“In the 21st century, thin equals success: posh clothes shops don’t make big sizes; rich footballers marry skinny birds. And fat is no longer just a feminine issue. These days men, worried about the moobs, are every bit as likely to refuse the bread at lunch as their wives. The days of the porky chief executive with his “chauffeur chub” and long lunches are gone; these days moguls are lean, mean and up at 6am to work out with their personal trainers. It is the poor, with their takeaway buckets of fried chicken and cheap processed stodge, who are fat.”
I completely agree with this article I found online. Even two years later, this is still a problem. I was shocked when I first saw this Kate Moss quote, and it still echoes today. The constant need to be skinny is EVERY girl/woman’s problem. More and more brands are slowly hiring ‘plus size models’ but I don’t think that will end eating disorders.
..the end of the second term is nearly here! After easter the third term is only eight weeks long..Before I know it I’ll be a second year student.
For this project the three objects I have chosen are; a wire sculpture I made of myself, my mother’s decorate ball ornament and a set of three brooches that my grandmother left me before she passed away. What I like about my chosen objects is that they’re decorative, surface textured and they link three of my family’s generations together.
In my sketchbook I started to record these surface textures using various media and on assorted papers. I also used a lot of the drawing techniques I learnt last term such as continuous line drawings and timed drawings. I feel my drawing skills have improved greatly since last term because they are a lot more detailed and I feel I’ve been able to take more from these drawings to transfer into the workshops. I really enjoyed all of the workshops this term particularly stitch. I learnt so much in each of them and as a result, I’ve produced four really inspirational files all inspired and linked to my chosen objects.
My final piece focuses on the three of my chosen objects together in a collective order of three generations. My final outcome is a mixed media wall piece, incorporating pieces of; tyvek, bondaweb, nuno-felt and free machine embroidery. I’m really content with the textures I’ve individually created and how well they all blend together. I’ve learnt a lot this term and really pushed the boundaries.
Today I started to plan out my final piece using a scrap piece of wallpaper. Using photocopies and various colour pens I mapped out my plans and ideas. I really enjoyed planning my idea out because I’ve never designed this way before and I feel I benefited from it. Next I started the making part and I decided the easiest way to go about this was to make each piece individually and then later place them all together. I thought this would be a long process but I seem to be getting through it well. I’ve finished the nuno-felting and bondaweb parts, which I’m really happy with so far. I feel I’m progressing with this final piece and I’m really enjoying planning and making each piece.
Continuing with my final piece I carried on making the individual pieces of my design. Today I started with the tyvek and free machine embroidery samples. There wasn’t much to do with the tyvek except painting it and manipulating it, which I thought was quite an easy task. Next I moved onto my free machine embroidery samples, I created these using various threads, dissolvable fabric and an embroidery hoop. I’m happy with the individual pieces I created today; they’re so textured and layered. They’re detailed and will work beautifully with all the other pieces I’ve produced.
Today I finished my final piece. I used heavyweight calico to attach all my individual pieces to. My idea was to overlap these pieces, let them hang over the edge and created an overall layered and textured design. But something is wrong. I think something is missing but I don’t know what. I feel like I need some tutorial guidance to point me in the right direction because I don’t want to end up ‘ruining’ my final piece.
After confrontation with my tutor about my final design I decided to add a bit of embellishment to add the finishing touches to my final piece. I did this by adding beads, wire and various threads. I found these embellishments relevant to my design because they all link to my design in one-way or another. Wire because of my wire sculpture. Various orange threads which link to the colours of my object (the decorative ball ornament) and beads with link to my brooches. After attaching these embellishments to my design I feel it is complete. I am really happy with my final piece and all I have left to do is to staple it to a thin board ready to be mounted. I’m nervous about having it mounted to a wall because I’ve never displayed my work to such a high level before but it is exciting and I look forward to seeing my final design in an exhibition for the first time.
