Tuesday, 29 March 2011

Textures home and away

It is just a year since I was in Venice so I have been looking through my photos again.  As usual I haven't got round to printing any out but now I that I can think about art quilts again I will.  One of my favourite textile artists is Fenella Davies who does wonderful work based on Venetian walls.  http://www.fenelladavies.com/shadows.html
I don't want to seem as though I am copying her style so I need to think carefully about what I do with my images.

I think trying out some of the fancy filters in Elements should be high up the list.  Cropping this image of a palace and then using the new 'photo' might be good.

and I have two or three detail shots that have potential.

It wasn't easy taking photos when moving around in a group and unfortunately the tour did not have much free time for me to go back to places.  However, I can see all sorts of possibilities with this shot - and I do have a couple of more detailed ones of the same building.

I have also been slowly collecting similar photos locally so I might do something that compares Penwith and Venice.  How about these from Hayle and Penzance?

This is a wonderful piece of old iron wall on the beach at Lelant near Hayle.

Here is the side of a rusting ship in Penzance harbour.

And this piece of old iron was beside it.

And back in Hayle I found an old door with an interesting knocker. and bolts.  As you can see, I am rather fond of rust!

Saturday, 5 March 2011

Spring at last

I don't know what happened to February.  The winter seems to have gone on and on so I didn't get out to take any photos and this blog did not get updated.  However, I have made progress on the quilt front!  The churn dash top is now all but finished (just the mitred corners of the pieced border to do tomorrow) and I have found someone at the other end of Cornwall who will longarm quilt it for me.  That feels like a great relief.  I really did not want to spend months trying to sandwich it together on my dining table (not really big enough) and then trying to quilt on such a complex pattern.

I have also completed the first bag from the yellow scraps and am making good headway on a second.

The second one has stitching in purple as well as yellow.  I have reduced the number of layers and will sew the bag with a proper lining.

After weeks of wet weather it has finally cleared up.  What a difference to see the sun.  On Monday I was at Tate St Ives for the annual 'Home Day' for staff.  It was held in the cafe on the top floor which has views to die for.  I was lucky enough to get a seat next to the window so I could gaze out on the beach, the bay and the coast looking north, all day!  No photos though.  On Wednesday I paid my first visit of the year to Tregwainton http://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/main/w-trengwaintongarden.  Not very many flowers out yet but some nice light on the bark which I will show in another posting.  Yesterday I decided it was time to walk up our nearest valley.  We are lucky in that although we live on the edge of town it is only a few hundred yards to a road that goes up onto the moors and which is an easy walk providing there is not too much traffic.  The signs of spring always appear reasonably early here.

This stretch goes through a small wood and there were plenty of daffodils out.

They are wild but I think they are escaped cultivated ones - the seed having blown from the fields as the whole of this area has been a commercial daffodil growing area for a very long time.

There were also plenty of primroses in the hedgerow as it is quite damp.

The third plant that is a real mark of spring in Cornwall is gorse.  We have two varieties, one which flowers at Easter and the other (which I think is Western gorse) which flowers alongside the heather in August and September.  It is a real mark of Cornwall but some years there have been awful problems with vandals setting fire to the heath, burning all the vegetation and displacing/burning the birds.

Yesterday there was still a bitter wind, though, and the horses were still in their winter overcoats.

At the top of the road there is a typical Penwith dwelling (at least I assume someone lives there). It consists of a caravan and an old shed, possibly a pig byre.  Parked beside this is this wonderful old car.

I am not sure what it is although I think it is the same as the first car that my father and his brothers owned in the late 1930s.  This year it has spent most of the winter parked round the corner from us here.  As it is obviously a vintage something (I suspect a relic of the US forces from WW 2) and was parked right on the corner I got a bit concerned when the snow came in case someone ran into it.  So it was good to find that it had returned to its summer quarters.

This valley and its vegetation inspired a spring Journal quilt a couple of years ago.

I gave this one to my sister-in-law for Christmas as I have reached the point where I feel they should not languish in boxes and folders.  This year I am having a rest from Journal Quilts.  This is supposed to free me up to do some new art quilt work but I have to admit that so far I have just done the Churn Dash top and finished Zelah's quilt which together are the most traditional pieces I have made in years.    Now I can see the way forward and I hope to get started on something more exciting this month.