Mixed media for textiles-Formative feedback for Assignment 4

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Formative feedback

Student name      Samantha Gilliam ScottStudent number                   517228
Course/Unit          Mixed MediaAssignment number          4
Type of tutorialVideoCall date 29th June 2020

Summary of tutorial discussion

Demonstration of technical and visual skills, quality of outcome, demonstration of creativity

Again you have submitted a committed body of work here Sam.

I can see you have taken the time to fully immerse yourself in this assignment, you have understood what has been asked of you and produced a good body of work. You answer what is required of you but also take your ideas further, researching different designers and looking at other techniques that can develop your work on. Sam, you should be pleased with what you have produced, you have shown some really good experimentation of techniques, materials and processes. There is a good quality in the skill of the techniques, you have taken time to research this and improve where you can. For example the good quality press and also finding out about tetrapack.

You have presented your work well. Thank you for the video, it has really brought your work to life ! It gives me an idea of the scale of your work, the colours are clearer and I can see the texture and details on the prints. It is a real positive to show all this, well done.

The colour in your prints in the video did seem better than in the static shots, i think this was because i could see more tones and details, this breaks the colour up a bit and gives it more depth. The scooter and the landscape with the silver leaf were more successful in the video. I still feel though that on the whole your use of colour in the painting on glass and landscapes is not as sophisticated as your handle of texture and pattern within print. Working within a tonal palette worked better for you, for example the John Ross style picture and the pebbles.

I didn’t really enjoy the painting on glass. I think maybe if I tried an abstract painting it could have worked better. The brief said choose 5 images to replicate on glass so I chose 5 photos I had taken. The colours were a bit brash, I only had primary colours and black and white so had to mix my own colours so it was hard to get the correct colour. I didn’t feel this exercise was particularly successful but trying the technique was new to me so I am glad I was able to play around with it. -Sam

The development of the ladies was successful , the original line drawn prints are beautiful and the pick up from the pressure of the hand ( dappled areas) really adds to the quality of the figure. You then developed these using text and also silhouette very successfully and confidently ( for me the least successful was the painted figure in the text, the colour and techniques didn’t sit so well together ) 

Totally agree that the painted figure within the text did not work, but I felt it was worth experimenting with.– Sam

It was great to see you again looking back to past projects and bringing ideas forward in new ways. This is a sophisticated development of ideas.

The development of the pebbles also worked very well, you produced some interesting prints here. Be careful not to be too “finished” with your samples, I think you have such a free experimental style, don’t over perfect an idea.

You could have played with scale a bit more, from what I can see most of your prints are roughly the same size? The intensity of the small scale motifs repeated in the calotype was an exciting relief.

I did mainly work in A4 size for the monoprinting but the nudes were done at A5. I also had varying size plates for the collographs, A4, A5 and smaller but I agree, I could have experimented a bit more.-Sam

Context, reflective thinking, critical thinking, analysis – 

You are writing well in your learning log. Your work is presented well here. 

The video worked well ( pls don’t turn the camera half way through though ! ;-))

Please add thumbnails of the artists that you also looked at, I am interested to see what you are looking at.

I have gone back and added some thumbnails of the other artists I looked at-Sam

Well done, I look forward to your next assignment.

Tutor nameJenny Udale
Date29th June 2020
Next assignment due7th sept 2020

Textiles 1: Mixed media for textiles Part 4 mono and collotype printing: Recording outcomes

Recording outcomes

  • Did you find the artists influenced the direction you took? If so how did this transpire? 

I liked the abstract imagery of Brenda Harthill’s work and her use of gold and silver leaf and the detail of her textures. I did some of my collograph prints intuitively, letting the materials lead me rather than working from drawings to try and achieve this type of texture orientated feel. For example, the forest print and the trio print of flowers, rocks and sky was mainly concerned with creating as much texture as I could, applied in a semi abstract manner.

I was inspired by Henri Matisse for his monoprints of the female form and Paul Gauguin for his technique of trace monotype, which led me to doing the series of curvy ladies monotypes.

  • Discuss how the printmaking went for you. Was there anything you particularly enjoyed or anything that particularly challenged you?

I enjoyed the trace monotypes or back drawings. They were quick and simple but the quality of line and the unpredictable pickup of excess ink created really strong prints. A simple quick sketch on the back of the paper created a print that looked like it had been well planned out and executed rather than a 2 minute sketch. The challenging thing for me was remembering to reverse the image- in most cases it just didn’t happen, I am not sure why I had such a problem remembering to do it. Most prints came out ok anyway but a few would have been greatly improved by reversing the image first.

Also the collograph plates made from tetra packaging, mount board and wallpaper which I mixed and matched really excited me. The plates printed the detail so well using the intaglio method. I know that the course material asked for collaged plates and relief printing but I found my collaged plates printed nowhere near as well as using the intaglio method.

  • How well did you compose and craft your prints?

A lot of consideration went into the nude lady with text prints. Placements and knowledge of the use of stencils and masks were key to achieving the prints I wanted. Also with the mix and match loose collograph plates, composition was very important for creating a well-balanced print, in colour and structure.

  • How would you describe your use of colour?

For the test plates in both projects I stuck with black or blue, my thoughts being that detail would show up better with these darker colours. For ex 2 project 1, drawing on the printing plate, I mixed my colours to match the photos I was working from. The trace monotype curvy ladies started in blue as that was the colour ink I had left on the plate. I then switched to red as red and white were dominant colours in MMT2 wrapping and joining when I initially looked at body shaming by wrapping dolls. The red, white and black prints of the nudes with the text created strong, dynamic images. The collograph print colours were sensitive to the theme of the image, for example the stones were a mix of greys and grey blue. The beach stone print was printed with the colours of sand, rock and sea. The shore find prints were inked separately allowing for many colour choices, but, I still used colours that worked well with each other.

  • Did you come up with any ideas that you may want to develop in the future?

Yes. I can see a wall hanging maybe with panels of the different curvy girls, some positive and some negative images, using the stencils and masks. Taking this further I could use the negative prints and have negative, body shaming words on them and the positive prints could have kind, affirmative words on them. Maybe it could be double sided so one side was positive and one side negative.

I also liked the mix and match collograph plates. These could be used to create a repeating pattern for fabric maybe.

  • Do you have any ideas about how to use these printing methods in combination with the other sample making exercises in this course?

I am curious if I could collograph on fabric- whether the detail would show up enough. Also if I could collograph onto paper clay or air dry clay to create blind embossing, but I am unsure in what context this would be.

  • How did you use drawing within this part of the course?

I did not use drawing all that much. Some of the first prints from project one had interesting details that I then drew in my sketchbook, for example, the fishing net and the cross cut corrugated card. I drew from the photos I used for the drawing onto the plate exercise so that I had a template underneath the glass to follow. I also used drawing to create the 4 nudes I used for the painting on the plate exercise and the stencil exercise. For some of the exercises I preferred to work intuitively with the materials rather than working from a drawing, placing objects, papers and gels directly onto the plate and arranging them until I was satisfied with the composition. I drew freehand straight onto the back of the paper for the trace monotypes and I liked the spontaneity of the line and the little corrections showing up. In hindsight, I may have been better off drawing my ladies first so that I could then reverse the image.

