Friday, 17 May 2013

A productive afternoon

 I took the afternoon off today to make the most of  the weekend while Ian is at his parents to get 2 pieces of work underway for  Festival of Quilts. I concentrated today on my entry for CQ challenge
 ' Horizons' ( 50 x 150cm).   My aim was to create the background on the old red quilt I used for 'red flotsam'  to use some of the results of my screenprinting experiments from a few years ago.
 I became quite an expert on ripping 2 inch masking tape into raggy strips!
 Sample after first lot of  masking tape and painting with blue and red acrylic paints.
2nd lot of making tape applied then 'unbleached titanium' acrylic paint.

Tape removed
 Reasonably pleased with the first half  of the full size piece. Maybe a bit too regular , I'll  try to create more variety for the second half.  Loved the mass of coloured making tape I peeled off!

While I'm waiting for the paint to dry, time for a final play with my 'half way between ' indigo piece  - need to finalise the size by the end of May if I want to enter it in FoQ! Off to bed for an early start  tomorrow!

Wisteria and Bluebells

 A busy time at work helping process  the orchid material colleagues brought back from Madagascar  and dealing with enquiries about our work on Lady's Slipper Orchid. Snatching a moment to go and collect the post, the wisteria on the admin building is at it's best - reminds me of when I came for my job interview 23 years ago - I love the smell too.

Over the bank holiday, I finally got round to  pumping up the tyres on my bike and  have been cycling in. Took the opportunity to whiz down to the Conservation area last Tuesday when it was sunny ( remember that?!), the bluebells were spectacular.
The  summer festival  ' incredibles' launches on 25 May - everyone is talking about the arrival of the giant pineapple! 

Saturday, 11 May 2013

TVCT Meeting - Afghan Embroideries and Halfway Between

An interesting session at Thames Valley Contemporary Textiles today - a talk from Maike Laurensen about an initiative providing self help to Afghan women through sale of small embroidered squares ( and examples of how they'd been incorporated into larger textile pieces by European artists) . I couldn't resist the multi-coloured fat tailed sheep  and the subtle pear incorporating  stitching most commonly used in the eye veil section of  a burqa.  More about the project here.

Then in the afternoon, lively debates and discussions about our forthcoming exhibition ' Halfway Between'. Besides my 2 green door pieces, I've been working on scaling up my Journal quilt pieces to an indigo shore transition piece. Still a long way to go moving bits around. but I'm beginning to see the way forward in how different sections interact. I had a massive session of preparing fabrics with Bubble JetSet  both to print copies of my indigo shibori and photos of sand ripples manipulated  to look like indigo. It's  not really cheating....

Thursday, 9 May 2013

Bank Holiday Tree felling


A productive bank holiday weekend - some creative work, a visit to  the Ice Age at  British Museum followed by an excellent meal at Savoir Faire and some lumberjack activities removing the bay tree ( pictures after and before above). It's got way too big and dominates the garden, shading my herb garden and beyond my capabilities of pruning to get it into shape. The fig we planted needs more room now too.  We'd had quotes for taking it down but eying it up during our first outside lunch of the year  we thought we'd give it a go taking it down ourselves 

 We  were so keen to get started that I'd already removed several branches , working from below, before we thought to get the camera!
 With sturdy loppers and increasing size of ladders finally got the top branches down

 Then Ian took over sawing through the thicker branches
We called it a day when it was down to a tall stump and  having not yet stocked up on tonic and ice, celebrated with a rose spritzer with frozen raspberries.  Very satisfying!