Friday 30 June 2023

Ballarat - workshop begins

Thursday - first day of class. As I am not doing the usual walk around the lake, I walked around the grounds before class, and took more photos of moss and lichen, and as usual, found mushrooms – teeny, tiny mushies! 

A nicely paced day to begin with, starting with mono-printing. I was really pleased with how using pieces of heat-distorted satin worked, looking like rocks. The fabric pieces themselves look wonderfully interesting too. Something new to me was the reverse monoprint, where you place the paper or fabric down onto the inked up plate, and can draw into it, which creates quite a different effect.

Heat distorted fabric
The fabric itself will be great to use now too

Reverse transfer monoprint
Gladwrap on plate, printing the gladwrap itself
Next was embossing, then creating patinas on our metal fabrics with bleach and ammonia. We finished the day by using flames to colour the metal fabric, with each one reacting differently, and many interesting effects possible. I particularly liked the random scrunching method, which is a little like tie-dyeing.
Flame painting

Chemical patinas
With a little free time before dinner, we were able to have an aperitif in the gloriously warm Woodbridge common room, before braving the cold to the dining room. Luckily the tutor talks are held there so we could stay on and enjoy them – both were very good. Lorell Lehman was not an artist I was familiar with so that was an eye-opening and enjoyable presentation. Our own tutor Alysn Midgelow-Marsden was next, and I felt her words resonate with me as far as being inspired by the same things, and her working just with them in her mind and informing her marks rather than recreating images.

Friday - Another photo session before class – just a quick one, as there was a very fine mist of rain. Some more very tiny mushrooms were discovered! 

We brought out the sewing machines today, and some struggled to remember how to use theirs, or did battle with the ones they had on loan. The morning’s exercise was cutting up the flame-coloured metal cloth into dark and light sections, and stitching them to create shaded areas on a piece of solvy.

The afternoon began with a layering of metal cloth over material to perform reverse applique on. I needed to colour more metal, so got out my butane torch, and ended up creating the loveliest pattern. I couldn’t bear to use it, so made another one, which was also fabulous. This created the pattern I would be using, so I ended up sewing from that side instead of the reverse. In the middle of the sandwich was a crumpled and torched piece, which I didn’t think would make much of an impact, but as I cut into it, I saw some lovely pieces.

Three different flame painted pieces

The layers pinned up, then stitched into and cut back

There were a few more experiments in the afternoon which will be completed tomorrow, such as stitching tissue paper on to be painted and scrubbed off, and stitching on lutrador over metal cloth.

Wednesday 28 June 2023

Tuesday Ballarat Fibre Arts

So I miscalculated and realised I was going to arrive a day early at Ballarat, and Glenys was kind enough to let me settle in a day early. WHAT a huge amount of unpacking that was, and how wonderful to get it all out of the way, including washing done. It was a pub dinner for the early crew of traders, tutors, and my dimwitted self.

Yet another shock to this Queenslander - not only is it bitterly cold here, but sunrise isn't until 7:40am! It didn't bother me so much on Police Point, as I wasn't on a schedule, but I had been hoping to fit in some lake walks before classes here - I am re-thinking that idea. Today I went to the gym, hauled my workshop materials over to the classroom, and had a little camera play in the school grounds - so much moss and lichen, and of course I found some mushrooms! There's a couple of amazing ones here - others missed the mark - largely due to the fact that I just can't see what I'm doing out there on the tiny screen!

I loved the detail captured in this one, and had a colour-play in photoshop.

I spent the afternoon helping people move in, then a quick shower before our class meeting with tutor Alysn Midgelow-Marsden, who had lots of exciting samples to show us. After dinner quite a few of us gathered in the common room, which is toasty warm and good fun. But, it's going to be a big week, so better get those zzzzz's in!

Monday 26 June 2023

Monday in Melbz

And so I return to my normal blog, after using my website blog for the last two weeks for my Police Point Residency and my arrival in Melbourne – visit that here.

After a leisurely start to the day (after all, it has been a very busy couple of weeks!) I caught a tram to Fitzroy to visit Darn CheapFabrics, where I found a few treasures. A wide sequin band - perfect for decorating boots, some crinoline material, and a super gawdjuss double sided silver/gold metallic polyester. I think it is going to pleat and shibori-shape up beautifully, and might be useful in this weeks workshop ‘Metal Cloth to the Max’. The lovely Kim there also gave me some secret-squirrel tips on colouring it.

I’m glad I checked my map when I did – Deans Art was just down the road, and here I found a set of beautiful gem-coloured Japanese metallic water colours – just what I was looking for! I headed back into town and was looking for somewhere to hang out for a while, and I was pleased to stumble across The Joint, where I indulged in their Beer and Bao special. I actually sat outside – there were moments of sun – as it was great to be watching the city and hearing those trams go past – ding ding! One last stop at Seniors Art, where I found some Walnut Ink, and it was homeward bound – believe it or not, that was Monday gone!

Another pack up tomorrow, and I head off to Ballarat, only an hour and a half away.