Research – additions to Sally Blake and Dorothy Caldwell research notes

Following feedback from my Tutor on Assignment Five I have added to my analysis of a piece of work by Sally Blake Research: Sally Blake Australian Artist – and to my analysis of a piece of work by Dorothy Caldwell Research: Dorothy Caldwell Textile Artist.

In undertaking this further analysis I understand how this approach to researching a piece of an Artists work can help me to see the work more clearly and assist me to take elements into my own creative process.

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Written Reflection – New Textile Capsule Collection

Taking my Tutor’s advice I have produced a new Textile Capsule collection with the aim of creating some innovative and playful work.

Why did I chose the particular approach to the new Textile Capsule Collection?

My new collection relates to my interest in sustainable textiles as referred to at the beginning of my blog post on my new Revised Capsule Collection – Part Five including the depletion of natural resources and the filling of landfills with used clothing.  This means that I wanted to consider the environmental and social costs of designing textile items in my new work.  I therefore included two up cycled shirts purchased from an “Op- Shop”.  In addition I was motivated as indicated in the earlier blog post by the need to respond to the fast disposable approach now taking hold for textiles and to adopt a more individual and slower approach to valuing textiles in the more thoughtful production of textiles by creating individual textile clothing pieces.

Why did I chose certain techniques like printing, cutwork, embroidery?

I was aiming to redesign the up cycled shirts into exciting one of a kind garments so I chose techniques like dyeing, printing and cutwork embroidery to add design to the originally white shirts (piece one and piece six).  As indicated in my analysis I think I achieved this aim with these two pieces.  Work in the future can go much further with a collection of up cycled shirts with added design and embellishment.

For the remaining four items(Pieces two, three, four and five) in the Collection I was aiming to create individual pieces which in some ways were playful and innovative.  I used the shape of the pattern piece for the top of a shirt for these items.  I used similar techniques to Pieces One and Six with the addition of using more innovative materials like the tracing paper and the actual flower petals.

Why it worked or not?

As mentioned earlier I reflected that the two up cycled shirts (piece one and piece six)achieved my aim of repurposing the two shirts in a playful way which created more interesting colour, interest with cutwork embroidery, and hand printing.

In terms of the other four top shapes (Piece two, three, four and five) as commented on in my analysis I think I responded better in this collection to actual garments than to flat shapes. I liked the way the petals were captured between the two layers of silk organza in Piece five creating the “floatiness” or fragility of the petals.

Piece two with the silk organza overlay was disappointing due to the way the silk scrunched with the one piece of cutwork stitching and the printed petals under leaf were not as visible.  If I reworked this piece taking more care with the silk organza cutwork would this work better? Or should I have used shadow work type embroidery?  On reflection I think the shadow work may have achieved my aim of creating an interesting piece but would it have been innovative?  I don’t think the shadow work would have been innovative but it would have been a safe option.

As an overall collection I used colour and purpose (i.e. clothing ideas) to unite the six pieces.  Techniques overall are another uniting feature.  The relationship to the Tropical Tourist theme from Part One and the Christening Robe in the Archive collection are also an underlying connection.  Did this work?  Yes but I think if I had used all up cycled clothes my collection would have demonstrated more cohesiveness.

I understand now more fully, but I am still learning, how to reflect regularly on my work as it is progressing and to write down my thoughts and ideas in my sketchbook and on my blog as opposed to carrying them around in my head which I so much do.  I can see how this form of reflection will assist me to develop in my textile practice.

 

 

 

Revised New Capsule Collection – Part Five

Background

Following feedback from my Tutor I have taken my underdeveloped Capsule Collection work and revised 5.3 samples and undertaken further work to produce a new Capsule Collection.

In reviewing my work in Part 5 again I have thought about the direction the new Capsule should take given I want to express myself more experimentally and innovatively.  I have been reading articles in newspapers and magazines about sustainability in clothing.  About how our landfill is being inundated with used clothing and how we should consider localised solutions for recycling(“Fabricate”, NZ, autumn 2017).  Slow fashion will assist and the idea that one should have a small number of clothes.

