Sunday, May 21, 2017

Faces and More Warps

Sisyphus' Gardening Season started two weekends ago, although I haven't been back outside. It's cold and crisp unbelievably early this year and I am loving it.
A month ago, I made three tiny warps, probably 7 inches wide at 16EPI, though I might go 18EPI. Nothing to write home about, but cheerful colors meant for four shafts. I've been tempted to put one on the loom, even though I have no idea what sort of threading or overall look, but every time I go downstairs I remember the humiliation of that cashmere warp, and I stop. I've got to get over this, so I might try a very different look, whatever that may be.

At one point in April I remembered the free postcard thingie was due at the end of the month and I had to get my act together.
Typical of me, I had to make things harder the second time around and a little less fun; this lot took longer and I'm not as satisfied with the results. Harder how? Whenever I saw a face, I added more "wash" to make it "layered", even to obscure the faces. I also continued to experiment with yellows and yellow-greens, turning everybody looking sickly. Then, the paint I used this time, a Japanese student watercolor, was less transparent/translucent and behaved more like gouache, and I couldn't get a handle on it. Lastly, the postcards are different; these were smoother and less like the typical watercolor paper; at first I thought I'd have to collage, but the packaging said they are suitable for watercolor or ink. Again, the experience was so different from the previous lot, and I never got used to this pack. Half a dozen were so not working, I ran the cards under the tap! You may be able to spot a few better-blended, physically flat cards. At any rate, they were posted with a day left; some unfortunate souls are receiving more than they asked for.
These two are staying with me because I haven't figured out how to resolve them.

I painted my usual back-and-forth arc on the left card, then mono-printed, (I don't think it's a real verb, but you know, I placed a fresh card top of the wet card to let it pick up some paint,) a mirror image to the right. Then shuffled them back into the deck and applied washes, as well as picked up paint from several other cards. On the left card, I can't get over where the green paint showed up; nose, top lip and chin, although the eyes and forehead are a bit tricky. The right is a little harder to see, but there is the chin, and if you look at it too long, a profile of 45 pops up grumpy and defiant!

After these were done, I've sporadically kept working on Letter Journals, both in groups and one-on-ones with Tess, who continues to challenge me in a very good way.

I'm happy I'm completely over coveting mixed media products, but find LJs challenging at times as I try new techniques, look for fresh ideas, and try to improve my drawing skills. I must have enjoyed the postcards, too, because I bought some A5 size watercolor paper and painted backgrounds on some, then washed all of them. This must horrify those of you who know how to size paper properly, but my intention is to learn how 200 and 300gms paper react and absorb water. The plan is, because I couldn't find a suitable watercolor paper sketchbook in Auckland, I'm going to draw/paint/collage a whole bunch of faces, I think, on these and take it to the copy center and have them spiral-bound with covers. This is a long-term project, although it may morph into something else. I have been keeping up a-face-everyday project, too. Amazingly.

I've been hoping to get back to weaving and have liked a few more art/weaving pages and joined a few more weaving groups on Facebook, but even when I see nice things my heart doesn't sing/dance/tingle any more. (I sure study the selvedge, though.) It may be a good time to focus on techniques or learn new structures or dyeing, and maybe the tingle will come back. But, gosh, darn it, I thought weaving was my vocation; who would have thought one wonky warp would so quickly and completely wipe out the excitement. On the other hand, my rather clinical/detached is nothing news so maybe I just need to get back on the loom bench, yes?

And Donna, I haven't died under a pile of rubble in an earthquake just yet. I haven't been able to stay with one thought long enough to finish a post. :-D

8 comments:

  1. It sounds as though you might benefit from moving a loom to a different location for a while, so it doesn't have the same trigger!

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    1. A feng shui thing? Our house isn't big enough for it to move it to any other room, and the new washing machine is too wide now the dryer lives in the weaving part of the basement, and Ben's storing an extra car roof, (fabric, not metal,) there, too. But probably doable, by moving boxes of wool around, which, in the basement, aren't too numerous and smaller? Yes, doable. Maybe this afternoon!

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  2. Feng shui or just tricking the mind - I don't know, but it is the sort of thing that works on me (gullible soul that I am).

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    1. Well, it did. I put one warp on the 4-shaft today! Thanks, Cally.

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    2. Wow, that was quick! Well done you. I hope one step leads to another...

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    3. Fingers, toes, and eyes crossed, Cally. Thanks to you. BUT as usual, it wasn't straight forward. But then you wouldn't expect any less, (or more?) from me, would you?

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  3. Well, Meg, don't laugh at me !

    It occurred, once upon a time, when papers and tv spoke about an earthquake in NZ, and i was unquiet about you there, with no new posts on your blog at the moment !

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    1. No, not laughing at you. I appreciate every bit of interaction with you, Donna. And if there is an earthquake, my stash room and downstairs workshops are the worst places to be. In fact, without earthquake, I get hit on the body by free-flying cones of yarns anyway. Which is why I don't go dust either of the rooms unless/until it's so bad I can't stop sneezing. :->

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