Musings of a New Zealand mixed media & textile artist
A great week artistically! Not only did I sell one of the pieces at the Knitting and Stitching Show in London, but I also sold a painting at The Framing Rooms Gallery , Nelson, the day after it went up.
I have been working on the piece for the Bernina International Pictogram exhibition.
The stenciling on the ghastly mustard fabric has worked well. I decided I needed to have a mental adjustment and think of it as being 'old gold' , not calf-poo yellow.
I continued to stamp on it in various bronze and gold colours which has created a sumptuous background.
I machine stitched swirls all over this patterning to give a subtle look of textural interest. I have now fused the pictogram shape in a soft bronze silk, and machine stitched it in fine gold thread. This has given a lovely texture to the dress..
I then collected together some small scraps of silks in golds, bronze and soft browns and appliqued tiny Klimt-like circles on the left side.
I am beginning to integrate these with hand stitching in circles and little french knots. I have introduced some touches of blue-purple as accent 'guest" colour to give some zing. The right side looked too empty, so I machine stitched lines of varying widths like falling vines in gold thread, then fused some touches of gold foils. Over the whole right edge I made up a checkerboard pattern in almost black paint. I felt I had to take another leap of faith as I applied this.. it may not have worked. I feel it has give a strong statement on that side, and has balanced the swirls and organic shapes.
I am now hand stitching on the background in very subtle tones of cream and gold.
Okay ,so not as efficient with technology as I thought. After I wrote my blog post somehow only part of it posted so trying again...
My pack arrived and I opened it to find that there were the two colours I dislike the most....orange and mustard. I spent several days looking at them. Maybe if I smiled nicely then a miracle would happen and I would be struck with the perfect design inspiration! Surprisingly, this didn’t happen and I was back to the next best thing-hard work. I played around with ideas which utilised those colours (autumn, sandy beaches etc) , but that was working.
I then thought about a grungy graffiti look where I used black, browns and dirty whites, but that didn’t feel very different. There has been a lot of art produced recently with that style.
After several more sessions it suddenly struck me- I could use the influence of Klimt, one of my favourite artists. I began to experiment with stencils and stamps on scrap fabric. After finding a colour palette of bronze, gold, burnt orange and dark blue-purples it began to look more promising.
As I only have one piece of the mustard felt it had to be right before I started on the actual piece.
Today was the day. I mixed several different bronze colours and stencilled straight on to the felt. I am now committed.
Today I could procrastinate no longer. I have agreed to take part in the International Bernina Pictogram Project. We have been sent a base fabric, some lovely Madeira threads and a male or female Pictogram to be used on the piece.
This all sounded great, and I am excited to be part of this. I couldn't wait for my pack to arrive.
The first blog on my new website. Goodness, I am certainly starting to move with the’ technology ‘ world!
It has been a busy few weeks. The Knitting and Stitching Show in the UK has opened. I have two pieces in the New Zealand Contemporary Textile artists exhibition there. Both are using my hand painted, stamped and stencilled fabrics. I have machine stitched and then hand stitched to give lots of visual texture.
I am totally fascinated and seduced by marks at the moment. I don’t care if they are stitched or drawn. I use them to guide the viewer around the work, to explore and interact with the work. The two pieces connect visually through colour and line, but are made as two separate pieces.
The second thing I have been working on is my painting for the David Ryan student work exhibition. This opened at the Refinery Artspace, Halifax St Nelson on Tuesday night.