With a background in design history, printing and art and design teaching, I now design and block print textiles in my studio in Sheffield.
I lino block print onto linen union and thick cotton, using vegetable oil based inks from Hawthorns in York.
With a product range including cushions and lampshades, I aim for something bold, clean and contemporary, with some reference to mid 20th century design.
I am becoming increasingly interested in the complexity of patterns, textures and colours which can be achieved by a repetition of simple blocks and patterns, from the use of overprinting, repositioning of blocks, and varying inking density.
Recently, with the help and encouragement of a research and development grant, I have begun to experiment with wholecloth quilt making. I’ve been exploring how the two repetitive mark making processes of printing and stitching can be combined with traditional quilting and construction techniques to make quilts which reference both patchwork and wholecloth traditions.
My interest in lino block printed textiles began back in the 1980s while studying for my history of design degree in Manchester. I came across textile designs by 20th century artists and sculptors like Ben Nicholson and Barbara Hepworth who in the 1930s had designed and printed lino block fabrics for their own use, some of which were later produced commercially. Researching and reproducing these textiles was a great way of learning and understanding the design disciplines and printing techniques involved.
Another inspiration for my own work have been the bold coloured blocked designs of Welsh double weave bedspreads which I remember from a childhood in North Wales and went on to study for my degree dissertation. The design disciplines imposed by the weaving methods and machinery and the subtle textured colour combinations achieved have informed my own design focus.
© The Black Fish Press 2017