Online creative workshop with Ruth Singer 29th-31st January 2021. £75
Do you have boxes of precious fabric scraps and tiny treasures like buttons and keys? Would you like an excuse to get these out and make something really special from them? This workshop gives you the ideas and inspiration to create your own beautiful and meaningful sampler using your own personal treasures to keep or to gift. You might want to include family heirlooms and antique textiles or broken china and scraps of dishcloths. The idea of this workshop is to create something out of all those tiny bits you cherish but don’t really know what to do with.
Precious objects samplers are as unique as you are – everyone’s choices will be different. You will learn how to create textile backgrounds with scraps and hand embroidery, how to wrap and stitched into tiny objects and how to attach them. We will also look at how to finish your piece ready for display.
This workshop is all about working slowly and thoughtfully so it is timed to run over a whole weekend but you can dip in and out at your own pace
When you join this workshop you can: Come along to a live Zoom introduction and meet other participants. Friday 29th January 5pm GMT (one hour) Join a Facebook group to share your work and thoughts with others around the world (optional) Watch 5 pre-recorded instructional videos from my studio covering:
Exploring meanings and stories in your work Planning, choosing and editing your objects and fabrics Preparing the backing with scraps and stitches Working with tiny objects Finishing and attaching
Come back together with the group to show and share your work Sunday 31st January 5pm GMT (one hour)
You can work at your own pace over the weekend and continue for a week or two if you need to. The videos remain accessible for two weeks, as will the Facebook group.
This workshop does NOT include materials. Packs of treasures and vintage fabric scraps are available separately here.
You will need fabrics and tiny treasures as well as threads and sewing kit. More information will be given when you book. Online booking and payment available here. Please contact me if you need to book and pay a different way.
Reviewing the year and soulful planning for creative businesses in 2021
It’s hard to see the wood for the trees at the moment. Hard to see the path through towards running a business in 2021. This year has been really rough for small businesses as well as so many others. I’ve been working on ways to review my year and make plans for next year which take self-compassion and energy into account, not just focus on finances and big leaps. Tiny steps are enough. I wanted to share this approach with others so I’ve created Gentle Goal Setting – a new workshop for artists / makers / writers / creative businesses / freelancers (and anyone aspiring to be one of those in 2021) to take a reflective look back over what you have learned from everything 2020 has thrown at us and learn how to use your values, what you love and what works for you to create realistic and meaningful goals for the new year. A two-part workshop with a workbook to contemplate over the holidays. This workshop, with two live sessions and a workbook as well as a private Facebook group is just £45.
It’s been such a strange and difficult year to be running a creative business / artist practice. Do you need to have a bit of time out to review the good and bad of the year? Would you like to look back and then look forward to set some achievable and meaningful goals for next year? My way of ending one year and starting the next is to look back over the whole year with a holistic and realistic review and then take a slow and mindful approach to thinking about what I want to do next year.
I will guide you through my review process in a live online workshop, then give you a workbook for quiet, slow reflection on your own business journey for a month over the holidays. This will take you from reviewing the year to working out some goals about how you want to feel about your business / practice. You can share with a like-minded group of other creatives in a private Facebook group and then get back together with me and others in a follow up live session in January (optional). Live session will be via Zoom at 4pm GMT Friday 11th December. Then you have a month to explore the workbook and share with other students in the Facebook group. On January 11th at 4pm GMT we will come back together live on Zoom to talk through goal setting, ask questions and share your thoughts (optional). Both live events will be recorded so you can catch up if unable to attend live. The Facebook group will remain open until 31st January 2021 for you to keep in touch with others.
If you need more help, you can also book 1:1 video call sessions or email feedback with me in January at 10% off my usual rate.
I’ve made a colouring book! I created a sort-of colouring book for my library commission earlier this year, and really loved doing it. It reminded me that I wanted to make a patchwork pattern colouring book a few years ago, but never had the time. I’ve made the time and now it’s ready.
My book of patchwork drawings is more than just a colouring book, it is a place to play with creative ideas, to try new colour combinations, patterns and really stretch your creativity. This A5 book (15x21cm 6x8in) has 14 hand-drawn designs inspired by original antique patchwork quilts which I have created meticulously for your enjoyment. I love using patchwork as inspiration for creative drawing and colouring and I am sure you will love these too. The paper is nice and thick, suitable for watercolour as well as pens, chalk makers and pencils. There are also two pages for you to create your own designs with a helpful grid to guide you. I have also included 6 pages of full colour designs with lots of tips and ideas to make this colouring book really special.
The colouring book is £9.50. I can post all over the world too. You can find it in my online shop, along with books, textiles and much more.
I’m pleased to be taking part in the Leicester Print Workshop members exhibition this year. I am working in collaboration with Gillian McFarland to produce a changing artwork installation which will develop from week to week as we share ideas, develop and pass things to and fro and create new pieces inspired by two found objects.
The exhibition opens this weekend (17th-18th November) with the Print Festival and Gillian and I will be giving at talk on Saturday 17th November at 4pm about our work. There is also an exhibition preview on Friday 23rd November – details below. The exhibition continues until 26th January 2019.
Gillian McFarland and Ruth Singer work in collaboration as McFarland & Singer alongside their distinct and established solo artistic practices. They began working together in 2014 while sharing a studio; a space that allowed them to share ideas and approaches. In addition to the work created for this residency, McFarland & Singer have a strong convergence of interest around the archaeology of stains and marks of time.
This work is an ongoing collaboration, passing to and fro between us as we each explore related, but separate ideas. The piece begins with two found objects from a charity shop which we both respond to initially, through discussion and making alongside each other. This work will change every week as we add new prints and related pieces of work. This work is displayed in file trays to represent the orderly collation and separation of ideas. Feel free to take the pieces out of the trays and move them around and change the order. We will use this intervention and selection as part of the process of making new pieces each week.
I treated myself to another creative experimentation day this weekend, trying new materials, techniques and ideas. I spent the day on a Mark Making workshop with artist friend Helen Hallows whose work and philosophy I have long admired.
When you teach a lot of workshops you really appreciate all the hard work which goes into making a workshop really special for the participants, and it’s also a reminder of what it is like on the other side of the teaching table.
Helen made the day very lovely and it was extra special to find my friend Alys there, also having a birthday treat workshop day!
We made mood boards, splashed paint around, printed, stamped and got thoroughly messy, covering paper in colour and pattern. I loved trying mono print again but in totally different ways to the workshop last week and covering papers in bold, strong colour, layering, marking and scraping away. I have created a huge stash of beautiful papers which I think I will use for stitching into, creating collage and more experimental work and I have also stretched my imagination, tried different colour palettes and lots of new ideas for creating colour and pattern which will seep their way into my work in lots of different ways. I left the workshop invigorated and excited and I’ve now got my dining room floor papered in drying painty sheets of paper!
I was also hurtling through finishing a quilt for a big birthday present at the same time as opening the exhibition. It was more than a little close to the wire getting it done but it was nice to have lots of sewing to do.
As an aside, I am teaching this type of improv(ised) patchwork later in the year, along with the paper pieced type too. Find out more here.
Since the exhibition opened, things have been somewhat different and the pace of life changed completely with a few sunny, chilly days on a canal boat. There’s a lot of work to do on a boat, and lots of walking and exploring, but there was time for some simple making too. I’m slowly working on a very time-consuming piece for my Narrative Threads exhibition and making hexagon patchwork with antique fabrics, also for the exhibition.