Monday, 28 July 2014

Happy Monday

Enjoying a studio day today, interspersed with domestic matters. My lovely Mum and Dad are coming to house / cat / doglet sit next week*, and their housekeeping standards are higher than mine!

*I am going to Sark with my WD friend Diana, my first 'going away' holiday since Iceland in 2009. We plan on painting and general larks. I may take a small frame and some yarns for little weavings. Diana is flying in from Ireland but I am driving to Poole for the fast cat ferry. I am therefore bringing the bag of sea salt, cans of spray fixative for Diana's pastels, proper coffee (D) and loose leaf tea (me); all items which might cause problems at Dublin or Gatwick.

There are distinct advantages to having a studio at home, which I had forgotten:-

Tea and bagels available whenever I need

An extensive library for reading breaks

A sofa for naps thinking

Being able to work in pyjamas or a sarong; neither necessary nor desirable
in either the Time Machine nor the Cathedral, even in the basement!


Sunday, 27 July 2014

Sampling, Swatches, Studio and a Spectacle

I like a neat swatch book!

The weaving studio carved from The Boy's bedroom. The bed head makes a good impromptu work table for 'Abram'.

Now to head to the photocopier to turn an A3 tracing into an A1 cartoon. Cut and paste the old-fashioned way. The cartoon will then be cut up into random rectilinear sections for weaving. The piece is called 'Shrapnel', not 'Poppy' as you might have thought. I hope to get the warp on before the end of the day.

The spectacle? Me, this morning, tumbling down the steps in the quire at the cathedral. Part way down ( for I fell in three stages, each of which I thought was the last) my hand landed on the sign which reads 'Uneven Steps, Take Care'. Three people were there to pick me up and dust me off, my dignity more bruised than my body. Thankfully it was not during the service; I might have taken three others out :-))


Monday, 21 July 2014

Of Loom, Loot and Dye Baths

Loom assembled and ready to go.

Walking (very slowly) the Goldsworthy trail yesterday I found this skull near a ruined flint hut.

And this aluminium pot. I think someone has been taking pot shots (ha!) at it. I can hardly believe that no-one has picked these things up before. Am I odd?

In pursuit of the perfect red: a bath of 3% Red 2GL (now drying) and another of 4% (now rinsing). I am approximately the same colour after building the loom, boiling vats in a very small kitchen and moving more boxes upstairs. It is the only downside of living in a first floor apartment :-)

In my foraging in the garage - which will one day have plumbing and be my wet studio- I found the black silk I need for the centre of the poppy, and some pillar box red that I dyed while at Time Machine. I think that I now have everything that I need, so no more procrastination. Winding the yarns onto cones and some quick sampling of the potential blends and I will be off.

Tally Ho!


Saturday, 19 July 2014

Of Dyeing and Holding a Heartbeat in my Hand

The results of today's bloodbath; so called because the main dye is Acid Blood Red in all except the last one. The beakers of dye did look exactly like boiling blood and I some mad-eyed scientist - largely due to the heat in the dye room.

Linens, a stray purple wool and a cone of hideous orange acrylic - which works unexpectedly well in blends. I still have to locate the pillar box red wool that I dyed last year - or dye/ buy some more. Ditto for a true black, possibly shiny.

While I was in the dye room, a swallow flew into the office and was struggling against the window. It let me catch it and remained quite still, close-cupped in my hands as I carried it to the door and released it. I watched it soar over the roofs into the blue-grey sky. Really moving and remarkable to feel a heartbeat in one's hands and for the bird to remain so calm, trusting and resting. A happy moment.


Thursday, 17 July 2014

The Sanity Saving Spanner

Borrowed from the WD workshop. The bed is now dismantled, oh joy. The loom is not yet mantled - that can wait until the cool of the early morning.

I have spent some time working on the cartoon for the first new tapestry; it has doubled in size from my original plan, so I shall be doing some dyeing after my shop shift on Saturday. Having access to the dye room is a great blessing. It should also be much cooler on Saturday; leaning over boiling vats is not an activity for a heat wave!

This evening I have been listening to Britten's War Requiem and re- reading the first of Pat Barker's 'Regeneration' trilogy, in preparation for completing the set. Getting into the zone for working on 'Abram'.

Location:New Workspace

Tuesday, 15 July 2014

World Trade Centre Wreckage

House Collapsing on Two Firemen

Location:IWM North

Ball Patrol

Chess the Action Dog

Flo the bewildered


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