Saturday, November 01, 2014


These days I find that I need some incentive to finish a piece of work and now that these two pieces have found a home I have found the energy to complete them.

If you like the artwork visit  HERE where you can view more of my son's work.

This piece I visualized hanging horizontally but it will be hung vertically so I added some more lines of stitching, although I prefer it my way!

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Suminagashi continued.

I have learned a few things whilst experimenting with Suminagashi; one is that it is quite addictive. If you try this you will need plenty of paper, I have found that watercolour paper works well, as does a mixed media card- like paper, even copy paper will work. The best results are made with handmade paper. You also need plenty of kitchen roll in order to damp off the paper.

By leaving the old marks on the water there will be an interesting ghost print on the next piece of paper.

It is fine to over print and it gives interesting depth to the papers. The original print is not disturbed. Also the other side of the paper can be printed without any effect on the original side, mostly mine are double sided.

Most of the time there is little control, at least whilst one is experimenting, but there are some marks which one learns how to repeat.

If you want to have a go at this you could join up to Creative Bug, the workshop is excellent, but if not there are some good videos on YouTube.

If you want to know how to get these pretty colours I can tell you, its a cheat, I used the original photo in a water colour app on the Ipad.

Friday, October 17, 2014


I have recently signed up to Creative Bug on line craft workshops really just because I wanted to  follow a line drawing class and found that I had to take out a monthly subscription to join it. Fortunately or unfortunately I tend to want to have a go at numerous new techniques when I see them in action, so this has been a big distraction. More of the line drawing later but this week I found Suminagashi very clearly demonstrated and decided I just had to have a go at it.

I am lucky to have found a Japanese Calligraphy set in a charity shop not so long ago, and in it is a bottle of Sumi Ink and two brushes. Plenty of paper is needed, I have some offcuts of printing paper, and various types of handmade paper which work well. I found the nicest marks were actually on my own handmade paper.

The darker shapes are where I used two kebabs skewers rather than brushes.

The background marks on this one were made with Indian Ink, which seemed to give lighter marks; I like the Sumi Ink used on top of it.
Using my own handmade paper, which is fragile when wet but takes up the ink well and gives such nice marks.

I don’t feel that I will stay a member of Creative Bug for long, although I may dip in and out. I would say that the workshops are extremely well produced and professional. They do tend to focus on dress making and knitting, so the ones I have watched have been limited, which is just as well as it could get terribly expensive in buying new materials. There were some problems using the app on my ipad but more content seems to be available, i.e. live chat sessions when I use my PC.

Saturday, October 11, 2014

Fabric painting.

I have been painting some fabric pieces recently to demonstrate to a group  with which I work. I haven't done it for some time, I usually use acrylic paint for this but this time I had access to some fabric paint, which does leave the fabric much softer rather than using acrylic without any added textile medium.

The middle piece now has some added layers of monoprinting. It is hard not to get attached to ones’ layers but worth keeping adding more marks.Thanks to Alisa Burke from whose dvd I first learned this technique.

It is also difficult to cut up pieces but I wanted to show how pieces can be used together, particularly if they are unified by colours or marks used.

Over on the Sketchbook Challenge blog the theme is Trees for October, take a look.

Friday, October 03, 2014


Don't say no thing ever happens in Basingstoke, although you are  probably right,take a look at this event happening next weekend.

Saturday, September 27, 2014


This is one way to build up layers of words and writing on both paper and fabric; I have shown some examples in my sketchbook video.
So you can work on either fabric or paper whichever you fancy or both. Taping the edges with masking tape makes a nice edge to your work. Work on a smooth surfaced fabric such as calico or poplin.

Write some words at varied angles on the surface using a permanent ink.

Stencil over areas where you have words using acrylic matt medium.

Allow to dry and then paint over acrylic paint , I used Craft Acrylics; before the paint is thoroughly dry wipe it away, using baby wipes, in the areas which you have stencilled with acrylic medium, the medium will act as a resist.

Add some masks in areas (freezer paper works well for this) and then add another colour of contrasting paint. In the areas that you mask out you can add some more words.

Using varied scales of words adds to the overall effect; if you have a letter stamp trying using that in places.
Add some large scale writing using a Sharpie Marker or similar. Swipe some areas of pearlescent/ iridescent paint in areas using an old plastic card or pallet knife.

~Do this just for fun or make up the fabric for items such as book covers, wallets etc.Add some free machining for another layer of 'writing'.

Monday, September 01, 2014

Video 'Words in my Sketchbook'

September is my month to decide on the theme for The Sketchbook Challenge Blog and I have chosen WORDS. Take a look at this month's theme over on the blog.

To go along with my post over there I have taken a short look through one of my sketchbooks seeking out where I have used writing and words.

Words in my Sketchbook from J Bowcutt on Vimeo.
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