I have really enjoyed starting this degree - it feels like a very positive move - but I didn't expect to feel so isolated. Having just completed two years doing ‘A’ Level Textiles at night-school - and although I wasn't working directly with other students, I was able to discuss my progress and ideas face-to-face with my tutor and took my exam at school with everyone else. However, as the course progresses I hope to link up with other students and also attend some research visits and workshops.
The mark making exercises helped me to take my drawing further - my friend said to me "if you can make all these marks - you can use them in your drawings" which seemed to make a lot of sense and helped to make the connection between the mark making and the drawing. I have found that being pushed to use a sketchbook certainly improved my drawing ability, so I am definitely hoping that this will continue to improve, but I am pleased with my progress so far, I even attempted drawing a person - the first time ever!
For drawing I find I enjoyed working in Biro or gel pen the most. Although I did like the graphite and charcoal sticks, both are messy afterwards and need fixative, which is not always to hand - a Biro is always available, clean and any mistakes just have to be worked with or around and there is less time to be indecisive, you just have to get on with it.
The exercises I enjoyed the most was Project 2; Exercise 4 - Preparing to create texture. I loved looking through all my fabrics and papers and selecting appropriate colours/textures/threads/etc. I do like to make the yarn wraps as well - I find even if I don't use those particular threads, it does concentrate my mind on the colours I will need.
One area I would like to develop is printing. I love printing - the unexpected outcome is always exciting. Recently at night-school we had a go at mono-printing which I thoroughly enjoyed, I would like to try this technique on fabric next.