101 Comments

  1. Andrea Butler
    August 1, 2016 @ 2:20 pm

    On a regular walk, I pass a small wooded area which has interested me for some time – the first day of the Creative Challenge seemed as good a time as any to try something out. I took some red wool, thinking it would contrast well with the greenery and made a spatial drawing: drawing the landscape/drawing in the landscape.

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  2. Andrea Butler
    August 1, 2016 @ 2:24 pm

    Drawing detail:

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  3. Andrea Butler
    August 1, 2016 @ 2:26 pm

    Detail of spatial drawing:

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    • Morag Thomson Merriman
      August 1, 2016 @ 11:10 pm

      Oh I love this Andrea! You’re weaving at one with nature, and the result is beautiful and rhythmic. Were you able to leave it up or did you have to take it down straightaway?

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  4. Paula Briggs, AccessArt
    August 1, 2016 @ 2:41 pm

    Thanks for kicking us off Andrea! Wonderful – I hope you left it for others to find?!

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  5. Andrea Butler
    August 1, 2016 @ 3:26 pm

    Sounds fantastic, Paula, can’t wait for the next step! Not talking yourself out of things or thinking about things too much in the beginning and just acting is a good resolution. That yellow is gorgeous!

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    • Morag Thomson Merriman
      August 1, 2016 @ 11:21 pm

      Oh, I like this! I’m all for working instinctively and randomly, as it can produce the most unexpected results. I am loving this very spontaneous purchase of fiery yellow fire gloves and a roll of lead – can’t wait and see where this is going to go!

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  6. Morag Thomson Merriman
    August 1, 2016 @ 10:37 pm

    I did quite a bit of thinking about how to approach this challenge. I keep a daily visual diary and have done so for almost 4 years now. I wanted to see if I could do something different on a daily basis while continuing with my usual daily visual diary. Through a bit of exploration I discovered that it was possible to create a 32-page accordion book (with folds in different places along the way) from one sheet of A1 paper. I decided on some surface alteration prior to folding/cutting it into the required accordion format, and had a lot of fun making random marks with my toddler’s cars (wheels inked up!), inky fingerprints and random collage pieces. The surface alteration should make for some very interesting background material for the forthcoming daily accordion sketchbook images and could provoke further experimental work, such as cutting, scoring, adding height/depth through additional pieces, stitching, collage, printing, painting etc. See photos below of the prepared accordion sketchbook. Looking forward to seeing what emerges of this experiment!

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  7. Morag Thomson Merriman
    August 1, 2016 @ 10:38 pm

    Detail of accordion sketchbook

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  8. Morag Thomson Merriman
    August 1, 2016 @ 10:42 pm

    Detail

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  9. Morag Thomson Merriman
    August 1, 2016 @ 10:44 pm

    Further detail

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  10. Morag Thomson Merriman
    August 1, 2016 @ 10:45 pm

    More detail

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  11. Morag Thomson Merriman
    August 1, 2016 @ 10:46 pm

    detail of sketchbook

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  12. Morag Thomson Merriman
    August 1, 2016 @ 10:46 pm

    further detail of sketchbook

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  13. Morag Thomson Merriman
    August 1, 2016 @ 10:47 pm

    accordion sketchbook laid out flat

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  14. Morag Thomson Merriman
    August 1, 2016 @ 10:48 pm

    Accordion sketchbook in half circle

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  15. Morag Thomson Merriman
    August 1, 2016 @ 10:50 pm

