an artists' view

an artists' view

Sunday, 24 November 2013


This is a strange photo. You might not think it, looking at it; it's a pretty straightforward photo of the sky and clouds. Nowt special.
But for the fact that I have no memory of taking it; the mobile phone took the photo itself! Very weird!
Meantime, out of the world of spookiness, I've been stitching on Berenice's Brother (which always makes me laugh like a drain!) and creating wee xmas decorations for the craft stall I'm having at the start of December. I'm also making some as presents; Shannon asked me to make one for her niece, Josie, who is only a baby...Josie's first xmas! So I've done that.
And I've been invited to exhibit some work at Harry's Bar for the Artwalk next week. I've dropped a couple of pieces off; they can then choose which they want to hang. It's the first time I've exhibited anything since November 2012. Things have been....well, complicated. I've not painted since last September. And partly that was because I was concentrating on completing my City & Guilds course in Textiles. And partly realising that I haven't got the resources to set about painting just yet. My painting mojo has gone away for awhile. But she'll return. I just have to give myself time. So this tiny project of fabric xmas decorations is fine. It's about all I can manage at present. One day at a time; one stitich at a time.

Friday, 22 November 2013

Silkstone Church

The massive marble carving of Sir Thomas Wentworth. Carved from Carrera marble; made famous by da Vinci and Michaelangelo, as well as Barbara Hepworth.  Sir Thomas died in 1675; and lived at Bretton Hall, where I was a student in the 1980's. 
The carving is pretty amazing; here's a griffin/eagle at the foot of Sir Thomas's wife, Grace, who became a Countess after his death. Her carving is slightly higher than his, because of her higher status. She died in 1698.
 Wings; feathers; symbols of flight. Depicted in the element of marble.
More feathers; on the hat of Sir Thomas.

Sunday, 17 November 2013

stitching & Klee

As I've got more sorted with the decorating, I've managed to create enough space in the spare room to get out the sewing machine, kindly lent to me by Berenice. So I've been playing with it, trying out some different stitches. My old workhorse machine, from mum, only does plain running stitch, so using Bea's Brother (?) is quite a step forward. Mindst you, coming to terms with the fiddly technology of 'lower bobbins'....what I refer to as the 'shuttle' with mum's machine! quite daunting. After trying to change the thread on the 'lower bobbin' and failing dramatically, I had to go and have a cuppa and some food. Upon my return, all went well!
I've been making some xmas decorations for a craft stall I'm having in early December.
Klee 'Clarification' 1932; Oil on canvas; 70.5 x 96.2
Another loan, from Helen, is the Paul Klee catalogue from the current Tate exhibition. I was struck by this painting, the way the marks are like stitches. Below is a close-up to show the effect more clearly. The image in the catalogue isn't as pink as shown above; I was photographing in less light than was appropriate. 
I'm not a massive Klee fan. But his story is a powerful one. His involvement with the Bauhaus, and leaving Germany as the Nazi's took power and changed the cultural agenda. He is part of world history, as well as art history. 
And the news has just told us that Doris Lessing has died.
Weird co-incidence; as I was in the loft clearing stuff away last week, I went through my boxes of books to get out my ancient copy of 'The Golden Notebook', thinking I'd like to re-read it. And Pauline lent me her copy of 'The Grass is Singing', which is on my pile to read. Again, a re-reading. And usually I'm not one who goes back to books these days, feeling that time isn't on my side to get through all the books I want to read! Exceptions are made, occasionally. And Lessing was an exceptional writer. Perhaps I'll open those pages tonight?

Saturday, 16 November 2013


 Some rainy weather brought jewels to my path. Diamonds on a fallen leaf. 
A couple of weeks ago, Pauline and I took Minnie, her friend's dog, a walk round the grounds of Nostell Priory. We tired all of us out, and finished with coffee and cakes in their caff. Round the edge of the lake we saw this tree....I saw a face (two faces actually! Kissing! In public!) only later when scrolling through the fotos on my fone.
We'd had some blustery winds earlier, and the leaves were starting to come off the trees. This copper collection, gathered in the water, set off against the green rushes.
And Evening Primrose! Still flowering in (then) October! Reminder of sun gone; and sun to return. Some day.
I don't know much about the growing season of Evening Primrose, so maybe they are usually found in flower in October? They seemed fragile to me, in that cold October daylight.

Sunday, 10 November 2013

sewing box


Saturday, 2 November 2013

compost dyeing; avocado

The whole piece of silk; wrapped around the stone of the avocado, then placed inside the 2 halves of the skin and tied, then popped into the compost bin this summer. 
 Detail of the piece of silk that was closest to the composting material.
Close up of the silk that was wrapped furthest inside the avocado skin. Who would've thought I'd get such lovely delicate shades of yellow! The silk is still wet, from the rinsing, and has dried a bit paler.  A lovely surprise. The summer has been very hot and sunny, so the compost has been particularly active. I think I'd like to fold and tie up some fabric, and place it into the compost just as it is, to see what patterns emerge. Will consider that for next summer.
Meantime; myself, brother-in-law and niece have been to St Helen's church to the service for All Soul's Day, in remembrance of those who have died. I called up at the cemetery after, to put some flowers on the grave where mum's ashes are. It's a wild and wuthering day; windy, wet, and cold. Winter is a-coming in.

Friday, 1 November 2013


'October it has gone and left me with a song'
Sandy Denny

A suitable ale, for the time of year.
Happy Samhain.
Too much of the magic brew, results in the effects below!

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...