Sunday, 26 October 2014

The old black bird again unfortuntely

Oh dear - not a cheery post I fear. Some of you may have guessed from my somewhat quiet few weeks that all was not too good.
Unfortunately, I have had to admit that I am in the throes of another bout of depression. I think you all know it is a constant bystander for me, and every now and then swoops. No doubt I will work out why and equally, experience tells me that rest and withdrawal for a while will return me to normal.
I have had  to cancel everything for the next few weeks. I hope to be recovered enough to be on my stand at the Harrogate K+S show … I will keep you all up to date.  
Its been a funny year - some really wonderful things, some really awful and sad things and some just difficult to deal with things. I have been struggling since FOQ really and need to get properly well in order to be able to engage positively in all these things.
In the meantime, please bear with me – I find any sort of communication incredibly hard whilst my score so high – it is not that I don’t care … more that my brain seems to just shut down. Emotion is also too hard to deal with. Those who live with depression will know exactly what I mean.
Sorry to any I am letting down in anyway and I hope to be back to my normal (ish) self soon.
Hilary x
PS - just seen post below and realise those not on facebook may not realise that the Gelli book is now available in my online shop and from Art van Go x

Friday, 3 October 2014

I know - long absence .. big catch up coming - starting with my last lot of talented studnts - oh ... and a book ...

Lovely long title - much needed after such an absence. So much to tell .. and where to start. Well just let me quickly mention the NEW BOOK .. which will be launched on Art van Go's stand at Ally Pally next week, and is the main reason for my enforced silence .. the deadline was tight as ever ( I may never now be able to write a book in a normal timespan) Hopefully it will be worth it - here's the cover ..

It grew in production - so many ways to play with our gelli plates ... so is actually now 132 happy pages. I will be at Ally Paly - teaching Thursday and Friday, then demonstrating with Art van Go on Saturday and Sunday. I think it is safe bet the gelli will appear- so do come and say hello and join in my playtime (sorry - work). As Stephen is not at Ally Pally, he can deal with any online sales whilst I'm away - so I will get it into the online shop on Monday/Tuesday ... so if you can't make the show, you can still get your paws on a copy. I'm biased (very) - but I think it is nice ...

Now - away from me, and onto more talented students. I have one or two workshops to catch up with, but I'll start with the most recent and work backwards I think. Earlier this week, I ran a three day summer school (the second one) at Redditch Needle Museum in Redditch. We were blessed with the best ever weather and if the students enjoyed it as much as me, then we had a good time. We were mono-printing using gelli plates and then mounting the prints onto canvas, which the girls had pre-textured using modelling paste.  A very talented group, despite a few early nerves (quite right - I am scary) .. and they produced a wonderful variety of work. So I'll shut up and show you that now...

These are coming in alphabetical order I think ... photo album must have done that - we all know I haven't!
So starting with Denise  - four beautiful and very varied canvas, using some leaf prints, some fruit prints, some stencil and stamp prints and some mono prints made using masks .. very thorough job Denise!!

These next three are by Helen - gorgeous curvy pears (and beautifully controlled fine appliglue application), some gorgeous ferns and some prints form  what remained in the bottom of my box of last years hogweed head ...

The next two are by Jacqui, - gorgeous colour interpretations of some leaf prints ...

Once she got the hang of where she was going, there was no stopping Jane - who made these next four beautifully graphic canvases

Jenny came all the way from the north of Scotland and now has a new group of friends to visit workshops with. They were all staying in the same place and went out on the town every night .. lovely when it just works out like that. I love theses dynamic swirls that Jenny worked with - the energy in this canvas is palpable


This gorgeous canvas featuring some leaf prints, is another of Jennys
We did quite a lot of mark making and drawing with the appliglue this session and Loretta shows complete mastery with these wonderful 'scribbles' over her textured and gelli papered canvas  

 This is another of Lorettas - a fabulous Japanese style canvas using leaf prints and some stencil based gelli prints - just so different ..
And different again are these beautiful and dynamic pieces by Olga - on canvas and in her sketchbook 