    Day 1 of Creative Challenge
    I had always wanted to try stitched drawing on paper (I often do this on fabric but had never tried it on paper), and I decided that today was the day I would do it, and I would do it straight onto my accordion sketchbook. No practising elsewhere as it’s not about creating the perfect work, more about the journey of making and experimenting and being bold! The plan today as a family on a beautiful day was to climb Arthur’s Seat for the views across the city, but we never did make it for various reasons. However it brought back memories of struggling to climb this very same hill as a little girl, and I decided to recreate this hill scene through stitched drawing and other media. No thinking and planning, just working instinctively with my hands to see what emerges. I was, I admit, a little tentative with my stitching on paper at the outset, not knowing how it would work or behave, and I kept stopping and starting. However, it wasn’t long before I killed my fear and found my rhythm, and went for it, in all random directions, gaining confidence to add in collage pieces and stitch over these too, and only stopping very occasionally to see how it was looking. I deliberately let the collage pieces hang over the edge of the paper, as I wanted to push the physical boundaries of the accordion sketchbook. The little boy was cut out of a magazine and his face altered using oil pastels, and I also used oil pastels to create additional “stitched” lines across the hill (in orange). Overall, I think the combination of the stitched drawing and the collage pieces has created a map-like effect which I hadn’t expected, and which I’m pleased about. It was also interesting to turn over the accordion to see the effect of the stitched drawing on the other side. I really like the puncture marks made by the needle and the overall effect. Think I might exploit this on another day!

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  16. Morag Thomson Merriman
    August 1, 2016 @ 10:52 pm

    detail of stitched drawing and collage

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  17. Morag Thomson Merriman
    August 1, 2016 @ 10:54 pm

    detail of collage pieces stitched over the paper’s edge

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  18. Morag Thomson Merriman
    August 1, 2016 @ 10:58 pm

    close-up of stitched drawing

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  19. Morag Thomson Merriman
    August 1, 2016 @ 10:59 pm

    On back of accordion sketchbook showing the puncture marks made by the needle

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  20. Morag Thomson Merriman
    August 1, 2016 @ 11:00 pm

    Detail of puncture marks

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  21. Sheila, AccessArt
    August 2, 2016 @ 8:23 am

    Wow Morag! Such rich work! Incredible intimacy in detail. Your accordion sketchbook is truly inspiring. I love reading the story of Arthur’s Seat and your memories of climbing to the top – how wonderful to be so open and let such a remarkable image come out! Thanks so much for sharing.

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  22. Sheila, AccessArt
    August 2, 2016 @ 10:52 am

    Mine is a simple holiday journal – lovely going back to my teenage years when I used to keep one… I’ve been coming to this place since I was four years old – so drawing almost a nostalgic process…

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    • Andrea Butler
      August 2, 2016 @ 11:00 am

      Sheila, a beautiful drawing that captures the moment perfectly – a sense of space out across the sea to the horizon and such feeling in the marks, very ‘watery’ and fluid. How lovely to document your emotional connection with a special place through your journal drawings.

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  23. Sheila, AccessArt
    August 2, 2016 @ 10:54 am

    a local swimming pool with water from the seismic hills…

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  24. Sheila, AccessArt
    August 2, 2016 @ 10:55 am

    Populonia…

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  25. Andrea Butler
    August 2, 2016 @ 5:08 pm

    Inspired by Paula’s post Drawing Outside and Never Ending Landscapes http://www.accessart.org.uk/drawing-outside-never-ending-landscapes/ I got out my dip pen and ink and made line drawings of seed heads collected on a walk. I’ve had a roll of soft, flexible wire in the back of my cupboard for a few years that I’ve never really used but I was reminded of it today by my black ink drawings. It was lovely to shape and manipulate the wire into small 3D drawings of my seed heads.

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  26. Andrea Butler
    August 2, 2016 @ 5:08 pm

    Wire drawings of seed heads:

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  27. Andrea Butler
    August 2, 2016 @ 5:09 pm

    Detail of seed heads:

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  28. Morag Thomson Merriman
    August 2, 2016 @ 11:35 pm

