Friday, 29 June 2012

This blog is my learning log for Textiles 1.
I received the course work file yesterday and read through the introductory details, and created and started my sketchbook with some drawings of a vase of flowers that is slightly past it's best on my kitchen table.

A lot of thought has gone into the course information, and it helps to reassure me that I have signed up for absolutely the right course for me.

I haven't had much in the way of formal teaching in textiles before - only one term of City and Guilds in Patchwork and Quilting about 12 years ago, at Morley College,which stopped because not enough people wanted to do it.

But I have done a lot on my own - learning from books, or effectively working out for myself, how to knit, crochet, embroider, quilt, weave, upholster and sew toys, clothes and soft furnishings by hand and machine. At first I was making things to patterns, but the truth is I never really stuck to the pattern as written - once I had worked out how it worked, I would be trying to make it more interesting or unusual or fit me better.

When my children were very young I made toys, quilts and clothes (especially dressing up clothes) for them. More recently I have focussed on acquiring dressmaking skills more, but again found myself  more interested in designing clothes, using patterns to support this experimentation rather than to follow.

In the last year or two I have been experimenting even more, trying to go after what interests and excites me, and the result is a marvellous blossoming of the world I live in, and lots of energy to investigate and explore new ways of seeing and making things.

I have been particularly drawn to the texture, three-dimensional nature, and colour patterns of skin. Hence the interest in fingerprints. I have tried to make fingerprint patterns in various ways - so far without huge success! - which has led to a couple of satisfying objects. I would upload photos of these but this is my first attempt at a web blog and I haven't worked out how to do that yet. Another example of the positive blooming effect of pursuing creativity.

I am hoping that doing this course will help me along this path, and direct me towards more opening up and learning and expressing what is beautiful and/ or intriguing to me. I do also want my work to be assessed because this is a life-long interest of mine and I am hoping that this course will lead me into ways of using this interest and skill in future. So a qualification may come in handy.