Today I had an interim critique with my course tutor Helen Watkins and it was such a brilliant experience I really expanded my ideas. I went into the room with a basic idea plan in my sketchbook and left with a final design idea. Out of all the workshops I couldn’t just chose one to specialize in because I honestly enjoyed them all. So my idea started from there, why not use a bit of everything in my final piece? A mixed media piece. I’ve never made a mixed media piece before so it would be a new thing for me and it would require me stepping out of my comfort zone because I did initially want to make a fashion item. From this mixed media piece I want to be inspired and create designs from it. Am I a designer or a maker? At this moment in time I’m definitely a designer.
I was looking forward to start the print workshop because I had so much fun last term. Today we started screen printing, I tried this briefly last term and loved the technique but this term we’d be taking it further by not just painting images onto a screen but putting an image onto the screen to create a collection of bold prints. I really enjoyed todays workshop, although there was a lot of waiting around for screens to dry, I ended up with a lovely collection of prints. The design on my print was based on one of my drawings (the decorative ball, simplified and bold) repeated and reversed. I printed in black ink first not only to keep things basic but I believe black as a colour stands out best and grabs attention. I printed onto a variety of papers and fabrics to see which works better than others. I also printed in yellow because I found this colour relevant to the image I was printing. I’d like to take this screen-printing further by using another image to add to my collection of samples.
READING WEEK!! :)
Stitch workshop continued; bondaweb. Today We were also introduced to a new material, one I have never heard of before and is known to be used in buildings and crime scenes. This material is called TYVEK. It looks a lot like paper and I enjoyed using the heat gun to manipulate this material by burning it/melting it/putting holes in it and shrinking it. I went further with my manipulation by stitching over it with the sewing machine and painting on it. This made my samples look a lot more professional and creative. I really enjoyed experimenting with this material and enjoyed mixing it up by adding fabric.
Today in stitch I started to plan out ideas to make a 3D object. I decided to use one of the brooches as my chosen design. I decided to make a pillow design using plain fabric as a practice run. This was definitely a challenge but I think I got through it in the end. I made the pillow design in three parts; front/back/rim. I found this task very tricky and I think I was definitely pushed out of my comfort zone. The finished item, if you can call it finished wasn’t up to my standards. I found it badly put together, odd in some parts and definitely to a finished item. However, I feel I can learn from this in many ways because I know what I have done wrong so from this I know how to make it right. Next time I will make the pillow design in two parts instead of three and I will use my invisible marker pen to help me cut closer to my pattern design.
Goodbye paper and hello felt! I’ve done felt 10000 times before and can practically do it in my sleep so I’ve been looking forward to this. I made range of samples using various colours and layering techniques. I also made some felt balls. I’d like to see what I could do with the idea of 3D felt, which could be very interesting!
Felt workshop continued with further experimentation including 3D felt and more advanced samples of felt such as nuno felting. I really enjoyed this workshop- I felt I developed my skills greatly and definitely benefited from this workshop.
Three reasons why I liked nuno felting;
It isn’t much different to normal felting but develops a different effect.
I find it a lot easier to control in the sense of adding various colours and layers.
Unlike normal felt, you can use a minimum of one layer and still achieve a creative outcome.
Our class was invited to a preview of ‘Routes’ a Contemporary Textile Practice Exhibition at the Orial Canfas Gallery. It was such a good experience, to see what the third years had produced and to what standard their work was at. Each piece was totally unique and beautiful. My favourite piece was ‘Golden Little Stars’ by Holly Flye.
First day back in university after a month off and straight back into the workshops. I was looking forward to papermaking because not only have I done it before but also I look forward to creating samples linking to my ‘three objects’. The brief for this term is based on three objects of my choice, my three objects are; a wire model of myself made by myself, a decorative ball belonging to my mother and a set of brooches that my Grandmother left me before she passed away. In the workshop I tried to focus my inspiration on these objects. I did this by following the obvious colour schemes; oranges/yellows for the decorative ball, neutrals for the wire model and light pastel colours for the brooches. This worked to my advantage but to improve these samples I decided to sew over some samples either to add effect or to add the element of one of my objects. Overall I got a lot of work done in this workshop, a productive day back in the city Cardiff. It’s good to be back.