    ‪#‎dailycreativechallenge‬ ‪#‎inspiremeAugust‬ ‪#‎31daychallenge‬ ‪#‎day2‬
    Continuing with the August Creative Challenge http://www.accessart.org.uk/join-us-for-an-august-creative…/, here is my resulting image for Day 2. Today was a rare chance for me to have a few hours to myself while my husband looked after our young children. I had the opportunity to empty my mind of parental responsibility :), thus enabling myself to be open and receptive to what might come my way. I attended a lecture at the Scottish National Gallery of Art (“Tangled Lines: On Surrealist Automatism”) and visited the exhibition “Surreal Encounters | Collecting the Marvellous” at the SNGMA. Both wonderfully inspirational, so much to consider and explore in my work. I had taken my accordion sketchbook with me today, along with my oil pastels, one blacklead pencil, a papercutting knife, 3 reels of thread and a needle, a tiny pair of scissors, a glue stick and one fairly large torn piece of paper I had found on my studio desk, part of a magazine photo showing green shrubbery. I had no idea if I was going to use any or all of these materials. While things were still very fresh in my mind after the exhibition visit, I sat on a bench outside the SNGMA while waiting for the gallery bus back to the city centre and got started. No preplanning, just playing around with a black origami square I had picked up in the SNGMA Resources Room which someone had already folded and unfolded, so the lines of the folds were still visible. I folded the black square randomly and started hand stitching with orange thread, working freely and instinctively. I tore out the little figure from one of the free gallery brochures I had picked up, and at that point it was time to board the gallery bus. I decided to carry on stitching on board the bus, rather than wait until I got home! I was able to stitch in the little figure and temporarily put in place the torn piece of paper (the green shrubbery) with my sewing needle. I finished the piece at home while cooking dinner for my family, altering the little figure’s face by the addition of a drawn beak and adding rhythmic columns of marks made with an orange oil pastel. I decided to leave in the needle I had used to attach the torn magazine photo of the shrub as the needle was catching the light nicely. A lovely outcome from taking the photos of the resulting image was seeing a possible connection to yesterday’s stitched drawing, suggesting a narrative through the glimpse of the boy behind.

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  29. Morag Thomson Merriman
    August 2, 2016 @ 11:36 pm

    Detail of altered figure

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  30. Morag Thomson Merriman
    August 2, 2016 @ 11:38 pm

    oil pastel and hand stitching

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  31. Morag Thomson Merriman
    August 2, 2016 @ 11:41 pm

    Another detail showing oil pastel in a rhythmic column

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  32. Morag Thomson Merriman
    August 2, 2016 @ 11:43 pm

    Detail of collage pieces

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  33. Morag Thomson Merriman
    August 2, 2016 @ 11:46 pm

    Detail showing needle catching the light

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  34. Morag Thomson Merriman
    August 2, 2016 @ 11:47 pm

    With view of previous page

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  35. Morag Thomson Merriman
    August 2, 2016 @ 11:49 pm

    As part of the accordion sketchbook

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  36. Andrea Butler
    August 3, 2016 @ 4:46 pm

    I had more time today and started off with some research on Alexander Calder’s wire drawings. I thought I would try a wire drawing myself based on Calder’s work and was particularly inspired by the children’s drawings in http://www.accessart.org.uk/drawing-with-wire-like-calder-and-backwards-forwards-sketching/. I began by trying to figure out how Calder had put together his wire horse using different colours in my drawing to understand the construction. I then tried a wire drawing from a drawing of my own. As I began to manipulate the wire, I became more and more interested in the idea that within his wire drawings Calder joined mirrored shapes in a parallel format. I decided to follow that thought and see where it led. My leopard is the unexpected outcome.

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    • Sheila, AccessArt
      August 4, 2016 @ 11:34 am

      Stunning drawings! Shadows of the wire drawing on the page exciting too!

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      • Sheila, AccessArt
        August 4, 2016 @ 11:35 am

        And the experimentation with coloured lines very successful.

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  37. Andrea Butler
    August 3, 2016 @ 4:47 pm

    A leopard: shaped balsa wood, paper and thread

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  38. Andrea Butler
    August 3, 2016 @ 4:47 pm

    Waiting to pounce!

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  39. Morag Thomson Merriman
    August 4, 2016 @ 12:16 am

