Octopus cloth - 2009 Kirsten Chursinoff
I'm happy to report that the octopus series is underway. I've always wanted to embrace the creatures with my fabric touch. Here's a few studio snapshots of various "octopusian" undertakings. I've been inspired by the marine exhibits at the Vancouver Aquarium.
detail "Octopus" - 2009 Kirsten Chursinoff
Drawing - 2009 Kirsten Chursinoff
By drawing, re-drawing, tracing, and cutting, I intimately study each line. This prepares me for the free-motion machine stitching. Through all these step I hope to gain an understanding of the flowing lines. It gives me ideas about how the next piece should be drawn. Hopefully I'll get better at it as I keep working with the series.
Pins - 2009 Kirsten Chursinoff
Yes, I'm doing this the old-fashioned way.
More pins, Voodoo-Octo
Cuttin' it old school
Yes, hand drawn in pencil, traced in ink and then cut out to use as a template to cut my fabric. No seam allowances necessary. Appliquéd by free-motion machine embroidery. I did it the hard way. I wanted to see if the fabric would hold up to cutting without any interfacing or stabilizer of any kind. I don't recommend it...
Most of the cutting is done with my embroidery scissors. They get into those twists and turns.
More pinning and cutting
Shape against signature background
Not every detail can be depicted, so the body and texture are simplified so it can be "translated into fibre". The creature is illustrated, rather than just documented.
Even though the design of the octopus body is drawn out ahead of time there are still design decisions to make along the way. I leave the suckers to be spontaneously added near the end, and I add the eyes last to make sure they sit the way I want them to.
Legs are fiddly things, especially when there's eight of them!
More to come soon!