Friday, March 21, 2014
Making it your own
'Summer Rain' by Jo Budd
With some of the fabrics I produced on the workshop ( I produced loads!) I put together some of my favourites in purples that spoke of the sea , placing them on a canvas backing as Jo often does. I did start to attempt to stitch using her methods ( I own a small piece of hers ‘Summer Rain’ which I could refer to ) and canvas is certainly easy to stitch through even if it does fray too easily but I like my stitching visible! I took it as a sewing project while I was on holiday in Weymouth overlooking Portland and I feel I stitched memories of the big skies into it.
My main focus of the workshop ‘Microcosm to Macrocosm ‘ was producing different fabrics using as inspiration a stick I found on the towpath of the Thames going into work, attempting to capture its colours and textures. Jo helped me with the composition, moving different components around to create the start of a more balanced piece. But I wasn’t happy with the idea of using canvas as the backing , that was her method not mine, and I wanted to use something coloured where I could layer and integrate the fabrics to suggest the layers of peeling paint.
I like to ‘repurpose’ old quilts so I used an old red and sprigged floral strippy coverlet and painted sections with acrylic paints (partly to stick down some the fraying fabric). It had already been quilted with chevrons and I added further hand stitching both to attach the layers of printed fabrics and to integrate them with the background cloth. It was so therapeutic, not thinking too much but responding to the fabrics, it was difficult to know when to stop!
I’ve since made 3 further pieces from that 1 quilt, using almost every last scrap. ‘Nautical Dawn’ is about to go to Prague as part of CQ Horizons exhibition and the 2 ‘Connection’ pieces will at Minerva Arts from July to September ( meet the artist On 20 July).
The rough back of homespun twill with its unconscious marks contrasts with the bright colours of the front with carefully blended threads - the currents and eddies swirling beneath the surface. I’ll be talking more about backs and the ‘unconscious side’ in my next post.