Sunday, 16 June 2019

Recent Art Adventures

It kind of makes sense that as an Art teacher I enjoy Artmaking. This is true, although I don't often spend as much time creating as I would like. It takes a while to get all my materials out and set up, so I have to plan to spend a whole day making if I'm doing this at home and I take up A. Lot. Of. Space. when I'm working. My sewing, on the other hand, is usually confined to a much smaller area, unless I'm cutting out and therefore is easier to pick up and do a bit at a time. so I always take opportunities to attend workshops when I can.

Last week I have been fortunate to attend some CPD at The Northern School of Art at Hartlepool (formerly known as Cleveland College of Art & Design). It was a bit of a trek from school, but well worth it and it was inspiring to see the degree shows at the same time.

The CPD was focussed on printmaking with found objects. The instructor was Helen from Northern Print and she went over a range of different printing processes and how we could achieve effective results in the classroom, with or without a press.

As often happens I found myself drawn to the monotype processes. I don't know if it more to do with the painterly aspects of this type of printing or the immediacy and unpredictability of the technique that I like. I played with the layering of textures and shapes, using both hand printing and the press to achieve different results.

What was new to me was using a printing medium for using with acrylic paint. I was pleasantly surprised how long the paint stayed open with the medium added. I think I will buy some to use with my Gelli plate at home as I have found the fast acrylic drying time limiting when working with the Gelli plate. When I make monoprints at home I usually use oil-based ink, which I have grown to love but it can take a long time for the inks to dry and then there is the cleaning up!

I am constantly drawn to printmaking and would love to pursue this further, especially textile printing methods.

On Saturday we also had our monthly crafternoon and I decided to start a painting. So I took along some paints and some design ideas I've been working on and began to create the underpainting. I go from excited to bored very quickly and I'm starting to realise that I like my paintings to have textural qualities and at the moment this work is far too flat and the colours and layout are not quite right. Over the coming weeks, I will be adding to this to start to bring it to life. I really do like to work with mixed media and would love to bring some stitch into this work at some point. Watch this space!

It's always amazing to see how my preferences and ways of working change and develop over time. I wonder where this will go next?

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