TEX104 Theoretical studies presentation on my chosen object. I was really nervous about this presentation because it was a lot more formal compared to previous one I had yesterday. I honestly think my nerves got the better of me today because I could barely get my words out but I got through it somehow and hopefully did the best I could do.
Oral presentation in groups of five showing all final samples. I found this presentation experience really relaxed which helped settle my nerves. I enjoyed looking at other peoples work and seeing what they had done within the workshops. I realized today that everyone has his or her own style of working and presenting. I enjoyed showing people my work, hopefully they could see all the hard work and effort I put into it. I hope my six final samples show how creative I am and also show how high a standard i set myself in presenting.
Today at 5PM is the deadline for my project which includes handing in all samples, all files and my sketchbooks.
I made the deadline, a few hours early and felt like a huge weight had been lifted off my shoulder. Tomorrow I have my first of two presentations on all of the work I’ve produced this term, I’m nervous but looking forward to seeing other peoples works.
Today my class travelled to London for the day to visit the V&A Museum. I’ve never been before and fell in love, there was definately too much to see in one day! I really liked the ironwork on the first floor, I’ve seen this kind of work before on gates and hanging basket frames but never really paid any attention to it till now. Such inspirational designs I especially liked the floral and swirly patterns.
My favourite place in the museum was the history of laces, this was the place were I was most inspired and it’s also the place where I found my chosen object for a project I’ve been recently given (I’ll make another post about my chosen object).
Yesterday was my first time in the Dye & Print workshop and I really enjoyed! It started off easy with proceian dyes and papers. I’ve worked with dyes before but only briefly so I feel quite new to this but I hope to give it my all. Using a variety of papers I mixed colours and created textures using candle wax as a resist, clingfilm, batik and salt. I really liked using candle wax because it allowed me to draw images from sketchbook and create interesting textures. I only worked with fabric once today and this was when I created a screenprint. I drew an image of a tree from my sketchbook using browns and greens and yellows. The image was strong, effective and once printed I was really happy with it. I’m looking forward to friday’s lecture which will consist of shibori, hot water dyes, heat transfer & tie-dye!
The art of embroidery
Inspirational stitches, textures and surfaces
Thames and Hudson
The cover of this book is stylish, inviting and generally easy on the eye. The cover illustrations on the book clearly indicate what the book is about, embroidery. The pages of the book are set out spaciously, the font is simple and easy to read also I’d say there are more photographs than text in the book.
The book basically teaches the reader how to learn embroidery from basic stitches to really complicated ones. I think any textiles student like myself would find this book more than useful and definately inspiring.
After reading this book, I’ve learnt a lot and I feel that I have improved my knowledge of both embroidery and hand stitches. While reading the book I felt I had to follow the step by step stitch guide and try out the range of stitches. I didnt find this book off putting at all, infact it kept me interested throughout and I’d like to purchase my own copy. “If I had to stick a postit on my favourite pages then I’d probably run out of postits!”.
For a new post this is a very delayed post seeing as the task is over a month old (I’ve already done it in my reflective journal but thought it would be relevant to put in my blog).
Task: Look for atleast three different properties of ‘skin’ in either the practice of textiles or ceramics and discuss in what ways they achieve this connection.
It’s such a thin and breathable fabric. I think these properties are directly linked to skin. Skin is always soft and movable, like muslin. It can be dyed to create shadows and coloured pigments of the skin. Various stitches could also be added to create textures of the skin.
2. Muslin dipped into slip
As already stated above, muslin dipped into slip only adds to the connection with skin. I tried this technique back when I was college and it worked beautifully. Mixing muslin with slip makes it easier to work with and chance to shape it into any desired form.
This clay type connects with the properties of skin better than any other clay. Porcelain is such a rich material to work with but it’s also smooth, easy to work with and can easily be textured. I also like the fact that it’s white, this makes it easy to colour/glaze afterwards and white enables forms to create shadows and tones making the idea of skin a lot more realistic.
Before I started my course, I was given a task to start an artist file where I had to collect inspiration from the internet, books/magazines and other sources. I’ve decided to show some of the inspiration in my file through photographs below..