I wander into K Mart recently and see new shirts/blouses for less than $10 and see how this must be attractive to customers. To me this devalues textiles and encourages the throw away mentality. Pondering on this I think that individually designed clothes of a small number is the way of the future.  Obviously for our planet and secondly, for individuality /offer the wearer the chance to express themselves.

So I decided to use my new Capsule Collection work to incorporate experimentation with clothes.  I chose natural fabrics as the base next to the skin including cotton, linen, lawn, muslin as these suit our hot climate here in Northern Australia.

Based on my above thoughts I chose to use “Op – Shop” find shirts as a base and to use a pattern type for the front piece of a sleeveless top for my other experimental pieces.  I also wanted to use a limited colour palette based on the colours of the bougainvillea and hibiscus flowers from Tropical Tourist and the Christening Gown from the Archive collection so apricot, orange, pinky shades.  I referred back to my revised 5.3 samples to build on these works in my development of the new Capsule Collection.

New Capsule Collection Piece One

I chose an “op shop” find of a white cotton shirt to be the base for my first Capsule Piece.  I did not like the starkness of the white so procion dyed it using a quarter teaspoon of dye powder in two containers one orange and the other scarlett.  I scoured the shirt first in hot water and then placed in soda ash solution.  I removed from the solution and placed in a bucket prior to pouring over the dye mixture.  The mixture is very watered down as I wanted to achieve I light shading.  The outcome was satisfying the shirt was crumpled in the dye bath to achieve slightly uneven dyeing which was the intent.

Looking over my new revised samples for 5.3 I was drawn to the cutout embroidery on the linen.  I cutout and embroidered four more petals in the thick variegated embroidery thread and after experimenting I put a piece of hand dyed cotton with colour variation behind the cutwork not just the shirt.  It looked bland with just the fabric from the shirt showing through.  I hung up the shirt with the cutwork attached by pins and thought the shirt looked unbalanced with just one side with the medium weight linen work.

I decided to further experiment with my gelli plate but this time I decided to make my own plate using a vegetable gelatine and glycerine.  I was very pleased with this plate not perfect but interesting and as it is vegetable gelatine it does not need to be refrigerated so I left it outside on my work table in the alfresco and it continues to work perfectly so much cheaper than buying a gelli plate and you can chose your own size.  See photographs below.

I printed a number of new orange/scarlett/red textile ink veggiplate samples.  Looking at my shirt again I auditioned one of my new samples and decided to try it on the other half of the shirt but higher up nearer the top.  I was pleased with this and to me it was more balanced.

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New Capsule Collection Piece Two

I decided to use a piece of light white muslin cut in the shape of the front of a sleeveless summer top for Capsule Piece Two.  I did not scour this top shape but placed in soda ash and then squished into small container and poured over diluted red procion dye.  This fabric is light delicate and floaty like the bougainvillaea flower petals.  I took some of my new veggiplate samples and decided to roughly cut out some petals and leaves printed as a second layer on the plate.  I used wonder under to adhere the petals/leaves to the muslin.  Mindful that I had silk organza to audition as an overlay I cut the silk out and pinned over the top of the muslin.  As the silk is fairly transparent the petals/leaves shine through.  But I was not satisfied as the silk looked plonked on top and did not relate well to the story.  So I decided to do some insertion/cutout lacy embroidered bougainvillea flower petals on the organza.   This was difficult to do on the silk and the effect was not flat which was disappointing. Overall the concept has potential but with more investigation on how to ensure the silk does not pucker. I think this piece links my Tropical Tourist theme (part 1) with my archive piece the Christening Robe which also has overlay lace.

