After a couple of months of composition, contruction and stitch I am back at my print bench doing what I love best – breakdown printing! I’m not trying to make a glorious piece of wholecloth. I’m printing fabrics which are going to be cut into smallish pieces before being reassembled. So there is no agonising over where to place my screen. No worrying that I’ve ruined the piece by laying down one too many prints. Just joyous, carefree application of colour, shape and texture to cloth. Accompanied by loud music and to be followed up by a glass of wine. Call me sad but life does not get much better then this!
Storm 1 (Jagged) detail
After several months of working on my Still / Storm series I am taking a break and focussing back on my Ruins series. But before I do here is a small preview of Storm 1 (Jagged) which I will be submitting to the SAQA Turmoil call for entry. I’ll dedicate this one to Linda Bilsborrow who had requested a ‘spikey’ one – hope you like it Linda!
The first thing I need to do with my Ruins series is print more fabric. I love this series because nearly all the fabrics are created using breakdown printing. The photo below shows the screen I set up yesterday. The metal plates have been used so many times that some have become rusty. The rust actually prints off leaving unintended flashes of rust orange on the fabric. Lovely! They also leave bits of rust on the screen but that is a small price to pay.
Breakdown printing screen
A very short post to share our second son, Callum’s revamped website. Cal runs a picture framing business, Manchester Custom Framing based in Islington Mill in Salford. He has framed lots of textile art including making a beautiful walnut frame for a set of three rust dyed and stitched pieces for me. He does a great job and offers discounted rates to artists. So if you need something framing …..
We are currently turning an old, spare bedroom into a super hero pad for our grandson. Or rather my son is decorating; I am just driving to and from B&Q and paying. Unfortunately the bedroom wasn’t really spare – it was full of stuff, lots and lots of stuff. Including lots of my ‘quilt / art’ stuff that I hadn’t looked at, let alone used, in years. And a large pile of finished quilts.
My son, very helpfully, carried everything out to the studio. Oh boy do I have a lot of ‘stuff’! There was some stuff that was easy to throw out. A big box of painted papers (mostly created during a couple of City and Guilds courses). Two boxes with scraps of commercial fabrics left over from long forgotten projects. Some tapestries and cross stitches that I did 25 – 30 years ago that have sat in a box ever since. There was some stuff that absolutely had to be kept. A letter press and 4 boxes of type (left behind when our daughter left home), lots of books, some unfinished projects that I will complete at some stage (assuming I live to 110!) and many of the quilts. But not all of them. I should probably throw away more but can only bring myself to get rid of 3. One was a Hoffmann Challenge piece (do they still exist?), one was hideous when I made it and still is, and one from the above mentioned C&G course. It feels a bit strange but quite liberating. Have I crossed a Rubicon?
In honour of this momentus occasion I thought I would share a couple of my older pieces. The first is the last ‘tradional’ quilt I made. At the time I was a still a member of a local quilt group and the piece was a result of one of their workshops. I called it Slapdash because my points don’t all match (sorry quilt police!). I only actually finished this in 2012 – it felt important to finish it, a like closing a door on a previous life. It is just over a metre square and I’m looking for a loving home for it.
The second piece is called London, England and was completed for a Quilters Guild challenge at Festival of Quilts in 2010. I made this after finishing my City and Guilds Diploma. I had spent nearly four years immersed in Gothic Cathedrals as a design source and needed some light relief. So I made this without using a sketchbook or creating samples. Do you like the very professional photography! I’m not only going to keep this, I’m going to hang it in my grandsons new bedroom – I think Thor and The Hulk would appreciate giant ice creams!