Constructive and creative distractions have absorbed the last couple of weeks, so today is tidy-up day, log, blog, note or glue findings and lessons learned so I can re-focus on joining & wrapping.
Online Developing Sketchbooks Workshop with Dionne Swift – inspired by some of my OCA peers, I signed up for this online learning which was available from 11th January for two weeks.
It was a very enjoyable, worthwhile experience. Initially, it felt like an overview of many of the skills gather over the past few years, but it was more of a consolidation. Reacquainted with my vast supply of art materials, I was reminded of the benefits of using lots of different media, the need to play and try different approaches to work towards a more considered outcome.
Other knowledge gained or reiterated included:
- the benefits and flexibility of being able to re-organise and insert sketchbook pages to make a whole.
- pastels and watercolour wash, effective, new to me.
- how much I love the visual texture of print, wax resist and wash, layers of colour, text and print.
- using a simple colour theme enhances overall presentation of work.
- Reworking drawing and pages can improve the outcome
- refillable marker pen, filled with bleach, great to draw with especially on Quink ink washed pages.
- abstracting lines/colours, anything from randomly torn visually appealing magazine articles is a helpful way to kick-start a project.
- cutting holes from any interesting shapes in sketches, prints, mark making to reveal underlying page adds interest.
- Rubber (eraser) carved stamps are a quick, easy method to incorporate block printing.
Emma & Norma Textile Workshop – Lino Print – Saturday 16th January, 2016
Emma Hobbs & Norma Kennedy teach A-Level textiles at a local sixth form college and I was introduced to them by a friend. Their one-day workshop was thoroughly enjoyable, but the art adorning the walls, the sketchbooks, the reference books, generous sharing of information and resources by the teachers was absolutely priceless. It was such a privilege to be in their company and classroom.
Beautifully executed examples of mixed media textile art were hung on walls, clothing fashioned from recycled items & thread stitched on soluble fabric dressed tailor’s dummies, all backed up by detailed explanations of the techniques and materials used, if requested.
The Lino print course too was very enjoyable and included:
- painting silk habotai, polyester voile, lightweight cotton and newsprint paper with solutions of Dylon and drawing inks.
- Taking our own inspiration (my lemon print from above and a desire to practice layering different blocks) and adding to it from a secondary source if desired, using their reference books.
- drawing design to required size.
- transferring the design to cream soft cut lino with tracing paper.
- cutting the lino
- checking the design by taking a rubbing with a chunky graphite stick.
- printing onto plain and painted fabrics and newsprint paper with water mixable oil paints.
An enjoyable and informative day!
An afternoon’s papermaking with a friend – Friday 22nd January, 2016
My friend and drawing teacher generously shared her paper-making skills, resources & high quality pulp with me. I had a productive afternoon and came away with some lovely paper and lots of tips. Move mouse over pictures to reveal inclusions.
Ruth also shared some ideas from a course she took with Magie Hollingworth at West Dean College in March 2010 which I will be revisiting during the next assignment, Molding and Casting.
My first attempt, following instructions home alone! Rolled a little thickly and a bit shallow, but promising.
My second, a little thinner, with holes.
My third and final attempt, very thin and really quite exciting!
Very keen to explore this in future.
Session 1 – Still life – fireside chair A2
Quite pleased, first sketch a bit tentative and perspective difficult and not quite right. Second, bolder and more accurate, with added ink and white emulsion to improve contrast.
Session 2 – Still life – ram’s skull – drawing with pencil taped to stick, thinking about tone.
Drawing 1 – A2 – medium stick, HB pencil, arm outstretched.
Drawing 2 – A2 – long stick 2B pencil, arm outstretched
Drawing 3 – A2 – long stick 4B pencil, arm outstretched
Drawing 4 – A2 – Final drawing, long stick, all three pencils interchanged, arm outstretched.
This was an interesting and enjoyable exercise, good to use a stick to keep marks very loose and expressive, but also to concentrate on tone with different softness of pencil.