    Day 3 of the August Creative Challenge http://www.accessart.org.uk/join-us-for-an-august-creative…/
    It was a very convoluted, tortuous exercise today, and the problem was I had spent too much time thinking about my work which is not the way I normally work. I had only little pockets of time here and there which meant pausing my work repeatedly, which in turn led to the problem of thinking about it too much. Not ideal for someone who likes to be random and spontaneous with her work! I worked my way through too many preplanned changes and nothing felt right. However, at long last, I managed eventually to get a grip on myself this evening :), and working quickly, I ended up with what you see in the photos which I managed to take just literally before the daylight faded. Once I had resumed working instinctively, I found myself reaching for long vertical collage pieces that you see in the photos, layering them over the original pieces I had attached at the time of preparing the accordion sketchbook. Then I had the idea of using one of my bird prints (the early proofs which I had kept just in case they would be useful), and cut out one bird out of the group of 3 birds in the print. I then found myself searching for blue acetate paper and that I stuck over the bird to give it added drama and texture. During one of my earlier attempts to resolve my work, I had cut out a small section at the bottom of the sketchbook page to create an extra layered dimension (catching an unexpected glimpse of something beyond the physical structure of the sketchbook creates an element of surprise and fun). This I decided to retain as part of the final piece, as it seems to work well with the bird seemingly perched above it..

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  40. Morag Thomson Merriman
    August 4, 2016 @ 12:19 am

    Detail of lino print bird covered with blue acetate paper

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  41. Morag Thomson Merriman
    August 4, 2016 @ 12:20 am

    detail of cut out section at foot of page

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  42. Morag Thomson Merriman
    August 4, 2016 @ 12:21 am

    Detail of cut out section with glimpse of toy car behind

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  43. Morag Thomson Merriman
    August 4, 2016 @ 12:23 am

    Accordion sketchbook with Days 1,2 and 3 completed

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    • Sheila, AccessArt
      August 4, 2016 @ 11:33 am

      So much has happened in two days! Absolutely love the way this is becoming a life of its own and living sculpture… amazing to watch this creation unfold!

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  44. Andrea Butler
    August 4, 2016 @ 4:39 pm

    Day 4: From a collection of objects gathered on a walk.

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  45. Andrea Butler
    August 4, 2016 @ 4:40 pm

    Day 4: A collection of objects gathered on a walk.

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  46. Morag Thomson Merriman
    August 4, 2016 @ 10:51 pm

    Day 4 of the August Creative Challenge http://www.accessart.org.uk/join-us-for-an-august-creative…/
    Beginning to lose count of the days already! I had decided today that I would play around with another old bird lino print proof but after I had cut out my bird, I suddenly started cutting up the bird itself into three pieces, the head, body and feet. These pieces I pasted onto 2 layers of stronger cartridge paper. The out came the sewing machine and I started stitched drawing over the lino print body of the bird. Decided against using the head and feet, and instead pasted some collage pieces on the accordion sketchbook page, going for height and b&w scenes to add drama. I included a figure from a magazine, whose face I altered through the use of oil pastels. I added arms from another model, then started folding the bird’s body in various places to suggest a full length swishy skirt, which I stapled into place (the folds had made it too thick and bulky to hand sew into place). I made sure not to adhere the whole of the ‘skirt’ to the accordion page, as I wanted to create a sense of depth through the shadows cast by the edges of the ‘skirt’ rising freely up from the page. I like the way I’ve allowed the character’s arm to invade the previous day’s image, seemingly touching the blue bird, thereby creating a connection.

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  47. Morag Thomson Merriman
    August 4, 2016 @ 10:52 pm

    Stitched drawing over lino print

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  48. Morag Thomson Merriman
    August 4, 2016 @ 10:54 pm

    Showing folds of the ‘skirt’ with staples holding it in place

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  49. Morag Thomson Merriman
    August 4, 2016 @ 10:55 pm

    Showing how the edges of the ‘skirt’ are free to rise up from the surface of the page, thereby casting shadows and creating depth

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  50. Morag Thomson Merriman
    August 4, 2016 @ 10:56 pm

    Day 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5 of the accordion sketchbook completed

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  51. Andrea Butler
    August 5, 2016 @ 4:16 pm

    Day 5 was spent out and about: sketchbook notes from an exhibition, a figure seen at the museum and testing water soluble neo-colour crayons on the train home.

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  52. Andrea Butler
    August 5, 2016 @ 4:21 pm

    A test sheet using crayons and a water brush – a nice way to spend the time on the train home at the end of the day.

