Sunday, 26 July 2009

Finished commissions and the sound of the sea, 50 times over.

The two commission pieces are finished. All wrapped up and waiting to be collected, all very exciting. It is always a joy and relief when a piece is finished, a joy that the piece is good and one is pleased with it, knowing in ones heart that you have done your jolly best and been honest with yourself, and a relief that it came out well, without the embroidery being damaged whilst sewing it. (sometimes they split with the heavy intense stitching, there is nothing you can do to save the piece, all that hard work ruined-heartbreaking).

I have a couple more commission pieces to do drawings for first, for the clients to see, before I begin to make the embroidery pieces, but I need to make some pieces for myself first. I am so longing to finish the piece I started before I went away on holiday, I feel so out of touch with it, its so empty with only the black stitch upon the fabric, this week I know I will get it finished and finally be able to work out the story in the piece, of course I'm not going to tell anyone whats it all about, I shall leave that to the viewer to decide.

Today I have been at Southampton University part of "The Big Outdoors" with my colleague Alex Hoare part of a music and arts workshop day, we were making rain makers, although a lot of the time Alex and I said it was in fact the sound of the sea! which the children enjoyed making very much, lots of tissue paper and glue-heaven! we reckon we worked with about 50 children throughout the day, so not bad. I must admit I was thankful for a cup of tea when I got in and a sit down. Then the real rain started outside again, had we encouraged it with our 50 rain makers?

Friday, 17 July 2009

On Friday I went to London and delivered my book to A&C Black Ltd. I can't believe that I have handed over my manuscript and it now lies in their capable and experience hands. I now have a bit of time to play with until it is returned to me with changes and checks. I celebrated with a trip to Maison Bertaux - 28 Greek Street Soho where I met my old college friend Graham Hollick for coffee and the most wonderful cake. (The window of the cafe is not only a visual feast but a mouth watering one as well, resistance is futile) After stuffing our faces and catching up on news, events and trips of holidays and working holidays, Graham is off again to India for more work on his collection of clothes and accessories for the home, working with a woman's co-operative. Graham is not only a talented designer, fantastic cook but also a modest and kind soul who works with the most fabulously talented individuals and groups. I wish I could be more like him.

After waving goodbye to my friend I went to Contemporary Applied Arts to deliver new work and collect old work. A fantastic gallery which I am really delighted to have my work shown in. It's in Percy Street, very near to Tottenham Court Road and well worth a visit.

Then I decided that after having my apatite whetted with all the wonderful pieces in CAA I need to see more and went along to the British Museum which is just a hop, skip and a jump away. I am so glad I went. I saw clothes made and worn by the indigenous people of Northern America. Oh what fantastic garments they were too. A Parker made from seal intestine, the 'fabric' looked like silk, it was embellished with beautiful hand embroidery, made to wear whilst collecting berries. I have new ideas for new pieces and am very excited.

This week I am finishing off a big commission piece for a family, then making a small cat commission, and then if there is any time left I am going to continue in finishing the piece I started before my holiday.

Thursday, 9 July 2009

Filming for television

last Monday I was filmed for a Stitching programme which is due to be shown later in the autumn. I was so nervous on my drive to the filming, I did a one stage think that I had better pull over as I thought that I would be sick due to my nerves. I didn't and I was fine.
The organiser, director and film crew were all very kind, reassuring and gentle. As I was being filmed I could feel my pounding heart echoing through my words, but I think I got away with it and only my words came out.
I have no idea how I came across or what I said, or how I looked as i stitched away, it was noted that I was very enthusiastic when talking- so we will have to wait and see. Now a few days later I can say I enjoyed it, or rather the memory of it! I was so, so tired at the end of the day, was that all the hard work and emotion of my performance? or my mum waking me up at 6am to tell me I did not need to get up until 6.30?

I am back from my holidays! I had a wonderful time. We camped in mid wales and them moved down to the coast, lots of wonderful walks, food, laughing, sunshine and showers.
My visit to Cowslip Workshops was great, the lovely students were very inspiring and produced fabulous pieces of embroidery. Now I am back in the studio and back to work with a mound of pressing things to do and a collection to start for Origin.