  • Would you consider using printing to develop ideas in your sketchbook?

Yes, definitely. I have used lino cut prints in my ATV sketchbooks a couple of times. I also created coloured, textured pages to use for collage by using the Gelli plate to create monoprints which I then cut up.

Textiles 1: Mixed media for textiles Part 4: Mono and collotype printing Project 2: Collotype printing

With collograph the inking can either be relief or intaglio or you can combine the two. Relief is when you ink and print the surface of the plate, either burnishing by hand or by rolling through a press. Intaglio is when a print is made by inking the recessed areas of the plate, so you would apply the ink really well ensuring you get in all the lines and layers and then you wipe off the surface layer of ink, just leaving ink in the recesses. You can print intaglio by hand but much better results are achieved by using a press as more pressure can be applied.

Collograph plates can be made from mount board which is then cut into, revealing different layers to print from. Or, it can be made by collaging items onto a piece of card and printing the textures from those objects. Or, you can combine both methods.

I had tried collograph in the past and not had good results as I didnt have a press. So, I bought myself a X-cut X-press die cutting machine to use as a print press. There are lots of videos on YouTube about using this machine as a press which I found very useful to watch.

X-cut X-press

Although this video is for using the X-cut with a lino cut it gives good guidance for how to use the machine as a press https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gq6rngtERAs&list=PLgR8qsF00yRHZFKAnS9KUvbcrK8PM97QL&index=3&t=0s

Ex 1 Create a collage block

Hessian/jute string, cotton thread, organza,tulle, fishing net, lace, muslin,hessian,stiff mesh and onion net test plate 1
clean, clear defined prints- Relief print 1
Crumpled tissue paper, corrugated card, textured sticky back vinyl, Ikea drawer liner, bubble wrap, skeleton leaves, pencil shavings, rice, lentils, spaghetti test plate 2
clear, defined print- Relief print 2
Sandpaper, ceramic stucco, acrylic modelling paste,X-panda print,dried hydrainga flowers,torn card,tin foil and textured card test plate 3
Clear, defined print-Relief print 3
Textured card test plate 4
Not as clear as other test plates but the texture has shown up- Relief print 4

I did all the test plates as relief prints. I got some good, strong prints, especially from the materials on plate 1 and the dried rice, lentils and spagheti on plate 2. What I really liked about plate 2 was the embossed markings left by the dried pasta and rice on the extra paper I had laid down to collect any excess ink.

I am going to try and keep the embossed image in mind as a technique to try out and maybe combine with other collograph prints in the other exercises. I enjoyed experimenting with found objects and materials for this exercise, finding things I may not have though off for using with a collograph.

I ran out of PVA glue pretty early on and due to Covid-19 I could not find some anywhere- I think parents were going craft mad to keep their kids entertained during lockdown. I managed to buy some Liquitex gloss medium and varnish and that seemed to work just as well, it was just much more expensive!

Ex 2 Polyfilla block

Polyfilla test plate 1 – using embossing tools, sculpting tools, credit card, bubble wrap and wire brush to create texture
Polyfilla relief print 1- I wasnt that pleased with the results, there is texture there but it is quite subtle
Test plates using, modelling paste, gesso, ceramic stucco and stencils
Ceramic stucco through stencil- really good result, good detail
Modelling paste through stencils- again, good quality prints, lots of detail
Ceramic stucco through stencil, nice, detailed print
Modelling paste with rubber stamps stamped into it for texture- good prints, not as detailed as through the stencils

The polyfilla I used on the first test plate was an old tube with just a little left in it. It was quite thick. It was easy to put texture into it but I found it didn’t print very well- this might have been because I built the layers too high and they were not all the same height so when it went through the press only the highest areas printed well.

I had modelling paste, ceramic stucco and gesso and some Ronseal filler (much thinner and smoother) so I combined those materials with stencils to make test plates. They were all relief printed but they all came out really well- very defined and clear and showing lots of texture.

Ex 3 Collotype collage prints

Plate 1- seascape- organza, tissue paper, corrugated card, textured card stock, tin foil, tulle, brown parcel paper
Based on this photo

Plate 1- I forgot to reverse the image-again. I drew out the image onto cardstock then traced it so i had a template to cut out the materials.

Plate 1- best print Relief method

I used Water based printing inks. I mixed them to get the colours I wanted.I printed this plate 4 times , twice on cardstock and twice on Snowdon printing paper (dampened). Both times the 1st print had too much ink so detail was lost. The 2nd (ghost) print both times came out better. I did expect a lot more detail to show up so was a little disappointed with this plate.

Plate 2- polyfiller, modelling paste and gesso
Plate 2- best print relief method

Plate 2 was polyfiller and modelling paste. I found this one to have texture. The first print was still a bit heavy with ink but detail did show up. The ghost print showed up the texture really well. I did get a halo effect around the rocks- this happens when you have different heights on the plate but I quite like the effect.

Plate 3- corrugated card cut into
Plate 3- best print relief method

Plate 3- corrugated card cut into with a craft knife. 1st print was heavy on the pate, ghost print was better. A lot of detail has shown up but I am not keen on the print, it looks a bit childish.

Plate 4- textured wallpaper, tulle, scrim, hydrangea petals
Plate 4-Intaglio method

For the 4th plate I used the Intaglio method. I applied all the ink and then wiped areas away. I found this gave a much better level of detail and texture. I like the wallpaper I used on the tree trunks as it looks like bark. I did this plate freehand with no sketch, I wanted to be a bit more intuitive with the materials. I was going for a sort of ethereal forest scene.

Although the course says to do 4 prints I felt I was not finished experimenting. The prints I had done are ok, but I really felt I wanted to play some more with different techniques to really get a handle on the subject. I watched some videos and this is when I came across Sally Hirst’s collagraph online workshops. In the ones I watched she just uses different gel mediums to create the plates, so I thought I would have a go.


Top left plate-clear gloss medium, gesso, modeling paste with thick embossing powder. Bottom left plate-acrylic wax, modelling paste, ronseal smooth finish filler. Both abstract plates, free hand without a sketch

print from bottom left plate above. It was not a good print so I added some gold leaf (inspired by Brenda Hartill) to try and make it better. Not sure it works!
Bembridge beach photo
ceramic stucco, polyfilla, modelling paste and gel medium through a stencil. First print a bit heavy on the ink.
Intaglio method- added silver leaf to the sea to highlight. Ghost print really picks up the detail of the pebbles on the foreshore
modelling paste and ceramic stucco on mountboard
Intaglio method- silver leaf added
Seascape with textured wallpaper collaged onto plate
2 prints from above plate- intaglio method
Detail from prints

Really like how the textured wallpaper has printed as so much texture has been achieved. Some places are a little blurry- I found the dampened watercolour paper used tended to make the inks bleed a little no matter how much I blotted it.