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New Capsule Collection Piece Three

I chose a white cotton lawn which I cutout as a top of a summer blouse as my base for Piece Three.  Once again I procion dyed using diluted dye using the same technique as Piece Two.  I decided to use the gocco/thermafax screen I had made for the Christening Gown (reference) and to make another gocco/thermafax screen using a sketch I made of the bougainvillea flower.  I printed these screens which use Japanese riso screen and bulbs (redundant now not for sale anymore) using red textile ink.  The effect was pretty I think but not interesting.  I looked back through my stitched samples for the revised 5.3 and decided to use a more experimental substrate tracing paper like in Sample 5.3.  with cutout shapes of the bougainvillea petals and lacy embroidery.  I thought this contrasted with the pretty but predictable second layer (screened).  The result is interesting but needs further development as the tracing paper looks a little placed rather than integrated into the piece.  I think I was experimental but my design is not so good.

 

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New Capsule Collection Piece Four

I cut out a top shape for a summer linen blouse.  I procion dyed the same as Piece Three. To add interest I placed textile ink in blobs on my veggiplate and rubbed the top shape in it – this produced some interesting marks but was not enough.  So using a section of my veggiplate I used real leaves to veggiprint leaves on to the top in a random fashion.  I could have used a leaf printing technique but this is very predictable and I wanted the leaf shape but not in a totally controlled way.  The veggiprints came out all a little different with more texture.  A netting top was added over the linen fabric to make the printing more subtle.  The top has an organic random effect with interesting pattern and shapes.  This approach forced me to break away from an organised overall pattern and to be more free and interesting in the work.

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New Capsule Collection Piece Five

For this piece I sought multi dyed organza and decided to fuse two pieces together with legacy fusible with real bougainvillea and hibiscus petals sandwiched between the layers.  The new fabric is quite firm and plastic like but was very easy to cut and work with.  The petals were placed randomly with the larger hibiscus petals at the bottom to balance the flowers.  This resulted in a pleasing arrangement which is experimental but I could see being used for a special costume top or as wearable art.  The petals may eventually lose their colour I will have to wait and see.

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New Capsule Collection Piece Six

For the final new capsule collection piece I took another ‘op shop’  white cotton shirt and after soaking in soda ash I procion fibre reactive dyed using  diluted yellow and an orange dye.  The dye was applied randomly.  I decided I wanted to see how the shirt could be used for cutout work.

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IMG_8939I decided to apply iron on stabiliser to a section of the shirt and to see what effect I could achieve by cutting out the petal shapes but in a more elongated way to assist with successful hand stitching.  I then removed the stabiliser after I had hand stitched around the hole I had cut.  Next I selected some netting and adhered this to the back of the shirt using fusible to achieve the effect I was after.  I might add I am not a real sewer so if the garment was going to be worn often I would need to design a more robust method to attach the netting.  I could have done further work with more holes but time is running out so I have used the above to enable the effect to be seen.  I am happy with this work as a prototype experimental piece but would like to see the idea taken further into a completed garment.

Analysis

I have been very challenged in completing these pieces because my father passed away early last month and then my stepdaughter last week.  It has been very hard to focus but I remain determined to finish my revisions and submit to assessment.

I feel that in these six new pieces I have been innovative in my approach to the collection.  I have used a variety of techniques in my attempt to be experimental.  Some pieces are more successful than others.  I think piece 2 is rather bland and could have benefited from having the petal pieces appliquéd to the organza as opposed to the background fabric I think this would have created a more interesting and successful piece.  Piece One is balanced and wearable and the cut work adds interest to the shirt because of the texture and shape and the subtle dyed fabric underneath.  I also think that Piece 6 has lots of potential for a wearable garment and I like the interest created by the cutwork and netting combination.  On reflection I think I responded best when I was working with a real garment and that is something for me to remember as I go forward with my overall course.

I have taken my design ideas which are reflected in my sketchbook to be submitted for Assessment in an  experimental way.  It would be so possible to take this work much further and add designs to existing clothes and to create stand alone art pieces.  I have attended the World of Wearable Art Show in Wellington, New Zealand on a number of occasions when I was living there and the works are amazing and cover a huge range of materials and techniques.

