New experiments in working methods

Having being slowed down over the last few days by some sort of viral thing, I’ve decided to treat it as a timely reminder that I had too much to do. I have started another book, images have been posted etc, but I certainly wasn’t enjoying doing it. A daedline can be a good thing but after many years of that sort of thing perhaps it’s time to try a different approach. So, I’ve withdrawn it from the show, and that’s a relief, and of course now I’m happy to be doing it again. I had given myself a ridiculously short time to develop and make what is in fact a complex project, that needs much more thought and planning than I could have managed. In short a rare and lovely [potentially] free week was scuppered by over work and unwellness. I have decided to sit down to eat lunch and to go for a daily walk, things which had gone from life. I may introduce even more thrilling things.

Interestingly there was a timely article in the Guardian the very day I was in bed and able to read it properly, which was entitled “limiting the hours worked increases output”. So that’s my experiment.

I love artists’ books and think this is the way my art will be going, but unlike my “Into the Cacao Grove” textile book I’ve decided to make textile pieces for some of the illustrations in the book but photograph and print them, then combine words, textile image, drawn images etc in a printed format, bound and added to and produced as an artist’s book. They will be one offs but I may have them produced as normal books for purchase. “Into the Cacao Grove” is on it’s way to be produced in this way. The reason I’ve decided not to bind the textiles as the book is that they can never really be shown properly, although I do take it to talks and classes and it will be on my stand at the Festival of Quilts in August. The textile pieces for future books can be exhibited along with the finished book, hopefully making an interesting show. The Cacao Grove book has been offered a couple of exhibitions but it’s too big for any show cases!

“Blood on Paper” was a brilliant exhibition at the V & A a couple of years ago, many artist’s books in intense variety. The RBSA have also put on an excellent show of artists’ and limited edition books in recent years.

Here are a few images of work in progress for “The Stone Bird”. Apart from the archaeopteryx, which let’s face it is a bit of an ugly chappie, it’s hellishly difficult to stop birds from looking cute.

Two of the early pages after laying out. They will be machined and hand stitched. They are A2 size.

Lapwing and bones with his green landscape above, and the double page spread of the beach which features digital images of pebbles and groins taken a few weeks ago in Wales. I’ve made these into a fabric and basically cut it up. It gives a lot of depth to a piece. I think digitally printed fabrics have been rather overdone and I sense they are now out of fashion, but I like to use them occasionally and can’t be doing with fashions.