Archive for February 22nd, 2013

Module Reflections -Textiles 1: A Creative Approach

Eighteen months ago, on 25-August-2011, I wrote about my hopes from the OCA course. I am now in the throes of packaging up the final assignment for this module. How has it gone?

  • Purposeful exploration. Tick! One of the things I’ve really enjoyed about the course is the structure – skills and ideas are introduced, you do initial exercises, then use the skills as one component of later sections.
  • New skills, particularly in design. Another tick, in the context of this being a foundation course. I’ve learned and improved. I need to practice and learn more if I want to keep improving.
  • Learn ways of expressing myself. Yes. I chose a theme which was very personal and which I found very challenging. I’m glad I did, and I feel the final piece is true to me as a person. That’s very satisfying.
  • Incorporate weaving in the work. Marginal. There was the structure section of the module, but that was mostly tapestry – very valid as weaving, but not previously my “thing” and not what I was thinking of in this point. On the other hand, I’m rather proud of myself for choosing not to use weave in the final piece.
  • Improve/train memory, with sketchbook work and a framework. My sketchbook work basically stopped during Assignment 5. I also slowed down on reading about art history. Both are very disappointing – it felt good and I enjoyed it when I was in rhythm. Definitely something I want to return to.
  • Learn about what others are doing in textiles. A strong yes. I’ve done more reading and been to more exhibitions, both textile and other forms of art, than ever before. This also fell apart during Assignment 5, when I developed a rather obsessive and narrow focus, but I’m confident will return.
  • Do things I wouldn’t have thought to do myself. Definitely. I never expected to make yarn and weave with fly-screen mesh, but now I think it’s a very exciting material that I want to use again. Overall I feel I’ve tried to push myself beyond my comfort zone and given the levels of discomfort I felt at various times I should rate that as achieved.

Those were all the hopes I listed, but I’ll add that I’ve found writing these reflections very helpful. I’m good at finding flaws – in de Bono’s terms I’m a strong black hat (www.debonogroup.com/six_thinking_hats.php) – valuable in moderation but… Writing my reflections I’ve tried to acknowledge the good parts in balance with areas needing improvement. It still feels uncomfortable, but my inner critic could afford to lose a little weight.

This style of learning suits me and my¬† circumstances well. I’m looking forward to more.


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