My education pack has arrived and I have spent the last couple of days preparing to start work on the first exercises. At this point, having read the introductory literature through and read Gwen Hedley ‘Drawn to Stitch’ and Kay Greenlees ‘Creating Sketchbooks for Embroiderers and Textile Artists’, I am brimming with ideas but also feeling a bit apprehensive about getting started. Having come from a medical background, I need to get into the spirit of experimentation and out of my tendency to want everything to go perfectly first time.
Up to this point, I have had no shortage of inspiration, and am naturally drawn to recording interesting colours and textures. I have dabbled in painting and photography, but found the results to be rather naive, and have really enjoyed teaching myself to knit and crochet. From this course I am hoping to gain confidence in developing those initial inspirations and observations into designs; and to improve my basic skills, particularly in drawing, painting and embroidery. I feel most confident with knitting and crochet, but it would be nice to take this further by incorporating spinning and dyeing as well as designing my own pieces. The initial exercises in drawing and painting are therefore daunting as they are my perceived weakest area, but I am excited by the challenge. Where this course takes me in the long term, who knows! The dream is to be able to make a viable career as a designer/maker, but we’ll see how realistic that is in time.
To get prepared I have started by sorting all of my art and craft equipment and materials to get some measure of things I need to buy or collect. This has been enormously useful as I have collected rather a lot over the years and didn’t realise quite how much I already had! We are fortunate to have an excellent art supply shop practically backing onto our house, and a good library a short walk away.
In terms of sketchbooks and logbooks, I have a small notebook as I have always had for jotting down ideas. I have also got an 8″ leather bound sketchbook which will serve as my main sketchbook, an A5 gummed pad of cartridge paper, and an A3 size spiral-bound pad as my main logbook to supplement this blog. I already had a similar A5 pad with black paper and may borrow some pages from that.