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  53. Morag Thomson Merriman
    August 5, 2016 @ 10:08 pm

    Day Five of the August Creative Challenge: http://www.accessart.org.uk/join-us-for-an-august-creative…/
    This was a lovely gentle exercise, done on the way to and back from a family day out. Working with wool is therapeutic and calming, and there is a nice rhythm to winding wool repeatedly round an object, in this case my accordion sketchbook page which I had strengthened by pasting cardboard on the back to make it easier for wool winding. I had found in a magazine a photo of a wall of framed images, all b&w, against a cream wall, and I had the idea of using this to suggest windows hiding behind curtains, with a few people peeping out at the figure I had created the previous day. The photo of the framed images was pasted onto the accordion page, and then the wool wound round. In the event, I decided to have only one face peeping out as it heightens the drama of the scene. On taking my photos, I discovered lovely little unexpected vistas and connections from different angles while arranging and rearranging the accordion sketchbook. It’s becoming almost like a little theatre set! 🙂 Why not have a go yourself? It’s becoming quite addictive!

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  54. Morag Thomson Merriman
    August 5, 2016 @ 10:10 pm

    Detail showing face peeping out

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  55. Morag Thomson Merriman
    August 5, 2016 @ 10:14 pm

    The accordion with Day 5

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  56. Morag Thomson Merriman
    August 5, 2016 @ 10:41 pm

    Accordion detail

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  57. Sheila, AccessArt
    August 6, 2016 @ 8:51 am

    Just amazing to check in and see your processes and the way your work feeds each other- such a privilege to see. Thank you Morag and Andrea! Incredibly inspiring to watch.

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  58. Andrea Butler
    August 6, 2016 @ 5:15 pm

    Day 6: Drawing my wrapped objects. I wanted to make drawings that spoke of my experience of the softness of the wool and the quiet, repetitive process of wrapping. I made small drawings with a white wax crayon and watercolour, enjoying each drawing as it revealed itself and not being too precious about creating an accurate observational drawing. The finished sheet reminded me of a page of scientific illustrations, so I got out my typewriter and made some labels for these fragile creatures.

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  59. Andrea Butler
    August 6, 2016 @ 5:17 pm

    Studies of objects:

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  60. Andrea Butler
    August 6, 2016 @ 5:17 pm

    Whole sheet:

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  61. Andrea Butler
    August 7, 2016 @ 7:33 pm

    Day 7: I watched an interview with printer, Stephen Chambers (RA) recently and he talked about his enjoyment of potato printing. It set me thinking and I realised that I couldn’t remember the last time I made a potato print. So, using a pencil drawing from a museum as a template, a potato and some leaves from the garden, I constructed a pop-up potato print.

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  62. Andrea Butler
    August 7, 2016 @ 7:34 pm

    Test prints:

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  63. Andrea Butler
    August 7, 2016 @ 7:35 pm

    Printing with leaves to create a background:

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  64. Andrea Butler
    August 7, 2016 @ 7:35 pm

    Creating the pop-up element

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  65. Andrea Butler
    August 7, 2016 @ 7:36 pm

    My pop-up potato print.

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    • Sheila, AccessArt
      August 8, 2016 @ 11:27 am

      Superb!

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      • Andrea Butler
        August 8, 2016 @ 11:52 am

        Thanks! – such a nice process carving my potato!

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        • Sheila, AccessArt
          August 9, 2016 @ 11:51 am

          I’ve not done potato printing for years and years! Would be fun to try again. Also must try Morag’s eraser printing – such beautiful results!

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  66. Andrea Butler
    August 8, 2016 @ 7:59 pm

    This piece is a small visual note, perhaps for future work – an experiment in weaving two prints of similar images together to create a pixelated, fragmented effect.

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  67. Sheila, AccessArt
    August 9, 2016 @ 12:04 pm

    Years go by and I have a sense of age and passing, yet here there is no change – a stillness in the continuum and movement… the same, ageless Coconut man?

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  68. Sheila, AccessArt
    August 9, 2016 @ 12:06 pm

    Same faces gather… in a daily routine all theirs…

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  69. Sheila, AccessArt
    August 9, 2016 @ 12:08 pm

    Flow, stillness…. flow….

