New Textile Art

Nebulous contours 7 June 2012

Nebulous Contours © Angela Porter 7 June 2012

Approx. 17cm x 11.5cm.  Needle felted dyed goat hair on a black felt background.  Patterns picked out with copper ‘Japan’ threads, various beads and metallic threads.

Inspired by the flow of gases in nebulae and of contour lines on maps.

Nebulous Rainbow 7 June 2012

Nebulous Rainbow © Angela Porter 7 June 2012

Approx 11cm x 10.5cm.  Needle felted rainbow dyed synthetic fibres on a black felt background.  Patterns picked out by gold ‘Japan’ Thread, various beads, sequins, polymer clay tiles and metallic threads.

Shapes and patterns inspired by contour lines and also the flow of gases in photographs of nebulae.

Autumn Flow 1 and 2

Autumn Flow 1 © Angela Porter 12 Apr 2012

Autumn Flow 2 © Angela Porter 12 Apr 2012

Two teeny tiny little pieces of textile work.  The photo doesn’t really show the sheen on the mohair that has been used in the needle-felting on the black felt background.  They are approx 2″ square-ish.  Copper thread has been used to add the lines and shapes, along with copper, gold and red beads.

The colour reminds me of autumn, but I also think it may be how I seen passionate love too.  It has a wonderfully warm, deep, intense colour to it that I find quite irresistible, not a colour I would have usually loved.  I think this could be becoming my favourite colour!

The lines remind me of contour lines on an OS Map.  I feel a new source of inspiration for art coming on… maps and satellite and aerial imagery perhaps.  I know my fingers have been fair twitching for paper and pens and inks and paints and pencils to use my textile work as an inspiration for other forms of art, so my textile work may become an inspiration for me too. How weird is that?

These may be for sale on Etsy…I’ll have to decide if I can part with them!

Planting seeds of love work in progress and a new little pretty…

Planting Seeds of Love – Work in Progress

Planting seeds of love WIP 8Apr12 © Angela Porter 2012

This is a work in progress, and I’m not at all sure about it.  I had the title first (I’m working on loving and accepting myself), then a mental image of what I wanted to do, but I’m not at all sure about what has resulted from it.  Usually by this stage in a piece of art I know if it’s working or not, and this one … well I’m not at all sure.  I have to complete the outlines, add textures/patterns and metallic/iridescent accents, but I’m not entirely sure I actually want to finish this one.  I’m wondering how much the resistance to this piece of art comes from my lack of satisfaction with the art itself and how much comes from what it is representing – my inner work at this time… An interesting point to muse, eh?

I’ve had a lot of emotional turmoil in the past few weeks while I’ve been off work with laryngitis, much of it to do with allowing myself to love, respect and care for myself and to let go of various negative belief systems from the past.  It’s also involved a change in my value system, and something that hasn’t been easy to do. The words/mental idea sprung up from this work, as I’ve already mentioned.  It’s been a bit of a tough time, and sometimes it’s hard to find balance.

It’s also had an effect on my creativity.  Instead of painting/drawing/sewing I’ve been lost in either reading or knitting and watching DVD after DVD.  A positive from this is that I have created, after 30 years or so, a knitted throw/blanket – which has amazed me as I’ve always got bored with the process after a little while, but not this time.  It isn’t a pretty thing, it’s very random in terms of colours and knitted patterns and crocheted squares, but it’s mine and I love it very much, mainly because it’s proven to me that I can persevere with a project such as this, and there is benefit for me in doing something that is simple, creative in a crafty way, and also rather meditative in nature.

I now have another blanket/throw on the go – and it’s certainly going to be ‘different’, but very much ‘me’.

Little Pretty 7April2012

Little Pretty 7 Apr 12 © Angela Porter 2012

This is a teenytiny piece of textile art, approx. 4.5cm x 4.5cm (1.75″x1.75″) that I completed yesterday. The silver japan threads were added during a sewing/craft afternoon at O’Callaghan’s Coffee House yesterday.  The other stitches and beads were added later.

It will eventually be for sale on Etsy, when I work out what price to put on it, and whether to offer it framed or ready to frame … I dislike trying to put prices on my creations.