3 separate plates made to print together- top and middle wallpaper collage, bottom dried flowers and seed heads
The inked plate, 2 prints-intaglio method- the bottom one has really bled on the paper, I used the same watercolour paper as above
Detail of above print
Detail of above print

The watercolour paper bled badly again, I soaked it for a shorter time and blotted with tea towels but it just seems to hold the water and make the inks bleed out. I do like the idea of making smaller plates and then mix and matching them to print a trio.

At this point I found the Handprinted UK blog and they had an article on Tetra pack collographs which really interested me. I went back through some of my sketchbooks (Assignment 5 ATV and my personal ‘pebbles’ sketchbook) for inspiration and decided to have a go. I combined the tetra pack plates with mount board ones and wallpaper ones to get a good range of textures. I made them all as single, loose plates so they could be mixed and matched to print.

Pebbles sketchbook inspiration
ATV 5 sketchbook inspiration
Separate collagraph plates from tetra packaging (top) mount board (middle) and wallpaper (bottom)
Pebble stack 1 -wallpaper
pebble stack 2 mountboard
pebbles wallpaper and mountboard
pebble ring 1 mountboard
pebble ring 2 mount board
pebble detail
shore finds 1 tetra pack, mount board and wallpaper
shore finds 2 tetra pack, mount board and wallpaper
shore finds 3 tetra pack, mount board and wallpaper
shore finds 4 tetra pack, mount board and wallpaper
shore finds 5 tetra pack, mount board and wallpaper
Shore finds detail

I had so much fun with these! Each piece is small so doesn’t take long to make and you can mix and match them. The tetra packaging (I used the inside of a milk carton) is just so easy. I drew my shape on it, cut it out and added detail by scoring and cutting away layers. The quality and detail when its printed is really clear and precise. The mount board also worked extremely well- I used the same technique as for the tetra packaging. The wallpaper ones were cut to shape and then mounted on card (I used easter egg boxes) and cut out again- this was just to give them a bit of extra stability.

Shore finds 5 with silver leaf on pebble, mounted and framed
Silver leaf added to pebbles
silver leaf detail
silver leaf detail


I learnt so much on this project. Due to the Covid-19 virus a lot of amazing artists were posting online workshops, either for free or greatly reduced. Sally Hirst, Carol Nunn, Handprinted UK are just a few I found really informative for this part of the course. I feel I soaked up so much knowledge and experimented fully with a huge range of techniques. My collaged collagraphs didn’t come out as well as I expected at the beginning- too much ink, layers too high but once I started developing new techniques and materials I found the quality of prints got better. The paper also mattered- the watercolour paper was 180gsm, but even if I just dipped it in and out of the water quickly, it still retained too much and then the pressure from the press made the ink bleed out past the plate. 160gsm silky touch office card worked well without wetting. Snowdon printing paper 300gsm worked well taking the print when damp but while drying it tended to distort and curl up a bit.

The X-cut X-press was amazing. There is no way I could have got such good, detailed prints by hand burnishing so I am glad I bought it. Experimenting with different pressures gave differing results. I liked a slight indentation around the tetra pack plates and the mountboard and wallpaper and for blind embossing I used as high a pressure as I could to get deep impressions of the words from the plate.

Textiles 1: Mixed media for textiles Part 4 Mono and collotype printing Project 1- Monoprinting EX1-4

Monoprinting Ex 1 Mark making

Papers used (limited due to Coronavirus lockdown)

  • Printer paper
  • Black card
  • White card
  • Deli paper
  • Brown parcel paper
  • Handmade paper

Mark making tools used

  • Rubber tipped sculpting tools
  • Pronged sculpting tools
  • Plastic combs with different edges (made for Gelli printing)
  • Cotton buds
  • Paintbrushes- soft and hard for different effects
  • Kitchen towel (for wiping method)
  • Store card edge
  • Knitting needles
  • Embossing tools
  • Plastic straws
  • Lollipop sticks
  • Empty sellotape reels

Materials used for pattern and texture

  • Bubble wrap
  • Lace
  • Hessian
  • cheesecloth/muslin
  • Onion net
  • Fishing net
  • Tulle
  • Wire wool
  • Leaves
  • Corrugated card

To begin I used a glass plate and Schmincke aqua Linoldruck printing inks. I had some good results but I found that the finer detail did not transfer to the paper well- the lace and fine lines I made using a small bottle brush did not come out well on the print.

Ex 1 printing ink on glass plate-bubble wrap, mesh, sculpting tools

I switched to using a Gelli plate and acrylic paint. This created much more texture and pattern showing up on the print, particularly the fishing net, lace, hessian and cross cut corrugated card packaging.

Lace, mesh, hessian and fishing net
Fishing net- positive and negative monoprint
pen drawing of the fishing net monotype
Empty sellotape reel monoprint and drawing from monoprint
Paintings of corrugated card monotype and fishing net monotype

Some other samples

Plastic combs, sculpting tools, mesh, net, wire wool
net, sculpting tools, leaves

The cross cut corrugated card image has picked up lots of 3D texture and looks like a cyanotype.

cross cut corrugated card packaging monoprint and pen drawing

There was not really a noticeable difference in quality of print using different papers but I did like the delicacy of printing on tissue paper. By crumpling up the tissue paper first it added even more texture to the print.

In this exercise I also tried Dendritic printing- placing paint on one sheet of glass and then laying another sheet of glass on top. When seperated you are left with a beautiful veiny type pattern, a bit like plant roots. You can take 2 prints, one from each glass print. There is no real control over how the paint will spread so each print is a surprise.

Dendritic printing- I think the end one looks like 2 angels

Conclusions for ex 1

  • Very different results between the glass plate and printing inks and the Gelli plate and acrylic paints. Much more detail and texture with the gelli plate and paint. Not sure why, maybe because you can press harder on the Gelli plate to get a clearer print?

Project one Monoprinting ex 2– Drawing onto the printing plate

I decided to choose some of my own photos to make the sketches from for this exercise. I had no simple compositions in my sketchbook as this was only exercise 2 (I checked with my tutor that this would be ok). I chose images that I thought would translate well with this method, either due to colour, texture or composition.

My Dads scooter- chosen for the colours
Hawthorn tree, Culver Down- chosen for the composition
Limpets in devon-Image by my sister (I have permission to use)-chosen for the different textures
Bembridge beach- chosen for composition and texture
Goddess statue in my garden- chosen for colour and the contrast of stone and flowers

I sketched my images and placed them under the glass plate so I had a template, although I did keep forgetting to reverse my images. Some it didn’t matter but others would have been better if they had been reversed.

(Glass plate on left) Dads scooter- 1st print and ghost print

I started with using the glass plate with printing inks, expecting to switch to the Gelli plate if the prints were not good, but I got good results with the glass.

(Glass plate on left) Hawthorn tree-1st print- has not shown up as much texture as I thought

I was worried that the inks would dry before I could pull the print, but, even when they looked like they had dried the ink still transferred to the paper.

