Monthly Archives: October 2013
I’ve been working on my second piece for the Mayo Artists’ Show (the first one being the magpie). Originally I was going to do some origami but the paper weaving bug hasn’t finished with me yet. I’ve been working on a couple of ideas. The first one is a continuation of the paper weaving I started with in July. Here are some photos of the work in progress.
A wonderfully kind friend from Japan recently sent me some beautiful washi paper. I wanted to use this to make the snail pattern. However, I found that, as I’ve found before, less is more. When I wove two patterned pieces together the result was a mess (even without the camera shake):
Even before it’s woven, the washi looks fantastic:
Here’s the second idea I’ve started working on:
Since you last saw them, the magpie and wyrms have been causing trouble. Now that the dust has settled I think it was the frame that started it. When I put the original design in the frame it just didn’t look right at all. Maybe I should have bought a different frame but instead I tried a different background. And another. It’s been driving me crazy. I got so tired of it today that I just gave up and glued it. I can’t change it now. My daughter said it looked alright so I’ll just have to trust her. Most times when I work on something I go past the point where I can see it objectively any more. All I see are the details and not the overall effect. I suppose that’s why I ask for feedback here*. Do you experience this problem, dear reader?
I have a story about a flower but most of it is too personal to share. What I will say is that there was one day a few years ago that I felt I was being forced to do something major that I wasn’t sure was the right thing for me and my family. On that morning I had an overwhelming urge to go out into my garden. I felt like I couldn’t breathe in the house. I’m a keen gardener so I keep a close eye on what is happening in my garden. On this occasion however I found a single ornamental poppy in the courgette (zucchini) patch that I hadn’t noticed before. It was beautiful. I wish I had taken a better photo of it. It banished all my fears about what I was doing that day. It was like the Universe had smiled at me and told me that everything would be alright. I went through the day willingly and with a full heart. The flower fell to pieces the next day; it had done it’s job. Everything did turn out alright.
In case you haven’t been following this blog, I like knots. I crochet and I like to draw Celtic knots. I have also experimented with the type of knots found in Islamic art. Now, thanks to a couple of Internet friends, I have found two more styles of knotwork which are very similar to Celtic interlace. The first – Croatian interlace – evolved on the same continent. The second – mizuhiki (水引) – evolved in Japan.
It seems that wherever there are human innovators there are also complex knots.
I’ve been working on the background for my “magpie and wyrms” piece. The first background I had planned didn’t work. I was beating myself up about this when I stumbled upon a new idea. It was inspired by a programme about autumn colour in Japan which I was (mostly not) watching during the beating-up process. I would really appreciate any constructive feedback on this (the picture, not whether I should be beaten-up ;)):
I want something a bit vague and “messy” to balance the hard lines of the magpie and wyrms. The leaves look a little like flames to me, which ties in with the dragons, I guess. The magpie and wyrm pieces aren’t fixed yet so if you don’t like it I can try something else.
The thicker paper was harder to weave but I managed it eventually. The up-side is that the thicker paper means that the pieces stay locked into this knot shape without glue. The one I made with thinner paper falls apart quite easily.
I have been (slowly) working on my first piece for the Mayo Artist’s Show. I was going to do one of my usual 2-dimensional knots but then my earlier experimentation with paper-weaving took me in a slightly new direction. I thought it might be interesting to blog the work as it progresses. Here is the original old sketch that the new work will be based on:
The final piece is going to consist of the knotted wyrms and the bird. The dogs are okay but they don’t fit into the “story” of the picture. I think I want the bird to be a magpie so it might change slightly. The heads on the wyrms will be changing too. The first step was to transfer the knot to graph-paper and experiment with the wyrm heads:
The next step was to separate out the wyrms and divide the long wyrm to eliminate overlapping parts:
Now the wyrms can be woven:
Next I transferred the wyrms to better paper:
I messed up one of the long wyrm pieces so I had to do that one again:
That’s it so far.