Tag Archives: textiles

Art Elements May Challenge – Tide Pools

When I saw the theme for the May challenge on Art Elements I was very excited, you might say obsessive as I thought of nothing else for 3 days. Then we went to Liverpool which gave my brain a rest. I wrote a list of at least 10 ideas before I left so not to forget, but on my return I knew which two I wanted to investigate further.

I gathered together my rock pool photos,  none of which are turquoise or azure blue like those on the internet but I do feel connected to these less colourful pools of the UK as I grew up near the coast.
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P1340455Both ideas use techniques I’ve not used before, or I have only just learnt but isn’t that what a challenge is all about, stretching oneself?

I started with something that was familiar, out came the clay and my shell moulds and I got to making the ‘rockpool’. I was so engrossed I forgot to take photos.

While the bowl sat drying I started on the textile part of my make. I have only just learned about water soluble fabric but thought it might be perfect for making anemones, and the seaweed was made from tyveck which was stitched, painted, cut out and burned along the edges with a soldering iron.

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Whilst waiting for the bowl to dry I was thinking about the term tidepools, as well as rockpools. While going through my photos I  came across a photo with the tide going out, there are shallow pools left in the sand. Tidepools right?

I decided to make a stitched picture, as I need the practice having only just finished a stitching course, my thread painting technique needs working on.
Photos from a happy day at Newton by the Sea with friends.
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It didn’t start well, I had some tension issues on the underside, and not enough colours of thread!
P1500171 I realised that there was something wrong with the darning foot of my new machine, it’s fortunate that I kept my Gran’s old 1970’s Singer machine, the feed dogs don’t drop so I covered them with masking tape. It worked like a dream. Two days of stitching later I had something resembling the picture in my head.
P1500176This is stitched on felt which was placed over a larger piece of soluble fabric so it would fit my hoop and also because I wanted seaweed spilling over the bottom edge. I love the way the stitching distorts the shape of the piece, I wonder if you can have some control over this. Next the fun part of dissolving away the solvy fabric.
P1500173I stitched some seaweed and a weedy thread on the spare soluble fabric rather than waste it.  I wasn’t  sure if the weedy thread would work but it did, apart from getting tangled up in the bowl of water.
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P1500179 The next stage was to drill some shells and while I was going through my seaside stash I found I had a piece of driftwood the exact length for my hanging.

When the fabric was dry I hand stitched some pebbles and then assembled the piece, all will be revealed at the end of this post.

Back to my rockpool bowl now ready for firing.

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The fired the bowl didn’t quite live up to my expectations, not sure why but I don’t really like it. It’s probably destined to be a bird bath in the garden. I wasn’t sure if I should spend the money on the resin but following a discussion with OH, who asked what had been my intentions with this piece, and did I meet those intentions, (which it did so far apart from adding the’ water’, I just don’t like it) so I decided to continue with the rock pool as it’s all about learning new techniques and answering those ” I wonder what if” questions, so I ordered some resin.

The resin arrived , I couldn’t wait to see my seaweed and anemone’s underwater.

And here is the finished rockpool, my lovely husband drove me 4 hours so I could photograph it on the beach.

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Saving my favourite ’til last here’s my finished wall hanging, which I love. It’s the first thing I see in the morning, and it reminds me of a lovely day at Newton by the Sea with friends. Happy days!

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Ebb Tide at Newton by the Sea.

P1500187I have started anther ‘rockpool’ inspired project but I will save that for another post.

Here’s a list of everyone participating in the Art Elements blog hop, why not head over and see what they have been up to, I’m looking forward to reading everyone’s blogs.

Guests
AE Team Members:

Thank you Lesley for a very inspirational challenge.

A week of this and that!

I started the week off throwing some pots with a new speckled stoneware clay and I loved it. Some clays just seem to handle better than others and this clay felt wonderful squeezing between my fingertips. Somehow I’ve forgotten to take a photo, but the pots have been covered with polythene to dry slowly. They are now ready for trimming so I will have to down tools and leave my textiles and bead glazing and get them trimmed today.
I have a lot of beads waiting to be glazed ready for my Etsy shop, 4 bowls full.
P1490269I’m really enjoying the second part of the Drawing for Textiles course; the first thing I do in a morning is make coffee then go back to bed to watch Dionne’s daily video, then my head is full of ideas for the rest of the day.

Remember those line drawings from last week?

This past week I’ve been interpreting them with textile techniques on practice pieces and next week ( the last week of the course) I will do more exploration, maybe introduce some colour and maybe make some finished textile art.

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I do want to try some of my ideas in glass, ceramics and enamel as well as textiles, along with stocking up my shop so it looks like another very busy week ahead.

Enjoy your day, I’d love to hear about your creative plans for this week.

My Process – from source to design

My Process – from source to design

15 days ago I went out for a walk in the countryside in search of inspiration. I had an overwhelming need to get back to ‘who I am’ and create from the heart. I love the design process, it’s a game, like chess, played out by head and hand.

I came back from my walk inspired and determined to start working on something new, something very different and hopefully by the end of the process I would have made a piece of work to be proud of.

This blog post is about my journey, the thoughts and actions that took place, the concept for a finished piece of work. Kind of a fly on the wall but inside my head.

I love texture and I find rocks, moss, lichens, and bark very inspirational, textures  and abstract pattern always get me fired up. I must have hundreds of these type of photos but a newly taken picture is so much more interesting, everything of that moment is still fresh in the mind and the senses.

I chose a couple of photo’s that I particularly liked.  P1310403My sketchbook, watercolours and a range of drawing materials came out, notes were made; what colours did I like? While working on my sketches I was thinking about how to interpret my ideas, what materials and techniques would work best?

P1310405I knew I wanted these pieces to be mixed media pieces, for a very long time I’ve wanted to combine ceramics and textiles. So I started thinking of how I could achieve this. My first thought was to have the main body of the work as textiles and add on ceramic, or even metal pieces so a quick sketch was made with notes about ideas for making textile textures. I started thinking about using subtle colours on some pieces but strengthening the colour for other pieces.
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The journey of making an actual ‘artwork’ began, I started making a textile picture. The picture needed 3 dimensional elements made from either enamelled copper, or ceramic clay, so I set about and made both. I will finish this piece and I will show it at a later date, but this is where I went off on a tangent and started making some clay pieces.

The clay pieces needed to dry, they were then fired. They were coloured and refired, interestingly I went with my favourite colour palette and deeper hues than I originally intended. I had quite a wait, ceramics is a slow process and sometimes the excitement waned, but once my tiles were fired my enthusiasm returned.

I have spent the last couple of days working on the textile part, more scribbles and notes were made. This was a journey of discovery as I had to learn several new techniques along the way, including soluble fabric, (which is amazing). I discovered needle felting from the wrong side could push the fibers through the fabric giving a fabulous mossy effect.
P1310401I have literally just finished my pieces, I want to write this post when everything is still fresh and exciting in my mind. So here are some photos, I still need to frame them but that’s for another day.

Now I need is to think of a name for my new body of work. I’m not finished yet, there will be more to come.

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I need to take a step back and assess the finished work, I like to look at them for a few days and think about how I could have improved on them, what will I do differently with the next pieces, how will I finish the predominantly textile pieces. But for now my head needs a rest, I feel content but quite exhausted.

Please leave a comment and let me know what you think, good or bad I’d love your feedback.

Jill