I’ve given a lot of thought to my last post, about reminding myself of techniques, and my thoughts on if/how to collate and make a record of all this information I have acquired over the years.
I don’t know if anyone will drop by here for a read, but as blogs ultimately are selfish things anyway, written from a personal need to record and share, I thought I would blatantly put that out there. Reminding myself, making a record for myself, and at the same time sharing and hoping it also offers something to others.
So I’m going to start a posting under the title of BEVERLEY’S BULLETIN looking at the many samples from my stash, sharing the details.
So let’s go back in time. 1992, so 20 years, almost impossible to believe, since I started on this creative journey, by that I mean via formal studies, I’ve been making and creating all my life. So in 1992 I began City and Guilds Creative Embroidery studies, well the first year wasn’t that as such, as the college I attended had a compulsory Foundation Year, although I started the Preparing Working Designs element that year. City and Guilds had switched from being an examination based course to assessment based, and I would be in the second year of this new format. Over the years as anyone who knows C&G will tell you, the how and what of the course has changed many many times, add into the mix that each centre is allowed to teach the course how they see fit to meet the given criteria, the variations in knowledge can be huge. Back in the day... I studied for Part I and Part II Creative Embroidery – I believe they are called levels/diplomas now... but I’m not sure. 20 years ago it was a prestigious thing to undertake, opportunities to study were rare, most counties only had one college offering the course, if you were lucky. For me it was a lifetime dream to take this path, and most of us considered it an honour to get a place.
At this time also you could find day workshops in all sorts of topics, run both privately and via organisations such as the Embroiderers’ Guild, and I’ve attended many of these. Today...sadly both formal studies and one off workshops are disappearing. So from all of these resources open to me, I’ve studied lots of things, some with the ‘names’ from the creative textile world.
I attended two colleges to study City & Guilds, the first being the only option around at the time. My Part I studies were quite formal and conventional, a very good grounding, all sorts of basic info was drilled into us, which still stays with me. But it could be quite disciplined and prescriptive in the how and what. However my Part II studies at another college could not have been more different. Very creative, and eventually freeing, once I finally got used to being able to do almost as I pleased! The room would be filled with everything necessary and we would be told to go and play! There would be questions of ‘miss’ – what happens if..... and the answer was always go and try it and see.
So the examples will come from this background, its absolutely by no means definitive, the right way, the only way. I think its very important to remember that, as for a long time I felt a bit of a round peg in a square hole, trying to make myself fit in with others ways. Unless you are making for coursework or set criteria where it is important that ‘rules’ are followed, or evidence produced – guess what, you are allowed to make things the way you want to, how you want to. The end result may not be as anticipated, it could be better or worse, but it all feeds into the knowledge base for the next time round.
So this is the background to my project, next time, I’ll have something practical to think about.