Wednesday, 16 July 2008

Busy, busy!

I made my mind up to get busy with some creativity this week, not necessarily to make anything but to catch up on my Free Machine Embroidery practice and to try and catch up a little on the Journalling course that I am taking with Sharon Boggon. The course started just as I was going to Austria and is now in its third week. I am still working on the exercises for the first week! More of that in a minute.

Yesterday I had a play on the sewing machine and tried out a few FME ideas. I think my control is improving a little, although I do tend to keep my foot over the foot pedal when I've stopped stitching and find that the machine sets off again! The practices above were done with straight stitching with the darning foot on and the feed dogs down. It all felt a bit random as I hadn't a design in mind but I was quite pleased with the little fish I managed to draw and the stars. I shall keep practising but I wonder if it would be better if I had an actual design or project in mind.

This second piece was done in zigzag and I enjoyed playing with this stitch. Excuse the yucky colours, I don't like wasting my best threads.........skinflint! You can see the stitching more clearly on the sample below which is actually the reverse.

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I'm working up to printing a photo onto fabric and then machining on top which I thought I had seen on Gina's blog but I can't find it now. Must have seen it somewhere! It had to do with printing a photo onto fabric, ironing on painted Bondaweb and machining and hand stitching on top. Oh well, I shall just have to try it out!
As I mentioned at the beginning I have made a start on Sharon Boggon's "The Studio Journal as a Designer's Workhorse". The idea of the course is to 'help you establish a pattern of observing, notating and using your studio journal'. This is done through a series of exercises which so far I have enjoyed.
The first exercise I did, after setting up the Journal, is an exercise in frottage or texture rubbings.
My DH and I took a walk round Belton House one day last week and while he was busy with his camera I took the opportunity to take rubbings of the different tree barks. Eventually I selected 5 of these in a range of tones from light to dark.


I particularly liked this rubbing of yew tree bark and, as it was quite an open pattern I decided there was scope to turn thepaper through 90 degrees to make a mesh.

As I've noted in my journal, I can see this being interpreted in an open weave fabric or by weaving yarns or ribbons and threads. I have left the opposite page blank to come back to sometime to actually try it out.
The second exercise was to make texture marks and interpret them in stitch. I feel at a bit of a disadvantage here as I don't know many stitches but I did find ideas were sparking.


I had planned to work this exercise in colour but the ideas were coming thinck and fast so I never got to picking up the colour pens!
The final exercise which I did today involved looking at a painting by Van Gogh and thinking about interpreting it in stitch. I have to admit I cheated a little as I had already got a sketch I made some time ago so I have put that into my journal.

I think when I did this original sketch we were looking at the movemnt through the painting.
Van Gogh's brush marks are so distinct that you can almost 'see' the stitches on the canvas! My little sketch above shows just a few of the stitches I have considered and as yet I haven't given any thought to the actual threads. The colours are only to identify the areas and are not representative.
The next lesson concerns colour and I have made a start but not enough to show here.


Gina said...

You've shared some lovely work here Julie. You free machining has really come along! And I love the work in the sketchbooks.
Gina x

silverpebble said...

I really like the collated bark textures in your sketch book. They remind me of a little veg patch. I really enjoy seeing the progress of your projects in each post. Magic.

Genie said...

You have been busy, great work as usual, Thanks for visiting and leaving comment re my daughter.

sharon young said...

Hi Julie
I agree, you've don e some great work here and your FME is really going places. I love the little fish , he's definitely got attitude!
It's good to see your progression particularly when you started looking at stitch marks, I'm with you when it comes to not knowing many stitches. I often thought I should have done Sharon's stitch challenge, but I daren't take anything else on at the moment.

Lesley said...

I love seeing the way you work through your ideas - thanks for sharing :)


Helena said...

I love Van Gogh.