(Glass plate on left) Limpets- really pleased with the colour and texture of this print
This is the ghost print of the limpet print worked back into with watercolour pencil. I feel this technique has worked really well to create a useable print from a faint ghost print

The first couple of drawings I did I used too much ink so some detail was lost, but did show up in the ghost print pulled.

(Glass plate on left) Bembridge beach- forgot to reverse image so looks a little strange, pleased with the texture of the seaweed coloured rocks

I used a variety of tools to make marks just like in ex 1.

I only had white, black, yellow, blue and magenta inks but I managed to mix all the colours I needed.

(Glass plate on left) Goddess statue -not as much texture as I would have liked, but happy with the colours

After I had done my 5 sketches I still had inks left on my palette so thought I would try some prints using inspiration and techniques from Degas and John Ross. I did this freestyle on the glass plate. I used the wiping method to produce 2 prints in the style of Degas- the ballerina print worked really well, the print shows up detail that just wasn’t seen on the glass plate before pulling the print. Again though, I forgot to reverse the image so one of the legs looks a bit funny. The face of the ballerina looks really good and the ruffled net skirt has real texture and depth to it. 

Really pleased with the depth of this print, one leg looks funny as I forgot to reverse the image as I drew it free hand straight onto the glass plate

The other Degas inspired print did not come out as well, there is not enough detail.

Lost a lot of the detail in the pulled print
In the style of John Ross- lots of texture used and most of it showed up on the print

Conclusions for Ex 2

I enjoyed this exercise but I did find that I spent a long time creating texture on the plate only to find that once printed, a lot of that texture was lost. I think that some techniques worked better than others for texture. The wiping method I used on the Degas style ballerina worked extremely well and gave the print a depth that could not be seen on the plate before printing.

Project one ex 3 Back drawing

I did some mark making exercises first using the tools listed above. I managed to achieve lots of different marks and textures. I like the subtlety of the excess ink that transfers from the plate and the blurry/smudged lines made. I did these back drawings freehand and found I quite liked the spontaneity of the lines and marks created. I did a few drawings in the style of Paul Klee and some nudes in the style of Matisse- very free flowing and organic. 

Various mark making tools-back drawing
Back drawing

While working on this exercise and looking at Matisse images, I came across the work of Christianne Knops. She is a mixed media artist from the Netherlands. Although her works are not prints her style lends itself well to monoprinting, back drawing and stencils. Her large ladies are a mix of colours with black outlines that are not always consistent with the shape of the body- it’s like the outlines can not contain the curves and colour of the nudes. This could translate well to a monoprint background with a trace monotype or back drawing of a nude, or even using stencils and masks to block out the shape of the nude. I was drawn to her work because of the curvy nudes as I feel this could link back to my body shaming work from mmt 2 and the bulging works from mmt3.

Copines en rouge- Christianne Knops
Assise en blanc -Christianne Knops

Images from https://christianneknops.com/portfolio/

I decided to sketch out some large, curvy nudes and use these as templates for painting on the glass plate.I had already done this exercise but wanted to go back to it to try out my curvy ladies. Again, I kept forgetting to reverse the image but overall they came out well.

Painting on the glass plate (ex 2) Nudes- kept forgetting to reverse the image but pleased with images (left side is the glass plate)

I then used the sketches of my nudes to create back drawings on paper, card and cotton fabric. The first one I did on fabric I decided to use acrylic paint and fabric medium so I could fix the print, making it washable. This did not work well. The cotton picked up a lot of the paint, making the traced drawing not that visible. I went back to normal printing inks- they are water based inks so although ok for experimenting, if I wanted something permanent on fabric I would have to rethink what I could use. The inks came out really well on the cotton. The lines are well defined but still have that lovely smudged quality and here and there the cotton has picked up the excess dotting of the ink. I like the starkness of the black ink on white cotton.

Back drawing on cotton squares- really love how the images have come out so well with that lovely soft fuzzy line
Back drawing-red curvy ladies on paper and card- again, I was drawing these freehand directly onto the paper and so kept forgetting to reverse the image
Back drawing-blue curvy ladies on paper and card-again, I was drawing these freehand directly onto the paper and so kept forgetting to reverse the image

Conclussions for Ex 3

I really like the trace monotypes of red and blue curvy ladies- I feel that these could become a series of their own. I really enjoy the fuzzy line, the spontaneity of the line (from drawing freehand directly onto the back of the paper without planning the image out first) and the excess ink that is transferred to the images-sometimes a little, sometimes a lot. I found it exciting pulling the print not quite knowing what to expect. I like the change from drawing to print- this has to be one of the easiest and quickest methods to create a printed image.

 Ideas for development: I want to see if I can incorporate red text like the text sewed onto the cotton strips that I wrapped the Barbie doll in.

Project one ex 4 working with stencils

I decided to use the curvy ladies I had drawn to create stencils and masks for this exercise. I used the Gelli plate rather than the glass plate as I was running out of printing inks but had plenty of acrylic paint.

Stencils and masks of the curvy ladies and a stamping plate

I drew the ladies onto thin cardstock and then cut them out, ensuring I kept the remaining card intact so I could use it as a mask. In this way I could create both negative and positive images.

Positive and negative use of stencils and masks, word stamping plate and combining with trace monotype

I decided to see if I could create some text for backgrounds. I was going to draw words out and then cut them out (wish I still had my Cricut die cutting machine as this would have cut out the words easily leaving me with a stencil to use). I felt that if I cut the words out by hand they wouldn’t give a clean impression so I decided to make a stamp block of words that I would press into the painted surface of the Gelli plate leaving a clear print behind that could be transferred to the paper or fabric. I used chipboard and foam letters on an A4 piece of card. This worked extremely well and I got good, clear printed text. I layered the stamped up surface with either a stencil to get a curvy girl image filled with text, or the mask, which gave me a blank curvy girl with the text surrounding her. I combined some of the trace monotypes and the painted on glass nudes I had already made and used the masks and stencils to create new images with text. This method worked really well and I feel I got some really good, defined prints. To develop this idea further, once the fabric prints were dry, I free motion stitched around the blank, nude, images, filling in the details. This added a little more impact to the printed fabrics. 

trace monotype combined with mask and mono printed word stamp
mono printed word stamp combined with trace monotypes and stencils and masks
curvy ladies from ex 2 (painting onto the glass plate) combined with monoprinted word stamp and stencils and masks
Curvy ladies monoprinted onto a length of cotton
Trace monotypes on cotton combined with mono printed word stamp, stencils and masks and then free motion machine stitched
Trace monotypes on cotton combined with mono printed word stamp, stencils and masks and then free motion machine stitched
Trace monotypes on cotton combined with mono printed word stamp, stencils and masks and then free motion machine stitched

The next images should really be with the collograph project but as they are on the theme of my curvy ladies I have included them here. I wanted to experiment a bit more with type combined with the curvy ladies but in a more subtle way. I made another word plate, this time reversed so I could blind emboss it on my X-cut X-press. This worked well and gave clear embossed words. I tried embossing some of the cardboard lady stencils from the monoprinting and although this worked there was just an outline, no details.