Yes, that’s right. I’ve been in Cardiff for 48 days today and I cant believe how time flyssssssssssss! I’m really happy here in Cardiff and on my course. I’ve met some really wonderful people and possibly friends for life. Here are some pictures from some of our student nights out..
I found this website while searching for some sort of inspiration while I was sketching buildings. Before I found this website I was bored with drawing such a hard subject matter, I found it more than challenging and really didnt understand how architecture linked to textiles. Until now. Buildings are not just buildings but like textiles, buildings can be textured, cut into and shaped in so many ways. Also architecture isnt just buildings, its so much more than that and can even include interior design. FAT (Fashion Architecture Taste) really inspired me because unlike most buildings, the designs on this site are different. They’re unique, eye catching and definately link to textiles.
Since the summer I’ve been finding inspiration from artists, books and the internet. I’ve also started collecting my three favourite fashion magazines; VOGUE, ELLE & HARPERS BAZAAR. My aim is for my next few posts to be strictly on inspiration and this post will be based on magazine inspiration only.. See scanned copies below for my latest finds;
I’m really enjoying the stich workshop. It’s a mix of things that I’ve done before and new techniques which is keeping me really interested. My favourite new technique I’ve learnt is sewing with interesting threads and wools, I also really liked creating pile fabrics. Below are some photographs of some of the samples I’ve been creating for my technical file.
Drawing is a very important part of my course and although it isnt my strongest subject area I’m constantly improving. I used to work basic (pencil to paper) but now I’m drawing with everything and I love trying new techniques like drawing with the wrong hand and continuous line drawing. I’ve become a fan of using a variety of papers and masking tape is my new best friend.
My first workshop was mixed media. I was looking forward to this because I was excited to work with new material and try something different. I’ve worked with wire previously so I was aware of what I could do with it and show off what I could already do ontop of learning even more skills. Before this workshop I hadnt heard of spot-welding, little did I know but I was about to end up being a spot-welding pro! I created a variety of samples not only spot-welding but manipulation skills like bending, twisting and flattening. I also experimented with mixing metals with fabrics. The result from this workshop was to create a box and on each side show various techniques. This task gave me chance to be as creative, unique and make my box as innovative as possible. Below are pictures of my final box and certain details which I’m most happy with.
On Wednesday 13th October my class travelled to Oxford for the day to visit two museums; Pitt Rivers & the Ashmolean.
As part of the introduction to my course, our task was to go out and explore Cardiff. This gave me chance to find out where all the interesting places are and get my bearings of Cardiff. Buddug, Katie and myself spent the day exploring Cardiff and in particular Cardiff Bay, see photographs for reference on where we visited..
Although I live in Cardiff now, I’m originally from Port Talbot (roughly 32 miles away) and shockingly I havent been to St Fagans before now. My Mother insists that she took me when I was younger but I dont remember. St Fagans is such an inspirational place! There is so much to see and do. I’ve been twice since living in Cardiff and I plan to make a lot more trips!
Below are some of the many photographs I took on my inspirational visit;
Wednesday 29th September 2010
My first lecture at university! I really enjoyed my first lecture, it was so interesting! My favourite part was the symbols and how the such simple drawings can mean so much and tell stories. The slideshow was eye-opening because Kuwait as a country is so simple humble, it shows just how many of us take life for granted. The Al Sadu weaves are so beautiful and I cant believe the size of most of them. I’d love to travel to Scotland to see these with my own eyes. Overall I’ve taken in so much from this lecture and simple shapes will never just be simple shapes again! Thanks Keireine!
To start my blog I thought I’d introduce myself and talk a little about my backround. I studied a National Diploma in Art & Design along with two A-Levels in Textiles and Ceramics. I’ve always been a really creative person and I’ve always wanted to study Textiles at degree level- so here I am, currently living in Cardiff studying BA (Hons) Textile Design for Fashion & Interiors at UWIC. The course has just kicked off so I’m currently meeting lots of new people, learning new techniques and getting used to this busy new lifestyle! I hope to keep you up to date with what I’ve learnt, what I’m enjoying and places I’ve visited!