 

 

 

Revised Assignment 5 work – Plan of Action

I have prepared a Plan of Action based on my Tutor’s Formative Feedback on Part 5.

ACTION PLAN for Revised Assignment Five

Learning Log (Tutor: overall well organised and I demonstrate the ability to take on information and learn from it). However Tutor points out I need to put some of my new knowledge into practice.

To DO

  • More reflective thinking on my own output.
  • For example collage sample – Tutor advises my questioning attitude excellent but I need to add some answers.

Action 1: Further develop collage samples in Part 5.2 – analyse, reflect and document outputs.  Add some answers!

  • Took risks in the materials and techniques in initial sampling in Part 5 but did not write up extensively.
  • Look at each sample and write not only what I did but what I thought of the results (shape, colour etc) which will help me to see what worked well and what can be taken forward.  Remember to reflect on my work in progress and document well in my Learning Log.  This critical reflection is structured, focused and conscious thought with an end person(Stella Cottrell). So my reflection of my samples is designed to assist me to produce interesting, experimental and impressive textiles.

Action 2: Following my Formative Feedback I have decided to redo my samples for 5.3 Experimenting and taking risks. Undertake detailed critical reflection as I progress through samples.  Do far more samples, less techniques more focused go in deeper be innovative see potential have a framework for carrying out Action 2.  A framework or system will help me to focus (I have problem with this which is obvious when you see how many different techniques I have used but only superficially) define and consider my work.

Research (Tutor: have started my analysis of my research with Holmes and Lyddon but in Assignment Five I have been giving general information on Artists selected).

TO DO

  • Need to revisit some of my artists in Part 5 and write down what I see and what I think of work.

ACTION 3:  Revisit some of the artists in Part 5 and analyse and evaluate in more detail as suggested by Tutor.

Sketchbooks

TO DO 

  • Tutor commented that if using print as one of my processes it is really important that I have a large body of expressive sketches to draw from.

ACTION 4:   Do far far more printing samples which will help me to have a wide choice to take forward into final textile samples.  Part 5.3.

Engagement with Textile Techniques(Tutor:  Noted she had only seen my textile samples digitally.  Liked my colour palette and saw variety in my compositions and noted that there is evidence I have pulled together things I have learnt from previous assignments to create the work.)

TO DO

  • But my work lacks as noted by Tutor because I have not analysed my early sampling fully.

ACTION 5:  Do another more developed Textile capsule collection with the aim of creating innovative and exciting work.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Feedback Part Five

I have carefully read the final formative feedback document from my Tutor.  I have identified from this Feedback further work I need to undertake for this course before I submit for Assessment.

My Tutor commented overall  that I had clearly worked hard during this part of the course but that my final samples reflected the pressure of trying to get things right and hence a safer approach.  My Tutor advised that it  is important at assessment that the student has taken an innovative and engaging approach and that demonstrates an ability to take risks. In addition the Tutor has noted that I have not  used my analytical skills to examine in depth my earlier samples and some of my research material.  My Tutor noted that I had a pleasing colour palette and provided evidence that I have pulled together things that I have learnt from the previous assignments to create my Part 5 work.  My drawings were interesting particularly those inspired by Georgia O’Keeffe paintings.

I have pondered at length this overall feedback and feel in myself that I could have been more innovative and experimental.  I also think that I rushed my final samples and whilst being self critical I have not documented that appropriately.  I could have documented more extensively my initial sampling in Part 5 particularly what I think of the results.  As I used print in my less developed samples I should have made a larger body of expressive sketches to draw from I understand this but for various reasons I was rushing.  This means I need to establish a better framework to approach my study work in general to ensure I develop in more depth and document in more detail.  This would then ensure I can pick the best of my samples and not rely on a small number.

