Project #4 Evaluation

This project was my strongest and therefore the most important, as it has shifted me towards the Fashion and Textiles pathway.

Strengths:

  • Capturing incredible textures and colours through photography
  • Mixed media aspect
  • Learning to weave with unconventional materials
  • Gathering inspiration from the work of others
  • More confidence in working with A1 sheets
  • Deeper understanding of colours, and how they compliment each other
  • Enjoying every bit of the process
  • Library research

Weaknesses:

  • Mixing colours with acrylic paint was difficult- it was hard to get the exact tones and hues in my photographs
  • Mixed media collages were perhaps a little too abstracted, making it difficult to recognise the actual shapes I used from the photographs
  • Absent for two days, missing two project reviews due to open days
  • Did not have all my photographs around me whilst I collaged

I had to settle for an A2 size research sheet rather than an A1 because I did not have enough time to create a large moodboard, due to the two-day absence for open days in London. I incorporated a few sketches and mark-making techniques on the sheet, all of which were very loose and organic, reflecting the botanical garden location I received. As I created it, I realised that it was difficult to use a single term to describe my colour scheme- it is a combination of purples and greens with a hint of pink. I would describe this as a subliminal transition from a vivid living green plant, to the dry, decaying dark purple, grey state it ends in.

It was Catherine who suggested an improvement for my sheet- adding weaving techniques, because this was a weaving project after all. I scanned diagrams of basic weaving techniques in Learn to Weave by Anne Field, and worked from those scans to produce small samples to add on my moodboard.

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My moodboard

I had the strongest library research for this project, as I used the Selvedge magazines for the first time, and browsed through the rare editions of Vogue which Brookes held, even from all around the world. It was the article on “Fibre Diet” which intrigues me most, as I learnt more about the undesirable impact that textiles dyes had on the environment, and how contemporary designers were searching for solutions.

During my 1-t tutorial with Catherine, I noticed that the colours I used for my collages were slightly off. They didn’t match my photographs completely, but very close. I also lost focus and did not create clear patterns in my A4 studies, but I can improve this by having a much more refined approach next time. However I did successfully accomplish the aspect of heavy textures and a strong interest in surfaces.

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These mixed-media studies were inspired by the plants’ transition into a decaying state:

 

These were created with influence from plants that were still vivid in colour and living, only hints of dark, decaying bits occasionally:

Although the project had a lot of steps to it, more than the other ones I’ve had, I absolutely loved it, because I love an intricate, systematic process. I learnt a lot about colours, compositions and textures, and learning to translate 2D designs into a 3D outcome.

I created two separate pieces that explored a vibrant aspect of the living plants, and a piece that represented more of the crunchy, dried decaying stage. I placed both on the net found in Orinoco, and I weaved the centre to join the two creating:

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My final large woven piece

I love how you can see the contrasting colours on both sides of the piece- the bright, lively yellow and the dark purple side on the right. The piece encompasses a transition, the effect of Autumn on plants, which is exactly what my photographs captured. After learning how to complete a Rya knot on YouTube, I used paper instead of string, which didn’t hold together very well, but it is just very fragile. Fortunately, I found a net already in the Orinoco scrapyard to act as the warp. It is a good one too, with rings that can make me hang it in a variety of ways, on the body or as an interior piece.

Close-Ups of the woven textile

Finally, I produced an A1 drawing of the large textile piece, and I am so pleased with the outcome! I settled for mixed-media because I wanted a tangible element to the study, not just for it to simply be a flat drawing. I used charcoal, soft pastels, acrylic paints, silk and silk paint, so it is very rich in colour, surface and textures. Even at this stage, I wanted to maintain an inventive approach in my materials, and  I feel like I accomplished this well.

The process of drawingimage

A1 mixed-media study of woven textile piece 

Textiles is clearly an area I want to immerse into, and out of all the projects, my strongest work is clearly in this one. I will still consider fashion design as an option too, but I know now that I have potential in studying materials and fabrics, and its’ capability for use in clothing, as an accessory, interiors or other everyday encounters.

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