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

Wednesday, 22 February 2017

Surface Treatment Workshop - week 3

a few weeks ago my sister and I decided to work our way through the prompts
covered in the book "The Surface Treatment Workshop"
and already we are on week 3 which explores using aluminium foil ...
the sort of foil most of us have in our kitchen drawer

most of the prompts include embossing patterns into the foil first
before experimenting with colouring the foil

for the embossing part of the exercise I mainly used stencils
and textured surfaces found in my studio such as corrugated card and blister packs

the samples below were embossed with a seedhead stencil I had
and then coloured with acrylic inks that I bought at Festival of Quilts

I only bought the three mixing colours of turquoise, magenta and yellow
and blended them on the foil to create these tones

the inks were quite runny so they don't work with all stencils
but they did sit quite nicely on this one which had enclosed patterns
below is another piece of foil textured with corrugated card, blister pack and leaf stencil

I applied black shoe polish to this one which achieved a lovely "vintage" tone as it dried

I rather like these tones and mixed patterns

in the sample below I embossed the foil with circles from a stencil
added a layer of pva glue, then, after the glue had dried I painted a seascape with acrylics

to help the drying process along I heated it with a heat gun which created tiny little texture bubbles
I noticed this was the pva glue bubbling and also the white acrylic, but not the blues

you can see the embossed circles coming through the paint

the close up detail below looks like seagulls and sea foam
(you have to use your imagination a little bit ...)

this is another sample below of the same process but without using the heat gun
and painting into the pva glue while it was still wet

the paint blended with the pva to create a feeling of movement in the seascape
(I definitely prefer this version)

this is the whole scene below ... a landscape

and a detail of the seascape with white sand beach, rolling waves and wintery sky

it's all I had time for this week as I also worked on covering my sketchbook
but I do have a couple more samples in progress which I hope to finish at the weekend

these are ... drawing and mark making on the reverse of the foil instead of embossing

and a 3D piece where I stuck some limpet shells down on a base
covered with aluminium foil to get the shell textures coming through
then I painted the shells white and just need to work more colours into the shells

I may share these at some point

in week 4 we are exploring mark making with masking tape

week 1 - stamping/printing
week 2 - stencils
week 3 - aluminium foil
week 4 - masking tape

my sister didn't enjoy using the foil this week but she did create a lovely original sample using
foil wrappers from stock cubes which she painted with acrylics and oil pastels

you might like to see ...

Sunday, 19 February 2017

colours of the season and the tides of the sea

a fab day on Friday visiting some of my favourite places locally ...

at Godrevy ... the light is always amazing

this gorgeous rugged coastline and beautiful white sand beach
(owned by The National Trust) is one of my most favourite places ever

for quite a while I just sat on the headland and took in the salty sea breeze

I want more of these peaceful moments this year

the colours of the season in the winter landscape are very calming ...

back in St. Ives
I popped in to see friend Sharon McSwiney's exhibition
at St. Ives Arts Club

"Colours of the Season"
11 - 17 February 2017

Sharon was exhibiting her gorgeous metallic wall hangings, pictures and jewellery
with her friend Alison Dupernex, a textile designer who creates beautiful knitwear

their work complements each other beautifully
and a lot of thought goes into ensuring their pieces reflect their chosen theme

"Colours of the Season"

these gorgeous seaweed pieces were my especial favourites
in particular the shapes, textures and colours in the patinas

Sharon offers workshops at her Garden Studio to make a wall hanging
like these or smaller pieces of jewellery / art cards
so I'd really like to try and do a workshop with her this year
(I've thrown a photo in here that I took the same day on Long Rock beach
the colours complement very well, I think)

below are some of Alison Dupernex's textiles
I adore the tones and textures

Alison's work picks out the colour palette I associate with the beach and the winter season
(my photo centre of pebbles taken the same day at Long Rock beach)

Alison has attached to her knitwear some metal charms made by Sharon

all of the work at the show was gorgeous and very inspiring
but sadly the exhibition is finished now

if you would like to see more of Sharon's and Alison's work you can visit their websites
and Sharon has a shop at The Drill Hall in St. Ives with a good selection of all that she produces
as well as her private Garden Studio where she offers one to one workshops

for another chance to see their work at St. Ives Arts Club
Sharon and Alison will be exhibiting again in October 2017

following the show, and some lunch at Porthmeor beach,
I headed over to Long Rock beach in search of more beach inspiration
(I'm still looking for interesting pebbles and tangles of seaweed / beach string)
to work with for the "Cornwall" theme for St. Ives Textiles

I'm spreading out my collections and sketchbook samples at home
trying to narrow down my focus a bit as I've been feeling
rather overwhelmed by the amount of inspiration all around me
Cornwall is a very large theme ... but I must decide very soon and knuckle down

meanwhile ...
I'm just enjoying time to walk on the winter beaches and breathe ...

St. Michael's Mount through seaweed

Sharon's lovely sketchbooks

colours of the season ... on a winter beach

lichen at Long Rock

St. Michael's Mount ... always visible on the horizon
and beautiful winter colours ...

finally ... here are my stencil prints from week 2 of The Surface Texture Workshop

following the prompts ...


layering newspaper and taped text and stencilling over the top
(will probably work more into this one before sticking in my sketchbook)

New York London Paris


combining colours that "pop"
layering stencil prints over newspaper and taped text
the "pop" is gold metallic paint, heated to create texture, then gilded


stencilling with gold leaf

might try cutting this one up


seaweed and mussel shells
printed using a hand made stencil with metallic paints heated and gilded
painting and filling in around the edges of the print

a negative taken from the earlier print ... on tissue paper


dragging a ruler across the wet print for effect

"mark making"

scribing with a tool in white paint before layering with more stencil prints


"texture and bling"

stencilling, burnishing with a spoon, then stencilling again with texture paste
enhancing with metallic paint then gilding for extra bling


soft watery metallics in silver and gold with extra "bling"
well that's it for today
thank you for visiting and for all your very kind comments

I will be posting The Surface Treatment Workshop each Wednesday from now on
with textiles, catch ups and general updates on Saturdays

with love ♥

Wednesday, 15 February 2017

a perfect afternoon

yesterday ...
a beautiful afternoon on the beach at Marazion

in search of pebbles, seaweed and bits of beach string

nature throws the colours together perfectly ...

and the seaweed has amazing colours and textures ...

my camera seems to pick up colours and details that are hard to see by eye

I find nature's tones so relaxing and pretty inspiring

I found the beach string I was after ...
I need it for one of the projects in The Surface Treatment Workshop

you will see in a few weeks time ...

on valentine's day my hubby found a heart shaped pebble for me ...

yes ... it was a perfect afternoon

St. Michael's Mount from the beach at Marazion

I'm almost there with my stencil samples for Week 2 of The Surface Treatment Workshop
but I just want to work into them a little bit more so will share in the next post

thanks to you all for following along and for all kind comments
hope you enjoyed a little taste of the beach today