Friday, 28 January 2011

Digital Print

Two fabrics from my Botanical Range being
digitally printed

Printer jammed and caused colour to change!

Two more Botanical designs printed but
waiting to be steamed
The new Marine Collection - a bonus
A day digitally printing is far more stressful than teaching any Year 9 class ever! Moreover it doesn't end with the printing, it then has to be steamed and washed and as recent past experiences have taught me disaster can strike at any time!

Yesterday I planned to print 4 samples, two at a time, each 60cm x 100cm.  The first run on the morning got off to a bad start with the fabric jamming about 30cm into the print (about 25mins).The next attempt went without a hitch and so my optimism saw new heights by after lunch only to find the same thing happened. Ugh! There was nothing for it but to take a deep breath and start again. An hour and a half later the next 2 were completed so Vicky suggested that I went for it and printed the first two fabrics from the new Marine Collection so that is what I did.

I was delighted to get this far but the next step was to steam all 6 pieces and sit back and await the outcome. Strange things can happen and they did. My monochrome Jellyfish design developed areas of a wonderful lilac (formally grey!) but disappointingly it had also picked up a bit of discolouration in places presumably from the backing cloth.

Now all that is left for me to do is wash them successfully - Colour Catchers at the ready.

Wednesday, 26 January 2011

Week 15 continued

Wallpaper  based on Echinoderms
Thought I would just give you a sneak preview of this wallpaper that I have just designed. It is based on some drawings I did over the summer of Echinoderms which are marine animals with a radial symmetry and include sea urchins, starfish and crinoids. These were actually fossilised examples found in the Lower Carboniferous layers of rock in North America. I have had an A1 sample printed and it looks good according to Claire so I'm happy with that.
I haven't forgotten about a wallpaper to match the crab etc. fabric but that is taking me a bit longer and I will post pics soon.

Week 15

Furnishing fabric based on the jellyfish from the wallpaper
 Hope you like this new addition to the Marine collection. I have used the same drawings I did for the wallpaper but I decided to stick to monochrome colours. To get a bit more tonal variety I filled different sections of the patterns with black  and I am pleased with the result.

Tuesday, 18 January 2011

Week 14 - Marine Life

Wallpaper design based on the underside of jellyfish
Fabric design based on crabs, shrimps and crayfish

 For the last few days I have been happily developing new designs based on some simple line drawings of marine creatures to which I have added some bright colours. I really enjoyed filling in the crabs and shrimps with the patterns of fish scales, which added a quirky twist. Hopefully the resulting repeats don't look too much like the real creatures.

Thursday, 13 January 2011

Collection Complete

Pomegranate Fruits

Sprigs of Pomegranate
These last 2 wallpapers, based on the Pomegranate textile piece posted earlier, at last complete the Botanical Collection, making a total of 6 fabrics and 6 wallpaper repeat designs. The wallpapers are printed as A1 paper samples and look good and I have started the digital printing of the 6 x 1m long samples on cotton satin fabric. The first 2 look good at a glance but the printer has splodged black ink in places were it shouldn't be! I am now looking at creative ways of distracting the eye away from the imperfections.
I have to wait now for more fabric to arrive and so I am excited at being able to start a new range.

Monday, 10 January 2011

Anniversary Trip to London

 What a fantastic weekend Paul and I have just spent in London. We arrived on time by train, checked into our smart hotel near Covent Garden and then ventured off on our first adventure. We thought of going to the Arsenal football match but Paul talked me into skipping that and visiting the Fashion and Textile Museum to see an exhibition of the work of  textile and interior designer Sue Timney of Timney-Fowler. What a little gem of a place packed with her drawing sheets, mood boards and samples of her beautiful fabric designs. Very inspirational!
 After a nice meal we went to the theatre to see Les Mis and by Sunday morning we were set to go again  - this time to the Royal Academy to visit the "The Glasgow Boys" exhibition. I have had a fascination for this period in Glasgow's rich artistic history since writing my Japonisme essay for Malcolm in Prof. Studs. It was good to see the influence of Japan, due to the close trading links Glasgow had with this country at the time, on artists other  than Rennie Mackintosh in particular E. A. Hornel

Paul and I viewed in the huge convex side of "C-Curve"

More weird is this pic of us in the concave side which inverts everything
standing at this distance

As the weather was perfect we took a long walk along Picadilly to the Serpentine Gallery in Kensington Gardens to see four outside sculptings by Anish Kapoor. We first came across his work when we visited Chicago to look at the architecture of Frank Lloyd Wright and we stumbled upon a huge mirror construction in a park that was a physicist dream, as the images were more difficult to fathom, but it was. good to watch people's reactions to these simpler pieces here in London.

Thursday, 6 January 2011

Corona Imperialis Wallpapers

Horsetail Ferns, Dragonflies and Butterflies

Pod Stripe
I have been very busy in college today so that I can have a guilt free trip to London this weekend to celebrate our Ruby Wedding which is on Sunday.
These 2 wallpapers were designed to accompany the Corona imperialis textile piece. The first one uses the images of butterflies from the border of the print. Along with these I have included a rather nice dragonfly that I used in one of the fabric designs and I have put them with some ancient horsetail ferns. I have included my first attempt to illustrate the trials and tribulations of designing repeat designs. The observant among you will notice that this piece (with 2x2 repeats) is not quite lined up and  looks a bit "blocky" but I did quite enjoy the challenge of correcting this (which was as a result of my wonky drawing of the original stem of the fern).
The second design  used the seed pod of the Corona imperialis flower and was a breeze to do, but even this needed a bit of "warping" to line up the stripes.


Drosophila and Embryos

Pitcher Plants
Towards the end of last term I produced 3 botanical prints on fabric, that initially I saw as a collection in their own right, and I planned to both hand and machine embroider into the borders that I had created to frame the central image. There was then a change in plan and I started work on designing a collection of furnishing fabrics and wallpapers to accompany each of these. You have been introduced to the fabrics and now it's the turn of the wallpapers. I thought I would produce 2 designs for each print - one digital and one to be screen printed. However, after a one to one chat with my tutor, I have decided to design both in CAD and digitally print both. This way I hope that I can achieve a really contemporary look, despite the traditional subject matter.
It might not be obvious how the first design links so well with my concept of "Evolution" but these little fruit flies, called Drosophila, are a favourite with geneticists the world over because they show lots of mutations and are very prolific breeders!