Thursday, 30 August 2012

Fabric and Paper Journals

               Apropos of absolutely nothing related to this post! Just a lovely healthy bowlful.

Phew! Well, I'm all musicked out, and I expect you are too, after ploughing through all the Burwell photos  - about a quarter of the ones I took. Never mind, here we are, back in the land of cloth, paper and, the odd pair of scissors. Now obviously you know I haven't been stitching away diligently the last week or so, and very little journaling has been done either. So in order to get this blog back on its tracks, I photgraphed some fabric journals I made....ooooh, at least 6 years ago, and a couple of paper books. Unfortunatley the sun went in just as I assembled everything outside, but I think the shots are reasonable.

The first is a card book designed in a Gothic arch shape, called 'Crowns and Wings'.

I recycled the backs from used note-pads as the bases, and covered them with 'altered' wrapping paper and my own hand designed papers.

I used rubber stamps, collage and marker embellishment. I coated each page with some kind of varnish, maybe Mod Podge, I really can't remember!

Both background papers are mine, I merged inks on a piece of butcher's wrap and when dry I stamped text all over it. They remain my favourites still.

 Background right side is wrapping paper, left side, one of mine. I bet several of you have a roll of that paper somewhere, it's really lovely; I've never used it for wrapping!

Finished off with some yarn and beads Lots of gold outlining!

These next pages are from a slim volume that I'm still working on. I took it to Burwell with me-- hah! as if I'd have any time to work on it! However I did want to take it to show Martina, whistle and flute player from Vienna, who now blames me for the fact she HAD to go out and buy a small collection of Copic markers as she is now addicted to journaling! We swapped ideas and checked out each others pages, Martina you have to put yours on facebook! Anyway, here are just four double pages, some of which I haven't finished. I intend to coptic bind them as four signatures. Eventually.

The backgrounds are mostly inked, one or two may be watercolour pencilled, before stamping, collaging, then finally adding text and doodling.

  This spread is waiting to be 'journaled' upon. You can see clearly the background was crayonned.

                                        This one needs some more work as well.

             Waiting for some words of wisdom - not sure how successful the background is.

                      This one needs tidying up, and more emphasis on the right-hand page.

This tiny book is called Rare Egyptian, and depicts Cleopatra.

                                                 It's about 3" tall. Lots of gold ink.

This one is merely a '7 Gypsies' slim book which I covered with stamped papers and a little collage.

This next little fabric book I made using my own hand-dyed fabrics, and image transfer techniques.

I stamped images onto paper then scanned and printed them onto treated fabric so the images wouldn't wash off. Each page is sandwiched with wadding, and hand stitched to make this little accordian House Book.

This little hand-stitched book is my favourite. It's so simple yet somehow perfect to me. Inspired by the hymn 'Glad that I live am I', I used my hand-dyed fabrics and used the same omage transfer technique to get the text onto the fabric. Finished off with oversewn edges and a few beads - I love it!

I did some sun dyeing here, treated the fabric, then laid leaves on it and left it out in the sunshine - lo and behold, you get a kind of 'sun-resist'! Brill! Right hand page I used coloured foils in the bottom corner to suggest the rainbow.

I have three other fabric books to show you, but I think I'll leave them for the next post as this is getting rather long! Hope you've enjoyed these, anyway.

Now before I go I must say something about comments. Comments, as one of my bloggy friends has said, are the best thing! It's great to have some feedback on your words and pictures; I do try to leave a comment regularly on a number of my favourite blogs. If you leave one, check back because I always reply. (I know bloggers with huge numbers of comments would find this impossible! Not a problem for me!)
I have done everything to make it esasy for you to comment, but if you sign in as 'anonymous' can you mention your name somewhere in the comment? The I can reply properly.  One thing I have done to facilitate things is to disable the 'Robot check' thingy because I know how frustrating it is. I could scream sometimes when I have left a comment and then find the botcheck thing is indecipherable. I KNOW you can click 'refresh' and get a new attempt, but today I clicked FOUR TIMES simply because I really needed to leave this particular comment. Ordinarily I would give it two goes then give up. WHY do they make them so impossible to see? PLEASE, bloggy friends, see if you can disable yours, give it a try, you won't get inundated with spam, it certainly hasn't had any effect on my blog.  Who on earth designs these things? Total rubbish. get a proper job!

Anyway, (yet another) rant over! The rain is pouring down but I have some gorgeous homemade veggie soup in the oven then later I am off to my melodeon lesson YAY! (as they say!) and after that....I'm taking myself to a new-to-me Folk Session in Dereham, which is on my way home. I'll give you the low-down next time! Enjoy what's left of the holidays.xx

Monday, 27 August 2012

Burwell Bash 2012

                                     Fiddle Class, Friday Concert. Moi resplendent in Turquoise!

Well now. This is a tricky post to get my head round. I have to be up front and say it has absolutely NOTHING to do with either textiles are art journaling.  But it is to do with music, and therefore  legitimate blog fodder, I'm sure you'll agree. But thanks for all the comments on the previous couple of posts, and I have answered them!

I think the easiest thing to do is just post the photos and try and remember what was going on in each one. I can't begin to express adequately the magic that is the annual Burwell Bash, when people turn up with their fiddles, flutes, whistles, guitars, and piano accordians for the tutored classes, but also sneaking in other illegitimate instruments such as melodeon (me), violas, mandolins, bouzoukis, broomstick basses, double basses, cellos, djembe, cymbals, trumpets, saxaphones, clarinets,.......correct me if I've missed any out! Suffice to say there is non-stop music going on. No tv, no radio, no newspapers...who would have time to read one?

                        Emily and Gina......ha,  Jude thought she was safely out of shot!

