This was an interesting exercise we did in class over the past couple of weeks.
1) We studied the Hundertwasser picture The Houses are Hanging Underneath the Meadows and analysed it in terms of design - colour, balance, repetition, motifs, etc. We were also asked to think about in terms of maps (an obsession of our current teacher, but a worthy one for this exercise).
2) We were told to produce a series of coloured papers using inks and oil pastels in various ways (there was a list of about six or eight ideas of what to do with them - including painting ink of wet paper, doing pastel rubbings and then inking over, etc.
3) We were each given a photocopied portion of a Melbourne street map and told to design something based on our study of the Hundertwasser piece, using all or a portion of the map to create the design.
4) Then we used the papers we had created to produce a collage based on our design. We were allowed to add small bits of extra drawing on top - I drew grass with green oil pastel on top of the centre section of mine, and then outlined it with black texta to make it show up better. (This was when I discovered that fine line pen, which is my favorite, doesn't work on top of oil pastel - derr!!)
5) The next week we had to produce coloured cloths to recreate (approximately) the paper collage, using fabric paints, fabric crayons and transfer dyes and crayons. I have never had much luck with transfer dyes (I know others who swear by them, though) and got rather frustrated trying to get the right magenta for the right hand section of my piece, giving up in the end and settling for the more red-pink which was all I could mix with the available fabric dyes. I still liked the ultimate effect.
6) Then it was just a case of vliesofixing the relevant bits of fabric down and doing some stitching. The funny thing is, in class I was saying that I was going to do hand stitching only, and resist my usual urge to put beads on everything, and how I had sworn off machine embroidery - and look what I did, machine stitch and beads!!
Ultimately I am pleased with this piece. It may not be great art but it was an excellent example of structuring a series of classes (which is what we are actually studying at the moment, Strategies for the Artist/Teacher, doing a textile piece was just a bonus way of demonstrating the process to us!) and I enjoyed the process.