Here are some of my recent paper designs created during my time through the Crafts Bursary in conjunction with Creative Scotland and DJCAD.
Reluctantly I’ve cleared and moved out of my space in ‘the room’ in the textile department. I’ve finished my time there and have taken my wings to fly to pastures new. I’ve found the experience so valuable to take time to consider my crafts practice, looking at all the strands I have with workshops, making products, designing surface pattern. I’m going to reposition myself to being a surface pattern designer who creates patterns and illustrations for all surfaces from stationery, fashion, furnishings, ceramics and architecture…
During my time I had a chance to try new things, learn new skills, reconsider my business model, have mentor support and meet lots of other creative people, such a great vibe at DJCAD. I highly recommend the opportunity.
I’m doing some up-skilling on photoshop and illustrator from Andy Rice from Not Just Design. I’ve always stayed away from the computer in the past; but now realise that it can enhance my work and I can retain all the hand qualities, painterly marks, randomness of my patterns and the happy accidents – all the things I love doing! I’ve a lot to learn but quite enjoying playing with the aspect ratio, testing out colour ideas in seconds rather than painting up and waiting till for hours for it to dry before I can work with. Last session is on Wednesday, then I’m going to practice, practice, practice…………
Here’s an image taken from my hand drawings; then overlayed with my hand created watercolour backgrounds and married together in photoshop.
Running through the marks by Louise Kirby
What a successful open day! DJCAD staff visited my studio and made really valuable comments; and fed back on my progress and work to date. I was visited by Mike Press, Sandra Wilson, Frances Stephenson, Christine Kingsley, Louise Valentine, Janice Aitken, Sean Kingsley, Jeanette Paul, Jane Keith and PHD student Lesley McKee.
My main aim is to change my business model from being a hand printed scarf designer to a surface pattern designer who works to commission and collaborates on surface patterns for a wide range of products from architecture, packaging, ceramics, fashion, furnishings, stationery……. I was looking at the key steps to re-brand myself and the changes I need to make with my visual signature to final resolved designs. It’s a very exciting time and also very intense with all that I want to achieve!
My space has been changing over the last few weeks with me really exploring marking and colour. Constantly creating new work putting it up all around me to absorb then selecting and rejecting, cutting, re-working so I can get closer to my visual signature.
As part of the Crafts Bursary we are encouraged to take risks to push our practice. On Thursday 17th Feb, myself Louise Kirby (surface pattern designer), Gilly Langton (jewellery) and Fiona Thompson (ceramicist) were briefed from Prof Georgina Follett and Dr Louise Valentine in the board room at DJCAD. We had till 9pm to come up with a product in collaboration with each other using our specialist skills. From this experience it taught us that we have strong creative skills as well as the other roles we work well in. Louise Kirby (designer, project manager and positive encourager), Gilly Langton (designer, summariser, marketing and pitcher), Fiona Thomson (artist and thinker). I throughly enjoyed being part of a collaboration and work well with others in an enthusiastic, positive manner and see this as one of the ways forward for my business.
Great day in the studio, doing what I love best! Can you see any creatures sneaking amongst the marks?
I’m happiest when I’m walking in the woodlands with my Cath Kidson wellies on squelching in the mud. I’m so happy when I’m outdoors in the countryside and inspired by the colours and textures of the woods. Saturday was a day trip in Airlie Estate from Cortachy Castle to Airlie Monument and Sunday was a trip to Kinshaldy Beach at Tentsmuir where the woodland merges into the sand. These trips are key to my wellbeing and inspire the new work I am developing within the ‘crafts bursary’ time at Duncan of Jordanstone.
As a designer I never seem to go in a straight line, my thinking and ideas sparking off all over the place going off in tangents. I’ve been doing some sampling with different materials and surfaces. Today was pulling it all together to create a coherent story. Always great to have my mentoring session, they are so valuable! After my session with Josie I created mood boards to bring everything together.
I’m in full swing of the Crafts Bursary at Duncan of Jordanstone and good things are going to happen this year!