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Talking About Art – Karen Platt on Saatchi Art Online

Talking About Art is not an easy subject. Art, after all, is a personal creation and one where people either love your work, are indifferent or hate it. Even family members are not always supportive. You might work in a group or as I do in isolation. Both have their advantages and disadvantages.

I create because, like most artists, I simply have to. It’s not just the urge to do it; it feeds my soul. I love the serendipity, the chance to explore and discover. What I choose to reveal and what remains hidden, on so many levels.

Talking about art
Zantedeschia copyright Karen Platt 2020

Painting As An Art Form

I do enjoy painting because I love texture and colour. My chosen medium is acrylic because I admit, although I strive, I am not a brilliant watercolorist and I cannot stand the smell of oils. I know they are oils that are less offensive these days. However, though much maligned in the beginning, I feel acrylics have come into their own as a versatile medium with many qualities. It gives me the expressive ability I need.

Talking About Drawing

I certainly do not do enough of it. With each artwork in any medium you improve as you do more. This is especially true of the skill of drawing. It takes practice. For me, drawing is all about mark making, so not just drawing objects, but making marks.

Is Digital Really Art?

Currently this is my favourite medium and one I believe I excel at (nothing like blowing your own trumpet!). In all its forms and disguises, it is art. Think of Hockney’s iPad creations. I love the possibilities of taking photographs and manipulating them into something different and extraordinary. Of course, you can create art from scratch digitally too, but I prefer manipulation to that. Some of my digital work informs traditional work. Some of it stands alone when I use my photographs and enhance them digitally in many ways. I enjoy creating large bodies of work digitally like my church series or Tunisian doors. I have developed some of my own techniques. I am very comfortable with this medium. You too can learn photographic techniques on this ecourse

talking about art
Tunisian Doors series

Exploring Mixed Media

You might be astonished that this was not covered on my art course. I am largely self taught and took an art and design course at the age of 50. The first art I had done ‘in class’ since I was 13. I have been a textile artist for many years and I enjoy using text, I am therefore gravitating to mixed media. It has great appeal.

Talking about art, I have started to upload my work onto Saatchi Art Online as the best platform for selling artwork. I have sold some artworks in the past at local exhibitions, so I am certain this is the place to be. I have uploaded over 50 digital artworks as limited edition prints. It’s now time to upload some paintings and other works. I feel there is a future for me in the art world.

I shall continue next week with art subjects.

Words, work and images copyright Karen Platt 2020

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Update On Textiles, Quilts, Knitting, Art

I realise it is five weeks since I have blogged, so thought it was time for an update. I have been doing things, it’s just that something beyond my control is affecting me financially and healthwise and I am not quite in my stride. But here’s an update on all the things that are keeping me occupied. I have a very tidy space now too.

Update Quilts

In August I saw my son for the first time since the first week in March. That lifted my spirits somewhat. However I have not quilted for eight weeks. My last pieced quilt is still hung on the design wall. Yesterday I took one, then another, then a third piece, trying to decide on the quilting and get on with it. They all went back on the design wall unquilted. So it is at the moment. I am not fretting, it will get done. I also stopped designing at the same time, even though I had begun a very wonderful theme, and one I definitely want to continue with at some point.

What’s New Textiles

I have not been idle. I had a good tidy out and now have a really tidy workroom, which means I cannot find anything, ha ha. Some of the bits and pieces I was tidying away whispered in my ear and I made 4 textiles pieces. I have always liked making wall art and these fabric pictures are wonderful to make.

I also got the embellishing machine out. It was either that or throw out all the merino wool. So I made a start with a shawl. I have lots of merino and silk to use up in this way. I also have a pile of ribbons to use.

Update Textile Work
The Cosy Cottage
New Work Textiles
The Setting Sun
Update textile pictures
Fields of Daisies
Fabric pictures
Golden Fish
Update textiles
Update Textiles – Embellished shawl

Update Art

I have also been creating digital work to go with the inspiration travel books. That has kept me busy too. It’s good to look through old photos and create new pieces inspired by them. It was great fun creating work around one of my favourite places on earth, St. Ives, since it has been very frustrating not being able to travel there. Check out the travel inspiration ebooks here and have some armchair travel fun.

I even picked up my paint brushes and daubed a couple of canvases, but those are not finished.

