Saturday, 22 February 2020


I drove down to Cirencester to meet Helen & Becca so that we could visit the Quilt Art Traces exhibition.  It is at the New Brewery Arts Centre.

I took photos of the pieces that most appealed to me.
Sea Fret by Fenella Davies

Close up of Sea Fret

A snippet of De Profundis by Eszter Bornemisza

Cry Me A River by Jette Clover

Breakdown by Sue Hotchkis

Traces of Memory by Christine Chester

The exhibition is on until March 15th so you still have time to visit.  Whilst you're there take the lift to the top floor and visit my friend Emily Northen.

Thanks for joining me today.

Tuesday, 18 February 2020

Abstract Calligraphy

What a fabulous day we spent with Simon Sonsino at Littleheath Barn.  He showed us various techniques through the day and after each demonstration it was our turn.  Here are my efforts.


Just have to work out how to reproduce the abstract calligraphy on fabric now.

Thanks for joining me today.

Saturday, 15 February 2020

Climbing a spiral staircase

Do you have that sort of déjà vu feeling that you've asked yourself the same questions before?  Hopefully as you ask yourself the question you have moved on a bit - much like climbing a spiral staircase - where you come to the same point but higher up.

I went to Committed to Cloth for the workshop Unlocking the Mystery of Creative Play.  Having done it twice before, I knew what to expect - sort of!  Lesley changes it up a bit every year depending on who is on the workshop.  But I knew there would be playing with paper and design as you have seen in my two previous posts.

But I wanted to spend some of the time investigating what I am going to do with my work in the future.  I've been working through the Head, Heart and Hands workbook and found that to be really useful.  The activities are about finding your creative voice.

This is one of the things I wanted to talk to Leslie about.  I was very fortunate to have a session with her every day, just to talk.  In between I did the paper play activites but mostly thought and journaled.  I answered some of the questions that Leslie asked, which often provoked questions of my own.  Here are a few of my answers.

Why do I go to so many workshops?
  • I enjoy learning new processes and techniques
  • The 'cross-pollination' of working with other people and their ideas

Why should I stop going to so many?
  • I don't spend time afterwards playing with what I 've learned or making the process my own
  • Procrastination: a workshop can be a 'worthwhile' way of putting off doing my own work.  Why is that?  Lack of self belief in my own work.
  • Money spent on workshops could be better spent on quality materials for my own work
  • Free up mental capacity for my own work

Leslie talked to the whole group about 'finding joy' in our creations and our creative process.  She and I talked about numbing and how Brene Brown says you can't numb one emotion on its own.  If you numb one emotion you numb them all.   I wrote about numbing in January 2014.

I journaled about joy - or the lack of it.  I journaled about the investment of time and money.  I asked myself questions and came to a point where I felt there was a choice:

Give up creative activities altogether.  Clear out all the media and fabric and find a new thing.
Become committed totally to what I do.  But do what I want to do - no courses, no exhibitions, no deadlines - just play.

I decided on the latter.

I made a list of what I need to do.
  • Narrow down techniques I like - make a list.
  • List the colours I like to work with.
  • List materials I like to work with - narrow it down.
  • Take responsibility for my own creativity.
  • Develop my curiosity.
  • Go on Artist's dates.
  • Value my work.
  • Play

As I have written this blog post, all of the above seems so easy, but at the time - those 5 days away - there was a lot of angst.  I knew things needed to change but I don't like change.  I like to think I'm open to change but in reality I can be quite resistant.

I'm still working through the questions and journaling.  I looked back through my creativity journal and found that I was asking these same questions in 2017.  Hence the spiral staircase analogy.  I'm climbing the staircase and believe that I am making progress and see the same point from a different perspective.
Climbing the stairs featured in the first photo.

Thanks for joining me today.