Art, Travel

Bonjour Paris!

Not so long ago my husband and I spent a magical weekend in Paris. We caught the Eurostar early on Friday morning and by midday we were checking into our hotel.

We stayed at the Opera de Noailles, situated near the Opera House. We chose this hotel mainly due to the great reviews on Trip Advisor and we weren’t disappointed. Not only is the central location perfect (10 min walk to the Louvre) but the hotel is full of interesting pieces of modern art such as:

The turtles behind the reception desk

Opera de Noailles Paris

The snails in the main lobby

Opera de Noailles Snail

And the group of bears in the courtyard which became more and more sinister as daylight faded!

Opera de Noailles Bears

 

Our room was small but very clean, it was ideal for us as we spent most of the weekend out and about.

One of the places we visited was the Les Catacombs, which I have to say I was a bit apprehensive about at first. The catacombs are a series of disused quarries that run deep under the centre of Paris. In the late 18th Century, due to overcrowding and disease it was decided to transfer the bones of those buried in the city centre graveyards down to the mines; the tunnels hold the remains of as many as 6 million Parisians.

The way the bones have  been displayed and arranged makes for a pretty strange experience. I have to say I am glad that we did visit as it was unlike anything I have ever seen before, but I’m not sure I would rush back to do it again.

Paris Catacombs

 

In the evening we took a wander down to the Notre Dame and the Seine.

Notre Dame

The Seine Paris

 

It was late when we got back to the hotel and unfortunately the bar was shut so we couldn’t have a drink with the bears! On the Saturday we headed over to the Louvre to check out this little lady.

Mona Lisa

The Louvre is such an amazing, inspirational place. Everywhere you turn there are opulent halls lined with exquisite pieces of art. It really is something else. It also made us want to watch the Da Vinci Code again!

The Louvre

 

The only thing that I really wanted to see that we didn’t get chance to was a Surrealist exhibition at the Pompidou Centre – we just ran out of time. However, some of the artwork back in the hotel could have given the surrealists a run for their money!

Opera de Noailles art

I also really liked this chair – the jacket on the back was made up of strips of paper but you couldn’t tell until you got up really close.

Opera de Noailles

And check this out – the hotel has a really unique way of displaying it’s thank you notes!

Opera de Noailles Thank you

It really was a great weekend and I hope we can go back again soon – 2 days really isn’t long enough to explore this beautiful city.

 

 

C&G Hand Knit Textiles, knitting

C&G Hand Knit Textiles – Module 2 – The Knitting Bit

Following my previous post on Module 2 of the Hand Knit Textiles course, here are the samples I produced for activity 5. The brief was to produce 3 or 4 samples based on visual sources of line, but I got a bit carried away and did a few more 🙂

Activity 5 – Interpreting Line in Knitting

Sample 1 – Green Vase

DSC02564

This vase is in the V&A Museum in London and I like the thin white lines painted on the ridges and the way they reflect the light.

The sample is knit in plain green stockinette  and then in first purl row I used a fair isle patterned yarn which sat on the stitches below and above each ridge to give the highlight effect.

DSC06296

Sample 2 – Grille

IMG_0434

Knit in striped stockinette but the diagonal lines were picked up using purl stitches so at the end I could draw a line of yarn through these and finish with a button for the centre.

DSC06277

Sample 3 – Egg Dish

Another V&A find – the sample couldn’t be anything else but entrelac!

DSC02562

DSC06278

Sample 4 – Hexagonal Box

DSC02538

DSC06279

Sample 5 – V&A Floor

DSC02489

It was the interlocking squares that I liked about this pattern – originally tried working this one in colour but it got beyond complicated trying to keep track of the intarsia bobbins! So it became knit and purl instead and duplicate stitch over the black squares – but I wasn’t keen on the result,  it works better in one plain colour.

DSC06280

(By the way, see if you can spot the mistake in the floor mosaic photo!)

Sample’s 6 and 7 – 3D Blocks

DSC06283

After failing to recreate the V&A floor sample in colour I wanted to try again with a different pattern, this design was on the back of a greetings card.

DSC06282

I then tried the same design in a linear pattern and used contrasting yarn to pick out other patterns within it. The shapes aren’t very clear from the photo below but they are in yellow, pink and green.

