Whenever I come home after spending time by the sea, for a while afterwards I am still sort of emotionally and mentally sea-bound. I find that my subconscious sort of draws me to contemplate sea-related things, to seek out coastal images, to reminisce about past seaside holidays.
Yesterday, I even found that whilst sitting at the computer and waiting for images to load, my absent minded doodles on a scrap of paper were all sea-related too (little fishermans cottages and boats, when usually I doodle hearts, flowers and birds!)
So yesterday, after I had written my post about our weekend by the coast, I found myself thinking of the many different times during the past when I have visited Robin Hoods Bay (first ever visit, vividly and passionately remembered, September 1996). I also suddenly remembered that I had once stitched a picture of Robin Hoods Bay, and after routing around in the Attic24 eaves, I managed to find my old portfolios of textile work.
I have been wanting to share my textile work with you for some time, wanted to air them on my blog, but have been ridiculously nervous to do so.
I still feel butterflies in my stomach seeing these images on the computer screen, although I don't know why.
I think because they are so much a part of me, so personal to my life, they cause me to feel huge emotion.
It's most odd.
I began stitching these sort of textile pictures in February 1997, at a
time when I was tentatively attempting to find a way to earn money from
Each piece of work is a unique, one off piece, and because the scale is quite small (top picture of Robin Hoods Bay measures roughly 8"x5") I was able to put the original piece of work directly on to a colour photocopying machine and photocopy it.
I am SO Very Glad I had the foresight to record every single piece of work I made by copying it in this way, because it has become a very valuable and precious record of my work.
I sold my first piece of work in the Spring of 1998.
I was exhibiting at a contemporary craft fair in Battersea, London, and a wealthy lady bought a framed piece to go in her Paris apartment.
She paid me £180.
I was shaking from head to foot during the whole transaction.
Over the next four years before My Little Man was born, I went on to establish myself as a contemporary textile artist and produced a great many one-off pieces of work.
One Hundred and Fifty Nine to be precise, all numbered and dated and recorded in my portfolios.
I exhibited at fairs and galleries up and down the country, and even had my very own one-man show at a Cornish gallery in 2000, where I sold every single piece of work (20 in total)
I have ten pieces left, some hanging on the walls and some wrapped up and stored away.
These seascapes were such a pleasure to make, and looking at them again now, I can remember creating each one, usually following a weekend spent by the sea.
I did have other subject matter too :: flowers and the such like.
Perhaps I'll show you some more sometime, the flowery ones?
It's been fun to share these with you, although I somehow feel like I need a stiff drink now.
I am not normal, am I?!