Gallery of past work

Monday, 10 February 2020

Rethinking things

I haven't always been a very regular blogger over the last year or so. Much got in the way - often textile and exhibition related. I was heavily committed and found as a result that I was too busy to sit down and find something (hopefully) interesting to say or indeed even to think too deeply about how I was approaching things.

Thankfully, I have fewer demands on my time this year with spring 2021 being the next deadline date for a significant amount of new work for either of the groups I belong to. This feels very liberating and is giving me time to evaluate where I am overall. First of all, I intend that my next body of work will not be quite so closely tied to my photographs, though I'm sure they will still play a big part in my process, especially at the start of new work.

I have begun here in security while I work out the way to proceed with two striking photographs taken in Sydney, Australia, a few years ago. The first of these, an extraordinary building, stayed in my mind long after I left Australia and I have been wanting to do work in relation to it for some time. In the second photo, those long thin vertical bands of light and dark and reflection mimic the surrounding buildings and hint at a possible approach to work.

As I start, I've beeen drawing shapes within the first building with black gel pen and Koh-i-noor paints. The latter produce lovely, vibrant colours which I find very satisfying. These small drawings are taken from the pages of my current sketch book.

They are part of my first, tentative steps forward (tentative is good - it allows for moving in all sorts of different directions!) on Brunel Broderers' new theme of Inhabit for 2021. This is a lovely broad theme, encouraging consideration of buildings, structure, culture, our effects on our environment - and much, much more that will no doubt come to mind as the year goes by. It will also allow me to continue to develop my exploration of pattern, structure and form in (this time) the urban landscape and to develop further towards abstraction.

There was definitely a lesson in last year for me. I think, as a result of my lack of time to consider things, I got stuck in a rut. This didn't make for growth in my work and my process nor, indeed, give an interesting variety of blog posts! As a result, I approached each new challenge in the same way. Hopefully, 2020 will be different ...


  1. Struck by your conclusion in the final paragraph. I think that is the lesson I learned as well when I stepped away from working on exhibit pieces. I'd felt for some time this rut you speak of, even though I tried some things to break out of it. Always the same, with impending deadlines, defaulting to a comfort zone or not really knowing where to go next. I'm still floundering a bit I think, but I like the feel of this space to do as I please.

    1. And actually, I had more to say, so here it is. You also remind me that I need to work in a sketchbook more as it relates to working up design ideas. The pages you have shared are very instructive and I can see how they are working to help you develop an idea.

    2. This was the first time I've really felt this need to push on into things in this way. Luckily, I think it affected my blogging and posting on Instagram more than it did the final work outcome. However, it has been a useful lesson for me and this less pressurised year i very welcome.

      Sketchbooks are certainly very important to me. They are where experimenting and then, from that, learning happens. And of course, I really enjoy the freedom and pleasure of it all. How lucky is that?

  2. AS always it will be good to follow your progress. I can see the attraction of the red flap building. xx

    1. This time, I intend to blog as I go along. There will certainly be plenty of experimenting which is hopeful!


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