You know when I really think about it,, more happened in 2021 than it seamed at the time. Constant uncertainly meant I didn't plan any face to face workshops, the few shows I decided to brave got cancelled and I was screen weary. Our house was full of builders and my studio was in storage so there was no solace to be found....thank goodness for ITALY!!!
So some really good stuff did happen in 2021 and it feels right to recall some of it here:-
Early in the year we [me, Janice Gunner and Magie & Bob from the African Fabric Shop] saw the completion of the Virtual Quilt project. With over 500 virtual Log Cabin squares it was a welcome burst of energy in the early days of Covid.
Through February, March and April so many of you got involved in my Sew-a-long sessions, depicting 3 of my favourite landscape compositions using hand stitch [Harden Reservoir View, Openings, Golden View]..oh they there lovely relaxing sessions! Maybe we should do some more? What do you think?
In April I started to learn a new technique - Jewellery making - I totally love it. I've bought a ridiculous amount of equipment in order to make tiny objects but I'm ever so slightly obsessed and can lose hours scrolling Pinterest for jewellery inspiration!
I joined forces with Immediate Live Academy to create the Observe and Stitch Landscapes Masterclass. It was a mammoth endeavour and it's a mammoth masterclass.. The film crew were able to follow me and record as I walk, see, draw and sew the landscape. I was lucky enough to be on the Immediate Live Academy stand for a couple of days at the Harrogate edition of the Knitting and Stitching show - great to see some familiar face even if behind a mask.
I ran Woven Together a community project here in Kirklees....was it, wasn't it face to face...ahhh in the end I created videos and had the change to connect with participants via Zoom [did anyone know of Zoom before all of this - did anybody get any shares early doors???]
In May I was interviewed by June Hill. She wrote a lovely article called 'Stitched Symphonies' for Embroidery Magazine which you'll find in the September/October issue
As summer approached and the builders invaded, we packed up our house again and managed to get to our house in Italy. Usually I would have been running summer schools there but alas, they are to be saved for other moments. We were finally able to purchase a piece of land behind the house and clear the olive trees: it was wonderful! Olive harvest is the first week in November - we picked 100kg which was pressed into 13.3 litres of green gold!! Not bad going for our first year: onward and upward Rodney!!!
I created a major new Artwork: MURMURATION which was selected for Sew Rome. Mark and I were fortunate enough to be able to go and help with the installation and break down of the show...I realised my Italian still needs to be better if Im going to converse in the way I wish to in an exhibition setting!
Ain't the Archies is a wonderful portrait exhibition at Timeless textiles in Newcastle, Australia. I created a self portrait in hand stitch which felt right for the time.
More recently I discovered that 2 of my stitched Artworks have been selected to the Art of Embroidery Exhibition, taking place in London early next year.
I launched a new collections of Drawing classes.
At the 11th hour [ and 59mins!] I'm in my new studio YAYYYYYYYY! There are still some tweaks but nothing I can't sort...now to get working!
When I put it all together it definitely seems lively although at the time I'm not sure all cylinders were fully functional!! Thanks for being with me through the bumpy ride - its always better together.