Sunday, 20 March 2011

Not really a seed head

More a patch of sun bleached grasses blown in the wind. Every time I walk down the road I see these grasses, still standing despite a winter of ice, snow & strong winds. They're on the verge so I'll watch the new grass just push thru, the old ones dissapearing back into the ground.

Apart from the real thing there is so much inspiration to help me work out how to interpret the grasses. Altho this time the first image I looked at was mine from the printmaking class that I started at the beginning of the year. Our homework from the first class was to choose an image & draw it ready to cut out the following week. Well, panic set in & I didn't have months to procrastinate over which of the 50 thousand images I liked best. So I went into the garden & chose seed heads & these grasses.

Above is one 1/3 of the block I carved, the yellow ochre is the first color, (actually the second, the white is the first 'free' color) Then I would have carved some more out for the next color which would have been blue. Then I'd have finished with a thin line of black. This is called reduction printing... I think! If I ever invest in some oil based ink I'll finish them. Or when we restart the course. So, I was pleased with my first pull of my first propper lino cut. ;)

I was inspired by Angie Hughes while making squares (scroll down past the walk, check the top 2 rows) using scrim, open weave sacking then painting & stitching - I don't have her book Stitch, Cloth, Paper Stitch but I wish I did! Of course Jan Beany & Jean Littlejohn cover grasses in A Complete Guide to Creative Embroidery. They were using lines of masking fluid then paint then stitch mark making, lovely. I could have borrowed DH's masking  fluid but instead I got some recycled rich brown shiny fabric & finally got round to using the bleach that's been sitting under my desk for months & made marks representing grasses with a satay stick. You can just about see them.(forgot to say that I was inspired by Jackie at Stitchworks with her Highly Prized entry in the Sketchbook challenge, she gave a great tutorial, too) Then I machine & hand stitched. I had to add the teabag as it was, well, grass colored ;)

The second image is light sketching with a fine felt tip &  gold leaf on a ground of oil based printing inks (the bleach didn't show up here!) from the printing course. The tutor must have wonderd what on earth I was doing rushing about getting my fingers dirty taking 'prints' off plates before they got cleaned :0 Couldn't help myself; all that lovely ink!

                                                                A few simple sketches

 A small sample using 3 different strips of various grounds,
 grasses sketched & the 'leaves' cut out & backed with gold (chocolate wrapper ;). I enjoyed this so I made a bigger one for the studio below - 12cm x 21cm about 6" x 10" There are so many ways to do grasses, can't wait to do some more! day :)

& finally, ages ago, Ju North showed a pic of her porch so I thought I'd join in the game. I'm trying to show off the view, of course which makes the actual porch pretty dark....but you get the idea. The house walls aren't skew but the rug is ;)

A sight for sore eyes when I come down bleary eyed in the morning.

Edit: Linda over at Linda Stokes Textile Artist is having a giveaway promoting her wonderful new Thermofax Screenprinting service, shall I get one? But which design?!


Iz said...

What an inspiring view from your porch! And I love all the grasses-inspired work, especially the 6x10 piece at the end.

Jill said...

Your view is fabulous, I'm sure I would never do anything with a view like that - I can easily spend an hour watching grass grow in my patch. Love watching your grasses project - just goes to show, we don't have to look far to find inspiration, just to open our eyes.

Parabolic Muse said...

I keep commenting here, and my computer keeps going down because it keeps raining and if I don't get out of the house I'm going to throw my computer through something.

I can't remember the two comments I tried to leave. Suffice to say, I bet if you made something with your washer collection it would be FABBO!!

hoping this comment takes,

ju-north said...

I want your porch and the view that comes with it!! Your work is so inspiring - can't wait to see more. Have a great week!

Mail Art Dramas said...

very nice pieces, you have been busy.
I would post a pic of my porch but,,..but we had plumbing issues in my kitchen and some of my cupboards and other trash/wall boards are resting there at the monment. they need to move on to the burn pile but my husband has not had time to move them, they've been there a week! we have no neighbors so I'm the only one who cares.
xxx, jill

Anonymous said...

Really wonderful interpretations of grasses Emma. It's always hard to capture that free sense of movement. You did it remarkably well. Like your back porch view. xox Corrine

Beverley Baird said...

Love allthe pieces you have created! What a variety. Would love to take a lino printmaking course.
Thanks so much for stopping by. Great to be back altho the holiday was lovely!

Heloise said...

I can see you have enjoyed all these different processes. My favourite is the last, it is all the movement in it. That view is perfect. Mine at the moment is a building site for one new house.

Laura said...

Beautiful Emma, full of creativity and playful exploration!

Anonymous said...

These are wonderful, so much variety.

Lynda Howells said...

thanks for being so sweet on my blog. I left a message there for youx l have done quite a few silkpaintings and l am getting there!phewx thanks for caringxlynda

jackie said...

Pleased to have inspired. If you have not used a thermofax I would definately get one. They are good value as they can be used over and over; grasses or seedheads would be v. useful.
Thanks for your comments.

Linda Vincent said...

Lovely, inspiring pieces Emma. I especially like the last two.
And that Can't wait to see it .. :-)

Heavens2Betsy said...

Fabulous view. I'm having trouble tearing myself away from here. Penny