Anyway, the eager ones turned up on the Sunday, and right after supper a session got under way outside the lounge.
                                         About a quarter of the gathered musicians

                                                       I do believe that's me!

                      Session moved indoors about 11pm. Here are Sam and Yael.

                                              Jayne, Hattie and Debs. OH! And Mr Meloedeon!

Monday everyone else arrived and the course got under way. Burwell House look after us beautifully, the staff welcoming us back year after year, like old friends. I can't tell you how well the whole thing just moves smoothly on, we certainly aren't aware of the 'seams' though I'm sure behind the scenes there is furious paddling going on all the time.

                                  James, Mr Burwell House himself, manning the bar.

The Burwell Bash is organised by Stephen Bardwell (with help from his son Joe...a guitar student on the course.)

     Sorry,  not the best shot, but here is Stephen looking pensive at set-up time, Concert Night.

Jumping about a bit here, but trying to be chronological and explanatory at the same time - failing on both counts! The tutors for the Bash are as follows. Google them, as they are all incredible performers, talented and generous musicians who play solo, together, and with a plethora of other well-known musicans and bands.
                        This is Jock Tyldsley, fiddle tutor, who came to Burwell my first year.

Jock teaches Appalachian and Cajun fiddle tunes, and plays with the New Rope String Band, his lovely wife Vera van Heeringen, and numerous other folk, including Eliza Carthy, Dirk Powell, and erm.. Joan Baez. Jock has welded together a cohesive fiddle class, and tolerates our many quirkes and annoying habits...and random bowing styles (That'll be me, then.)

New to the fiddle class this year, Irish fiddle tutor Tola Custy, who arrived with his wild hair and fiddle, having had 6 hours sleep in 3 days...or was it 3 hours sleep in 6 days. Anyway, he settled right in.....

                                                    Tola's debut at Tutors' Concert.

Responsible for more than a few philosphical digressions during class, Tola never the less managed to impart some fab tunes, two of which I have in my head all day .

               Stephen presenting Brian with his birthday cake..made by the Burwell staff.

Brian Finnegan is probably the foremost flute and whistle player, anywhere,  ex of the band Flook, now with Kan, and corroborating with umpteen other musicians. As well as learning within our instrument classes, students are allocated to a 'mixed band' headed by a tutor. We have a handful of classes to prepare a couple (at least) of numbers to perform before the Tutors' Concert on Thursday night. The year I was in Brian's mixed band I was overcome by the beauty of the tune we learned. The arrangement was magical and I can still remember feeling quite emotional about the final rehearsal when it all came together. (FYI, Burwellties, it was a slow version of 'Joy' from Brian's cd. )

Assisting Brian is  Katherine  Mann who is surely one of the earliest Burwell-goers, from childhood. This year Katherine came accompanied by husband and baby.

Ed Boyd tutors the guitar class. Another ex member of Flook, Ed has played with bands and solo artists too numerous to mention; he's always in demand because his talent is widely sought after. Honestly you have to google these guys to understand just what top-notch tuition goes on here. The running joke at Burwell is Ed's iron - or lack of one!

Last but certainly not least, we have piano accordian tutor Sam Pirt. What can I say about Sam? Musically, I think, he's a genius. No, seriously, stand him in a room  with 50 or so music students on various instruments, no music, a tune off the top of his head, and within 20 minutes or so he will have us all having learned the tune, taken it apart, put it back together again and re-arranged in several variations. The end result is...mind blowing!  And it isn't prepared. I don't think Sam reads music. Anyone who can arrange a piece for five different instruments and 50 players, on the hoof, in 20 minutes, has to be pretty special, don't you think? We do. Every year I tell Sam I am getting speaking to his mum about the adoption papers!

                                                    Sam commanding the troops.

     Sorry, lousey shot,  Sam doing some foot percussion, which he usually does while playing.
The lap-top you can see there was enabling a link-up with Helen, a regular flute student who was unfortunately in California so unable to join us. We had her on skype for about 4 hours while she chatted to all of us and then she watched the concert!

Sam plays in so many bands I couldn't name them all. 422, and The Hut People are the ones I mostly know him from. He plays an eclectic variety of music, all of it hugely rhythmic and attention grabbing, particularly the south American Foro and Poro tunes. This year Iwas in Sam's Mixed Band  (Next year again, please, Stephen!) and we did two cracking numbers. Truth to tell, I was torn by wanting to buy a piano-accordian just so I could play the sort of music Sam plays. Not that I would leave the fiddle class  ; )   ! Oh, so tempted.  But I think I will continue with my melodeon, which I do love.

Ok, I am slowly losing the will to live here, going back and forth between photos, so just a few more general shots.

                         John, married to Jude, and all-round good egg and stalwart regular.

                                  Eddie, piano-accordianist, saxophonist, and BBC sound man.

   Sam and Thelma.........don't ask! I think she looks as if she's been knocked out and is going down for the count!

Ellie is another student who has been coming to Burwell since babyhood. Here she is doing a guest spot with her band Kiss The Mistress..unfortunately I couldn't squeeze John on bhodran into the shot, but he was dead good! Their set was absolutely brilliant.

                                                                   Clive and Debs

                                             Damien and Nicolas...The French Connection

                       Martina from Vienna, and behind, Caroline, from a bit nearer!

               It's a brave Frenchman who proudly sports the Union Flag on his chest! Damien.

                                                                Jock and Emma
                               Jenny and Sam. Jenny and Emma are sisters with Katherine (tutor)

Well, do you know, I think that's your lot. Normal service will be resumed next post! Sorry my plan to explain more about the course fell by the wayside, as I'm in a hurry to get this out. However, I think the photos speak for themselves. To fill yourself in, google Burwell Bash and have a read, also you'll find most of the tutors on youtube, somewhere! Now I'm going to lie down in a darkened room! Catch you next time.