26 March 2014

Portraiture class, final week

What happened to last week's report, you may (or may not) wonder ... well, there's nothing to report. I stayed home and worked on the maze-book project ... and for a wee while on preparing for this week's class, hoping to do some stitching-from-life, spurred on by Olga's post about her own experience.

My rummaging for the dressmaker's wheel had turned up a postcard from which I made a drawing and a stitching -
Against the light, the stitching shows the threads on the back -
Certainly making the drawing before doing the stitching was a big help - the drawing took about an hour, the stitching maybe 10 minutes. Big stitches, as you can see, with one length of thread -
To the final class I took along some opaque fabric and some transparent, and the embroidery hoops, thinking that if you're going to translate three dimensions into two, you don't want the 2D bit (the support) to behave in a 3D way and flop about.

First, though, some not-looking-at-the-paper drawings to re-acquaint myself with the subject, and to try to work out where to start with the stitching and where to take the thread after that -

does this count as a warm-up?
second one on the large piece of sheer, using a thicker thread
different thread again, still on the sheer
(this is the one being photographed in the final pic)
using linen thread - rather too wiry
on voile ... losing the plot a bit ...
not enough time to finish the one on black
the aim was to move from point to point, having threads crossing on the back
People were intrigued with the idea of portraiture via embroidery, so I felt less like a lame duck among the practised painters. And it's great when the model wants a photo!

Although I didn't exactly look forward to each class, I feel I learned enough to make it worthwhile. Even if I didn't take up the challenge of painting, standing in front of an easel for three hours week after week, even if you feel angry or frustrated or bored, does get you drawing and - most important - looking, revising, looking again. Now, I feel less afraid of tackling "drawing faces".


Olga Norris said...

You achieved lovely work with the stitching - great. I'm glad that you got something positive out of the class generally too.

Jane Housham said...

The stitched drawings really have something about them, and you can see that you've caught the model, from that last photo, so I think that's a great achievement. To be developed, perhaps?