Monday, 24 March 2014

Jelly Fabric - March Assignment

It's already been another month on the e-course I'm taking!! Time flies!! 

Between the week we got our theme and the week we found out we were to design for fabric, I tried my hand at gelatine printing, so I used some offcuts to make this pattern. I just love these colours, don't you?

From seeing the work from last month, I knew I wanted to try and create a coordinating collection for this project. So I learned how to index colours in Photoshop, and chose just 8 colours from the design above, and ended up choosing one more colour for the next design.
This one is a basic half drop repeat. 

As there was only 3 icons,  I really wanted to try incorporating more imagery, but that's easier said than done!! I ended up creating a little kitchen scene, with shelves and a dresser. The jelly theme is much less obvious, but there is still signs of it. Again I changed all the colours from the original painting to match the 2 other designs. I find reducing colours quite fun, even though the look of the piece changes drastically from the original!

In the end I only submitted one design, as the thumbnail in the class gallery is quite small, so I'm hoping that by only having the last design it's as visible as possible!

Sunday, 9 March 2014

Gelatine printing

I've spent my weekend trying to make a gelatine plate. I first heard of it last week when Lisa Firke, a fellow MATS student showed us her lovely work that she created using a Gelli Pad. You can see her monoprints here.

As I wasn't sure if it was a technique I'd enjoy using but still wanted to try, I had a look if there was a DIY version of it. There is actually a very easy way that only includes gelatine and water, but it only lasts a few days before you have to throw it out. But then I found this recipe, so I tried it out... 5 times, before it actually worked. The recipe itself is fine, it's just me getting things wrong. I can't verify it will last years as I've only made it today but once I understood where I was going wrong, I managed to make a pad and print from it. So if you are interesting in trying to make your own plate, then do try that recipe.

So here are a few things to remember ( I learned the hard way)!

  • make sure, really really sure, that the gelatine is dissolved properly before adding the glycerine. The best way I found was to mix it with the COLD water, then the COLD sugared water, and then VERY SLOWLY heat it up on low heat, UNTIL it is perfectly dissolved! This is the way I went wrong, and even when I tried to re-melt it, the gelatine just wouldn't dissolve. I think I heated it too quickly and I'm not sure whether the glycerine stops it from dissolving too (the 2nd mixture I didn't put the glycerine until I was sure everything was dissolved so I can't tell if it was just the heat the issue or if the glycerine was also a reason the first batch didn't work.)

    See the tin foil? Do not use it!! bad things happened once I tried to get it out!
  • do not use tin foil as a lining of the mould. It seemed like a good idea, as it's heat proof, but no, wherever the tin foil teared, the gelatine broke, and the tin foil really sticks to the gelatine so it tears a lot!
  • do use cling film as a lining of your mould - it was really easy. So maybe it doesn't give smart sides but it's 100% better than trying to get the plate out of the mould by itself!

The plate, after use - the specks of colour are actually in the plate as I had to melt it again after trying the tin foil. I'm hoping the paint won't start to go mouldy but it's acrylic so I think it'll be ok
My favourite one - the photo doesn't do it justice, it's actually turquoise and gold, with a leaf stamp 
torn paper stencil
finger painting
hand carved stamps
I'm glad I bought enough ingredients to be able to try it again after the first batch, and I've had fun doing a few prints. I will now need to create a lot more stencils to make some more interesting textures. I find I have to think well in advance if I want to print like this, but at least now I have the pad, I have one less thing to organise when I do want to print.

Tuesday, 4 March 2014

Jelly Jell-o!

So this week's mini is Jelly! Wibble wobble! I have seen some interesting (or rather disgusting!) photos of jelly, enough to think twice about eating some again! 
These are the sketches I've done so far, I had to try colour much sooner than last month's assignment - I'm using some faber-castell paint watercolours, but they don't feel like proper watercolours, for one, the colours are so much more intense! I'm also using an old nib pen, it keeps splattering ink everywhere!! 

Had to draw the kiwis - last time I made jelly I forgot to read the instructions and added kiwis... it obviously didn't set!

We were told that sometimes you just have to make bad art

Spot the squiggles from the toddler :) 
I'm planning on making stamps and using masking fluid for some more designs this week.

Monday, 3 March 2014

Great Big Stitched Postcard Swap

I'm taking part in the Great Big Stitched Postcard Swap - this year the theme was "create".
I used the idea that nowadays you can create opportunities for yourself, and I also had in mind the saying "if a door closes, a window opens". And that ultimately creation is about life and love. It's such a big concept I don't think I did it justice really, but here's is the card - I'll be sending it all the way to America this week!

Are you taking part in the swap?

Saturday, 1 March 2014

Quick Paintings

I think it's a mixture of
  • having my art supplies already out for the e-course I'm taking, 
  • the really helpful community from the course
  • my husband being out for the evening
  • having just read Lilla Rogers' book
  • having seen the sketchbook project from August Wren
but I finally did a few paintings last night - I just tried forgetting about a specific theme and just painted whatever came into my mind. 

Colour has always been a difficulty for me but I want to improve so the more I use it the better it'll get!!


    It was much looser than what I usually produce, and I'm still not convinced I can make it work. I actually want a mixture between this freedom and the more detailed work I usually do.

    We are getting our new assignment on Monday so that should be the perfect opportunity to try out more ideas!

    The link for the book is an affiliate link- if you decided to buy a book buy clicking on the link I get a small fraction of the sale

    Catherine S © 2010 - 2014 No reproductions permitted unless authorised.