from Gina Ferrari and Angie Hughes who have both recently worked with Ruth, reminded me of how valuable it is to have a day or two dedicated to colour.  I really ought to try to come up with a resolved piece from all these samples. It will make me think.

And finally on Friday I did a one day workshop with Clive Barnett whose work I admired at the FOQ last year. We explored the use of discharge paste and dishwasher liquid to remove dye from different fabrics.  Clive had dozens of pieces of fabric to try, but we all started with a sample of black silk, cotton and linen.  The dishwasher liquid was brilliant, but gave a different result to the discharge paste. We used it in the same way, monoprinting, silk screen, themofax etc. He had a wealth of stuff for us to experiment with. The aim was to end up with a piece to add Kantha stitch to, but there was just not enough time in the day for me to start some. You can see some examples of Clive's work if you Google his name along with 'quilt', however there is not much there.

(this has come out rather yellow in this picture)

Finally I have also started an exploration of mark making  - another ongoing project that can last the rest of my days! Just something I can do when the mood takes me, or I want to do something and I'm not sure what.  I have started off with vertical lines.

Now all these things are loosely linked, as I'm sure you can see, perhaps just letting myself dip into this and that is good therapy after the restrictions of a course. I did speak to someone who said it was months after she had finished a C&G before she could settle on finishing something, and it is less than a month since I finished. Writing this has been good therapy, I realise now that I have been playing a lot, and it has not been as long as it feels since I completed something. Why are we so hard on ourselves?

Make sure you have a good week,