Thursday, 3 September 2015

Facing Time - a new work

Facing Time by Gillian Cooper

How much is enough?  I don't think there is any possible answer to this as an artist.  It is two weeks until the European Patchwork Meeting and I am still creating new pieces.  Originally I thought this didn't look very professional, but now I realise that it is part of being an artist - I can always make one more piece; I always have another fantastic new idea to try.  And I'm nowhere near finished with 'Unsung Muses' yet. So many possibilities and a deadline.  The perfect conditions for me to make work!
So here is another new finished piece.  I had a definite vision for this one from the start.  A few months ago, I was looking through an old sketchbook at some drawings and one jumped out at me.  
Original drawing (after I've played with it with some image manipulation software)

After redrawing it several times, I knew it was perfect for development, using similar techniques to those I had used in 'Elements of Our Past'. 

Full sized drawing on the wall
I pieced it together out of large patches of hand dyed fabric, working tonally from a full scale drawing. 

Some of the fabric I considered
I then used free machine stitching to add the detail and define the shapes and to hopefully give it a sort of sketchy feel.  I wanted the face to look human, but not too human and not to be over-defined, as it is coming from long ago.
In progress

Some of these fabrics were dyed seven years ago.  It is was good to use them and I really like the soft colour palette I achieved then.  I'm racking my brain to work out what dye shades I used so I can make some more of them, but as I didn't dye them at home it won't be straightforward. As I'm teaching dyeing to my C&G Certificate group this weekend, I may have a bash at it.
Detail of  'Facing Time' by Gillian Cooper

That's another of the new pieces.  I have four or five others at various stages of completion and another three or four in my brain.  Given I have eight days until we leave, and miracles are rare events, even in my most optimistic state, I don't think they will all be finished.  It's not like I actually need them - I already have sufficient work, but the joy of being an artist is I can always do more...


Sandy said...

I love the direction this one is taking you! wise use of cropping.
Sandy in Bracknell

Gillian Cooper said...

Thanks Sandy. It sometimes feels a bit vicious to remove so much, but I think it does improve the work too. I really want to try more like this, but it may have to wait a few weeks/months!

Margaret said...

This month's Master Class theme is "Lost Edges"...and I see some in that wonderful face. I'll be sharing the link with my may get some more blog attention!

Gillian Cooper said...

Thanks Margaret! All readers are gratefully welcomed. Lost edges sounds a fascinating theme,

Maggi said...

I do like this piece. I'm also glad that you are still finding so much mileage in the Unsung Muses.

Gillian Cooper said...

Thanks Maggi. I'm pleased you like it. It is a bit different to the others. Unsung Muses just isn't ready to let me go yet, although I do have some pieces based on leaves floating around my head too...

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