Monday, September 12, 2011

Textile Workshop with Petra Meer

I have been away recently, attending a three day workshop at the Yarra Valley Arts Centre.  It was about taking your textile work to the next level.
The brochure didn't give a lot of detail and the list of things to take didn't enlighten me greatly.  I had to take a piece of clothing that I loved but no longer wear, a piece of textile that meant something special to me and a piece of text or image that grounded me or has special meaning.
As I wasn't sure what we were going to do with the clothing, I took something that I loved wearing but was not bothered about cutting up or working on.  (Actually, I cheated a little, I do still wear it, just not in public.)

The workshop turned out to be about taking our work to the next level through our mental processes rather than learning a particular technique. There was a lot of thinking, talking and writing, as well as making.  It was quite intense as we had to focus on our ideas and try to draw them out.

On the first day we taped the clothing to the wall and wrote words it made us think of.  Then we drew some small sketches from it. The top I had chosen has moth holes in it and some staining.  When I looked closely I really liked the fluffiness of the the hole.

After this, we then did some paper collages based on our sketches and the piece.  My top is blue which is not a colour I would usually use, so I was instantly out of my comfort zone.

The collages were either pinned or tacked, no glue.  We did them at about an A5 size and had to work relatively quickly, making three.

After more reflection and discussion, we tacked them on the wall with the clothing.

As blue is not my colour, I used fabrics from the pile that Petra had provided as well as donations from the other participants.

The next step was to make some fabric collages based on the paper ones, once again just tacking or pinning.

That was about it for the first day - we had done a lot of talking and thinking.  We had thought about taking some home and doing some 'homework', finishing off the fabric collages but decided that we didn't want to change the feel of the work.  The working space was wonderful and we decided to do all the work in that environment.
The working space.


parlance said...

What a lovely light working space you had.

Mary said...

Yes, Parlance, it was lovely and bright. Even though there were only 7 participants, we managed to use quite a bit of the space.