Monday, 21 April 2008

The finishing post is in sight.............!

.....and that is not a good thing. For one thing, I have really enjoyed doing this course (and of course eating Betty's cakes!). And I also seem to have a lot to do to finish everything. I am sure if I itemised everything still to do, it would not looks so bad (not convinced on that one. Still, nil desperandum. Onwards and up or downwards.
I thought I would take this opportunity whilst waiting for the paint on the front cover on my first project book to dry, to upload a few more pictures from my oak tree book.
The two pictures show firstly, various galls that occur on oak leaves. These are down using bits of tyvek, painted and heated. The little golden rings were done by winding yellow thread round jewellery jump rings and it took seemed a good idea when I thought of it. And they look fairly like the originals, I think.
The second picture are pen and ink drawings of the various insects that cause the galls. I've used different techniques for each. One is done using just lines the other just dots and the last using blocks of flat colour. Although it does not show very well in the picture the wings are small pieces of white organza.

Will upload more pictures soon as he paint is almost dry.

Thursday, 17 April 2008

Paper and more paper

This blog covers the last two classes. I should be at class tonight but I went to London with friends from my painting class to see the exhibition at the Royal Academy - From Russia - and did not get back until 8 o'clock. But well worth going. The collection of paintings was superb...especially the Cezanne and Kandinsky. They look so different in real life compared with reproductions in books. The Kandinsky, in particular, was stunning. I did not realise what a large painting it was, about 7ft by 10ft. It really knocks your socks off. I would recommend anyone to go to the exhibition but today is the last day so I'm afraid you have missed. I have included a picture of the Kandinsky here so you can see what you've missed.
Anyway, back to C and G. The last two weeks we have been making paper. Last week we made silk paper using just water and relying on the gummy substance called seracin left in the silk. Usually when making silk you need to use a cellulose glue or similar to get the fibres to stay together. The silk is teased out as thin or as thick as you like, then sprayed with water and placed between two sheets of baking parchment and ironed until dry. Simple as that. The silk can be coloured before or after ironing and embellishment such as other fibres can be included. I have shown a piece of paper with threads included and another piece that has been coloured with acrylic ink.
The previous week we made paper...using mashed up paper pulp from various sources such as old envelopes. As with the silk paper, this paper can be coloured and/or inclusions added.

We are not far off the end of the course..about 5 weeks to go. I can thoroughly recommend this course whether you paint, work in textiles or both.

Friday, 4 April 2008

I'm back

To anyone who reads my blog with any sort of regularity, my apologies for not having added anything for a few weeks. But I am back....not that I have been anywhere apart from cloud cuckoo land perhaps. Quite a lot to catch up on both on techniques and progress with the two project books.

We are nearly at the end of techniques for the workbook. Some of the latest techniques are show in these five images. The first is some bookbinding techniques based on Japanese methods and using fancy thread. The next image of some experimentation with water soluble fabric. Basically you colour, stitch or in some way mark the paper. You then use a brush or similar tool to add water to the parts of the water soluble paper you wish to dissolve. That is the basics....there is a lot of scope for experiment! The results can be very interesting.. The next image is a piece of brown paper that has been stitched and embellished and then treated with colour, in this case brown and liming preparation to create something that looks like leather I also added verdigris to give it a little added something! The next image show another experiment with water soluble material....The final image is my first experiment in making a pop-up. I think the paper engineering is one of my favourite parts of this course and I plan to do a lot mor when the course is finished.

My next blog, hopefully within the next few days will show some images from my Oak Tree book which is very nearly finished. I have had some trouble with the cover but that is another story which I will save for another blog.