"I begin with an idea ... and then it becomes something else"
~ Picasso

Tuesday 2 April 2013

mish mash

the thing is ...
most of the time I have many projects on the go

but I do like to complete everything I start
even if, frustratingly, it's not as quickly as I'd like and
sometimes there may be no apparent semblance of order

things may appear to be a muddling mish mash
a collection or mixture of unrelated things; a hodgepodge
but this can be a very refreshing way of working ...


it's the way I work ...
and I'm sure many of you do too ...

quite often I have a specific train of thought going on
but one thing leads to another before the first thing has met fruition
and, before you know it, there's a big pile of UFO's
(unfinished objects)

 the only way to manage this way of working
is to accept that some projects serve their purpose at the time
and reach completion

and others are either best left to be revisited at a later time
or, perhaps, will never be finished ...
they may be cut up and used in a new project
 and this can be a very positive thing
... a way of connecting your work
especially if you work with recurring themes

acceptance is liberating

this happened to me recently on one of my Crow Days with Jo ...
 when we  met up for our usual monthly get together to "play"

we decided to have a go at making faux chenille samples
so I prepared my painted papers the night before
choosing to work with the colours in my photograph above
(my usual St.Ives/seaside colours)

 I used pages from my local paper - The St. Ives Times & Echo
in particular the art pages about
William Scott's exhibition at The Tate

as well as some pages from a daily tabloid and some bondaweb

 I coloured the pages so the text can still be read and enjoyed
and ironed some of the bondaweb onto the painted newspaper pages

 the painted papers were then mixed with layers of chiffons
on top of a base of stiff interfacing/pellon

and machine stitched in straight lines through the layers
then cut with a pair of scissors through all the layers
except for the interfacing base which holds it all together

 then I fluffed up the edges with a rough nail brush
to distress the chiffon fibres and reveal some of the text

although I really enjoyed playing with these samples
and was pleased when assorted St. Ives and sea related words
were serendipitously revealed ...

I can't, ultimately, see a purpose for this technique in my work
(that's just my own personal opinion)
so I'm not sure the exercise was wholly successful ...

and I came to this conclusion rather quickly
so I only stitched and cut up a small piece of faux chenille sample

you can see some good examples for end use
in Kim Thittichai's book "Layed Textiles"

so ... what to do with the rest of the layers? mmm ...

leaving the newspapers, chiffons and pellon in a random order
I folded them over and double stitched down the middle
to make little newspaper books

I only made two as my sewing machine decided to have "attitude"
and refused to stitch through the ironed on bondaweb
(something you may find of interest before you attempt this)

anyway ... when I opened them ... I was surprised at the
serendipity of them ... of the randomness of the papers and text ...
this pleased me very much
(and when I got home I began working into the pages)

 on my desk

preparing the base layers and beginning to decorate the pages
using pieces of fabric, scrim, lace and paper from my erosion bundle

the next stage is to embellish the pages with things I love
such as St. Ives related things, words I like and hand stitching, etc.

 this is how the front cover is looking ...

it will have a gorgeous blue mussel shell attached when it's finished
it's just placed there at the moment so that I can work on the pages

 now these I can see will have a purpose
one will be a mini journal filled with thoughts of St. Ives
the other will be a comments book for my show in November 2013
and I will share the pages later ... as I work into them

 anyway ... my point is that the faux chenille will always be a sample and will not progress to anything other than a sample which I will stick into the newspaper journal ... that leaves me with the newspaper journal ... an "as yet" unfinished project ... but an ongoing one ... as you know how long hand stitching takes ... and it will be revisited on an "as and when I get time" basis because I've got more pressing projects to complete first ... such as things for my shop, custom orders and tags ... so this is how it goes ...

you will be getting a mish mash of stuff from me ...

meanwhile ... back to our Crow Day
it was a Wednesday so it was time to photograph my jar

week 6 of the jar project
27th February 2013

[my jars for weeks 4 and 5 will be on Love Stitching Red]

I took my jar to Crow Day at Jo's studio at Krowji in Redruth

I used the mussel with the barnacles as my subject
and placed the jar on some of the painted bondaweb
through the glass it looked like a "watery" beach

and then I placed the jar on some of the painted pages
about the Tate exhibition ... love those distortions

William Scott and Peter Fraser

and then looking at the same page through the bottom of the glass

  mmm ... lovely colours and distortions and light

if you read down to the bottom ... thank you so much!
I  hope it may have inspired you a little to "play"

thank you always for visiting
and for reading my rambles ♥


Vanilla said...

