This is a post about drawing honesty from my garden and trying something new – fabric printing. But first…
A monumental change has recently taken place in my life. I’ve not made a big announcement because, although I’ve been very excited about these developments, I wanted to take some time to quietly become accustomed to the possibilities that have now opened up for me.
After 15 years working as a lecturer in adult and further education I have taken voluntary redundancy. As some of you know, I have been writing this blog and teaching an on-line drawing course for a couple of years now. Recently, I have been increasingly frustrated at not having sufficient time to develop new courses or even for my own art work!. When the college asked for volunteers to take redundancy it seemed as if everything was suddenly falling into place and I have no doubt that this is the right decision for me.
What is the best therapy after 15 years of being the teacher? Turning the tables and being a student of course!
I love learning new skills and, along with a friend, I booked myself onto a one day linen panel printing course. The workshop was taught by Liz Lippiatt and organised by the Gloucestershire Guild of Craftsmen.
The day before the workshop we both spent some time sketching plants in the garden. Initially, I found it difficult to make the mental switch from art to design. Simplifying, altering shapes to better fit a space and not being able to use tone were, initially, all quite tricky for me to feel comfortable with. Soon I began to relax and play around with the drawing and began to enjoy the process.
We spent the morning exploring and drawing from the Arts and Crafts collection at The Wilson where the course was held. Although there was an amazing array of source material to choose from I decided to go with my original drawing from the garden. The design was first cut from paper, which was laid over the linen to create a stencil. The fabric ink was then passed across the screen using a squigee to print onto the fabric. Liz was very supportive throughout the process and kept everyone calm, even when we were convinced our designs would all go wrong!
Above is my finished print…
And here is the finished cushion!
Now back to my neglected watercolours…