Wednesday, 22 October 2008


This is my latest textile art piece titled "Rainforest Dragon".
I belong to a group called Fast Friday Fabric Challenge. The original idea was inspired by the Project Runway/ Project Catwalk type shows where they only have a short time to create a garment.
The plan in this group is to make a textile art piece in a week. (or as near to a week as you can!) The learning art part of it is that when the challenge is set, there are parameters you have to adhere to. They are usually connected to artistic techniques or concepts, colour schemes, or themes.

This year we are going to explore the idea of doing work in a series as well as look at colour and composition. The first month - we start in September - was about Complementary color scheme with a Vertical, Horizontal or Diagonal layout. We were encouraged to think about following on with ideas from work we had done before, so as to develop a series. You don't have to carry a series on for the whole year if you think you have worked it enough.

So, I have all these dragons in my head that are wanting to get out! When I did the design element for my City and Guilds: Fashion Diploma, I did a book full of design ideas using dragons for inspiration. Here is one of the first ones, to come to life. It is in the inside lining of the coat for my 2007 Bernina Ensemble. The ensemble is called "The Epic Quest of the Last Dragoness".
I often have a story which goes with my work and the dragons are a good example of that. Here is the story of the dragon which inspired the Bernina Ensemble.

The dragoness is actually a Lightning Dragon. Did you know that inter-cloud lightning produces a very special sort of diamond? Well, the lovely dragoness travels stormy skies collecting lightning diamonds for her hoard. She also transforms into the shape of a beautiful lady. In this form, she attends glorious balls and special occasions frequented by the rich and noble in order to take note of any lightning diamonds which have been made into jewels for the ladies there. She collects other gems, too. If you follow the link for the gown just above the photo, you can see that her bodice is encrusted from the time she spends resting on her pile of gems.
What else do you think she does? Can you add to the story?

The Rainforest Dragon has a story, too. I started telling it on the Fast Friday Blog. I have sort of run out of time today, since I had computer problems earlier, but I will tell you the Rainforest Dragon story tomorrow. By the way, he is camouflaged. Can you see him? The red bit is his eye.

Oh, yeah, these challenges always start on 4th Friday of each month and you should post the result the following week on the Saturday. Our next one is this coming week. I am not sure I will have time to do much before going to Houston, so I will probably take an extention and post my work late this time. Wonder what the artistic challenges will be? Wonder which dragon will come out to play?

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