Did you feel comfortable with the exercises?
Not at first, no. I didn’t quite see where the exercises were going and found it hard to start. Instead I didn’t try to find a reason for doing the work but instead just got on in wrapping objects. By not expecting anything I found that this freed up my work.
Were there particular materials and techniques you enjoyed working with?
Not materials but I found the wrapping technique very contemplative. It was easy to get lost with wrapping things in yarn. I had hoped to document every layer of yarn that I had wrapped on some of the objects in exercise three but I got a bit carried away with covering the object and forgot to do that.
How did your various materials respond to the two techniques?
Mostly I used yarn and string to cover the objects. These formed around the objects and fitted in to and around the edges and protrusions of each one. I also tied fabric strips on to one of the objects. These formed around the shape of the object but the knots in some of the strips raised the surface of the finished, wrapped object.
Using a large piece of fabric to wrap an object meant that the fabric formed around the item, however as there was a lot of extra fabric this stacked and bunched around some of the raised sections of the underlying object. Wrapping these objects with tightly pulled yarn gave a straight sided and solid object a finished fabric surface that was undulating and raised in places.
Wrapping the jug in paper was a little more difficult. The paper did not fit to the shape of the object well and in some cases gave very angular corners to the surface created.
Both the fabric and paper changed the overall outline of the finished object from the original item that was wrapped.
Were you able to achieve interesting textures and colours in your samples?
I didn’t consciously focus on colour in these samples, I was using the ends of balls of yarn or string and fabric scraps from previous projects so there were limited colour options. However where coloured yarns have been used together I think they have formed good complementary schemes and work well together.
I particularly like the wooden spoon head that has been wrapped with string, cotton tape and fancy yarn. The contrast of these textures – flat tape, almost wooly, fat string and the fluffy fancy yarn work well together.
The wrapping of the yarn or string formed texture on the surface of the object when overlapped time and time again. Texture was also seen in the surface of large pieces of fabric used to wrap objects and held down with yarn.
Which outcomes were successful?
The wrapped samples that used several yarns in different colours and texture have worked well. Also the jug wrapped with fabric and yarn have given an interesting surface, where the yarn has held down the fabric but allowed it to balloon between the yarn wrappings and give a more raised surface.
I really like the sample made with the pine cone and strips from jiffy bags. These have been tucked in between the splits in the pine cone to replicate scales seen on the base of the cone. This extends out the surface of the sample well I particularly like the drawing I made of the strips. I didn’t try to draw the pine cone and only drew the red strips. This gives the impression of the strips swirling on the page, around an unknown central item.
Which were less so and why?
The shell and strip of frayed cotton fabric was not as successful as I had hoped. There was a large hole in two parts of the shell and I was trying to wrap the fabric strip through the holes and then cover the shell with the resulting fabric strips but it didn’t really work as I’d hoped. Too much of the shell was obscured and there seemed to be no relationship between the shell and the knotted fabric strips.
I also found the paper covered jug less than impressive. I only succeeded in making a very curvy item look very square. Also the thin thread I chose to wrap the item in kept slipping off the paper surface and was difficult to secure. I wasn’t happy with the final outcome as it looked like it was about to unravel at any moment.
What are your thoughts on the artists designers and makers you’ve researched in Part Two?
Please see previous blog page here
How did the research you carried out inform your own work?
I found the work of Judith Scott very interesting as she chose not to cover every part of the surface on every item she created. I have tried to do that in a few of my samples and feel that these are some of the ones that work well, having an area of the underlying solid object against the soft yarn used to wrap that object gives a good contrast to the final surface of the item produced. Also Scott used a variety or yarn textures and colours, using whatever was to hand, and I have tried to do that in my work.
Interesting or attractive samples?
The only whole sample I could choose here is the final ‘giraffe’. I think this brings together the layered wrapping from the previous exercises and the combining of smaller items to make a new object.
I like many of the details created in the surfaces of the samples I have made, especially where fabric has been held to the surface of an item and the fabric has bulged out from beneath the threads. Also the patterns of the wrapped threads across an items surface and seeing layers of wrapping exposed on a samples surface.
Which samples offer potential for future work?
Layering of wrapping with different threads – I could think more about colour combinations or textures of threads used in future samples.
Using fabric to wrap samples – larger and larger volumes of fabric used may give more bunching to the final surface.
How could they be developed further?
Perhaps some of these techniques could be scaled up, such as covering larger, more unusual items, such as a bike or a coffee table.
Part Two – Reflection
I wasn’t certain how to start this section of work. In the end the best thing to do wasn’t to think about it but just get on. I didn’t have any idea what sort of samples I might produce for this work as I had never thought about wrapping items in this way before. I feel that my work shows a clear progression from the simple wrapping used in exercise one to the layered wrapping seen in the final ‘giraffe’ sample in exercise three.
I enjoyed the wrapping, there was something very soothing about the repetitive motion used to apply the yarn to the items. I would never have thought that.
This is the first section of work I have done on either of the OCA modules I have undertaken where I do not have all the samples I produced. For exercises one and two I would wrap the samples, draw any details I felt relevant and then take photos of the item made. Each object was then unwrapped and the thread or yarn, and the original item, reused. This was quite refreshing as I felt I had to really look at each sample and document it fully as it was going to be deconstructed. Also this means that I have less items to store. However all samples from exercise three are still available.
My tutor commented on the backgrounds of some of my photos in Part One. These were distracting as I didn’t provide a neutral background. For this work I set up a designated area to photograph each item. I think that this has worked well as the white background does not distract from the item being photographed.
Also in Part One I didn’t do any drawings of my samples, I just photographed them in detail. In this section of work I have taken many photographs of my samples but I have also tried to draw most of the items. I have really enjoyed the drawing of these items and tried to use a variety of materials and techniques to try to convey details of my samples.
I am still trying to do more research in to current practitioners and link their work to my own. I feel that I am getting better at this and can see a genuine link between my work and the research I have produced for this part of the course.
In my previous OCA module I did not include very many photos on my blog site as they took up quite a lot of space. I have chosen to include more photos for Part Two of this module as I have taken them at a lower resolution. I think that they still convey the details of each sample well. However this has led to some very photo-heavy blog posts, as such I have split the exercises for Part Two over several posts so they do not get too big.
I was very apprehensive about starting this section of work but feel that I have produced some interesting samples. Those that have worked well included the bottle covered in scraps of fabric and the spoon covered in layers of different yarns, where some of each layer is still visible in the completed sample.
These samples resulted in some quite abstract drawings which I very much enjoyed producing.
Still I’m not sure where this method of working fits in with future projects but I look forward to finding out.