I also dug out the gelli plate and printed off half a dozen pieces.

gelli plate printing
Gelli plate printing

What’s Been On My Knitting Needles

I seem to have knitting fever, at least I have finished quite a few projects in the last five weeks. I still have to spread out my knitting, a little a day, otherwise my whole arm suffers. Just when I think I have used all the yarn, I find more.

Alpaca cardigan
Alpaca cardigan
Handknitting
Handknit with unusual neckline
Update knitting
Update Knitting, my latest design

I have also watched a lot of cricket scoreboards – whatever gets you through the night 🙂 and far too much Netflix for my own good!

Words, work and images copyright Karen Platt 2020

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Mark Making For All Craft and Art

Mark making is an important part of all art and craft. It takes your art from ordinary to extraordinary. From the earliest marks made by man to contemporary art, mark making distinguishes a person’s art or craft.

At an early age, we draw without fear. But many of us lose that ability. Get in touch with your inner artist. I want you to free your expression, get rid of the fear and discover the pleasures of mark making.

mark making
mark making

eCourse Creative Mark Making

I have today launched my new ecourse for Creative Mark Making. Find your unique voice and discover your potential. This ecourse is 10 months long and is suitable for all abilities without any previous experience. It is also suitable for any discipline – art or craft.

It consists of research, exercises, techniques and projects to help you achieve your goals. You will discover new ways of looking at objects, using different media and surfaces to explore your hidden artistic abilities. You’ll make marks intuitively.

There is a also a private facebook for those taking the ecourse. I am a fully qualified (DfE) and experienced teacher.

The ecourse is aimed at everyone who wants to develop their work from beginner up.

mark making
mark making

For more details please see eCourse Mark Making on the ecourses page. You might also want to look at the other ecourses whilst you are on there. I specialise in textiles, art, craft, and design.

Watch out for more new ecourses this month – Stitched Textiles and Hand Knitting. All these ecourses are unique to me and cannot be found elsewhere. They are written from scratch from my 40 years’ experience. They represent value for money for anyone who wants to learn skills and techniques.

stitched textiles
stitched textiles

Tune in every Monday for the latest blog.

Words, work and images copyright Karen Platt 2020

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Self Employed Designer Maker – Quilter, Textiles, Art

Self Employed Designer Maker – Quilter, Textiles, Art and the effect of lockdown. The Not So Merry Month of May Or the Not So Merry Year of 2020??? For me lockdown is a continuation of my somewhat solitary self-employed ‘lifestyle’ working as an artist in paint and fabric. I have no desire to break lockdown because I want to stay safe, but I do miss my forays into the real world. Just this morning I was reminiscing about my trip to Marseille in February, thank heavens I fitted that in. Only just over two months ago, it seems like a lifetime! Read the book here

Marseille
Marseille

Self Employed Quilter

As a Self Employed Designer Maker – Quilter, Textiles, Art, life has to go on. It is only work that keeps me sane. I finished a quilt that started life some time ago when I made blocks playing with striped fabrics, then put them away because I was not sure what else to do with them. The fabrics are from 2008. This week it came out of the box and is a finished project and a big hit over on Instagram. Maybe I’ll call it ‘Summertime And The Living Is Easy’.

Self Employed Designer Maker
Karen Platt quilt design

So what next? I have a joined together strip to quilt but no thread. I’ll get back to that soon.

Self employed designer maker
Joined up strips

I moved on to another project. Scrap quilts seems to be the overriding theme of 2020. I didn’t want to do blue again just yet and everyone loved the hot colours, that I thought I would still with orange and use up my yellows too. I had two butterfly fat quarters that had been around for a year or more.

scrap quilts
The beginning of a new quilt

Art

My art has taken a nose dive in the last couple of years. It’s mainly a twofold problem, affording more canvases and the space to keep them. I promised myself that I would create several pieces based on my time in Corfu in 2018. So I made a start at last. One finished, and one midway. I think I am capturing the mood at last.

Corfu art
Painting inspired by Corfu

Writing

Tunisia Part two is well underway. If you missed Part One, it is on the website with all the other ebooks. If you missed it, take a look at last week’s blog post, which was a retrospective of all work so far this year. I have done quite a lot.

Words, work and images copyright Karen Platt 2020

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Stay At Home Quilting and Textiles

Stay at home quilting and textiles from a quilter and textile artist who works from home offering ways to keep creative and an insight into her creativity with tips and themes.

