Sea creature out and about!

This afternoon I have finally been able to take a couple of pictures of my completed sea creature! 

Home at Clasheen

I had planned blogging more about Charlotte’s wonderful workshop and the fabulous jewellery session I participated in with Evelyn Refshal but time is just slipping away and felting my large rug is taking up every spare minute at the moment.  Over the next few days I will be short on writing but heavy on pictures so please bear with me!  Suffice to say that I ran into some MAJOR issues when felting my sea creature.  The gauze stretched amazingly due to the high raised bumps and I eventually needed to add some judicious stitching on the inside before working the felt to the finished stage.  Note to self, use silk in future for any similar projects, already have ideas swirling around in my head!  I also had planned adding coral-red points on top of the bumps (check back to see the picture I used for my inspiration) but now that the sea slug is home at Clasheen I rather like the turquoise and white just as it is. 

Disappearing into acanthus

 

I would like to acknowledge the generous support of Carlow Co. Council who helped fund my participation in Grima’s event through the award of a 2010 Arts Act Grant, your support was much appreciated!

One idea clarified and great news about an Arts Grant from Carlow Co Council

One of the ideas that I have been playing around in my mind with for Sculpture in Context is a really large felt cobweb sparkling with dew and catching the early morning sunlight.  To this end I have been thinking of ways to make the cobweb strong but not too thick, it needs to be strong enough to withstand the weather but fragile looking enough to suggest delicacy and light.  Tomorrow I am going for a site visit to the National Botanic Gardens and hope to find a likely spot to place the cobweb when designing my submission, stretched between some trees or draped over a suitable shrub in a slightly sheltered space would be ideal.  I would love to work on a much larger scale than I usually do so yesterday I decided to utilise one of Mehmet’s rug bases as a sample piece and see how it would felt into a finished form.  My reasoning was that the cotton backing would add strength to the strands of the web and I think that I have proved the point pretty successfully.  Check out this image of the sample piece hanging from one of the trees at the entrance to my front field.

Sample cobweb

Sample cobweb

The cotton backing from the rug base meant that the felt when fulled is strong and surprisingly flexible.  In the photo I have just draped the piece over some branches of the tree, for a bigger piece my intention would be to secure the edges of the cobweb with either wire or strong fishing gut allowing a little bit of leeway for swaying in the wind.  I also would like to string some clear glass beads and add them to the felt, these would add to the suggestion of sunlight falling on dewdrops. 

Detail of the centre of cobweb
Detail of the centre of cobweb

My other bit of news today is that yesterday I got confirmation from the Arts Office in Carlow Co Council that I was awarded a grant of E200 to go towards my trip in July to the international felting symposium ‘Felt in Focus’.  This takes place in Denmark and I am very excited as I have also been notified by the organisers that I have secured places on both the top two workshops from my wish list!  Will post more info during the next couple of weeks about the symposium.