Monday, 28 November 2016


For the past few months I have been dabbling with Gum Arabic transfer onto fabric together with the 
odd collagraph print and have been surprised at the quality
of the results I am achieving.
But what to do with these snippets?
As I am not a textile person... although I adore what can be achieved, I have been fumbling about
and learning new skills here and there.
Thanks to the effervescent Julia Jowett, I have popped a few hand sewn bouillon roses onto the piece to get a bit of texture in there.  
And there is always an excuse for the odd french knot.
I wanted to add a touch of shabby chic with these cloth shirt buttons.
But the biggest revelation has been the free machine embroidery introduced to me by Catherine Kingzett. She ran an inspiring workshop at the yard:ARTspace earlier this term.
Thank you Catherine for introducing me to dissolvable fabric, I am totally obsessed.
All this experimentation has turned into a cushion, yes a bit scratchy.

Now all you textile embroiderers and makers of gorgeous things in fabric and thread, would you like to know how to print onto velvet and muslin? I am running a Gum Arabic transfer workshop in May, check out for details.

Tuesday, 15 November 2016


Christmas has arrived at the yard:ARTspace this weekend with the first Create for Christmas workshop.
The tree is up, as are the fairy light, the crocheted snowflakes are out of the brown box, yes I found them easily this year!!
And to add an extra Christmas vibe, there are angels everywhere.
The workshop was fueled with special edition Christmas fingers. Like the tin?
With examples everywhere in 
sketch books, on fabric and feathers, this lovely group set 
to with Gum Arabic transfer, ink, 
wax, acrylic paint and bleach.
very individual work was created.
The Christmas twist was using glitter in the form of embossing powder to embellish finished pages.
What a glorious sight.
After 2 days of learning new processes and
being reminded of processes already in the back of our heads,
these beautiful books were made.
Some with very strong narratives.
Risks were taken with substrates.
And glitter was used in context.
The next mixed media workshop at will be a creative kick start for the new year on January 14-15, 2017, places are booking. The ideal Christmas present for the person who has everything...(tucked away in the art materials draw!!)

Tuesday, 8 November 2016


People rarely see me make a plate and never see me print one, so here it is, the struggle to make new work, I find it fascinating to see how artists put their work together, here is an insight into the technical issues I have been having over the past couple of weeks. 
I spent the summer playing with some different images.
Not just birds...I had an idea that I would like birds perched on statues, so spent
days drawing, drawing.
I plumped on an image I liked the idea of, in my head I knew I would change it as I went along, what I didn't know was that it would be so difficult to get right.  This collagraph plate is made from grey board, wood glue, skim and repair plaster and carborundum. On this plate the neck was all wrong.
But I quite liked the way the tones on the face printed.
So I made another plate, thinking that I would alter the drawing and make the composition tighter.
But too much glue and the shape of the face was all wrong. Now I am beginning to sound like something out of Goldilocks and the Three Bears because
the third plate was just right!
I proofed this collagraph yesterday and bingo...not perfect but certainly better.
I made some chine collee by printing gold ink onto tissue.
I inked the rook in Hawthorn dense black and the statue in brown black, the paper is Snowdon buff.
giving me an image I feel happier with. 
Rather than try to make this perfect I am moving on to another collagraph and will put into practice everything I have learnt from this one.
3 days drawing, 2 weeks plate making, 3 days printmaking...certainly not instant art.