This is a very refreshing post.
I too, work on many ideas and ispirations all the time and I get frustrated because I have many unfinished projects.
Good to know that I'm not the only one working this way.
By the way, I thought of displaying on the wall all the started projects and maybe incorporate them in new things to make.

Lynn Holland said...

Ditto to all you said about to many things at once.
What an exhilarating read Carolyn, I'm bookmarking it to come back to as you have filled me with inspiration . Thank you.
So glad you are blogging again.
Lynn xxx

K J D said...

You always inspire me Carolyn!

Great post!!!!

Karen x

Carol Rigby said...

Oh Carolyn, you create such lovely things. The books and the colours are beautiful.The images just make me want to be back in St.Ives were I spent a lovely sunny day last summer.

Zue said...

Love your little book. I often make books out of scraps and I always fall in love with them

Debbie said...

I love this post and every image, you open up so many ideas. Does Layered textiles have full instructions on how to do these. I am really a tapestry weaver but following blogs has opened up so many other avenues to explore.

Anonymous said...

The book is just yummy, so many raggedy wonderful ideas! I love the edges views too...xox

Lynette (NZ) said...

Loving seeing progress on your beautiful book. I really like look of the bondaweb on the painted newspaper. Always inspired by your posts


Hello Carolyn, Lovely post and most beautiful images. Hugs Judy

Unknown said...

I love to find people who work on several projects at once. I often find that a project needs to sit and brew for while before being completed or used in another way or altered in some respect.

TwinkleToes2day said...

OOh, what delicious books & pages Carolyn. So much inspiration and eye candy to feast on in this post.
I am just venturing into the world of art journalling and book making, but am hand sewing them as I don't have a machine for that. Its so exciting and liberating. And I just unwrapped my first erosion bundle on Sunday after it was seven months outside. I got some nice rusty material and pins & ribbon from it.
I don't know anyone who isn't working on more than one thing at once. I used to think I wouldn't do that, when I only crocheted, but now when inspiration strikes, there's no choice in my opinion, haha.
Take care; ttfn :0) Mo x

Beverley said...

Thank you for being so generous and sharing. Might have a go myself. Love all your photography - passed your blog to my niece who not yet 16 but who will study photography in Sept. Lovely to read on the blog and see you on Facebook.

Linda Vincent said...

Love this mish mash (as you put it 😉)......a beautiful post; full of inspiration. I shall come back to it again and have a try at something......

blandina said...

Amazing, I have been reading you for a while, I love your kind of creativity, very inspiring.

Magpie's Mumblings said...

Well, I learned something just now - I had absolutely NO clue that you could even do the chenille technique with paper. Interesting, but like you, I don't know that I would ever have a use for it. Love the jar photos - the colours are sublime. (btw - I'm sure I'm not the only one who spends the entire time I'm at your blog moving my curser around so I can see your flying birds!!)

stephanie said...

love the textures, i have the same book by Kim but i havent made anything directly from the book, just referenced it to my own work at uni. the jar project sounds very interesting too :)

Julie said...

I've just been re-reading your blog after seeing you today and must have missed this one. Isn't it amazing how different things look through the jar? I love the distortion and colours of the paper thro the jar. Makes it feel like looking through water. Xx

Cindi said...

How refreshing to hear that your process isn't orderly, prescribed, complete. I like taking past projects from the pile, resurrecting them, dissecting them, recombining them to see what they become. Sometimes. . . a masterpiece! Others. . . well, inspiration for the next time. :-)

Lovely images and creations.