Archive | creativity

Round the World Blog Hop

I have been invited by Shirley Goodwin of Dyeing to Design to participate in this Round the World Blog Hop.  Shirley is a dyer and fiber artist from New Zealand who has recently completed a Bachelor of Applied Media Arts (Visual Media) degree in Invercargill and I have loved watching her progress.  Shirley and I have actually met – she came to stay with us for a few days when she visited the UK in 2010 (I can’t believe it was so long ago, Shirley!)

The rules of the Blog Hop are that we have to answer some questions about our work, show what we are doing, and then nominate some other bloggers to do the same.  (I’m going to cheat on this one, Shirley, sorry!  If you read this and fancy joining in, go ahead, please!  I have only just come across the Blog Hop as I’m a bit out of the quilting loop so I’m not sure who has already participated).  Please leave a message in the comments if you do so that I can add a link to your blog.

Here are the questions:

1. What am I working on? 
If you’ve been reading this blog regularly you’ll have seen my #trainticketart challenge – one altered train ticket every day.  So far I’ve kept up pretty well with it. Here’s a few of my latest pieces.  It has been very freeing just to play, and a small card the size of a train ticket is not daunting.
train ticket art (recent)

A mosaic of my #trainticketart challenge

 

I’ve also been designing patterns digitally by scanning various painted and printed motifs and layering them in Photoshop – here is one I designed in the summer.
I designed this pattern based on a theme of jewels; I did lots of printing with gouache and played with it in Photoshop.

I designed this pattern based on a theme of jewels; I did lots of printing with gouache and played with it in Photoshop.

 I recently put it in repeat and had it printed on fabric at By Hand London – they ran a Kickstarter campaign earlier this year to buy a digital printing machine.  The colours weren’t as bright as the RGB ones in the photo above but I like the way it turned out.  This was printed on cotton.
flower garden fabric based on jewels design

I think it looks more like a flower garden than jewels here, what do you think?

2. How does my work differ from others of its genre? 
I think my style is very textural and layered (in fact I often can’t stop layering and wish I had stopped a few layers before – this is where Photoshop is useful as I can just turn off a few layers instead of having to get the discharge paste or bleach out!   I am very inspired by reflections and shadows and I think this emerges in my work quite a lot.
spoonflower fabric with nasturtium flowers developed from a photograph

This ‘fairy garden’ fabric was printed by Spoonflower on its silky faille fabric which is polyester – the colours seem to be much more faithful and vibrant on polyester perhaps because it is a different printing process than for natural fibres.

3. Why do I create what I do? 
 Because I love colour and I like being in the community of artists and makers online.  I like messing about with paints and seeing watery colours run in an unpredictable manner.
4. How does my creative process work?
Well, I’ve been trying to get into using sketchbooks and moodboards more, but up till now I have tended just to add layer after layer intuitively, waiting between layers to see what the design seems to want next.  I recently took Rachael Taylor’s course, the Art and Business of Surface Pattern Design and learnt to use moodboards to gather inspiration and become more focussed from the start.
Moodboard with lace, doiley and flower fabric

This is a small moodboard on my design wall at the moment, sort of a victoriana theme going on, lace, doily and flowery fabric. The sock is there for colour inspiration.

Over to you!  If you want to see what other people have been saying in the Round the World Bloghop, the easiest way is to click on the link to Shirley’s blog and work backwards; there doesn’t seem to be a comprehensive list of bloggers who have taken part.  Please tell me if there is and I’ll link to it.
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Chiaroscuro Exhibition

It’s been an age since I wrote anything in this blog – life has been rather stressful family-wise and I’ve been doing my best to keep up (and catch up!) with Module 2 of the pattern course I’m doing.

DS1 is currently on a backpacking holiday round the world so September was spent  helping him prepare for that – he spent the first month ‘doing’ Eastern Europe and flew to Kathmandu earlier this week.  He is planning to travel around Nepal, India, Thailand and a few other places before ending up in Perth, Australia in the New Year when he hopes to get work to fund more travel!  He has a blog which is quite entertaining.

Chiaroscuro, the exhibition I mentioned in my last post opened today and the opening night starts at 7pm tonight – if you live locally (South Wales) you’d be very welcome to come along to chat to the artists there!  All the details are on our Facebook Page, including several photos of us putting the show up!  

Birth of a City wallhanging

 

It’s on for 4 days until this Saturday, 2 November, 2pm – 8pm each day, Pontrhydrun Baptist Church, Cwmbran, NP44 2ND

What I’ve been reading online

I started this post a while ago but yesterday the news came that Google is killing Google Reader in July.   If you read this blog via Google Reader, there are a number of articles about the alternatives … here are a couple of them:

‘Hey Google, we still love Reader’ from Mashable and

Google Reader is getting shut down; here are the best alternatives, from Lifehacker.

If you would prefer to read it via email, you can sign up on the sidebar and Mailchimp will send you one whenever I publish a new post >>>>>

And of course within a few hours of the news breaking, someone had come up with a ‘Hitler hears the news about Google Reader’ on Youtube!

Recently instead of bookmarking all my favourite sites I’ve been using Evernote to keep them synched across my laptop, tablet and phone.  Evernote is like an online pile of notebooks with a really powerful search facility … It has a great series on its blog called Tips and Stories where people describe how they use Evernote for their particular line of business, hobby or whatever so rather than go on about it here I’ll just direct you there.

So what have I been reading online recently?

… about trends in fashion, vintage, fabric…. The Stylesight blog is a colourful and interesting read.

… about the fashion industry and the horrific tragedies caused … Onsies in a rush?

MsWanda’s blog – a great blog about sustainable fashion.

 The Good Wardrobe – The Good Wardrobe describes itself as “your online style-sharing community hub mixing the best of sustainable fashion with services that prolong the life of your wardrobe. The antithesis of fast fashion, The Good Wardrobe loves long-life style.”

Trash to Couture suggests ways to make old clothes into upcycled new ones…

The story of Harris Tweed – one page of a blog called V is for Vintage

Why shopping will never be the same – an article about tecchy innovations in the shopping experience

 The curated wardrobe – an article about paring down your wardrobe to the bare essentials… Maybe I need to apply the principles to my art supplies!

instant fashion software! – a fun webpage where you can draw fashion on a figure and it will turn it instantaneously into a 3d model!

 

What have you been reading lately?

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