I’ve been really interested in the graffiti and art in Manchester for a while and wanted to do a project photographing some of the different places for the blog. Here is a small collection in the city’s Northern Quarter, a vibrant part of the city with little independent shops and cafes. It is also home to The Craft Centre where a number of local artists make and sell items from ceramics and textiles to jewellery and prints. I love taking friends and family who come to visit. I’ve lived here for nearly 3 and half years and just love the vibrancy and creativity in the city. The Northern Quarter is also home to The Buddhist Centre which is in a lovely building and holds lots of different classes such as meditation and yoga. If you ever visit Manchester I highly recommend these places.
Here are two embroidery projects I’ve just finished.
I thought a nautilus was perfect for the smaller hoop and loved the patterns on the shell which I tried to recreate. I used a running stitch and split stitch for this project and I focused in on the details and colours of the threads.
I have’t posted for a while as I have been busy with this whale embroidery project I’ve been commissioned to do for a friend. She wanted a whale, like Moby Dick, flying and I had the idea of him being carried by balloons. I sketched into the fabric with a cool fabric pen that disappears after a few hours and actually did some shading at the front of his head before deciding I didn’t like it.
I added some swirls for a more textured look and to make it a little different. I guess it is similar to my art journaling style. This took me about ten hours to complete and he turned out so cute! I really liket his white thread as well. I have a lot of new embroidery ideas and hoping to get a hoop clamp this week so I will be able to do my embroidery with both hands free!
With my usual sprayed background, I used a few different tapes and two images in this page for interest. Not sure how happy I am with the end result but I love these tapes and want to try new things with them. I guess I am still finding my style as it evolves. I never used to think of myself as a mixed media artist and when I did A-level fine art I was in the graphic design group which I never really liked. I was just never the kind of person to colour in the lines! But I actually think now, that that is part of my personality and creative style – chaotic, wild, expressive. These things lend themselves well to mixed media, and I love different textures and combining different materials to create something new.
This weekend I got a new friend for my room – here is Benson Honeydew! I have so many cacti now I am going to forget their names! Walking round the garden centre was nice, I’d like my own garden one day.
So here is my latest journal page and I wanted to try something a little different with the image. I am really into collage and paint at the moment and also got my gel medium while I was making this page and I just love it! It is matte finish so really easy to draw and paint over while holding down the papers. You might not be able to tell from the picture but my art journal has got really fat so drawing on the left side was a little difficult. I like the idea of two different faces and want to do something similar again.
A little while ago someone suggested to me that I do a tutorial on how I create my doodle pages in my journal, which I thought would be kinda fun! So this is a post on my own way of doodling.
Last weekend I went to a college workshop called Fierce Beauty with Derek Gores and I had a wonderful time! This was part of the Double Indemnity season they are doing at the moment in Manchester at the Cornerhouse. I was looking forward to it for ages, and knew this would be a great opportunity to push myself and explore a new medium. It was also wonderful to do art with other like minded people as I mostly do my projects on my own in my room – having some space was good too!
I’ve been thinking about my inspirations lately and how I get ideas. Sometimes I have creative blocks and feel frustrated. If this happens I will get a little panicky that I will lose any talent I have, but then calm down and read or watch a film. I hadn’t realised though that my keen eyes are always drawn to things and store them in my brain for later. I like to keep images I find like magazine cut outs, postcards or interesting packaging, and only recently decided to put it in a scrapbook. I love making scrapbook style art, but this is more a place to put all my ideas, pictures, daydreams and thoughts.
As you can see I spent a while making the front, but the inside isn’t as pretty! That’s OK though because the purpose of my scrapbook is for reference and being free to do what I want on the pages without feeling like it will need to look like a finished piece.
I am going to add some more posts about inspiration, being self reflective in this sense is useful to understand how my mind works, the ways my creativity is stimulated and that a lull is sometimes a good way to step back and see how far you have come and relax with a good book and cup of tea.