"Metal point, descendant of the stylus of classical times and ancestor of the modern pencil, a small, sharpened metal rod used for drawing precise compositions on paper or parchment. The metal could be lead, silver, copper, or gold, but silverpoint was the most common choice because it is the most suited to permanent drawing, its stroke adhering unerasably. The silverpoint was of great value in producing the hard, clearly defined line required, for instance, by miniaturists; modelling, emphasis, and light phenomena, however, had to be rendered either by means of repetitions, dense hatching, or blanks or else supplemented by other mediums." — Encyclopaedia Britannica (online), 1996.
The silverpoint drawing ground creates a slightly rough surface onto which the metal particles rub off . The wire can be of different metals but I tried silver which was relatively inexpensive. I also bought a wire holder (right) a sort of pin vice.
The ground is the consistency of thin cream.. I was impatient to get going so grabbed some scrap paper giving it two coats .. although three would have been better.
I found the holder heavy, a bit cumbersome and uncomfortable to draw with.
As the wire is 0.5 mm and the same size as a pencil lead it easily loaded into mechanical pencil.
The metal point performed slightly differently to lead- it felt grittier but produced softer lines. It didn't really erase well but marks didn't smudge either.It took several layers to get darker tones. Apparently the silver tarnishes over time to a warm brown. I was pleased with the results considering it was a quick sketch on scrap paper.. Definitely something else I shall be experimenting with in the near future.
There is a great website with a lot of useful info here.
In March I contributed to a limited edition book for the ARTBOOKART fair at Hofs (Hadleigh Old Fire Station) in March. Each ABA artist made 2 pages and then the pages were bound together.
You can see more about the project here.
I played with various ideas for a while.. but oh what to do, what to do?
Mapped some ideas and was drawn to the idea of blank pages… began thinking about the way 'this page is intentionally blank" is written on the pages of a legal document or exam papers but then is no longer so. Explored a few more ideas but came back to using the map itself as a way of plotting the thought process behind it.
The each of my second pages are individual. They are made from sections cut from the 'blank page' maps, texts and book pages I am currently using in other work .. they kind of represent the pinging back and forward between projects- a sort of physical mind mapping.
A new book by Caroline Mornement features the work of more than 70 British artists' book makers and small fine presses.
This has been sitting in the drafts file for a looong time (along with another 14 posts!! all waiting for the words ).. Should I just delete? Maybe- but it is good to have everything here should I need to find it one day..
In 2012 Camberwell MA Book Arts were invited to take our degree show to Kiev for the Second International Book Festival Arsenal. It was quite an honour - just wish I could have accompanied it.
Attended Anna Dumitriu’s workshop at the Wellcome collection in June 2013 which ran in conjunction with Souzou: Outsider Art from Japan.
Described as an opportunity to .." create your own textile-based artworks and learn more about the issues raised in the exhibition, like mental health, autism and learning disabilities, as well as the notion of 'outsider'. Explore ideas about occupational therapy, creativity, language and the 'flow state', and how the availability of materials affects the making process. Work hands-on with a range of materials and learn simple techniques such as appliqué, needle felting and embroidery, as well as ways of working with recycled or found materials."
Flow for me is that state of mind when I am completely absorbed in what I'm doing and time seems to stand still. All focus is on the activity and nothing else. There is an explanation about flow here..
After a short talk and slide show we were let loose amongst an array of fabric, yarn, wool, papers and thread. My anxiety level immediately rose.. What should I make? What material should I choose? How should it look? Too much thinking not enough doing.
After a few false starts I settled for a piece of knitted fabric and some wool roving. Once I stopped trying to make a 'something' and just got on with it the process took over and the outcome mattered less.
The result was these ugly little handfuls which are surprisingly tactile and fit the palm of hand comfortably. Each was made from one piece of fabric folded or twisted in on itself and the edges stitched into place. Not sure I will take them further but it's a possibility. It was a relaxing way to wile away the time.
I'm following my bliss.