Do you feel happy with the work?
In short, yes I do. Although I imagine the work I will do in the future will be centred around different subjects and ideas, but this stage has been a good place to start. I struggled at times but enjoyed the process of the initial observation of textures – to the attempts at translation.
Do you prefer working with stitch to drawing ? Can you begin to see the relationship between the two ?
I like both. I love drawing…….although I would say I have slightly rushed the drawing aspect as I was over eager to begin the process of stitching. I have a very linear connection in my mind of the relationship between the two in that I would like to be an artist who draws with thread.
Having worked through Stage 2, were you then able to choose stitches which expressed the marks and lines of your drawings ?
I did not really achieve this. I hope to be able to do this in the future…… I have done classical drawing in the past at school so it is a new thing to create marks which would come to represent stitches. The closest I have come to this is ‘scribbling’ with the sewing machine. This gave me immense pleasure. Again, I did not give enough attention to the drawing part of this exercise, not really understanding it. Again this is something I will come back to I think and learn with time.
Do you feel that you chose the right source materials to work from ?
On my first 2 samples in stage 6 (bark and paintwork) – I feel happy with what I chose (from a beginner’s perspective). My third sample did not really work…well it did and it didn’t. I think the muslin was a good choice with the delicacy but I was unable to achieve the colours that I desired…so more thought needed on that one.
Do you think your sample works well irrespective of the drawing ? Or do you think your sample is just a good interpretation of your drawing and nothing more ?
I would say that my samples work well irrespective of the drawings and have something on their own – I would also say that as they bear little resemblance to the drawings. I think that drawing serves well to familiarise yourself with the texture you are trying to catch the essence of, it also helps you to really look and extract detail. The sample can come out entirely different and that is okay too as surely the aim is not to reproduce 3 identical images.
Which of the activities did you prefer – working with stitch to create textures or working with yarns to make textures ? Which worked best for you and why ?
I think I preferred working with stitch to create textures…although the yarns themselves obviously play a part of that. My work came out relatively flat and I guess that is a result of putting more time into the stitches themselves rather than varying depths and collages of yarn. I like the speed and organised chaos you can create with machine stitching….I wish I could layer more without getting in such a tangle though. I am also fairly limited with my knowledge of which threads can be used as an upper thread in the machine so I have been limited to fairly standard basic colours. I do enjoy handstitching also – I would ideally like to use both in future work as they both have their own qualities.
Make some comments on individual techniques and sample pieces. Did you experiment enough ? Did you feel inhibited in any way ?
As I said in my last post – I had highs and lows with these sample pieces. I can only speak from my own perspective – but I found it easier the less I practiced (perhaps less expectation of good results?). My first sample (tree bark) was the first work I did on this project as my practice stitching was going nowhere – I just had simple fun with hand embroidery using various yarns stitched into hessian. Hessian is good as it has a large weave so there are no issues with bulkiness of thread etc. I did quite a lot of experimentation – I went to my mental limit (frustration wise) with sample 3 (fountain water), and got nowhere really. I did learn what not to do…which is helpful I suppose – although not very satisfying. I did not feel inhibited. I felt frustrated that I do not possess the experience to create the effects I want… If anything I feel a little overwhelmed by all the possibilities and only trying a few in the time I have – certainly not ‘inhibited’.
How do you prefer to work ? From drawing or by playing with materials and yarns to create effects ? Which method produced the most interesting work ?
Both, I like to draw to prepare myself and to get to know the aesthetic I want to assimilate – and playing with materials and yarns is essential to creating effects. I can’t really answer this question… both ?…they are not separate ? I’m not sure what to say.
Are there other techniques you would like to try ? Are there any samples you would like to do in a different way ?
At the risk of repeating myself, my vague answer is ‘there are easily a hundred techniques I would like to try’ – and my priorities would be to practice stitching and working with natural basic fabrics first before slowly diversifying. I would like to try the peeling paint sample again once I have thought about it some more and have more experience…as yet I don’t know how I will do this.
Is there anything you would like to change in your work ? If so, try to think out why and make notes for future reference.
I think it is a bit soon for me to answer this question… I do not feel like I have produced any actual work as such.