Friday, 21 October 2011

Further thoughts on displaying printed fabrics.

I've been thinking about my coloured gum nut piece.  I had not fully understood how much you need to understand your application before you start work. 
Alzheimer's disease obstructing the beauty of ordinary thing.

I knew I wanted to create a long piece of fabric with a subtle change of colour along it, and the repeat print exercise required a 6m length of fabric.  Therefore I just assumed the design should extend the length of the fabric.  Then I changed my mind about hanging it horizontally to vertically, because I could not get a professional finish to a horizontal piece.  Pinning it to the wall was deemed shoddy.  I did not think to measure how long the drop would be from the rafters in the classroom (3.2m max).  So my careful delicate colour changes extended down the full 6m.  And could not be effectively displayed in one drop.  As it happened, I had not thought how heavy 6m printed canvas mounted on plastic pipe would be.  (The roll at each end was symbolic of how life continues before we can remember, and after we are gone - you can't see either end).  It was far too heavy for me to hang while standing on a ladder.  Jim was away cycling so I had no assistance.  Next time, I will ensure he is present for my assessments to assist with staging, as well as moral support!

So when it came to assessment, I was just lucky that I was in a room with a fixed worktable 1.2m wide and 4m long.  Even so, when the tutor realised there was more colour variation at the beginning of the cloth, she looked decidedly unimpressed as it did not fit its space, and asked me to roll it out for viewing, which I did.  I suppose this is a typical learning experience, in that, it was not until I had experienced how my fabric did not fit the display space, that I really grasped how you need to think through every aspect of what you plan to make. 

Another conclusion is that making a portfolio of samples is much easier than making an installation or application.  Yet, I thought displaying a length of fabric would be easy.  I expect there are considerations for doing a portfolio of samples as well.  I know sample portfolios need to have a slick finish and I would find this demanding.

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