Tuesday, 20 September 2011

Submission and beyond...

Hello, have you been wondering how I am getting on? I’m really sorry that I didn’t manage to give you an update before submission, but at least everything has been submitted now, so I finally have time to give you an update…

It was my birthday on 11th September, but I spent the day working on finishing touches. Although we did pop into town for some more fabric paint (3-d cushion cover) and whilst we were there we bought a cake from M&S – it was a yummy lemon cake, I’m not keen on chocolate cake.

We were given a timetable for presentations and mine was due to take place at 3pm on Tuesday 13th September, and I couldn’t help but feel that it would be better to submit at the same time rather than making two trips into Middlesbrough so – that is exactly what I did. It was such a relief to submit a day early! The presentations were given individually with just the two tutors present, which is always slightly easier than giving a presentation to a large audience. Because I was nervous I left out some important pieces of information that I had wanted to communicate to Michael and Neil, so I carried on explaining whilst answering questions!

After the presentations and submission we were all required to go into Uni and paint the exhibition room (AG12 in the Athena Building) white and then set up our show area. Tom and Adam went in and painted 2-3 layers of white and then Nick and I went in on Friday to finish the rest of the painting. Whilst the paint was drying we went upstairs and joined Michael, Adam, Andrew and Vicky to discuss the arrangement of banners so that we could start hanging them. Seeing the wide variety of imagery on the banners was very exciting – it made all the projects that were discussed in tutorials and presentations seem so much more real than they had before.

Nick and I set up our small areas of the exhibition room, along with all our embellishments and finishing touches – it was so very satisfying to see everything working so beautifully well together… it made me proud and a little emotional!

So, the AD-11 exhibition opens tomorrow evening and I am a little nervous. I’m not sure why though, because there is nothing else I could have done in the time and I am extremely proud of what I have achieved.

In the meantime my step-son Jez has designed a new website for me (unusual birthday present) and it will be up and running after it has received a few additional tweaks – probably in a month. His company, Jigsawpixel, can be found at - http://www.jigsawpixel.com – do take a look at their website.

I suspect that you may be wondering what I’m going to do next, now that things are beginning to quieten down. Well, I’m going to start by designing a range of Christmas cards – in fact I have already started working on it by asking friends and family what they associate with Christmas – answers include ‘Die Hard’ and half eaten mince pies and carrots that Santa and Rudolph can’t eat! How’s that for inspiration!? I also need to research greetings cards printers that specialise in environmentally friendly products.

And on that note I will go and get on with my research. Speak to you again soon, take it easy ;)

Wednesday, 7 September 2011

Ultimate/penultimate update!?

I’m exhausted and have been up since 4am, which was after I had sat in bed writing a ‘to do’ list! In a way I will be very glad to hand everything in and get some sleep, although, with 7days, 7hours and 50 minutes (at the time of writing this) until submission, I’m not totally sure I will make it.


Buy fabric for printing
Put sweetie lamp together
Finish stencilling wall
Photograph stencilled wall for portfolio
Make lampshade for sweetie lamp
Photograph sweetie lamp for portfolio
Go to print workshop and print fabric for cushion covers and seat cushion – this will not get done
Go into uni and design banner – submit for printing if approved by Michael
Order memory stick – probably 16gb
Submit banner for printing
Make cushion covers and cover seat cushion on Lloyd Loom chair
Finish putting sweetie table together
Have finished hand printed wallpapers
Take report for printing and binding
Take business plan for printing and binding
Put final submission together
Final submission

As you will see from this updated panic list, things haven’t moved along much from last time I wrote anything here – I have put together a photobook portfolio which has now been dispatched by the printers and should be here any day and, after 6 attempts, I managed to put together a banner which was to Michael’s satisfaction and is to be collected from printing at the Arts and Media Helpdesk today. In addition I have finished the gorgeous hand-painted cushion covers ready for the exhibition. The cushions covers look fantastic and have filled me with lots of ideas and inspiration for others… so much so that I would rather sit down and think about that than write a report!

I’m thinking about overlapping flaps sealed with vintage buttons, appliqué, patchwork (using my own prints) and all on up-cycled textiles from charity shops.

Anyway, back to the matter in hand – I have written my business plan and am just tweaking it. The report is 75% done, it just needs another 200 words and then editing, proof reading and appendices adding and it is ready to be printed and bound. I may even be able to take it to the printers tomorrow, a day earlier than my schedule.

The final submission is almost ready to go. I have put everything tidily into a folder and I have written explanatory notes which I will get printed at the same time as the business plan and report.

So, now you are either wondering what my problem is or, you have checked my list in your mind and have already worked it out – hand printed wallpaper!

I started working on it yesterday and it didn’t go well, so I had to start again. Because of the limited space that I am currently working in I have decided to stencil the pattern onto the wallpaper but, I have discovered that the stencils that I have designed aren’t as user friendly as I had thought and planned (must try harder) and I was very fed-up by the end of the day. The ‘Squares’ stencil is the issue, for 2 reasons -

1)    I put the guide holes in the wrong place so it is difficult to line the stencils up
2)    The pattern is very flimsy and corners keep lifting as I’m painting

Now, in the real world this would easily be sorted out, and will be but to have the stencils adjusted, cut on the laser printer, collected from Middlesbrough and painted onto 3½ metres of wallpaper by next Wednesday may not be do-able. I will speak to Michael today, when I go in to pick up my banner, and ask whether it will be possible to hand in that wallpaper in time for the exhibition instead of submission… fingers crossed!

Right, I need to be getting on with my report and painting wallpaper so; I will try to update you on how things are, before submission, but please forgive me if I don’t.

Take care J