If you’ve followed my blog in the past, then you might recall that from time to time I offer workshops in my studio. This year I’m just doing two retreats and this week saw the first. It was for a textile group who’d booked to come together, always a nice idea don’t you think? We had the luxury of three days in the studio so there was plenty of time to explore ideas and develop them in a bit more depth than a single day allows.
I always think printmaking is such an excellent icebreaker for a workshop. It’s fast and furious and a great way to quickly create lots of visual material to work with. We used monoprinting with reductive, linear and multicolour methods, plus stencilling with stencils and masks and simple sequencing of prints. You can see, the students were soon filling up the walls with plenty of work.
We stuck to working on paper, but many, if not all of the ideas are so easily transferrable to fabric techniques. Students worked on composing designs by selectively editing and collaging their prints, drawing into them, adding washes with paint and detail with pencil crayons.
There was also time for experimenting with rubbings, a method that I think complements monoprint really nicely. On our final day, students assembled leftovers into a book allowing us to think about layering, interesting book structures and ideas for display. As you can tell, it was a pretty busy three days.
The students all worked on their own choices of themes and so we were able to spend some time talking about how ideas start and can be developed with influences from all sorts of sources such as poetry to painting.
Of course all of this activity was fuelled by some good food. A big thank you to Linda for doing all the catering for us. We’ve been spoilt with shortbread, muffins, and delicious lunches with lots of homegrown veggies and salad, and of course, homemade bread.
The students were super-productive and went home with lots of work, and I hope, even more ideas to keep them going for the foreseeable!
If you’d be interested in booking a creative retreat for a small group please do get in touch by email at firstname.lastname@example.org Workshops can be for 1, 2 or 3 days, and can be tailored to suit your level of experience.