Thinking about blue ukulele

Probably taking most inspiration from this painting called Mandora by Georges Braque Viewed 2 June 2019

It shows the fragmenting and how I might be able to delineate the ukulele body with shading. It also has line which I plan to add over the top of the patches in stitch.I’m also thinking of adding labelling of ukulele parts. Sort of a nod to another modern art movement constructivism. And of course I am referencing cubism by making the quilt out of patches that are constituted of different views of the ukulele in cyanotype. So I’ll do photograms of different views and compile to make a larger than life ukulele. And the views are differing in another sense too in that they are photograms.


Here is the final quilt that I sent off to the Modern Quilt show

Fragments of Calm

Carolyn and I are doing a project we hope to exhibit later in the year. It’s about the calming effects of sewing and externalising and stitching down our multitude of anxieties. I had meant to document it earlier but I’ll do it now instead.

April 1

April 2

April 3

April 4

April 5

April 6

April 7

April 8

April 9

April 10

And that is the first ten days 😀

New Beginnings

I’ve been struggling to push all the OCA stuff down now that I have dropped out of that and plan to continue to use my domain name to put in my own personal research and work plans.

I’ve completed my BFA last year and this year am just trying to enter a bunch of exhibitions, mostly quilting, but also others, with a view to having ongoing goals this year. Then next year I hope to do honours, because I really miss the place and the people and want to continue to pursue an art focus into my golden years 🙂

Project three, Experimenting and taking risks

I’d like to think I’ve already done lots of experimenting, because I claim that as my thing, but in this project I will try and push it to extremes even for me. I’m excited to get started.

Lying awake last night when I should have been sleeping before work thinking about experimenting I could do:

-Very thick yarn with central white core and cloud of blue thread. Bulky enough that it could be displayed on its own. Maybe it could be arranged in a triangle like a shell. Maybe needle felted to turn back into a flat work

-nest of shredded fabric held together with stitch. Not too adventurous but maybe I’ll try it unbacked so it has light through.

-green rug pulled stitching thread and yarn.

-heavily worked and built up surface to look rusted. Maybe rust stained and then work the turtle surface around that

– manipulate fabric with heat

– resist lines crackle on cyanotype. Maybe I can create these simply by crushing the fabric before exposure. Layered cyanotype some sort of glue resist or wax resist

– hone in on super detail of one of the drawings

-build up imagery and texture with multiple layers of organza

– make cyanotype transparencies that could be layered and also allow repetition for more cyanotypes😀

Thread tangle substrate

The first of my experimental textiles. This is a substrate made from a crocheted thread tangle with the addition of further tangle stitching. It’s only very small because it took ages and I’m not sure this is the most effective way of achieving this sort of substrate. I have painted it with paint and textile medium and this keeps it together a bit and more like 2d substrate to work on.

Thread as substrate and fabric as thread

Here I have used stone paper as a stabiliser but then tried to build up a surface with thread. As this is just a tester I haven’t taken it as far as it could go. Then I’ve use torn fabric as my thread for stitching. Same sort of thing could be done on water soluble vilene to make it an entirely thread substrate.

Yarn as fabric

Here I have taken the tangle thread to a further extreme by repeatedly sewing sock wool over water soluble vilene and then washing away the vilene. This has produced quite a stable complex fabric that is easy to stitch into. More subtle colouring of the wool would be better so it was more about texture and less colour contrast.

Next I am looking at distressing fabric with the use of repeated cyanotype exposure, bleaching with washing powder, rusting and toning with tannins.

Photo here

Stitch will also be added in an attempt to reference the turtles back drawing.

Project Two Building a response

Colour palette

Can’t use the internet at present but reflecting on my drawings and their original source materials from the natural environment of Heron Island, I think I am going with:

Sky blue

Teal blue


Muted pink/orange


Darker brown

Green blue and brown will be the predominant with pinky orange as highlight.

The above is a starting point. I find that the CMYK numbers help me get proportions right for mixing colours or dyeing.

I don’t think the inks I have with me are true primaries, especially the red but we’ll see how I go creating some chips later.

This little turtle was found struggling towards the water on the beach. Sadly a seagull took him. I looked the colour palette because I was attracted to the blue gray and this colour palette makes me think of dulling down the palette for this collection a bit.

Inspired by an artist

Sue Hotchkis

I’ll have to wait until I’m back with internet access to include images and more information but I love the textural and colour elements of Sue’s work and I think it relates well to the direction I seem to be heading for this assignment. She includes lots of fine detail which is very effective and something I feel is often lacking in my work. I tend to rush the work and lose patience with the effort required to create the sort of complex work that I first envision. Viewed 21 June 2018 Viewed 21 June 2018

Susan works with an aesthetic of decay and the imperfect and is influenced by the Japanese wabi Sabi aesthetic. She is interested in the interaction between the natural and man made and how they both change each other. She also uses text in some of her work, which is something I have also been experimenting with.

I have also been working with degradation and rusting and enjoy the serendipity of results when some of the result is left up to the elements.

Betty Busby

This quilt is from a gallery on Betty’s website called macro.

It reflects the features of a macro photo. Lots of detail looked at closely to effectively abstract the imagery but it still retains a familiarity that is recognisable. Viewed 21 June 2018

I would like to incorporate some of these elements of semi abstracted imagery sourced from close detail of natural or unnatural objects.

Sue Reno

Uses cyanotype and moisture, calling it wet cyanotype. Like my starfish cyanotype. Then she makes art quilts. Need to research and write her up.

Lisa Walton

Australian quilt artist.

Here she has used traditional appliqué over traditional patchwork to wonderful effect. Something I would like to try. Viewed 10 July 2018

Reading the above I can see that this is not appliqué but instead is quilted then painted. I saw this in the work of Glad Howard at the Tasmanian art quilt prize and am also interested in incorporating that. I image that quilt lines would contain paint to some extent and maybe even contain thin dye. Am going to try soon.

Ann Johnston

Textile artist that works in quilts. Seems to focus on colour, texture and abstract pattern to create evocative works.

Balance 30: In Between

33” x 23”

Iron stained silk, whole cloth, machine and hand stitched Viewed 10 July 2018

Surface manipulation, stitch and yarn concepts

Preliminary ideas –

1. Grid creasing paper to create the sort of lit grid of the play of light over water ripples that I fairly unsuccessfully tried to draw. Maybe I could cut the tops off the creases to allow more light through. Creases could also be held in place with stitch.

2. Nest shape molded in paper with the use of glue and then fine loose stitching to outline

3. Coral shape drawing cut out as a silhouette and then cut into pieces and reassembled like a mosaic with spaces in between like the cell looking drawings.

4. Create translucent paper with textile medium and gentle colour

5. Shiny paper with Elmer’s school glue.

Moving on to some textile stitch and yarn explorations. Here I have cut silhouettes from paper and reconstituted using Joomchi. Then have stitched on silhouette yarn. This is referencing the layering of the silk organza cyanotype drawing and their silhouettes.

Sock wool yarn used to create a hairy green yarn and a paper manipulation also referencing my seaweed drawing.

I seem to have lost the hours of work I put in putting up all my textile and yarn concepts. OMG I can’t write all that again now. I’ll just put up all the photos and let them speak for themselves at the moment.

If I get time or motivation I’ll go back and write up all these photos like I did the other day but in the meantime I’ll just curse and move on I think.