Blind Embossed words and blind embossed nude

I decided to re-cut the stencils and add some scoring to give detail. I then inked them up and laid them on top of the blind embossed words and put them through my press. The results are very pleasing- there is still a subtly but the red ink I used also gives the prints some impact. I like the blind embossed words, to me they represent words that people might think when they see me, words used to judge me because of my size are not always said out loud, they are normally said with a look.

Blind Embossed words with collograph nude

Ideas for development: I can see a wall hanging maybe with panels of the different curvy girls, some positive and some negative. Taking this further I could use the negative prints and have negative, body shaming words on them and the positive prints could have kind, affirmative words on them. 

Ex 4 conclusion

I found this last exercise was great for combining lots of techniques. I have used mono printing a lot in the past so am quite used to using masks and stencils, normally commercially bought ones, so I had such fun making and combining the stencils with the word stamp plate I made. I used prints created in the 2 of the other exercises (back drawing and painting on glass plate) to take this exercise a step further. I also created the word stamp to use with the mono prints. Masking areas off to get the text where I wanted it and using the stencils of the curvy ladies created some quite striking images which I feel have a lot of scope for development.

I found no real difference in quality of print based on paper used but did find differences with inks and acrylic paints on the different surfaces. Acrylic paint on the Gelli plate worked better for detail in the first exercise and for the stenciling exercise. Ink on glass worked really well for the trace monotypes.

Textiles 1: Mixed media for textiles Part Four: Mono and collotype printing: Artist Research

Brenda Hartill

  • Depth and expression of colour is beautiful. The colours in her Blue and silver icons work, looks almost as if she has used the inside of paula shells to create with. She manages to capture that iridescent shimmer and sheen really well.
  • The addition of silver or gold leaf, highlights the images well and adds a richness and touch of magic to the prints.
  • Abstract imagery inspired by light, landscapes and organic forms. To me, her work seemed quite ethereal and elemental. Her images spoke to me on a spiritual level, leaving me filled with a wonder and sense of calm.
  • She explores and expresses texture and pattern well and I really wanted to know more about her process- how she creates that pattern, how she mixes her colours to create that beautiful sheen and texture.
  • She also uses collograph, etching, collage and embossing.
  • One of her pieces ‘Summers End’ looked like an art quilt piece, heavily stitched with rich threads. I had to look to see if it was fabric but it is an embossed watercolour. 
  • To me, her works have depth, vivid colour and excitement, not the normal style of collograph I have seen.
Brenda Hartill Blue and silver Icons work

Images from www.brendahartill.com

Laurie Rudling

  • I found a lot of his images, especially the etchings, very flat after looking at Hartills work.
  • There is a lot of very fine detail in the works but some of his colours are very muted. I’m not sure he achieves the depth of colour and texture seen in Hartills work.
  • He uses layering and overlapping to good effect, E.G. in the print ‘Hamnavoe’ the houses are overprinted in some areas which makes it appear there are more houses than there actually are.
  • There is more energy in his prints of birds, especially ‘Enough to make a summer’. The shadowing lines create movement across the print.
  • He takes inspiration from the built environment and natural landscape. His architectural prints have very fine detail but still appear quite flat to me. Obviously a very talented artist to create such intricate work, but in comparison to Hartill’s work, his work just didn’t come alive for me.
Enough to make a summer Laurie Rudling
Hamnavoe by Laurie Rudling

Images from https://www.laurierudling.co.uk/

John Ross

  • Married to Clare Romano, they are both printmakers who have worked on a lot of art for books and other projects together. This made it quite difficult to distinguish their work from one another, as they tend to get credited together.
  • John’s work looks to be quite structural and architectural whereas Clare’s work has a more childlike quality to it- not in terms of technique but in subject-simplified images of people and children.
  • They both did works inspired by the grand canyon. Clare’s work of this subject is a little more abstract and brighter in colour. John’s work has more realism and a lot of texture and his colours are a little more muted.
Gorge John Ross
Canyon floor John Ross

Images from https://www.1stdibs.com/art/prints-works-on-paper/landscape-prints-works-on-paper/john-ross-canyon-floor/id-a_1527153/?utm_source=pinterest&utm_medium=cpc

Paul Klee

  • Klee had many different styles- expressionism, surrealism, cubism and abstract. He was heavily influenced to experiment with colours by artist August Macke.
  • I could not find much information about his printing methods.
  • Some of his works look like other artists’ works, E.g I could tell which works had been inspired by Kandinksky.
  • I found it hard to be inspired by his work as he doesn’t really have his own style, something that would set him apart from other artists.
  • He moves through different art movements being inspired by different artists of those movements.
  • His portraits are abstract, overly simplified. He uses trace monotype and then works back into the prints afterwards, adding more depth and detail.
Angel from the Star
by Paul Klee

Images from artnet.com and https://www.guggenheim.org/blogs/findings/prints-paul-klee

Edgar Degas

  • He produced around 400 monoprints- I did not know that he used printing as one of his techniques, I was only really aware of some of his paintings, so it was nice to discover this.
  • He used scraping, brushing, finger painting, wiping and drawing onto the plate to create textures and a sense of light.
  • He normally worked in black ink which gives a sense of atmosphere and drama to his works. They can be quite intense with small highlights created using the above techniques to create the illusion of light.
  • He printed ghost prints and worked back into them with colour, normally pastels.
  • Although these works are not detailed, the use of texture and tone and the way he created light, convey a level of detail that’s not really there.
Degas monotype
Degas monotype

Images from https://www.pegasusart.co.uk/blog/workshop-news/when-degas-fell-in-love-with-monotype-printing/

Henri Matisse

  • Considered to be one of the greatest and diverse printmakers (according to Christies website)
  • He uses line well to capture body images that have a flow and fluidity to them
  • He uses simple, abstract designs
  • His earlier paintings are much more detailed than his monotypes. With the monotypes he tends to keep with simple flowing lines, a suggestion of image in some cases.
  • His work with printmaking and cutouts, or painting with scissors as he called it, is much freer and stylistic.
  • He uses contrast well, white lines on black, black lines on white, to create a greater impact.
  • I like the simplicity of his lines and lack of detail, he manages to convey body form very well with what sometimes looks like one continuous line.
Matisse monotypes
Matisse monotypes

Images from https://www.moma.org/explore/inside_out/2015/01/29/matisses-monotypes-an-unexpected-installation/