Why is that, I wonder?  I think it’s linked to me still not quite believing my artwork has value, or that my ‘doodles’ are truly art.  I have made the leap to the recognition that what I think of doodling is really my version of intuitive art, art that expresses who I really am, what I am inside, and the richness of that inner self and my love of colour and flow and swirl and abstract pattern.

I really do need to work on a statement of me as an artist that fully expresses who I am in terms of art and what my kind of art represents.  Now that’s a scary thing to do as it will lay part of me bare -though those who read my art aright will already have sussed that part of me out!

Moments after the big bang…

Prehistoric fertility 2 finished and renamed!

I really need to learn how to take photographs!  This is a dreadful picture of this textile work.

It’s framed and renamed to be entered into a local art competition – Aber Valley Arts – along with two other pieces of my artwork, but I don’t know which two yet.  I have to choose then write some gumpf to go with them.  I’ll be asking my pal, the head of art at work, to help me choose the others.

So, it’s been a busy morning here measuring and cutting daler-board to mount the various art works (seven in total, phew!) and calculating any aperatures that need to be cut.

Time for a ginormous mug of tea!

Almost the end of the Summer break…

Prehistoric Fertility 2 – A work in progress

Prehistoric Fertility 2 WIP © Angela Porter 2011

Dimensions – 23x30cm, approx.  Silk fibre needle felt on a black felt background.  Embellishement with beads, metallic and Japan threads, and custom-made sequins.

Photographs never seem to do my work justice, simply because I’m not a photographer.  There is no idea of the shimmery nature of the work, the way that the gold Japan threads used to outline various parts of the needle felt define the shapes and provide a channel along which the colours seem to flow like oil on water.  There is no sense of the texture and heights/depths that the needle felt has brought to the work, nor to the patterns and textures the beads give.  The colours still look garish in the photograph, yet in the actual piece they are more subtle and muted.

I have spent many hours on this so far – around 30 I would guess.  Every moment has been a pleasure, and I’ve even caught myself looking at it and smiling at how well it is working out – unusual for me as I’m my own worst critic, and it’s a step forward that I can appreciate the beauty in my creative work.

Last day of the holidays

It’s finally arrived.  Today marks the end of my freedom to a degree.  Tomorrow I return to work, to a structured day and all the ups and downs that go with the job that teaching is.  My time for art and other pursuits will become very limited.

I had a list of things to do over the Summer, and I’ve achieved few of them, however I have achieved other things, and that is good.  What is better is I’m not beating myself up about the tasks undone.  There’ll be time to do them…

I will miss the slow starts to the day, the spontaneity of trips and visits and time with friends.  Friday afternoon I spent with a friend in a local cafe-bar, drinking, talking about art and other things, working on art, having nice food and laughing before going to take the weekly meditation class I lead.  I will miss the opportunity to do those kinds of things.

On the positive side, it won’t be long until the next school break, and there are the weekends too…

There’s definitely a coolness in the air in the mornings and evenings.  It’s a feeling I associate with the coming of autumn, the return to school, the start of the new academic year and a sense of hope of better things to come, a hope that was usually misplaced, and still is.  However, I still hope that a new school year and a new term will bring new attitudes, opportunities and good achievements.

This year, the new attitudes must be towards myself and my expectations of me and how I react to the poor attitude/behaviour of others.  The Summer break has allowed me to relax, to become who I am meant to be.  I like this person, I like the contentment within me, I like the confidence that comes with it.  What I don’t want is to lose this with the stresses and strains of teaching.  There’s a challenge!

One of the tasks left mostly undone over the Summer was too look for an alternative career/job, one that will allow me to use all my personal skills/talents/gifts in a positive manner.  I’ve been stumped as to what to do, and looking around at available jobs there is nothing that seems to fit me, well not yet.

So that’s another task for the coming weeks – to keep looking at available jobs, to seek advice, suggestions, to continue the audit of my personal skills to help me focus on what  I could do.

I have been thinking about training as a hypnotherapist.  The biggest stumbling block for me is finding the money to pay the fees.  I’m making enquiries about that…so finger’s crossed!

