When planning a new body of work, I have to have a new sketchbook. I chose an A3 book in landscape format from L. Cornelissen, one of my favourite art shops. The clean blank pages can be a deterrent to mark making so I gave them colour washes, not always being neat and tidy, letting the paint drip, run and smudge. The edges were also painted, dripping into the pages and sometimes sticking them together! But that gave extra texture and marks - lovely.
I put everything in the sketchbook - ideas, quotations, pictures for inspiration, stitched samples, notes to myself for further development, stencils, discarded backing papers, scraps of fabric. Some ideas became finished pieces, others were binned.
I restricted myself to using only materials that I had in my studio and, consequently, nothing new was bought to create the hangings. And as the theme of the show was to be the life cycle of the poppy, I felt that recycling was more than appropriate. So, an old duvet cover, washing rags, old hand dyed fabrics and a Freemason's robe rescued from a skip form the basis for a lot of the work.
Here are some of the pages from my sketchbook to give an idea of the development behind the work - the completed pieces will be posted when the show has ended.