Paul Gauguin

  •  He was very experimental in his work and is said to have developed the technique called trace monotype which were oil transfer drawings. 
  • Scientists have analysed his prints to see how they were made. Their conclusion seems to be that he re-used the inking plate without removing previous marks, so they showed up on subsequent prints, adding a layer of depth and intrigue to his work.
  • He combined myths and legends from different cultures to create some of his trace monoprints.
  • With his monotypes he added different tones to the original print by inking up another sheet with olive ink and placing the print face down on top and applying selective pressure to where he wanted extra depth, to transfer the new colour of ink on top. This gave some earthy tones to his work. 
  • His works like this are double sided- the side where he drew the image while on the inking plate and then the transfer print on the other side.
  • I like the primitive subject matter in some of these monotypes and the detailed yet simple drawings. They are very different from the style of his paintings.
Tahitian Woman with Evil Spirit 1900 oil transfer drawing Gauguin

Images from https://www.moma.org/explore/inside_out/2014/04/16/metamorphoses-paul-gauguins-oil-transfer-drawings/

Other artists I found inspiring

Susan Bowers http://trace-marks.blogspot.com/

Work by Susan Bowers
Work by Susan Bowers

Kim Major-George  https://www.majorgeorge.co.uk/gallery/

Work by Kim Major George
Work by Kim Major George

Sally Hirst- excellent free (until the end of June 2020) workshops on her youtube channel collographs, monoprinting etc   http://www.sallyhirst.co.uk/

Work by Sally Hirst

My printing techniques Pinterest board  (for all types of printing, workshops, tutorials and inspiration  https://www.pinterest.co.uk/lunaiow/oca-printing-techniques/

Tutor feedback for MMT 3

Logo and name_RGB.jpg

Formative feedback

Student name      Samantha Gilliam scottStudent number                   519691
Course/Unit          Mixed MediaAssignment number          3
Type of tutorialVideoCall date 1st may 2020

Summary of tutorial discussion

Demonstration of technical and visual skills, quality of outcome, demonstration of creativity

You have shown a very nicely presented body of work here Sam, you have worked through the exercises and techniques in a creative way. You have successfully tried a variety of ideas looking at small textured pieces to larger simpler forms. Your commitment and focus is admirable considering these difficult times, well done.

It is very good to see you draw with purpose throughout the assignment, you draw to show development, to explore your ideas and to document your work.  

Your initial clay samples show a good exploration of a variety of surfaces. The way you have presented them is very clean and clear without distraction so we can easily compare the samples . You then go on to press the surface of balls which allows us to see how the imprints work in 3D. 

You have looked back to past projects and thought how to integrate successfully your stitch work. I enjoyed your explanation of why you treated the front and back of your concrete hole sample differently in relation to the wrappings. 

You have worked through the assignments successfully but you have also looked back at your ideas to incorporate and progress in the next exercises. This shows how you can develop your ideas. For example using the cast of the seedheads to create a very sensitive latex sample. I would love to see how you would use the clay rubbings in a future exercise?

You show your thought processes well and allow yourself to experiment and play with things that have not worked to create new ideas, this is a sophisticated way of working ( stacking of the broken pieces to create new ideas) 

You filmed your samples very well, the concrete and stitched samples worked so much better in motion than static in the photographs. I really wanted to pick them and touch them as you were doing. I was interested to see how you developed these samples as mini landscapes. You embellished them without “ decorating”, you considered texture, color, and placement. It was good to see you increase the scale of these samples too. 

The white bowl was developed well, you considered the tactile qualities of the yarn and clay and how they work together to complement and enhance each other. The final one was the most successful as it was more organic than the over vessels you trialled. 

You developed 3 ideas well with quite different outcomes but they feel like they sit together as a body of work as they show sensitivity to scale, materials and textures. 

Context, reflective thinking, critical thinking, analysis – 

Although the videos were very successful they were rather long, please shorten them for future assignments. 

You reflect well in your learning log and i think you are becoming much more confident in your own opinions and critique of your own work and that of other artists.

This is the link I suggested you look at from Rebecca:


Well done, I look forward to your next assignment.

Tutor nameJenny Udale
Date1st may 2020 
Next assignment due3rd july  2020

MMT 3- Molding and casting- Recording outcomes

Recording outcomes

I have enjoyed module 3 greatly. Working with new materials, challenging my concepts of those materials, learning new techniques to work with the materials, has inspired me a lot and I hope to be able to take some of my ideas further.

I have written conclusions under each project about how I worked with the materials, what influenced my samples ect and they can be found at the end of each blog entry for this module.

Was it as you expected? How did you feel working with hard materials?

I was worried about this module, the idea of using concrete really scared me because until I did the research, I didn’t know craft concrete existed! I also used air dry clay, which I have used plenty of times,but the other materials- plaster, latex and polymorph, I had never used before.

I actually found the plaster really difficult to use and the cement really easy, which was a total reversal of how I felt at the start of the module. I enjoyed the polymorph- it goes off quickly but it is fun to play with. I didn’t enjoy the latex- the smell was strong and it was so time consuming having to paint it on layer by layer, waiting for each layer to dry. Overall, I really enjoyed this module. I worked with materials I had never used before, I learnt a lot about what those materials can and can’t do and I created some samples I am really happy with.

Were you more comfortable using a particular casting material?

I have used air dry clay many times and so was already comfortable with that but I also felt really comfortable with the concrete. I like the results of the concrete, it’s smoothness, coldness and hardness.

Did you discover something new? Has it led to ideas for further sample making?

I learnt not to be so afraid of trying new materials, I learnt not to have an expected outcome as you probably won’t get it and I learnt to just have some fun, making a mess and experimenting, trying things together that I would not have thought of before. It has definitely sparked ideas for future samples. I have sketched some ideas of using rubbish like coke cans, water bottles, plastic cups and casting concrete in them with pieces of the wool and embroidered moss and lichen. I’m also quite intrigued to see how rusting powder interacts with the concrete- will it give me some rusty colour to the concrete or will nothing happen?

What are the qualities and characteristics of the samples you have made?

They are mostly hard , cold materials which have had texture added to them. Mixing the hard and the soft together has really intrigued me as well as working with materials that at first thought may not be considered ‘textiles’ by people. With the air dry clay samples, I enjoyed finding a material that echoed the look and feel of the clay, but in a much softer way, to extend the lines of the vessel.

What have you learnt from your contextual research and how did it inform your sampling?

I found a lot of new artists whose work I liked- I have a pinterest board here. I found myself drawn to the organic bulbous shapes and work that bulged, which is a carry over from my work in MMT part 2 I feel. I was very inspired by those types of work and that has shown through in project 2 of this module.

How do the processes you used relate to, or change your view of textiles?

At the start of ATV we had to write what the word textiles meant. I think I wrote that textiles were fabrics, wools, threads, items made with those materials such as clothes, interior home items, weavings, knitting, that sort of thing. At that time I would not have considered plastics, ceramics, concrete, latex as a textile. My view had already changed dramatically while working through ATV- I used fishing line in several of my samples. I am much more open minded now as to what textiles are and what constitutes a textile. 

How well have you used drawing and your sketchbook to document and develop your samples. Has colour played a significant role in your drawing?

