Sunday, 9 November 2014

Contextual Reference - Construct

My chosen contextual reference for construct is Malhia Kent. I found their work to be very creatively inspiring and full of ideas to help me develop my time in weave. Their way of working is very fun and colourful which l really like; it reminds me a lot like the way I work. The company specialises in luxury traditional fabrics that are ready to wear. They have more than 2000 fabrics produced per season and are 100% made in France in a mansion, which includes their showroom and hands on workshops! They also have a style team scattered all over the world. After several years of collaborating with Coco Channel, Michele Sorano founded Malhia Kent in 1987. The more l research into their work the more interesting l find it! They have an in-house creative team that fabricates woven fabrics for haute couture and top of the range women’s-wear.

The fabrics they use include fancy tweeds, open-work fabrics, sequined materials and Jacquards, Also adding lots of ribbons, fancy trims, mohair, feathers, glitter, raphia, lace and haberdashery. The Company’s range has various sources of inspiration including animal fur, blurred landscapes, extravagant mixtures, raffia, graphic design, hand-woven crafts and used metal. I tried to use lots of different coloured, textured and glittery yarns in my weaves, but in seeing Malhia’s work I will go on to being more experimental. I will maybe incorporate various fancy fabrics, haberdashery, paper and glittery finds in to them!

The way they add different materials and yarns into their weaves are simple yet visually effective; it makes the weaves appear more complex than they probably are. They’ve been known to print over the top of chunky weaves which l find particularly interesting and would like to develop my weaves further by doing this! She also uses lots of marks, patterns and lines like l have tried to use in mine to represent my drawings.

On their website they say ‘creativity is our only goal’ which l think sums up their work, it’s very unique. I love everything about the work, from the texture, to the colours to the fuss of all the different materials they incorporate.  

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Monday, 3 November 2014

Origins Evaluation

During my 6 weeks studying Origins, I have produced a collection of work from Friday Drawing Day, Embroidery and Construct. I firstly focused on my 10 chosen objects from home and produced a body of drawings from them; I then used these drawings to feed my project by producing samples based on the objects. I have completed samples in each of the relevant areas.

I favoured machine stitch whilst being in embroidery, l felt as though at times hand stitch was very time consuming and the overall result wasn’t as great. Towards the last week studying embroidery l focused particularly on one chosen object which was a decorative wooden box that was bought for me as a present by my friend whilst she was travelling in Australia. This has been a significant object in my project throughout due to the patterns and colours within it. It ties in well with the library exhibition that l visited and enjoyed – Material Matters, It also ties in with our Monday lecture with Alison which is also looking at materials and objects. I think because the object is precious to me l really focused on it more and l produced better work because of the sentimental reason behind it. I did produce some work in my sketchbook on the exhibition and selected out some images that interested me.

After our first three weeks rotation from embroidery, we started in construct. I was slightly disappointed that in construct we were only allowed to do either knit or weave and that we didn’t get the choice of which, but I did understand that it was just not possible in the time scale we had. However I was very pleased that I was timetabled onto weave and that I had the opportunity to learn how to do it. Weave is something I’ve never done before but always wanted to have a go at, l really enjoyed it and it has enabled me to develop new ideas. I learnt how to weave on an 8 shaft loom exploring with different weave sequences. I made certain that I used a particular colour pallet that was relevant to my objects, which fed my practical work well, yarn wrappings also helped these developments.

I do believe there is a clear connection between my drawings and sample pieces, for example the 20 timed and descriptive sentences drawings, that l did onto squares really influenced my weave samples. In my weave samples you can see where I tried to recreate the patterns, curves and loops.

I tested and explored with a wide range of materials, media and techniques. I used lots of different yarns, cottons, threads, fabrics, paints, pencils, oil bars, inks, pens and papers. I think Friday drawing day was very important as primary research as that was the starting point for all of my sample work. I chose to also look at Margo Selby and have selected some images of his work for my sketch book,  I think it links in with my style of work because of the patterns.

If I was to look back and think critically I would have liked to have used a more neutral colour pallet. This is because my drawings were quite neutral and I like the simplicity of it. Sometimes it got too fussy because there were too many colours. If I were to push my work and develop it further I would have maybe used techniques in both embroidery and weaving together. I would have also liked to have produced a few more strong drawings to feed my sample work because l felt like l lacked in this area.

Overall I have found the origins unit a real learning curve and very enjoyable, because I have learnt so many new techniques that I didn’t know about before.