I was pleased that my Tutor found my drawings interesting particularly the way I approached Georgia O’Keeffe paintings and she could see that I have been practising. Drawing has been a challenge for me so I took heart from these comments.

So I have developed a detailed Action Plan and documentation approach.  I will present this material by way of acting on my Tutor’s feedback and my carrying out some deeper analysis of my research which will lead to a new collection of work.  I will be careful to record in detail the processes, my evaluation and subsequent ideas in my learning log finishing with a more general reflection.  All work including the less developed capsule collection will be send in for Assessment.

My Written Reflection Part Five

I have really enjoyed Part Five of the Course because I had a sense of things coming together for me.  I found my drawing improving with this being a major challenge for me at the beginning of the Course.  I understood how to drill down on a theme and focus on a few elements and the ideas kept coming and still are coming.  Importantly I found I had more organisation and structure to my work.  I think the analysis at the end of Part 4 on “A Structured Approach to Reflective Thinking” leaning heavily on the work of Cottrell(2011,p211)help me to approach Part Five in a more cohesive way.

The model I presented of critical reflection encouraged me to do a “Review of Formative Feedback”(blogpost March 30, 2017) for assignments 1, 2 and 3, for example the question I posed to myself in terms of Assignment One Feedback “Have I looked hard at other practioner’s work and fed that into my own practice? provided me with a prompt as I commenced Part 5 to ensure I documented my Research of other Practioner’s who I was drawn to (e.g. Dorothy Caldwell, Bobby Britnell).  The reminder to draw in a range of mediums, to draw without looking on large A2 paper all were highlighted to me.  I also did an update of the book “Steal like an Artist”.  The review of the feedback from Assignment Two also encouraged me to include more photographs from my sketchbook,and to use to water soluble crayons and other materials.  I took on board the feedback from Assignment Four also and revisited Debbie Lyddon’s Book and provided more in-depth analysis.

In terms of my Model which is a continuous loop Model I followed along on the Acting and Experience by research gathering and documenting this, by preparing a portfolio of work.  I reflected on my previous creative experience in Assignments 1,2,3 and 4 and my current experience.  I tried to integrate my reflections with ideas and approaches by other artists and I think I achieved this at least to be influenced by Caldwell, Britnell, Blake and Streefkerk in Part 5. Review and Assessment I will comment further below and finally evaluating in terms of my development.

Overall for Part 5 I have had a shift in my thinking about my textile work.  For the first time I feel a deeper relationship to my subject matter to what I am doing and how I am doing it in some way it feels part of me.  It is not just a selection of techniques it is more than that.  I have also come to value the use of the sketchbook (I have to confess I was trained by a master US quilter to work intuitively with no sketchbook)as my place to sort out ideas and experiment I still have work to do though.  I think I better managed my time in Part 5 but there is still room for improvement.  I understand so much better now what I need to do than when I started the course.

The course in general has provided so much to me in way of my textile work.  I feel so enriched by the experience.  I now approach my work from a deeper mindset.  This has had a very positive effect on my other textile work outside of this course.  I plan to enrol in the Mixed Media in Textiles Course next.  I will enter Exhibitions also (I have done this already) but be more experimental and less risk adverse with my approach.  The course has stimulated me to think of textiles far more broadly and I look forward to expanding in this context further.

 

 

Assign 5 Part 5 Review against Assessment Criteria

Demonstration of technical and visual skills – materials, techniques, observational skills, visual awareness, design and compositional skill (40%)

I think I have followed the requirements of the Projects and Assignment and enjoyed the experience.  I have built on the work in previous Parts of the course in the undertaking of these works. I pushed the use of different materials in my work and to test their usability e.g. the Art Tissue paper.

