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Tuesday, 17 December 2019

Completion Catharsis


Gold paper and feather collage

Wow, it's been a long time since my last post! When I started this blog ten years ago way back in 2009 the world, particularly the digital world, was a different place. Over the last decade social media has exploded, our use and reliance on the internet has grown hugely and the the world of blogs is not what it was. Don't worry, this isn't a "isn't modern life terrible lets live in a cave" kind of post, I just want to set out some of my thoughts.

Jackdaw, 2019
Fabric pastel and hand embroidery on linen

Jackdaw, 2019
Fabric pastel and hand embroidery on linen (detail)

Over the last decade I've used my blog for different things; reflecting, recording, promoting, ranting and sharing to name a few. Recently though I've not used it much at all. Social media channels such as Instagram have meant that I share "little and often" rather than saving things up and writing blog posts about them. Like most things this is good and bad; it's great being able to quickly share and connect with people but for me the downside is that I don't share much 'in-depth' information and I certainly don't share as much of my reflections (which may actually be a good thing; it's probably only interesting to me anyway!) There are also other reasons for not blogging so often, I'm very busy being one of them! I also started a newsletter so information that would maybe previously have gone on here goes straight into that.

Flow: Moon, 2019
Hand embroidery and found objects on naturally dyed fabrics 

Sometimes I miss this blog and posting regularly but mostly it sits here, waiting for me. I don't know whether I'll carry on writing it next year but I'll leave it here for a while and see. I like to look back over my posts occasionally, it reminds me how far I've come and what I've achieved. Which leads me back to the reason I started writing this post which was to share some finished pieces with you. These have all been 'works in progress' for some time and I really wanted to get them done before the year is out so I've been enjoying sitting down with them and working on them until they're resolved.

Flow: Moon, 2019
Hand embroidery and found objects on naturally dyed fabrics (detail)

Some pieces come together quickly and easily, others need time and several attempts to get them done, which is the case for Jackdaw and Flow: Tide-lines. Often it isn't even that I don't know what to do it's just that I'm not in the right mood or there are too many other things that must be sorted first. I find that, particularly with hand embroidery, I really need to be able to sit in peace to resolve these works, it's so time consuming that I feel like I need a clear block of time to get stuck in. It's a bit odd really as the process is actually very calming and meditative and easy to pick up and put down. Maybe it's just my need for some quiet time?

Flow: Tide lines, 2019
Hand embroidery and found objects on naturally dyed fabrics

Flow: Tide lines, 2019
Hand embroidery and found objects on naturally dyed fabrics (detail)

Whatever the reasons, these pieces have been a long time in the making but I'm pleased to have finished them and have them ready to share with the world. I have a head (and several sketchbooks) full of ideas of what I want to do next in my work and having cleared these pieces from my 'to-do list' I feel like I'm ready to start working on some of these ideas. Maybe I'll share them on here and maybe not, we'll see!

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