Guardian Weekend did a great double page spread about Neisha Crosland's design sketchbooks on Saturday. It's not featured on the online magazine so I've photographed it (badly) for you - if you click on the photograph it will take you to my Flickr page where you can see a bigger image of the whole article.

I love seeing other people's sketchbooks, it feels like such a privilege, and it's often the best part of visiting degree shows. I also love to look through my own old ones - it is amazing how the same ideas crop up again and again in different guises.

I have included a couple of shots of mine - doodling for the perfect bird shape, and a study of some flowering ivy.

I have been thinking about my work and identifying areas which I need and want to develop. For me, there are five important aspects to what I do creatively:

  • Ordinary domestic textiles - sewing, knitting, crochet. A simple love of fabric, yarn, and a clean pretty house, not necessarily profoundly expressive, but rewarding nonetheless.
  • Drawing and painting - observational work which develops my skills and can be a end in itself.
  • Sketching and notetaking - like breathing to me - I am never without a notebook - doodling, pattern-making, collecting references, photographing, jotting down ideas.
  • Textile work - my love of handstitch - development of ideas and themes through expressive 2-D fabric pieces.
  • Objects, paperwork and 3-D work - exploration of print, decorated surfaces, construction processes.

There is also a sixth group - the things I make to sell - these grow out of the other areas and will be constantly changing and developing depending on what other creative work I am doing.

At the moment, my drawing, painting and expressive textile work is still very undeveloped and I feel the lack of these keenly. For me, to produce this sort of work requires serious concentration and determination, neither of which come naturally to me, and yet I have a strong need to work in this way. Part of my creative journey this year will be balancing these different strands of my work.


Menopausal musing said...

Oh WOW! Have just come to your blog via another, lovely, lovely posts.

Bobo Bun said...

Thanks for sharing your journal. Took me back to when I was at art college and had tons of these. Because of time I seem to dash ideas on scraps of paper as I run about. This has reminded me how beautiful these books are to look at.

Gilly said...

I love seeing your sketches. The ivy is beautiful. In fact, anything you do is wonderful! (Maybe I'm biassed ;))

If you want any acrylic paint to develop your painting skills, just let me know!

Anonymous said...

Hi Sue,
a really interesting way to look at your creative needs and desires and to identlfy your goals... i think i need to create a list for myself... love your sketch book pages too.
ginny x

Gigibird said...

One of the things I love about reading blogs of people who create is seeing their creative process – I find it fascinating.
I am far less organized than you, but a similar process occurs….my notebook is usually any scrap of paper that is at hand.
Nice drawings…..good strong lines

cocoa and blankets said...

I adore looing at sketch books...I am often found raiding the sixth form art students sketch books..with their permission of course as I appreciate that they are often very personal....typical that we didnt get the guardian this weekend...thank you for sharing...

Hens Teeth said...

As always you have put your thoughts so eloquently. Thoroughly enjoyable.
Food for thought too.