Quality of Outcomes- content, application of knowledge, presentation of work in a coherent manner, discernment, conceptualisation of thoughts, communication of ideas (20%)

I think my outcomes are satisfactory.  I realise that there was a lot of freedom to interpret what was required in Part 5 and Assignment 5 and I hope I have followed a reasonable path,

 

Demonstration of Creativity – imagination, experimentation, invention, development of a personal voice (20%)

I have used some sketching to study my yarn approaches and in looking at my Tropical Tourist items.  I have used a variety of sizes including A2.  I have used a variety of materials e.g. crayons, wire

My approach to 5.3 to create experimental materials and printing to form the basis of my textile collection and my yarn development 5.2 I think showed my willingness to be  experimental.  Creating the six samples for my Textile Collection really felt like I am starting to develop my personal voice, how I really felt and related to the subject matter and my own way of interpreting the subject.

Context – Research, reflection, critical thinking (20%)

I have documented the Artists I have researched in Part 5 who have influenced my work and commented in My Written Reflection blogpost of the impact of these Artists.  I have established several Pinterest pages on these Artists and others.

I have approached my work in terms of my Model of Reflection as discussed in my blogpost My Written Reflection blog post of 30 May 2017.

Part 5 – What have I done?

Before I undertake my Written Reflection I have decided to document as an Index the work I have documented in Part 5 on this Blog.  I have also used a sketchbook.

BLOG POSTS AND DATES – PART 5 AND RESEARCH AND EXHIBITION WRITE UPS

 

  • Assignment 5 – Textile Collection                                                              30 May 2017
  • Part 5 Project 3 – Experiments and Taking Risks                                   30 May 2017
  • Research:   Dorothy Caldwell Textile Artist                                            16 May 2017
  • Project 2.4 – Develop yarn and linear concepts                                      16 May 2017
  • Research:   Bobby Britnell Textile Artist                                                  04 May 2017
  • Project 2.3  –  Develop Textile Concepts                                                    03 May 2017
  • Research:  Sally Blake Australian Artist                                                   03 May 2017
  • Exhibition Queensland Art Gallery O’Keeffe, Preston                           03 May 2017
  • Project 2.2  –  Inspired by Artist                                                                  28 April 2017
  • Project 2.1 – Building a Colour Response                                                  18 April 2017
  • Project 1 – Drawings                                                                                      17 April 2017
  • Exhibition Visit to National Gallery of Australia                                    11 April 2017
  • Research:  Hannah Streefkerk Textile Artist                                           01 April 2017
  • Exhibitions: NERAM                                                                                     30 March 2017
  • My Review of Formative Feedback Assignments 1,2 and 3                  30 March 2017
  • Yarn File:  Selvedge Magazine #75                                                             29 March 2017
  • Research:  Cas Holmes – Mote Tree and Collage                                      27 March 2017
  • Research:  Follow up Debbie Lyddon Book Tutor suggestion              27 March 2017
  • Tutor Feedback Assignment Four                                                              20 March 2017
  • Book:  “Steal like an Artist” Notes                                                               10 March 2017
  • Research:  Glenys Mann Textile Artist                                                       05 March 2017
  • Part 5 – Reflection – How to look at Textiles                                              04 March 2017
  • Part 5 – Reflection Laboratory versus Factory                                         28 February 2017

Something to think about to assist my study work in  the future is why there are some periods without posts being blogged could I have made better use of my time? Have I documented enough of my Research? Have I taken time to reflect or to comment during the work for Part 5?

Research: Dorothy Caldwell Textile Artist

I have long been drawn to the work of Canadian textile artist Dorothy Caldwell whom I met in New Zealand some years ago.  I like the ruggedness of the work the detail of the mark making and the addition of stitch and appliqué in many of her works.  I appreciate the story behind the works. The photograph taken of the cover of a recent Studio Art Quilters Associates Inc Journal shows to some degree the scope of her work. This work A Red Hill/A Green Hill is 9 feet 3 inches x 9 feet 6 inches.

