A blog about making art and other things using cloth, paper, paint, colour, stitch, and all sorts of exciting techniques, some of which I'm sure I still have to discover! I hope that the joy all this gives me is visible in what you can see here.

Wednesday, 21 August 2013

Ghost beds and the marks they've left behind.

I've added more stitch to the above which I showed in my previous post. For some reason, those marks made in the floor of the hospital waiting room are fascinating me. Obviously made by the metal legs on beds, (the waiting room was once a hospital ward), I've started to work on developing the marks for some future textile pieces.

I printed with some staples onto paper, but it is very similar to what I've already done.

Then I wondered about arranging the marks into blocks, in rows and on either side of the paper, to resemble how the beds were probably placed on the hospital ward. This is going to be an ongoing project I think, so I will post more about it as the ideas hopefully develop. I think some hand stitch as the darker autumn evenings unfold will be on the agenda!

Thanks for 'looking in'.

Wednesday, 14 August 2013

Retirement and fun...long may it last!

After 23 extremely happy years as a Learning Support Assistant at a local school, I finally retired at the end of term. I received so many lovely gifts and cards from staff and pupils, but I just had to put some photos on here of this wonderful 'Farewell Album' that was presented to me. It is full of photos from way back to the present day, little anecdotes, doodles, and farewell messages from both staff and pupils, and I have to admit to a huge lump in my throat when I first read it.

For obvious reasons, I've not been able to include most of what's inside, as there are lots of photos of the young people I have had the honour of working with, but the above selection should give a 'taster' of what it's all about. I have to say that the last photo, which is on the last page, and where just the white space is left where I've been cut away, really did finally move  me to tears. It really is something I shall treasure for the rest of my life.

 What to do with all those Happy Retirement cards? Well, I found the answer for the above album idea on a YouTube video by a mixed media art journaller who calls herself  Jennibellie. It's easy to make, and is a lovely way of keeping all those 'special' cards.
I've really been indulging myself by 'playing' with paper, paints and glue. Again, the inspiration has come from Miss Jennibellie


I have made two very small 'pocket books' with some of the paper, they would be good for holding tickets, or small cards to either give away, or insert into a larger art journal.

I'm hoping to go away for a few days with my two sisters, so I thought it would be a nice idea if we spent some of the evenings making pages for a holiday journal. Above is the cover for it, so all we have to do now is fill it!!

 And finally, I am still stitching.......even though the first part of this post may not look like it! The first photo shows something that I'm working on, and has been inspired by a rock I saw on the beach in June. Where the tide had receded, the sand around it had formed a channel, with some really interesting marks in the sand above that. I also sketched it, but I've decided to take a break from it, it seems too laboured and heavy, and I was becoming frustrated with it.
Below, are some marks that I noticed had been made in the floor of a hospital ward where over the years, beds had obviously been moved around. Probably metal legs. Not finished yet, and I'm not sure about this either, but hey, we have to experiment, and try new ideas, and of course have fun, and I'm certainly having lots of that at the moment.
Many thanks for 'looking in' once again, apologise for the layout being a bit erratic, Blogger playing up a again!
Whatever you're working on at the moment, ENJOY, and have fun!


Saturday, 3 August 2013

Good to be back!!

After nearly four months, it's good to be back! I have still been busy with the cloth and stitch, but a new laptop has caused me a few headaches, and in between we spent a glorious four weeks with our daughter and grandson when they visited us from New Zealand.

These first few photos are of my challenge quilt for cqgb (Contemporary Quilt, a branch of The Quilters' Guild) The criteria has the theme as 'Horizons', this long narrow orientation,and the size 150cm x 50cm.

The orientation really vexed me to begin with, and then I found a photo I'd taken of Southwark Cathedrall while standing directly underneath and looking up. I decided that I liked the skyline and the perspective of this, so went ahead with the idea.

However, it wasn't all plain sailing, and having spent hours on the paper lamination that stretches from the top of the building to the bottom, I decided that the row of gargoyles across the bottom wall were wrong! (See previous post) The whole of the bottom section was cut off, and remade.....but what to put there? The original photo had a gargoyle, but I couldn't quite see how this would be relevant to the horizons theme.

Listening to a discussion on radio 4 about the Church of England, and some of the hurdles it is facing with regards female bishops and gay clergy, I had a sudden flash of inspiration! What is on the horizon for the Church as it tries to deal with these dilemmas?

Instead of a gargoyle, I made a paper lamination of a stone carved Bishop along the lower section, and painted a rainbow in the sky. Both symbolic for these issues that the Church is facing.

I used newsprint for the paper lamination as it gave me a good texture on the paper side up to paint and stitch into. The sky is calico that I have painted with watery acrylic paint, and then appliqued a paper laminated rainbow on top. It is all quite heavily free motion machine quilted, and also some machine embroidery.

As far as I know, it will be displayed at the FOQ's on some of the days this year. I haven't heard which day/days, but as I can't make it this year, it hasn't really worried me. What I do with it after that is the next question. It's not exactly something I would want hanging in my home, so any ideas gratefully received!

My four journal quilts from May to August are here too. Patterns from the Landscape is my chosen theme this year. Above is the first of four, and is a slightly stylized view of the beach at Goodwick at low tide, looking towards Dinas Head.

The second one above is similar to the first, but I have tried to simplify the abstracted shapes.

Version three is in black and white, with yet more simplification of the shapes, and below is number four. I made two identical versions of three, but chopped one of them up randomly and rearranged the shapes into a simple pattern on a black and grey background.

Well as I am now officially retired, hopefully I will be posting more regularly again. I have lots of plans, so keep dropping by and thanks for reading.