Wednesday, 21 November 2018

Mark Making with Modern Eccentrics

I recently went on a Mark Making workshop at Cass Art in London run by Ross Belton of Modern Eccentrics.  Ross is an artist who experiments with natural processes and the idea of place.  Natural dyes, found objects and recycled materials are all part of Ross's work.  His aims are a sustainable practice with a minimised artistic footprint and a desire to expose the viewer to works of transient beauty.

Ross Belton

We were exploring mark making using natural inks and handmade brushes...

Lots of materials

Ross showed us how to make our own brushes with the materials and equipment he had brought along.  We could also use the magnificent brushes that he had made.


These are the brushes that I made...

My Brushes

Ross told us all about natural inks and how to prepare them and provided 3 different sorts for us to use with our handmade brushes.

Oak Gall, Avocado Stone and Walnut Hull Inks

The oak gall ink was the darkest - almost black.  The walnut hull ink was brown and the ink made from avocado stone a pinky-brown colour.

Walnut Hull (brownish), Oak Gall (blackish) & Avocado Stone (pinkish) Ink Marks

We experimented with the different inks and the brushes to create our marks...

My Mark Making

More of My Marks

Thanks, Ross - it was a really interesting session! 

The venue - Cass Art - has a regular workshop programme and an amazing selection of art equipment.

Ross's work can be seen at the Knitting & Stitching Show in Harrogate later this week as part of the Studio 21 Colour Notes exhibition and then from 27 November until the end of December at Farfield Mill in Sedburgh.

Monday, 5 November 2018

Craft-y-Crawl - Sunday 18 November 2018

Hippystitch, By Helen, What's To Be Done With Her & Lucy Monkman Illustration

Come and join us on Sunday 18 November 2018 from noon to 4pm for Planet South Bank's Craft-y-Crawl.  Tour round the South Bank area of York where local artists and makers will be displaying their work.

At 33 Wentwork Road, York, YO24 1DG you will find, as well as tea, cake and mince pies, some new work from me including...

Bird Brooches
Wooden Button Brooches

Liberty Print Fabric Necklaces
Colourful Button Brooches

Lucy Monkman will also be there with her colourful and contemporary cards, stationery & prints...

Lucy Monkman Illustration

and this year Lucy also has her Home Sweet Home mugs...

What's To Be Done With Her will have lovely ladies tunic dresses, girls' dresses and baby knits...

What's To Be Done With Her

And By Helen will have her beautiful flowers made from yarn and fabric...

By Helen

And next door at 35, Wentworth Road you'll find Sue Dennis & Ruth Merriman with their cards and handpainted wooden tiles.

Do call in we'd love to see you!

A map showing all those taking part is available here and a full list of participants here

Friday, 2 November 2018

V&A Dundee - Ocean Liners: Speed & Style & the Scottish Design Galleries

V&A Dundee - Designed by Kengo Kuma

As a long time fan of Dundee and a regular visitor, I have been impatiently waiting for the new V&A to be finished. It opened in September this year and finally I have managed to visit.  Designed by Japanese architect, Kengo Kuma, it stands on the edge of the River Tay next to RRS Discovery (which launched in 1901 and took Scott and Shackleton to the Antarctic and is also worth a visit).

RRS Discovery & V&A Dundee
V&A Dundee

Inside V&A Dundee

View over the River Tay

Until 24 February 2019, the Ocean Liners: Speed & Style Exhibition is showing.  This explores the design of ocean liners from their architecture, engineering, & promotion to their interiors and life on board.  Here are a few pics to tempt you...

Six panels representing the Normandie - Gaston Suisse

Items from the France
Plating Model for the Queen Elizabeth - John Brown & Co Clydebank
Sign for the Cunard Tourist Office - Kay of Austria

Deck Chair from the Titanic

Evening Wear

And of course if you had all that evening wear you would certainly be needing one of these...

Desk Trunk - Louis Vuitton

Neptune Chair used on the Orsova

Design for Musicians Uniforms on the Canberra - Hugh Casson

Furnishing Fabric for the Orcades - Marion Dorn & Edward Bawden
Le Vieux Port - Christopher Richard Wynne Nevinson

It's a fascinating exhibition and very varied so there's bound to be something to interest you.  

Also on show are the Scottish Design Galleries with around 300 pieces exploring the landscape of Scottish design from past to present...

Model Ship

Banner for the British Association for the Advancement of Science - Jessie Newbery and Ann Macbeth, Glasgow School of Art

Bash Street Kids Artwork - The Beano

Cycling Skinsuit - Endura

Orkney Chair - David Kirkness

and of course The Oak Room from Miss Cranston's Tea Rooms in Glasgow designed by Charles Rennie Mackintosh...

The Oak Room - Charles Rennie Mackintosh

If you've never been to Dundee, now's a good time to go!

Sunday, 14 October 2018

White Poppies for a Peaceful Future

White Poppies at the Quaker Meeting House, Friargate, York

You may remember back in 2015, as part of the events to commemorate the First World War 100 years on, the local community, Deborah New, & I put up an installation in Rowntree Park to encourage both thoughts of remembrance (red poppies) and peace (white poppies) as remembering those who died or suffered through war whilst hoping for peace is an intrinsic part of Rowntree Park’s existence. More about that project here.

Rowntree Park Yarnstorm Installation

After the event the white poppies were given to the Friargate Quaker Meeting and the red poppies to the York Branch of the British Legion to use in ways they considered appropriate.  So, it was great to hear from the Friargate Meeting that those white poppies were on display promoting their events as part of the "York Remembers" season marking the centenary of the end of WW1 in 1918.  These events look beyond the history and consider a more peaceful future for the world...

Conference & Workshops to Consider a More Peaceful Future

A White Poppy for Peace Made of Many Poppies

Looking for alternative ways to resolve conflict

Big White Poppy

The first event has already taken place but the second event is on Saturday 17 November 2018 and is a day of workshops to introduce skills for practical peace making, conflict resolution and non-violent communication.  If you'd like to get involved, details are given below...

Programme for the Friargate Meeting House Events

I think we'd all appreciate a more peaceful world.

Sunday, 7 October 2018

Faux Applique with Joanna O'Neill

Joanna O'Neill - Willow & Rowan

Joanna O'Neill recently held a workshop for the City of York Embroiderers' Guild on Faux Applique.  She brought lots of her beautiful work to inspire us...

Joanna O'Neill - Protection, Healing & Strength

Joanna O'Neill - Dragon Tree (part), Leaves & Lost in a Quilter's Garden

Then, equipped with Markal Paintstiks, toothbrushes and stencils created out of freezer paper (made either from Joanna's designs or our own), we experimented with light and dark fabrics to produce our faux applique designs...

Markal Paintstiks
My faux applique designs

We put these to one side to thoroughly dry as this would take a few days.  Next, Joanna showed us her samples that had been hand or machine stitched in various ways to complete the faux applique effect.  Then, working on some samples that Joanna had previously prepared for us we stitched to create our own samples.

Joanna O'Neill - Faux Applique Samples

My stitched sample...

It was a very effective technique...

Other people's samples

Thank you, Joanna.