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  70. Sheila, AccessArt
    August 9, 2016 @ 12:09 pm

    And then a reminder that time does indeed move on!

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    • Andrea Butler
      August 9, 2016 @ 12:51 pm

      Such delicate sensitive drawings, Sheila – I love the mark making. The journal will be a wonderful memento of your holiday and be especially nice to look at in the depths of the British winter!

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  71. Morag Thomson Merriman
    August 9, 2016 @ 4:37 pm

    Day 6 of the August Creative Challenge http://www.accessart.org.uk/join-us-for-an-august-creative…/
    We were out today at the Surrealist Saturday Family Day at the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art, where all things weird and wonderful were celebrated, with the help of roaming circus performers. There is a fenced off area in the grounds for an exhibition themed play area (for the current exhibition “Surreal Encounters”), with the fencing constructed from oversized wooden playing cards (think of Alice in Wonderland). After we had got back home, I decided to have fun with collage and oil pastels to see what emerged from my memories of the afternoon. After trying out various ideas which seemed to jar with the rest of the accordion, I happily ended up with this final version which includes playing cards reflecting the fence at SNGOMA, but which also reflect my children’s ages (8 & 2). The character in the bowler hat (a nod to the circus performers but of my own devising) seems to sit well with the rest of the accordion, and I like the fact that he’s gazing to the right, thereby setting up a connection with subsequent images.

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  72. Morag Thomson Merriman
    August 9, 2016 @ 4:38 pm

    Part of accordion

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  73. Morag Thomson Merriman
    August 9, 2016 @ 4:38 pm

    Days 1-6 of accordion

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  74. Morag Thomson Merriman
    August 9, 2016 @ 4:40 pm

    Day 7 of the August Creative Challenge http://www.accessart.org.uk/join-us-for-an-august-creative…/
    I had a very interesting dilemma two days ago. I was looking at my accordion sketchbook and it struck me how much of a living being this sketchbook is becoming, expanding and growing in all directions. I realised then that I had to allow it to breathe more fully, by making all the pages more of a connective whole, and I suddenly had the urge to make little changes to Days 1 and 2, to create a more coherent, narrative connection to Days 3 and 4. This presented me with a dilemma. Should I leave it untouched as it’s a documentary of my progress (and it’s all been made public on Facebook), or do I go ahead with these little changes as it’s part of the creative process, and reflects the sketchbook’s constantly evolving status? I threw all this at Andrea Butler for her thoughts, and her wonderful suggestion was to go ahead with the changes and make them the creative act for the day, as they are as important as making the pages. Yes! If I had been working on this sketchbook in the privacy of my studio, yes, I would have gone ahead with these changes, so there was my answer, and it would have niggled me if I had not followed it through. Today was the day I went ahead with these changes.
    For Day 1, it was just one small, straightforward change, to make the sky darker to highlight the intricacy of the stitched drawing on the hill and enhance its overall reference to a map. I also wanted the darker blue to echo the blue bird on Day 3. As for Day 2, my thoughts were that there were areas that didn’t feel quite right, and that it was lacking coherence overall. I had visited the “Surreal Encounters” exhibition at the SNGOMA that day, so I wanted my image to reflect that visit. I made some further alterations to the figure at the top of the image, and now have it making direct eye contact with the viewer as if he/she is the exhibit, rather than the figure itself. I put a frame round this figure to provide a link to two other framed pictures I had also now pasted onto the image, before doing some more mark-making with stitched drawing. If you look at the bottom right of the image, you’ll see that I have partly unpicked some stitches. I had changed my mind about this particular area of stitched drawing, and had started to unpick these stitches when I discovered that I rather liked the messy effect of the partly unpicked stitches, so decided to leave it as it is! I am now happier with the way the accordion looks with the creative changes I’ve made today, so am very ready for tomorrow’s creation!

