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The theme for our coursework is Colour. The theme Colour, will be divided into three parts:

1) The artists use of colour ( Week 1-7)
2) Seasonal and natural colour (Week 8-13)
3) The importance of colour in different cultures (Week 13-20)


At the beginning of Unit 1 we will explore Colour theory using artists from various disciplines as our reference point. We will explore the symbolic meaning of colour and how it is used to convey message and meaning.

You will explore popular colour schemes and ways to choose colour for a planned project.
You will need to research the work of artists from a variety of disciplines and explore how they have used colour in their work. Look at dyed, printed textiles, fashion and interior design.

You will develop ideas whilst exploring textile techniques such as, dyeing, tie-dye, stitching- hand and machine and appliqué.

A visit to Alexander Palace and the Knitting and Stitching Show will introduce you to work by internally renowned textile artists as well as young graduates.

Artists to start your research with includes: Hundertwasser, Kurt Jackson, Julia Caprara, Jan Beaney, Ruth Issett, Michael Brennand Wood,
Ptolemy Mann, Jean Draper

Websites which explore Colour as an Element of Design

Colour Wheel showing the relationship between primary, secondary and tertiary colours.

"Colour and I are one. I am a painter".

Paul Klee 1914

"Colour is my day-long obsessions, joy and torment".

Claude Monet


Autumn 32
Autumn 32
The second part of our Colour brief is going to be inspired by Autumnal colour. Our primary observation will be drawing leaves, cones and natural items. We will take rubbings and use leaves for printing and for inspiring printing blocks. Our drawings will also be used to provide design source for exploring batik (wax used as a resist) and other textile techniques such as screenprinting. Along with Colour we will explore some techniques which exploit the use of Line, another Element of Design.

During this section of the brief we will design and make a textile item. You will learn how to write a Statement of Intent, design an item using Colour as a theme, reference other artists work, make samples to decide which is the most suitable technique for your design, explore fabric and threads and finally make the item to a good standard. An evaluation will be written so you can assess what you have learnt.

A good way to start this project is to take some photographs of autumn foliage and scenes. There are some images on Flickr to start the project. You will be able to upload your own images to the Flickr account, to allow you access when at school.

The deadline for Project 1 is the 14th December 2009.

The Forest Floor by Susan Strachan Johnson
The Forest Floor by Susan Strachan Johnson

This image is from a Blog written by Sian Martin a well-known textile artist. She uses the Blog as a learning tool for a textile distance learning course.

Sarah Strachan Johnson also has her own website.

Impressive artworks autumn
Impressive artworks autumn
This website links to a Blog which has collected a variety of Autumn related work. The artists have been inspired by the colours, textures, sights and ideas surrounding the change of the seasons.

John Keats wrote "To Autumn" in 1820 and it is considered the perfect embodiment of poetic form, intent, and effect.

Season of mists and mellow fruitfulness,
Close bosom-friend of the maturing sun;
Conspiring with him how to load and bless
With fruit the vines that round the thatch-eves run;
To bend with apples the moss'd cottage-trees,
And fill all fruit with ripeness to the core;
To swell the gourd, and plump the hazel shells
With a sweet kernel; to set budding more,
And still more, later flowers for the bees,
Until they think warm days will never cease,
For summer has o'er-brimm'd their clammy cells.
Who hath not seen thee oft amid thy store?
Sometimes whoever seeks abroad may find
Thee sitting careless on a granary floor,
Thy hair soft-lifted by the winnowing wind;
Or on a half-reap'd furrow sound asleep,
Drows'd with the fume of poppies, while thy hook
Spares the next swath and all its twined flowers:
And sometimes like a gleaner thou dost keep
Steady thy laden head across a brook;
Or by a cyder-press, with patient look,
Thou watchest the last oozings hours by hours.
Where are the songs of spring? Ay, where are they?
Think not of them, thou hast thy music too, -
While barred clouds bloom the soft-dying day,
And touch the stubble-plains with rosy hue;
Then in a wailful choir the small gnats mourn
Among the river sallows, borne aloft
Or sinking as the light wind lives or dies;
And full-grown lambs loud bleat from hilly bourn;
Hedge-crickets sing; and now with treble soft
The red-breast whistles from a garden-croft;
And gathering swallows twitter in the skies.

We can see examples of the organic shapes of leaves and florals being used during the Arts and Crafts Movement during the last years of the 19th century and the early years of the 20th century. William Morris produced blockprinted wallpapers and fabrics as early as 1862 and was known for his flat line and use of colour.
'Acanthus', wallpaper, William Morris, 1875. Museum no. E.495-1919
'Acanthus', wallpaper, William Morris, 1875. Museum no. E.495-1919

Rosemary Horn prints photographs on to leaves.