I have not used my sketchbook as much this time- the first time over the whole of this course, it’s normally full up. I think this is because I was concentrating more on just exploring the materials and seeing what I could do with them. I also found I could not draw or jot down notes as I went along as most of the materials used were too messy. I had to rely on recall to make notes and sketches afterwards. I have drawn my samples and I have drawn out ideas- but most of those ideas went by the wayside once I actually started using the materials and realising that I might not be able to do the things I had envisioned doing.

Colour has not played a huge part in this module, but where I have introduced it, it has been well thought out and appropriate to the piece.

How has your approach to research improved throughout the course.

I have struggled with the research, especially at the beginning of the course. I felt it wasn’t my place to say what was good or bad about an artists work, so I tended to focus more on the artist than their work. I have done some reading on critical analysis and have been lucky enough to have been awarded mentor sessions due to my disabilities and they have really helped me to be able to look at work, see the qualities, good or bad and be confident to say what I feel about it. I feel I am much more able to assess a piece of work, understand why I like it, or don’t and appreciate the skill of the work whether it is to my liking or not.

Could you be more tenacious when confronted by errors or samples that you don’t like?

I have come a long way just on this part of the module. I used to see samples I didn’t like or hadn’t worked as failures and time wasted- I am a bit of a perfectionist that way-so it has been hard to embrace the experimentation and playfulness, working on samples not knowing what’s going to happen, just letting myself be free to play and see what happens without having a perfect outcome. In this module, I found I had no expectations for samples as I had not worked with many of the materials before so I didn’t know what to expect. This led to me being a lot freer in my experimentation and not looking at samples as failures but rather something that can be expanded upon and something that taught me a creative lesson.

MMT 3-molding and casting Project 2- sketchbook

Due to the Coronavirus I can not send any work to my tutor, so I am putting images from my sketchbook on my blog- something I wouldn’t normally do.

Notes on artist research and thoughts and ideas for each project
Ideas inspired by researching artists- brain dump
Drawings of some of the textured air dry discs I created
Rubbings of the air dry clay discs I created
Drawings of the polymorph samples and drawings of concrete samples and ideas
Drawing ideas for the developed concrete samples- drawn on phone with pen up app
Drawings of latex samples made and ideas for further development
Drawings of the developed samples 1 of concrete with felt, wool and embroidery – art markers
Developed sample 2 Concrete and thread and ideas for further development
Drawings of developed samples 3- air dry clay vessels with mulberry silk thread- white prisma pencil
Project 2- plaster ideas for casting the internal space
Drawings of plaster sample from a plastic cup and bubble wrap- black art pen
Drawings of plaster samples made- left page white prisma pencil, right side white gel pen
Simple line drawings of stacked plaster samples- white gel pen
Simple line drawings of stacked plaster samples- black art pen
Simple line drawings of stacked plaster samples- black art pen
Simple line drawings of stacked plaster samples- black art pen. Right page- added red thread to the drawings inspired by Steen Ipsen
Ideas for further development of the concrete and moss samples
All these images from my inspiration board are glued into my sketchbook. They show artist work that inspired me and some of my own work that I felt might be useful for MMT 3

So, thats most of my sketchbook pages. I am thinking of making little videos for my tutor of my sketchbook and some of the samples so that she can see them, sort of in real life, as I cant send any work. Hopefully this will be helpful in viewing the samples from all angles and I can describe texture ect which may not be picked up on in the photos.

MMT 3 Molding and Casting- Project 2- Casting the internal space of a vessel

I decided to use plaster of paris for project 2. I had never used it before so thought it would be the ideal material to challenge myself and experiment with. I came up with quite a few ideas in my sketchbook- filling ballons with plaster and tying them randomly, wrapping net around the balloons to imprint the pattern, resting items on top of bags of plaster to create different shapes and textures, pressing a doll into the plaster, suspending stockings filled with plaster…the list goes on. But, I found out that plaster is a very difficult material to work with. It seemed simple enough, mix with water, pour into the vessel, tie in places or place on textured surfaces, wait for it to dry. No!

Lots of mess

I gathered everything I needed- freezer bags, knee high stockings, plastic cups and balloons for the vessels, a selection of thread, string, elastic bands and pipe cleaners for wrapping and tying and bubble wrap, a wire rack, the clay and polymorph balls made in project 1 and a plastic skeleton used in MMT 2 for texture. I asked my husband for help with holding the tops of balloons and stockings open for me- I’m not sure I would have managed everything by myself because the plaster set a lot quicker than I expected meaning I had to mix enough for just one sample at a time which was time consuming. The first thing I tried was filling a balloon, except it wouldn’t fill. I expected the balloon to expand with the plaster, like when you blow it up- nope, that didn’t happen. It filled a tiny amount and then the plaster was just spilling back out the top. I tried stretching it while my husband poured the plaster in, but it just wasn’t working. I tied it off and wrapped an elastic band around the middle. Not very successful at all. I tried again after stretching the ballon out, blowing it up and then letting the air out, to make the balloon more flexible, but, nope, they just wouldn’t fill! I don’t understand why!

Balloon, plaster, elastic band

I then decided to move onto the stockings. I wanted to create smooth bulbous shapes that had twists and ties in- referring back to my artist research on Steen Ipsen and Maria Bartuszova. I also wanted to try and incorporate some bulging using netting and a wire rack surface.

Top- stocking tied with perle cotton and sat on flat surface
Bottom- stocking filled and pressed into a wire rack surface

With the first stocking, the plaster was too runny so just came straight through the stocking, puddling on the table beneath. The next one, I made the mixture thicker but this meant that by the time I had it in the stocking it was already setting when I was tying the cotton around it so I didn’t manage to get a good result. Top row, image above.

The second stocking I filled and then place on a wire rack and pressed down on the top, squeezing the stocking through the wire squares and I left it to set. This sample worked well except the toe line of the stocking was right across the front of the piece. Still, I like the effect of the plaster pushed through the squares of the wire, creating a linear bulge. It also has circles in the squares which are the drips of plaster setting in the surface, which adds to the texture. Bottom row image above.

Plaster in stocking, garden net wrapped around, suspended to dry

Next I filled the stocking and then wrapped it around with garden netting and pulled it tight. I suspended it from the washing line in the hopes that the plaster would ooze through the netting creating bulge. I did manage to achieve the bulge, just not as much as I thought. The texture is great and looks like the clay balls I made in project 1.

Stocking, plaster, pushed into the bottom of a plastic bottle

I filled another stocking and pushed it down into the bottom of a plastic water bottle. This has resulted in a sort of 5 petaled flower shape. The stocking texture is visible on the plaster but the shape helps to convey the smoothness I was after.

Stocking, plaster, string and elastic bands

The next stocking was tied with string and elastic bands, randomly- I found I couldn’t really have a plan as the plaster was going off too quickly and I was covered in plaster myself! This sample is bulbous but it doesn’t have an organic flow to it. Also I’m not keen on the texture from the stocking, I think a smoother surface might have improved the look of this one. I might see if I can sand it.