The next two vibrant canvas are by Sarah - glorious colour combinations and a mixture of leaf prints with some mono-printed patterns

Lovely Val (who took some merciless teasing about her love of black) proved her choice perfectly, with these two stunning canvas (both on black, of course)

Viv made some wonderfully fine prints using fruit, stamps and stencils, which she combined in these lovely canvas with some needle lace and trimmings from her own stash

And last, but absolutely not least - her are three quiet beautiful canvas from Yvonne - using lace and old needlework , some interesting wax made papers and some beautiful hosta prints - I just love these


I never fail to be impressed by students willingness to feel a bit of fear and still do it and produce such good results. I hope each time by the end of a class, I have gone at least a little way to convincing them that art is not scary, and is not about judgments. It's about tapping into the heart of who you are - and my girls did me proud on that front - well done all.
And I think we have at least one class ready for next year too!! - Hilary xx

Saturday, 21 June 2014

Hilary B has not been talking and very much apologises .. plus stuff

I fear I have been quiet for several weeks - a rare occurrence, some might even say a blessing. I have (as always) been very busy .. but I've also had a few health issues to deal with .. which have pre-occupied my mind a smidge. Theses culminated last week in an appointment with a very nice Cardiologist and an  ECG. This story does not have any pretty pictures to go with it .. so we will have to just add random ones in .. like this .. some beautiful Gerbera I treated myself to ... as therapy ...
so back to the ECG .. well it turns out I have cardiac arrhythmias caused by Premature Ventricular Contractions. For anyone who wants to know more about those .. here's the Wikipedia link!
For the rest of us - enough to know that these could have been caused by many factors .. probably too much work and adrenaline .. but are not deadly .. so I shall be sensible and look after myself a bit better ... job done.
Thank you for all messages of love - all much appreciated - I am truly blessed with my friends.
This has meant I have had to cut back quite a lot of my workload - including some workshops. I am now fully booked until mid 2016 as far as workshops go .. and will be looking at what to do in the future. I shall continue teaching at the Bramble Patch, where I have a two day silhouette workshop coming up in October, which still has some spaces.  I am also re-running the full years worth of Make it \personal workshops next year at the bramble patch too.. These will be two days every two months again and are suitable for new students and beginners as well as those who have already done a year with me and might wish to continue developing their work. These are now on the Bramble Patch website for booking - here is a link ...
Time for another picture I think .. here are Dixter and Sean helping out with some dyeing in the garden and some of the resultant cloth ..
I am still running the summer schools at Redditch .. the first one is full, but there are a couple of places  come free on the second one, 29/30 September and 1 October. All the details are in an earlier blog - or in the website shop, together with booking .. another link
I am also teaching two one day workshops using gelli plates at both the Ally Pally and Harrogate Knitting and Stitching shows. Wendy Gardiner was very good in allowing me to have whole days for these - so I hope you will come! I know I already have one student en-route from New Zealand .. that is what I call loyalty! These will coincide with the publication of my next book 'The Gentle Art of Gelliping' ... this is a working title, but I love it so much, I think it may stay. This will be in conjunction with Art van Go and will hopefully encourage you to use your gelli plate in some very different ways, to maximise its potential and achieve unique and personal results. You will hear more about this no doubt in the next couple of months. I am very excited .. but then again .. what's new!!
Make it Personal Book 2 will be on a theme of Coast and I really hope to have it done for the Harrogate Knitting and Stitching show .. I will report on progress.
Talking of beach - I have been a couple of times in the last weeks - no-where else revives in quite the way the sea does. And I have been collecting treasure (of course) ... these are in the utility sink

