Experimenting with different materials. Sample Piece.
The final piece for this exercise has been done with the above picture loosely in mind. I wanted to portray the dark calm water out to sea with the lighter colour high waves in the foreground. I also hoped to get a little sunlight shining on the foam.
We were asked to choose some materials from our previous sample and incorporate those items in a more exciting way to create a sample work. I started by dyeing my warp thread light blue so I minimised the line effect which was so prominent in my last piece.
From top to bottom:
The dark blue faux leather indicates where the sea meets the skyline. To give some colour variation, but wanting to maintain the smooth surface appearance, I included a couple more leather/suede look pieces from my collection.
To indicate the high waves I used the wide blue/purple nylon trim and added a few Ghiordes knots to give height. In front of the main wave the section really is a mix of foam and water so I used the folded blue/white cotton trim. The smaller lapping wave is shown by the strips of lightweight Lutradur with, again, a few Ghiordes knots to give the impression of height and movement. Finally the bubblewrap strips show the silvery water running up the beach.
Here and there, although barely visible on the picture, there are thin lines of tinfoil and a few strands of silver crochet cotton where the sun is shining on the foam.
I shaped the front edge in a curve as sea water never seems to run up the beach in a straight line.
I have used a combination of plain weaving, single and double Soumak, Egyptian knots and Ghiordes knots.
Using metallic crochet cotton as knots is not to be recommended as the smooth slippery surface of the yarn makes the knots continually loosen and come undone.
Using a high quality tinfoil works best as cheaper brands tend to snap.
The instructions in the manual are a little confusing. For Stage 3 it says (précis) ‘Use about half the warp exploring different effects. Weave at least 5cm of each idea before moving on to the next one.‘ This is the piece in my last post Experimental weaving Part 1.
We start with a 60cm loom (approx). 10cm at either end are taken up with wrapping around the frame, header cord and ruler/shed stick. That leaves around 40cm to work on. We are asked to use half of that length (= 20cm) and do at least 5cm of each technique. Simple math shows that with those constraints we can’t do more than 4 techniques in total.
The manual goes on to say ‘For the remainder of the warp develop a sample piece based on some of the effects that you’ve achieved which you feel are the most exciting.’ This is my piece above.
If I had followed the instructions my first piece would have had only 4 techniques and I would have had to use them all, but shuffle them around, to get a final sample. Within the instructions we have been given some terrific ideas for techniques, materials and stitch variations to try but, it would appear, not the space to do them. Hence the reason I split the exercise into two sections and warped up twice. I simply didn’t have the space to achieve the outcomes required by the course in one piece.