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  75. Morag Thomson Merriman
    August 9, 2016 @ 4:41 pm

    close up

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  76. Morag Thomson Merriman
    August 9, 2016 @ 4:42 pm

    Day 2 image revised

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  77. Morag Thomson Merriman
    August 9, 2016 @ 4:55 pm

    Accordion with revised Days 1 & 2

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  78. Morag Thomson Merriman
    August 9, 2016 @ 5:10 pm

    Day 2 revised figure – detail

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  79. Morag Thomson Merriman
    August 9, 2016 @ 5:14 pm

    Altered stitching – detail

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  80. Morag Thomson Merriman
    August 9, 2016 @ 5:15 pm

    Accordion showing revised Days 1 & 2

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  81. Andrea Butler
    August 9, 2016 @ 8:00 pm

    Seed:

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  82. Morag Thomson Merriman
    August 10, 2016 @ 8:07 am

    Day 8 of the August Creative Challenge http://www.accessart.org.uk/join-us-for-an-august-creative…/
    Today was our family trip to Jupiter Artland, a wonderful contemporary art park and gallery located outside Edinburgh, showcasing outdoor work by sculpture and land artists. A weird and wonderful place to go to, a real feast for the senses! Among my favourite works were the dramatic and melancholic Weeping Girls by Laura Ford. I didn’t get a chance to draw from them on the spot, however I was able to make an inspired drawing on the car journey back home, making the girl’s hair look like thick coils of rope, just as it had looked on Ford’s sculptures. Back home, in the midst of getting dinner ready :), I realised I wanted to make a quick print based on my drawing and suddenly remembered AccessArt’s resource on monoprinting with oil pastels and carbon copy paper http://www.accessart.org.uk/monoprinting-with-oil-pastel-a…/. I had tried this out before with great results so I decided to use this technique for a double page spread for added drama (I had reached the point in my sketchbook where the fold of the page appears at the top rather than at the side and you get two pages folding down and outwards – see ‘before’ photo). I traced my original drawing and put the traced copy on top of the carbon copy paper which was itself facing down on the sketchbook page. I then did the transfer using a 5B pencil which resulted in a print looking similar to a pencil drawing, and used a blue oil pastel for the background to heighten the effect of the print. I then did the same on the second page, except I added some blue oil pastel to the carbon paper surface itself, and used a biro pen for the transfer, which enabled sharper lines with some blue transferred from the oil pastel on the carbon paper. I added a contrast background with the use of orange oil pastel. Such a great and quick way to do a bit of printing when time is short!

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  83. Morag Thomson Merriman
    August 10, 2016 @ 8:08 am

    carbon paper print with blue background

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  84. Morag Thomson Merriman
    August 10, 2016 @ 8:09 am

    Accordion with carbon print on blue background

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  85. Morag Thomson Merriman
    August 10, 2016 @ 8:10 am

    carbon paper print on orange background

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  86. Morag Thomson Merriman
    August 10, 2016 @ 8:11 am

    Accordion with carbon print on orange background

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  87. Morag Thomson Merriman
    August 10, 2016 @ 8:12 am

    the two carbon prints unfolded

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  88. Morag Thomson Merriman
    August 10, 2016 @ 8:16 am

    I had spent so much of today trying to sort out smartphone/PC technical issues which had cropped up, that I was craving a bit of light relief for my image today. Somehow I came up with the idea of snakes and ladders, totally random, but there we go :). Relief was the key word here, as I had decided to do relief printing using erasers (see my resource http://www.accessart.org.uk/eraser-printmaking-with-morag-thomson-merriman/). I pasted pages taken out of an old Rough Guide onto my sketchbook page. I carved out my snake and printed it in various colours (using inkpads in black and 2 shades of green). I added details using an orange felt tip pen and orange oil pastel for the eyes and tongues. I cut out sections of the page and created a ‘ladder’ effect by sewing embroidery thread across the cut out shapes. I then drew another ladder using an oil pastel and also stuck a circular orange shape to the page, meant to allude to the counters normally used in snakes and ladders, and which would also echo the orange used liberally on the previous page.

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  89. Morag Thomson Merriman
    August 10, 2016 @ 8:17 am

    detail of woven and drawn ladder

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  90. Morag Thomson Merriman
    August 10, 2016 @ 8:18 am

    detail of cut out section with woven embroidery thread

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  91. Morag Thomson Merriman
    August 10, 2016 @ 8:19 am

    Accordion with my snakes and ladders

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