Got into trouble for that ... even when I am ILL .. so had to move them to a bucket

and I now intend to go and do some seaweed and shell gelliping .. both for the book and also for two other exhibitions I am preparing for ..
Art Textiles: Made in Britain are having their inaugural gallery at Festival of Quilts this year and our theme is 'Identity'. One of my pieces deals with how I have managed my long standing issue of chronic depression and worked out how to still live a full life alongside the beast. As the sea is so much part of this maintenance of health .. I want some small pieces and images for that. I am also preparing a large exhibition with Stephanie Redfern, which is called 'Sanctuary' and which will open at the Minerva gallery next summer. Again - the coast is an obvious tie in for me here .. so coastal gelliping is definitely in order.  Here are some previously printed cloths which will also be used - together with more treasures .. and you can bet some of them will also be getting involved too

Golly - I am rubbish at brief aren't I?? I do apologise of this seems a bit of a dull, serious post .. I just wanted to re-assure and bring up to date. I have let everybody know now, where I have had to cancel anything .. so if you haven't heard form me - don't worry, it is still happening!
I'm of to gellip in the sunshine now .. which will no doubt help restore my spirits .. and will be back soon with masses of student work and hopefully my usual bonhomie. Thank you for visiting - Hilary xx

Monday, 5 May 2014

Fabulously messy studio, plus the show that caused it

I have one of our favourite treats here .. messy studio pictures .. so get a cuppa and settle down to gloat and relish ..
SO here we are .. just inside the door and looking right.. to the 'wet' area
 .. can I even get in?
I've managed to get about 2 ft .. and the view is not improving ...
another couple of feet .. and still deteriorating ..
am ashamed ..
poor Thelma .. abused as ever .. no wonder she sometimes smokes on the job ..
storage system breakdown .... (and yummy driftwood)
got to the table .. it is under there and turned round .. oh ...
 this is my washing up system .. I put them in to 'soak' and then to 'drain' .... several days ago - fortunately we have a dishwasher in the main house .. fear I am a slut
 right .. back out of wet area and turning right into collage and stitch area ..
not much of either is going to get done on here ..( a plus side here is I have been looking for that green spray bottle for AGES .. obviously it is only visible on photos)
or on my Janome .. hiding under here ...
or indeed on my HQ16 .. buried under here ..
and round to the right .. into the 'office area .. honest .. that is what it is .. there are 3 printers under there somewhere
useful sitting area with pathetic attempt at organising list .. I suspect I lost it after item 3 ...
desk .. and facebook on in the background .. I do tend to forget and leave it on like this .. so if I appear to be there but ignoring you .. this will be what is going on. What a bad desk .. must have majorly untidy mind then ..
Hope that was enjoyable. It isn't for poor Stephen, who is a very tidy man (weird) - I know it makes him physically traumatised having to even look .. poor soul. But it just always happens when I am manically busy running up to a show, exhibition etc. So lets have a few pictures of the exhibition. This was at the British Quilt and Stitch Village at Uttoxeter, where Traplet very kindly gave me a HUGE space to show a gallery of work .. these are first thing, before the punters arrived
and here is Stephen .. happier and keeping the shop area organised and tidy. Shows are a real eye opener for him .. he is always surprised how much people know about him (he doesn't do Facebook and so has no idea!) He does a great job and I couldn't manage without him ..  
 and here are a few images of the latest pieces I have completed .. some very last minute!!
A Feminine Touch .. 1 to 4
Beauty Matters 4 to 7 
Shape of Nature 1 & 2 
Beauty Matters 8 to 11: Willow 1 - 4
 Jugs 9: The Artists Jug
As you can see - it was a great opportunity to get some good photos whilst they were all hung up on white backgrounds .. thank you Angela. So I now have some good images for the website, where I will be updating all the galleries very soon with new work and pieces for sale.
I have been so busy this year and seriously have not had a day off since Christmas .. so after the show, I had a lovely day at Harlow Carr gardens, with a good friend. It was bliss to just potter in the sunshine, chat, eat buns and not work .. although of course I took a lot of photos, which will no doubt make their way into future work. I will post lots of those .. but for now .. here is a favourite .. some beautiful anemones. Thank you for visiting .. talk soon - Hilary x