In order to prepare for the exhibition we have collectively as a group sanded the walls and painted the room to ensure it is in pristine condition to show our work. We have each been given an allocated space in which we can display our work.
To hang my piece I experimented with different compositions in my space and came to the conclusion that it would be better for each fragmented piece to be hung at different levels and with different layers to create a more built up effect. To do so I used two thin pieces of wood and filament wire to hook them onto the wood. This was very difficult and fiddly to do due to the fact that it was hard to get them into an organised composition. With some of the pieces I really like the way in which they have natural twisted and curved and I want to bring this look into some of the other pieces. Furthermore, I need to use more of the filament wire to tack the pieces to the board to stop them from twisting. I think as an additional way to add more texture to it would be to add a light that will project onto the piece from the floor to cast the shadows on to the white background.
Looking back on all the previous techniques and development within my sketchbook it gave me inspiration to include the the use of vanishing fabric on my wall hanging. I chose to do the exact same design I had done previously that was based upon my primary research of octopus suckers as this was a simple yet effective design that I knew would compliment the other features of the wallhanging well without ‘taking over’ it.
I carefully considered the colours of the threads I chose as I needed something that would be bold and stand out against the dyed up background, therefore, I chose an orange and a red. One problem I did encounter with this was that it was time consuming and after consulting with a technician they suggested putting my machine on a different setting in order to speed up the process. This proved to be very successful and as a result of this I was able to then complete these pieces within the time constraint. However, with one of the pieces I accidentally used the wrong type of fabric and when I went to wash it away I came to the realisation it wasn’t vanishing fabric. To overcome this problem I carefully tore the pieces of fabric away from the embroidery and used some red and orange procium dyes which matched up the colours to the other pieces I created.
When pinning these onto the wallhanging I chose to place them within the felted balls so they looked as if they were spilling out and taking over certain the piece much alike to how things in the natural world grow. I have also decided to have them coming off the wall hanging and they can be pinned to the wall so that the viewer can see the finer details of the piece.
Upon research on pinterest I had the idea to add some felt pieces to my work. Although I hadn’t experimented with felting earlier during this project I was familiar with it and I feel that this would give me an excellent opportunity to add a three dimensional aspect to my work.
To do this I used a technique which involved cutting three circular shapes from some stiff plastic and grouping them together one on top of the other to create a base to felt on. I added merino wool that was brightly coloured and reflective of the colours present in marine life. I overlapped it on one side of the circular bases and wet it down with warm soap water, I repeated this on the opposite side and then gently began felting until the the felt started to shrink causing the inner base to start wrinkling, after this process I made a small incision which allowed me to remove the base and then stuffed the felted sphere with bubble wrap so that I could continue felting it. Although the incision wasn’t initially going to be part of the design I really liked the hole it created as it looks very alike to shell forms on coral reefs. Due to the fact that these felted balls were quite time consuming to make I only created a few which in the end worked in my favour as they would have over taken the wall hanging if I was to have made more. I also made some smaller felted balls that required a lot less time so that I could get a range of different scales.
When it came to the placement of these particular pieces I rearranged them a number of times and in the end I came to the decision that they looked far better clustered together as you then get a real feel for a reflection of the natural aspects of a coral reef. Furthermore, the variety of coloured yarns and wools used on each felted piece brought out the contrasts between each one. I attached these to the wallhanging and one another with hand embroidery as it would have been too difficult to do with a machine.
After much consideration I decided to go against the idea of bringing angelina fibres onto my final piece due to the fact I felt that the metallic aspect of this particular material would create to much of a distraction from the embroidery and therefore would override it. Therefore, I came across a few difficulties as I knew that the piece needed a lot more to it in order for it to have a built up texture and show the natural growth that takes hold of a coral reef, furthermore I also wanted to show the techniques I have learnt over the past year within surface pattern and textiles and on my piece.
To do so I pinned my piece up on a wall to view it in its final light and see what needed adding to it. There was a number of things that I have changed since doing this and one of which was the protium dyes.
As I explained on a previous blog post I felt that I had been too careful with the colours I had added within the embroidery as they were too subtle and didn’t stand out. Therefore, I decided to choose bold colours that were reflective of the embroidery threads I had used e.g. purples,pinks, reds. This certainly made the piece stand out more however I felt that these colours looked unnatural and after watching Blue Planet for research it became obvious to me that I needed to use more natural colours as when you view things through the aquariums and cameras the water and the lenses magnifies everything and creates slight alterations to the colours. I feel that this may have mislead me a little. So experimented with shades of blues and greens and used bleach to ease off some of the more bold and natural colours that I had previously added, I chose to cover the entire piece due to the fact that there is no ‘blank spaces’ under the ocean and these colours would bounce off the white walls profoundly when my piece is being exhibited. By soaking the wall- haning with water before adding these colours when I dropped the inks onto the fabric they bled into one another and created some really interesting natural textures. After this stage of adding the inks I felt that I had a more clear idea of where my piece was going and what the next stages of improvement would be.
Whilst I was considering the next stages of my final piece I had the idea to cut the hanging up into sections so that I could hang them collectively but in fragmented pieces. This in turn means that I can create a natural looking edge on every section as planned whilst I was developing final outcomes. Despite this not being part of the original plan I feel that this was an the right turn for me to take which has added a new dimension to my final piece. This means that the pieces can have something that could contrast to one another making the overall textures more interesting. Once I have moved further along with the development of the wall hanging I’m going to cut some more natural curves into the edges.
This is a list of the costs for various resources and materials during my FMP;