I have really enjoyed this unit. Although a lot of my work was very laborious, time consuming and mildly eye-sight destroying, I am really proud of the samples and final pieces I have produced. I feel like continuing my project using my colour based research from practice unit, meant I had a chance to really develop my stitch work.
Experimenting with different fabrics has been interesting and I found using machines to explore the qualities of my hand stitch to be very satisfying. I was pleased I managed to achieve the same intensity of colour with machine embroidery as I have in my darning and could make them at ten times the speed.
My final pieces are not what I expected to produce, but were reached through experimentation and I love the outcome. They reflect what initially inspired them (traditional embroidery samplers) and they offer the white space needed to allow you to focus on the detail.
Being entered into the Colour Competition run by the Society of Dying and Colourists was an excellent opportunity to learn about how to present my work for a specific brief and although I’m not sure what I entered was entirely appropriate to the brief I was forced to come up with creative solutions to avoid mounting white on white, keep within the four A2 board limit and trying to show my work as appropriate for a sustainable fashion context. I was very pleased to receive a judges High Commendation Award.
Having learnt from the Colour Competition I have created a well presented portfolio that allows you to see the front and back of my samples and gives each sample enough space to be appreciated. I have also been able to make sure you can see the narrative running through my work, being sure to include visualisation and drawings.
Although I really struggle with presenting my work, because of the hand drawn qualities and lack of uniformity, I feel like this unit I have made leaps with my presentational skills. Window frame mounting was not my favourite task, however it seems only appropriate that time-consuming presentation would be required for time-consuming samples.
I was also fortunate enough to have my samples picked to be displayed in the TIP in Progress Show which helped me see my samples in an exhibition context and gave me inspiration for how I might present my work at the Degree Show.
Finally having shown my four final pieces to the curators of the Gawthorpe Hall brief from Practice unit I have been offered the chance to exhibit in the Knit and Stitch Show 2016 alongside Manchester School of Art students and staff. I have been asked to create a larger scale, around 2 meter square piece with lots of my little pieces of darning. This is an exciting opportunity and will keep my practice ticking over after graduation, I plan to man the stand at both the London and Harrogate show with the hope that more opportunities will arise.