Post Polly Binns exhibition

I found looking at Polly’s work really interesting. A lot of her work is about mark making and suggesting feelings around the landscape. I really liked some of the Pickering techniques she used to suggest ripples in the sand. Before I got to the exhibition I had already decided I wanted to have a look at some of my seascapes. Particularly the Moo card crops of them. As this is a full sweep from sky through sea and foam and into the sand. This is a great sweep of intense colour and very good at expressing the colours I see without actually including any subject. I was thinking about triptychs. Or something with thin strips that were multiples. Either the same subject/place or different but similar in composition. Places with different colourations would be interesting. Like the Keys where the sand is so White, Wittering where the sky and sand are so intense and… Have to find another. Sure I have plenty. Maybe somewhere moody or grey.
Anyway, so having sand and sea in my mind, when looking at Pollys sand pieces, it was very easy to translate some of those ideas into felt. The pleating and adding ridges to give form and shadows and I’ve already discussed finding the “pebbles” that would be great for foam. I also then started thinking about knitting. There is a technique I learnt from some slouch socks that construct ridges and ripples into the ankle of the sock to make them slouchy but without going flappy. I thought if I extended this, varied that amount of rows in the ridge and tapered it in and out that the effect might look like sand ripples. It does! I the. Tried continuing these on subsequent rows to extend and curve the ripple. This then made me think about how to portray waves as they ripple in on shallow water. So I started sketching out plans. But water is more ephemeral than sand so I wanted it to look more delicate. So I thought about making the marks by using drop stitches and allowing them to ladder. This lightens the “fabric” considerably and it becomes see through and suggests lightness. Like the ghostly dresses I was looking at in one of carolines suggested artists work. So I had a go at creating these ladders. By turning the work on it’s side the weight should help to pull down the loops. But seeing what happens, 2 dropped stitches are too much and it loses it’s form. And for the moment, that is not what I want. I also wanted to create wiggled and movement in the waves. So I looked at increasing and decreasing stitches evenly on either side of the stitch I want to drop. This does move that line of stitches across and back on the width. But I will HAVE to mark that stitch with markers as in the test piece I dropped the wrong stitch! With 2 stitches in this manner all shaping is lost. But with the 1 it wiggled very nicely. This is great to do as I have missed knitting since starting the course. Particularly for days when I am too tired to do felted pieces and just want to veg out in front of the telly, but need to be doing something with my hands.
I have started a fairly large ish piece with variegated sock yarn I got in Great Missenden last week. So we’ll see how that goes. I might quite like to try it in layers too. Some blue mohair on a large needle, etc. Try lace yarns layered on top of one another and perhaps, in Polly style suspended away from one another to see through them.


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