Following on from a cold and snowy four days at the Birmingham NEC last weekend, the group are now busy getting their work together for our Hanger Farm exhibition which starts next week. As a taster of what to expect, here is a piece of work from Nicky Blake taken at the recent ICHF show.
Captivated by the outstanding beauty of the Solent coastline and ancient woodlands of the New Forest, Nicky is constantly thrilled and challenged to create Art that reflects her passion for our natural world.
Since completing the Foundation Degree in Stitched Textiles in 2012, Nicky is now studying for a Diploma in Stained Glass and Fusing Glass Techniques at the Creative Glass Guild in Bristol.
Day 2 of the ICHF is now over but with two more days left to go, there is plenty of time left for you to come and visit us at Stand N18. Here is a taster of what to expect.
We are very excited to be exhibiting at Hanger Farm during April. This arts centre is based in Totton in Southampton within a unique Grade II listed 18th century converted barn and is Totton College’s performing arts facility and professional community arts venue.
“To encapsulate the idea of moving on from the graduate show, the underlying concept of this series of work is growth and the generation of new ideas. The machine embroidery is based on personal designs created with graphics software and translated into unique pieces in digital stitch, often with added hand embroidery and embellishment.” Elizabeth Randall
“After I graduated, I knew I wanted to move away from the mixed media work I did for my degree show, and back to my first love, hand stitch. I played around with several ideas, but I had no clear sense of direction, and nothing really spoke to me. After 4 years of City and Guilds and 3 years of the degree, when I was working to deadlines, making pieces and using techniques more or less prescribed by the course, I didn’t know what I wanted to do.
I came across an on-line course, ‘An Embroiderer’s Ledger’ by Karen Ruane, and without really knowing what I was letting myself in for, I signed up for it. It was an eye opener.
Karen showed us how to move from an image which inspired us to our own individual work, through drawing, painting, stitch and collage. In the process, which is great fun, you produce a ledger which is a thing of beauty in its own right, and an endless source of inspiration.
By this stage I was beginning to think about ‘Moving On’, our display at the NEC. I had been taking photos of traffic with the idea of using them in some way, but using Karen’s techniques on a manipulated photo of cars produced a motif of repeated arrowheads. This image had a definite sense of direction, but arrows can go in all directions, just like my ideas. I decided to make a book which reflected the journey from my mixed media work, through chaos, to some sort of resolution. I chose a piece of clashing hand-dyed fabric for the backing and set to work, using colours found in the fabric.
Part way through, I was playing around with a photo of the mixed media page, ran it through an iPad app called Decim8 – and the arrows popped up again from nowhere. It was obviously meant to be!”
Since completing her Foundation Degree, Sue Fish has been exploring street maps for inspiration ~ particularly medieval street patterns within walled towns such as Chichester in Sussex, and Mdina in Malta. She enlarges the street map and develops the pattern with free machine embroidery.
Sue is still attending Eastleigh College for Contemporary Textile workshops and Red Hot Press in Southampton for printing sessions.