SAQA COVERDorothy recently did a series of work based on using earth to dye her fabric.  She undertook residencies in the Australian Outback and the Canadian Arctic.  Her process was to fill many small journals with images, drawings and paper dyed from natural sources thus recording fragments of the places she was studying.  Many of Dorothy’s art pieces are large as evidenced in the Cover photograph above. She references objects she finds on her walks in these remote areas and indigenous art.  Dorothy sees the stitch as very important to the mark making seeing it as a dot, a line and a texture.  The stitches are like running stitch, kantha stitch, darning and mending stitches  and she is quoted as being inspired by this Louise Bourgeois quote:

“I have always had a fascination with the needle, the magic power of the needle.  The needle is used to repair the damage.  It’s a claim to forgiveness.”  Louise Bourgeois

Her technique outlined in the SAQA Magazine (2016, No4) journal article is to first create the base cloth using printing, wax resist, and discharge and dyeing.  With the base complete she hangs the piece on the wall and continues by adding appliqué, stitching, and drawing with thread.  The work created is powerful and connected to place.

Dorothy’s work inspires me to want to travel to Outback Australia (I have never been) and see for myself the red ochres of the earth and try dyeing fabric with the earth.

ADDED FOLLOWING FEEDBACK FROM MY TUTOR

Dorothy is a Canadian artist and I have not been able to see her work in person much as I would have liked to.  What draws me to her work is the subtle colour scheme she often uses in many of her works, the bold large shapes and the way she uses stitching to add to the texture of the work.  She creates a story with each large piece and that is something I find difficult to do –  to create the feeling and the atmosphere in a textile work it is something that I aspire to do and adds to the richness of a piece in my eyes.  The bold large shapes in the piece pictured above create immediate impact and draw the viewer I would imagine from across the exhibition room.  The smaller areas of colour add movement to the piece I particularly like the small green pieces and the fact that they are    mottled colour.  The way the green colour is depicted in this uneven way adds more interest for me to the piece.  I note that she also subtly varies the shading of the neutral large areas on the above work and this adds I think to the complexity of the work.

Reference: 

SAQA Journal 2016/Volume 26, No4

http://dorothycaldwell.com

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dorothy_Caldwell

Research: Bobby Britnell Textile Artist

I have really been drawn to the work of Bobby Britnell for quite a long time.  I was lucky to go to a lecture Bobby gave at the Ally Pally Knitting and Stitching Show in 2015.  I love her drawing works and the way she uses negative and positive space in her textile work. Her use of mixed media is also interesting(e.g.gesso) and her machine stitching (free form zigzag) approach in some pieces.

Bobby is a member of the Textile Study Group and the exhibiting group Through our Hands.  I noted that in an interview with the Textile Artist (www.textileartist.org/bobby-britnell-explorations-bark-cloth) she indicated that she uses sketchbooks and finds them invaluable as a means of sorting out thought processes, investigating technique and testing ideas.  She also comments that she does not mind if the pages are messy or unfinished.  Her latest work seems more centred on bark cloth from Uganda and she has made some beautiful works with the rather thickish textured cloth.  (I bought a small piece after her Lecture).

Bobby listed her major influences in the interview with Textile Artist as Cecily Sash a South Africa, David Tress’ expressive landscapes and I found a reference to the inspiration she gains from the work of artist Ben Nicholson.  She maintains that as textile artists we should be looking at other forms of art.  I agree we should look widely at other art and have been attending art galleries and using the internet to find painters, sculptors and basket makers.  I find this broadens my horizon and encourages me to look  closely at colour, textures, lines and shapes in these other art forms.

As an aside Barkcloth is called different names in the Pacific and SE Asia including Tapa Cloth in the Pacific and there are some wonderful art pieces made by various Pacific peoples.  I have seen tapa cloth used to make fantastic dresses with machine embroidery on display in Wellington NZ some years ago.

I have not tried to reproduce photographs of Bobby Britnell’s work but have a Pinterest page.

Pinterest:  Bobby Britnell https://au.pinterest.com/chocflower/bobby-britnell/

References:  Bobby Britnell, 2013, Stitched Textiles: Flowers, Search Press Ltd, Kent