Being an artist is a broad term, but for me I start my art with a photograph and then decide how it is to be used.
My return to hand stitched items began almost four years ago when I began my wearable art range of scarves that feature my photographic art of Bendigo goldfields native flora printed onto silk, organic cotton jersey, cotton/linen and some polyester fabrics.
I design how the fabric will be printed and when it arrives in my studio I cut and sew it into several scarf designs. Some of the fabric such as the jersey needs to be sewn together so that the print is fully visible on both sides and although I use the sewing machine I often need to use old style hand stitching to finish off the garment.
To many who read this it may not seem such a big deal but sewing is not a strength of mine so when I returned to hand stitching I had to remember what I learnt many years ago from both my mother and also sewing classes at high school.
Part of my range of art also includes brooches made with printed cotton/linen folded down into a metal brooch holder.
Usually every winter I would settle down to creating crocheted projects but now need to take this easier due to a weak shoulder. Last year I was itching to do some hand work and decided to have a go at embroidering some of these brooches.
Once again I had to remember high school lessons and was amazed how it came back to me!
The first few were a simple stitch here and there to give a little 3 d character to the brooches. However I have slowly added more detail to the point I feel I am hand colouring my images not with pastels or pencil (another part of art process but on paper) but with colourful thread.
My main stitches I use are back stitch and the French knot, but I hope to try new stitches in the future.