Quilting

It’s a great opportunity to start a new project or to finish that pile of UFOs or diminish your stash or scraps. I am working on my scrap quilt. Piecing the back in a different way to the front, you can see the first two blocks of the back positioned over the front blocks in the top right corner. I also found some fabric in my stash that will make the sashing.

stay at home quilting

Stay At Home Textiles

Quilting comes into textiles anyway, but my textile work tends to also differ from my quilting work at the moment. I had set a fruit and vegetables theme for the Stay At Home and Create group on fb. I chose to work with pears and create a fabric book. That is now underway and I also added to the paper prototype. This week on the paper prototype I used charcoal, watercolour and clingfilm, words and I did my cutout too.

paper concertina book

The fabric book is a way to explore different fabrics and stitch. So far I have used my hand dyed fabric as a background, and pears made from my hand dyed felt and velvet. I have explored different stitches and threads.

stay at home fabric book

To say I have been so ill I have achieved quite a lot. I finished my hand knitted cardigan too. Not to mention the latest in my Travel Inspiration ebooks – Athens – has all the photos and text done and is just waiting for me to put the artworks I created from my trip into the ebook. All the travel inspiration ebooks can be found here. Escape whist sitting in your armchair. Here’s to another creative week.

stay at home fabric book

Words, work and images copyright Karen Platt 2019

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Lockdown Creativity – Drawing, Quilting and more

Lockdown creativity is about staying positive. Last week I started a new group on facebook called Stay At Home And Create, so if you want to join me, you’ll find it here. Over 50 members have already joined. Reduce stress, take your mind off the news and make something. Do it alone or with family and share on the fb page.

lockdown creativity
figs on the worktop

We are moving into drawing and painting fruit for Week 2. Here’s some ideas I have been working with. I am exploring ideas at this stage with a view to producing quilts, or a textile fabric book.

lockdown creativity
pears from my original painting
lockdown creativity
ideas developed in software
pear watercolour painting
another in the pear series

Work

Lockdown creativity for me has been limited as I developed shingles mid week. It could keep my creativity limited for some time. Financially it’s difficult for so many of us and I am one that relies on sales from my website and would appreciate any support people can offer at this time, particularly the online ecourses or ebooks so that I do not have to go out to post. Please take a look.

There is just one more block to go on my scrap quilt. Qaygo might be easier for me to quilt this. I might prefer to quilt in one go, but it definitely needs binding and sashing, which at the moment I do not have.

scrap quilting
scrap quilting

New ebook Travel Inspiration Corfu

I have finished ebook Five in the Inspiration travel series. It is a pictorial guide book to Corfu, where I enjoyed a fabulous holiday in 2017. The ebook has 250 photos including some art I created. It is available here

Inspiration travel ebook five Corfu

Join me next week for more textiles and quilting and more

Words, work and images copyright Karen Platt 2020

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Day 29 quilting of 31 day blog challenge

Day 29 quilting is effectively the last day as tomorrow and New Year’s Eve the posts will be looking back at the past six months’ work (that will be a big retrospective) and then looking forward to the next six months (lots to tell). So it is my last chance to show the quilts I have been working on.

New Art Quilts

Going through the stash I found a landscape quilt I had finished a while ago that had not been put up on the website. So that is quilt one today. A slight departure from my usual style for landscapes.

day 29 quilting
New Karen Platt landscape quilt

Day 29 quilting also brings you my latest art quilt. I just need to back and bind it. I was in two minds as to leaving it and selling it for someone else to back and bind or use in a quilt, but I am not sure if that would appeal to buyers at all. You can perhaps see the changes I made since yesterday. Changes for the better I think. This could spark a series or larger art quilt. I really love this one.

day 29 quilting
New Karen Platt art quilt

Painting

Yes I get to day 29 quilting before speaking of my art. It all used to be on the website, but we thought it confused the message. It was on an art website for a while. I do love to paint and create art digitally, so I just need to find a home for it and get selling. I started this piece some months ago and am just getting round to finishing it. I also did an abstract watercolour but I am still playing with that.

acrylic painting
All set up to paint
watercolour painting
watercolour abstract in progress

Discount

Take 20 per cent off any quilt, art or otherwise on the website. Just email from the contact form and I’ll arrange the discount. Pop back tomorrow for a look back at the past six months’ work. Thanks for staying around.

Words, work and images copyright Karen Platt 2019