Stocking, plaster, twisted and tied with elastic bands

I think this is one of my favorite stocking samples. I twisted the stocking after I put the plaster in, being careful not to twist too far and seperate the plaster and then I used elastic bands to tie off sections. It has a nice bulbous shape to it, it has an organic flow and looks good at most angles. Again, I would have prefered it to be smoother, without the stocking texture, but I may try and sand it at some point.

Freezer bag, plaster, pipe cleaners

I moved onto the freezer bags. I was not sure that I would get a bulbous like structure as the bag is square. After I poured the plaster in, I tried to smooth it around and create a roundish shape but it wasn’t happening. I tied around it with pipe cleaners and suspended it to dry. When set, I was quite pleased with the shape. The cone at the bottom is very smooth and precise, forming a tight point at the bottom. I like the gather marks made by the bag when the pipe cleaner was wrapped around, it reminds me of gathers in fabric. At first it looked like a heart to me, but now I think it looks more like a goddess body shape. The back is quite crumbly and rough but it also has the gather marks from the plastic.

Freezer bag, plaster, pressed into a plastic tray with the clay and polymorph balls

This one didn’t work as I had hoped. I filled a freezer bag with the plaster and then pressed it into a plastic tray that had a selection of the clay balls and polymorph balls I made in project one. They have a lot of texture and I was hoping that would imprint into the clay but it didn’t. It left the impression of round balls but none of the texture on the balls made it through the freezer bag to imprint the plaster.

Freezer bag, plastic skeleton, string

This one also didn’t turn out as I had hoped. I pressed a plastic skeleton toy into the freezer bag filled with clay. It has left a vauge imprint of a body shape but you cant tell it was a skeleton as none of the texture went through the plastic bag.

Plastic cup, bubble wrap, elastic bands

This was my most successful sample I feel. I placed a small bit of bubble wrap inside a plastic cup. I poured the plaster in and then I crushed the plastic cup , like you would if you were putting it in the rubbish, and used elastic bands to hold it in place. The bubble wrap texture has worked really well, giving a fab tactile surface which contrasts with the smoothness of the bottom of the cup. It looks good from most angles. The bubble wrap distracts slightly from being able to see that the mold was a plastic cup but I think this adds to the intrigue of the shape and texture.

Plastic cup, bubble wrap, elastic bands

Given more time I would like to explore the cup method further, crushing it in different ways, maybe using a plastic bottle or a drink can as well. It might also work well with concrete as the medium and if I added in the fake moss and lichen I think it could have a sort of urban decay/ nature taking over pollutants/rubbish theme.

Some of the samples piled up together

Conclusions for project 2:

  • Plaster is messy
  • It’s very hard to control
  • Consistency varies with each batch
  • Balloons did not work as I expected them to- maybe water balloons would work better? I really thought I would be able to fill the balloons with a desired amount of plaster and then tie them and suspend them to get large bulbous shapes.
  • I think I would have had better results if I was using ‘proper’ molds, made from latex or silicone. This would give more control over shape and texture. Using stockings and bags etc was fun and good for experimenting to see what works and what doesn’t, but, if I wanted to create a particular piece I think that plaster is too unpredictable.
  • Texture did not pass through the freezer bags- the texture of the plastic was caught well but trying to obtain a texture through the bag just didn’t work.
  • I was worried and a little cautious about working with the concrete in project one but was not worried about working with plaster. Now I have used both, I found the concrete much easier to work with to achieve the results I wanted. The plaster after 5 days is still quite wet and very crumbly, sanding did not work well on the one piece I tried it on, and every time I pick a piece up a bit crumbles off or I just get covered in white powder.
  • Some of my ideas that I thought of before starting with the plaster sort of fell by the wayside as I couldn’t get the plaster or the vessel to do what I wanted. But, experimenting was fun and I am glad I used a material I had never used before just to experience how I worked with it.

MMT 3- More artist research

Whilst carrying on with some extra artist research before starting project 2, I found this company.

Tactility Factory-


These are the thoughts and motivations that have inspired Tactility Factory to redefine the traditional relationship that exists between architectural design and textiles.

We call the result of this collaboration of design, texture and materials INFUSED CONCRETE®

all images from Tactility Factory
all images from Tactility Factory
Crystal beads
all images from Tactility Factory
Linen and gold thread and concrete
all images from Tactility Factory
Velvet and concrete
all images from Tactility Factory

They ‘infuse’ concrete with velvet, linen, stitched linen and crystal beads to create interior wall coverings. I was really impressed with their concept and designs. I especially liked the crystal bead and the velvet infused concretes. I think what attracts me to these designs is the play of texture and the soft and hard dichotomy that the final product presents.

I also found this book very interesting reading for this part of the course. There is a lot of relevant information and advice and tips on using different materials, not to mention the photos of artists work. Well worth investing in, I got a second hand copy on Amazon for around £6.

Textile perspectives in mixed media sculpture- Jac Scott

As part of my research for this course I had arranged a visit to Artecology Unfortunately due to the coronavirus I was unable to go.

Artecology is the innovative research and development department of ARC BIODIVERSITY & CLIMATE. We are based in Sandown Bay in the south east corner of the Isle of Wight UNESCO Biosphere Reserve. We work with industry and research partners to create bioreceptive construction and landscape designs for marine, freshwater and land based development. Artecology shapes green life-cycle solutions from new build, to retrofit and repair, from city to sea.” -taken from the Artecology website

Artecology creates man made concrete habitats for marine life, such as limpets, barnacles ect, these are called Vertipools. Their mold making process is very intuitive and they have made molds from pleated card samples and sand that try to mimic natural habitats that life can thrive in. I really wanted to go to their studio and see how they developed their ideas and maybe watch them make some pieces but this has had to be postponed. Although I will have finished this module by then I will still go when lockdown is over and do a blog post on it.

Photo from Artecology website (link above)
Hannah George shows presenter Margherita Taylor how sand casting paper art can make space for nature in built environment.
Hannah George shows presenter Margherita Taylor how sand casting paper art can make space for nature in built environment. Photo from Artecology blog

Hannah George pictured in the photo above is the artist I went to talk to for the folding project in part 1 of MMT. I did post a write up about her and her work further back on my blog. Definately worth a look at their webpage or IG page https://www.instagram.com/artecologyltd/

I took this photo in Hannahs studio, on the right is a piece of concrete casted from one of her paper pieces.


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A new learning log for OCA Textiles

Carmen Wing

My new blog for the next stage of my textile degree


Textile adventures

patternprints journal

My new blog for the next stage of my textile degree

Linda Kemshall

My new blog for the next stage of my textile degree


My new blog for the next stage of my textile degree

LisaMarie in Stitches.

My learning log for OCA Textiles ... A Textiles Vocabulary.


A Textiles Vocabulary

Textile Vocab

Learning Log for OCA 'A Textiles Vocabulary'

Spirit Cloth

My new blog for the next stage of my textile degree

Knit Knot Norris

Holly's OCA Learning Log

Sally Harrison Art

Textile and Mixed Media Artist

Samantha G Scott

Studying for a BA(Hons) in textiles with the OCA

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