The incipient return to work has been causing some anxiety and worry with me.  My meditation this morning was filled with thoughts of things that need to be done, ideas as to what to do, worries about things that cause me emotional pain …

More needle felting …

Rock Art 2 WIP © Angela Porter 2011

Just finished applying the needle felting to the black felt ground.  I have to admit the colours are a bit garish, even for my likes!  It is all a learning process, however, and as this is something new to me, I’m exploring how it works, or doesn’t, for me, including the use of colours and so on.  The ‘space dyed’ felting fibres (silk in this case) really don’t lend themselves to this kind of work…

The piece is approx 23cm x 30cm, so it’s a biggie for me!  Now the fun begins, with the stitching, beads, sequins and wires that will be added for more embellishment, and perhaps these garish colours will fade into the background …

Patterns inspired by prehistoric rock art once again…

Prehistoric Fertility 1

15×23 cm, around 12 to 15 hours of work/pleasure.

Needle felting in silk fibres, embellishments done with various metallic fibres, beads and custom made sequins.

Patterns inspired by British Prehistoric rock art and Neolithic/Bronze Age pottery.

I had my doubts part-way through whether this was going to work out, but I’m really now quite pleased with it. When friends saw it, they thought it was like cells expanding and reproducing – hence the ‘Fertility’ part of it’s title!

When I mount it for display, I’d like to put it onto a piece of slate, an old slate tile maybe; however, I have my doubts about the sensibility of that with the damage dust and fingers could do to it … I’ll work on the idea!

Swirls and sparkles …

I’ve just finished this piece of art created using wires and beads and threads and custom made ‘sequins’ using black felt for the ground.  It measures approx. 20cm x 15cm and has taken some 25 hours or so to make.

The inspiration for the swirls and loops comes from La Tene or early Celtic art and ammonites and shells.  The sparkly-ness is all my own – my inner magpie will not be denied!

I find working with this is a lot like drawing for me, but using the wires, threads, beads and ‘sequins’ as the mark-making tools.  There’s something calming about doing the work, and something magical about turning the black of the felt into something much brighter and lighter.

The choice of colours – coppers, golds, blues, greens, with the odd dark metallic purple and brown – was specifically for the friend who asked me to create a textile artwork for them.  They love all shades of blue, but especially turquoise, and copper and the gold and greens and other colours just seemed to go with these.

Proudly presenting the letter ‘a’

Initial A 19 Feb 2011 © Angela Porter 2011

I finished this earlier this evening.  It’s taken me several hours of work, and I’m quite pleased with it.  The organic swirls that fill the framework of the letter are inspired by La Tene culture art (early Celtic art).  The large ‘sequins’ are custom made by myself.  There’s not so many beads on this as in other examples of my textile work; I found the heavy application of the metallic threads created a lovely shimmery and dense finish that didn’t detract from the letter shape.  I also haven gone to town embellishing around the letter; I got the large custom ‘sequins’ in place and realised that that was about it for the embellishment around the letter as they seem to enhance it not overpower it.  So, all in all, I’m pleased with this for a first-time go at something so structured, so to speak.

I’m also pleased because I think I’ve found a way to create works of art using words and symbols, something that is uniquely me perhaps.  Only time will tell.

Other textile work

It’s now half-term for me – hooray!  I’ve been told by my pal that she wants all my textile jewellery and any textile works I have for sale as the people at the offices where the Princess Royal visited and received a piece of my art on Monday want to buy my art/jewellery!  She said she’ll take over that side of things, and of course I shall make sure she has a commission for doing this!  I now have to decide what to do next – another textile picture or to start on more pieces of jewellery …

Whichever I decide, I know I’ll enjoy doing it and it will help me to de-stress after a very stressful half-term.

De-stressing from the distress…

I had a major stress-out on Wednesday which resulted in me being home on Thursday with a horrible headache and a very upset digestive system.  Not that anything major happened, not at all, but just the constant day to day stresses increasing the level within me … I am now coming down, and I will make sure that this week has me relaxing, meditating, creating as much as possible.