DSC06299

Sample 8 – Ironworks

I wanted to have a go at creating something using raised stitches and cables and was inspired by this picture of an iron railing.

DSC02501

This is my least favourite sample and probably would have been a lot more effective in just knit and purl stitches. It just looks a bit messy and not really the result I was after. But hey ho – it was a good lesson in what doesn’t work!

DSC06284

Sample 9 – Llama

I found this little fellow in the Birmingham museum – isn’t he sweet!

DSC03102

The sample was a combination of knit, purl, stripes and eyelets for the markings.

DSC06285

So that was all of the knitted samples based on line – I absolutely loved this activity and could have quite easily carried on making more!

The final part of the module was to produce a ‘resolved piece’. Using the techniques previously explored the aim was to experiment with line patterns and work through a range of ideas to create a decorative design that could be applied to a craft item. The end design could be used as a print on a scarf, indentations around a ceramic pot, an embroidered or stitch pattern on a wall hanging or quilt etc.

Resolved Piece

My resolved piece started life as ripped up pieces of cardboard and thick paper which were then glued onto an A4 piece of card. I overlaid a piece of tracing paper and took a rubbing using a white wax crayon. This rubbing was turned upside down and put back on top of the original with glued on bits of string to mark out some of the lines.

DSC06286

I took a rubbing and scanned it into the computer.

DSC06287

Then was the fun bit of matching up the lines and picking out repeat patterns.

DSC06288

Here are a couple of ideas that were developed further

DSC06289

But in the end I went with this shape as it made me think of butterflies!

DSC06290

Once the main pattern was decided on I experimented with colours using watercolours and tissue paper.

DSC06291

This is the final design in colour.

DSC06292

Which was scanned and repeated to produce the pattern below.

DSC06293

The course then requires you to demonstrate how you saw the design being used. I saw this pattern as being a pretty print on a dress, forgive the rubbish drawing, but you get the idea!

DSC06294

And that was Module 2!

If anyone is interested in doing this course it is run by Fiona Morris at ‘Distance Knitting’ and you can find more details here.

 

 

 

C&G Hand Knit Textiles, knitting

C&G Hand Knit Textiles – Module 2 – The Design Bit

I have received module 2 back now so thought I would share an overview of what activities it included and some of the samples I produced for it. This module focused on design and creating patterns from lines and I am going to do this post in 2 parts as there is quite a lot of work in this module. Here is the design bit.

Activity 1 – A collection of images to reflect the theme ‘line’.

I had great fun collecting images and taking photo’s for my file, here are a few of my favourites.

IMG_0448

These panels are part of a public installation by Dale Devereux Barker at Cloister’s Walk, St. Katherine’s Dock, London. You can check out more of his work here. His use of line and colour are really inspiring!

38514_448171816340_3425971_n

This one was taken in Greece and is a reflection of ferry lights in the water.

DSC03159

This pretty skylight is at the Birmingham museum.

Activity 2 – Mark Making

It was back to school with this activity – out came the felt tip’s, poster paints, crayons and anything else I could lay my hands on! The aim was to experiment with different mediums and papers to create lines and markings.

DSC06269

Activity 3 – Doodle Sheets and Repeat Patterns

You are provided with a blank grid of boxes, each one to be filled with a doodle or pattern.  You then take 4 photocopies of the sheet and cut them up so you have 4 repeats of each pattern which you can then play around with to make repeat patterns.

DSC06270

DSC06271

Activity 4 – Layered Landscapes and Repeat Patterns

In this activity to have to select a landscape image that has a number of horizontal divisions.

I chose this one.

284282_10150336284351341_7661616_n

Using tracing paper, a scalpel and some card you make a tracing of each horizontal line. For each line you cut out the shape from a new piece of card and stick them on top of each other to build a layered picture from which you can take a rubbing. From the cut outs you can create 2 images – a positive and a negative image.

DSC06272

As with the doodle sheet before you then take copies of the image or scan into the computer so you can play around with repeat patterns.

DSC06274

I like this image as it has clearly defined horizontal lines but the pencil markings also make a chevron pattern.

I interpreted this in a knitted sample using red and orange yarn to create the stripes on a chevron background.

DSC06295

Activity 5 continues this theme and looks at interpreting line through knitting and you can use images that were collected in activity 1. I will share my knitted samples in the next post.