EXERCISE – ENRICHING DIGITAL SAMPLES AND SAMPLE EVALUATION

BRIEF – Explore hand processes to enrich work, traditional and unorthodox techniques and manipulation of the plane itself.

Consider and record my thoughts about digital and hand processes.

For the fabric sampling for this exercise I took the opportunity to have some designs printed from a digital print studio choosing different fabrics on which to print to get a feel for the possibilities. Although this was not necessary for the exercise I felt it was something I wanted to explore in order to complete the digital exercise and process as if I were practicing commercially as a designer.  Paper sampling in my sketchbook felt insufficient and I wanted to investigate it further but I was unable to use my printer at home, being a laser printer, for fabrics intended for home use ( although I have tried this with reasonable results with an inkjet printer before) . Using a print studio was exciting and invaluable as I learnt how to create files suitable for printing at specified sizes and also how to set up and use Dropbox to send digital files. It was very exciting to see my fabrics arrive and looking so professional. However, being so delighted by the quality of the samples made it hard to then manipulate them but I knew that was the intended purpose.

1 copy

Fabrics arrived from digital print studio  - I was delighted with results !

Fabrics arrived from digital print studio – I was delighted with results !

I have tried various surface and 3D applications and also combinations of techniques to ensure that each sample had more value than previously.

  • Foiling – 2 colours
  • Laminating – 2 weights of vinyl
  • Smocking- tying with Mizuhiki cord and cable ties
  • Burning
  • Melting ( with soldering iron to replicate laser cats)
  • Weaving
  • Stitching
  • Folding – securing with studs
  • Folding – securing with stich
  • Stich and slash
  • Stich and fold
  • Screen printing
  • Laminating to wood ( to replicate heat press sublimation printing) and stich
  • Transfer of digital image for shibori
  • Wire stitched in channels for manipulation
  • Pleating – burning, weaving, studs
SAMPLE 1 - using flag style polyester fabric. Burnt holes and wove different coloured threads. This could even be used with eyelets and plastic cables for outside use if I had the equipment.

SAMPLE 1 – using flag style polyester fabric. Burnt holes and wove different coloured threads. This could even be used with eyelets and plastic cables for outside use if I had the equipment.

detail

detail

SAMPLE 2 - printed on to SCROLL fabric - more like a Tyvek material  - made from recycled plastic bottles.

SAMPLE 2 – printed on to SCROLL fabric – more like a Tyvek material – made from recycled plastic bottles.

Detail showing how holes were made with a soldering iron to replicate laser cutting.

Detail showing how holes were made with a soldering iron to replicate laser cutting.

Detail - great tp allow light to show through holes.

Detail – great tp allow light to show through holes.

Machine stitching to secure paper string threads and also to create another layer of texture

Machine stitching to secure paper string threads and also to create another layer of texture

Creates interesting patterns with the light behind

Creates interesting patterns with the light behind

SAMPLE 3 - Transfoil in silver and blue were added with bondaweb but I then realised the fabric could not be ironed again so I used a heat bonded  vinyl to protect them. The reptile scale effect was achieved with slight pinching with Mizuhiki cord.

SAMPLE 3 – Transfoil in silver and blue were added with bondaweb but I then realised the fabric could not be ironed again so I used a heat bonded vinyl to protect them. The reptile scale effect was achieved with slight pinching with Mizuhiki cord.

SAMPLE 4 - Digital image printed onto Transfer paper and transferd to polyester fabric for heat set shibori. I tried to get the circle pattern to line up with the marbles.

SAMPLE 4 – Digital image printed onto Transfer paper and transferd to polyester fabric for heat set shibori. I tried to get the circle pattern to line up with the marbles.

Detail showing process

Detail showing process

Sample 5 - cotton folded and stiched to manipulate the regularity of the squares to make 3 shapes - square, rectangle and long rectangle.

Sample 5 – cotton folded and stiched to manipulate the regularity of the squares to make 3 shapes – square, rectangle and long rectangle.

Detail showing fold and stitch

Detail showing fold and stitch

SAMPLE 6 - printed onto stiff cotton then folded and stitched to enclose wire.

SAMPLE 6 – printed onto stiff cotton then folded and stitched to enclose wire.

Detail 2 showing how supported fabric can be manipulated to hold shapes.

Detail 2 showing how supported fabric can be manipulated to hold shapes.

Detail 1 showing how supported fabric can be manipulated to hold shapes.

Detail 1 showing how supported fabric can be manipulated to hold shapes.

SAMPLE 7 - laminated cotton for stability, smocking and secured with Mizuhuki cord.  Like how the circular shapes fall in the pockets of the grid. The sample is intended to have areas of smocking and then other areas of flat fabric.

SAMPLE 7 – laminated cotton for stability, smocking and secured with Mizuhuki cord. Like how the circular shapes fall in the pockets of the grid. The sample is intended to have areas of smocking and then other areas of flat fabric.

Detail showing fold formation and the use of the Japanese cord

Detail showing fold formation and the use of the Japanese cord

Detail 2 showing how supported fabric can be manipulated to hold shapes.

Detail 2 showing how supported fabric can be manipulated to hold shapes.

Detail 1 showing how supported fabric can be manipulated to hold shapes.

Detail 1 showing how supported fabric can be manipulated to hold shapes.

SAMPLE 8 - slash and stitch using a suede type fabric and layers of co-ordinating organza. I wanted this to be a textural sample.

SAMPLE 8 – slash and stitch using a suede type fabric and layers of co-ordinating organza. I wanted this to be a textural sample.

Detail showing layers and cut out lines

Detail showing layers and cut out lines

Sample 9 - Laminated satin to plywood board to replicate a sublimation print as I don't have a heat press at home. Stitched wood.

Sample 9 – Laminated satin to plywood board to replicate a sublimation print as I don’t have a heat press at home. Stitched wood.

Detail showing stitches

Detail showing stitches

Detail showing thinner stitches.

Detail showing thinner stitches.

Detail showing fabric lamination

Detail showing fabric lamination

SAMPLE 10  - printed onto a polyester suede as I wanted to cut with a soldering iron and not have frayed edges. Folded in irregular pattern and secured with studs to reveal print behind which is the a zoomed in version of the centre of the square.

SAMPLE 10 – printed onto a polyester suede as I wanted to cut with a soldering iron and not have frayed edges. Folded in irregular pattern and secured with studs to reveal print behind which is the a zoomed in version of the centre of the square.

Detail

Detail

Detail showing how effective this could be for a screen or installation needing some degree of translucency. The left has the light source.

Detail showing how effective this could be for a screen or installation needing some degree of translucency. The left has the light source.

SAMPLE 11 - printed onto SCROLL eco friendly paper fabric. Lines and holes made with soldering iron, stich detail to enhance digital scan of stitch from original drawing.

SAMPLE 11 – printed onto SCROLL eco friendly paper fabric. Lines and holes made with soldering iron, stich detail to enhance digital scan of stitch from original drawing.

Detail to show holes

Detail to show holes

Detail to show stitches and holes where stitched were in drawing.

Detail to show stitches and holes where stitched were in drawing.

SAMPLE 12 - pleated and secured folds, use of studs and Mizuhiki cord as fringe

SAMPLE 12 – pleated and secured folds, use of studs and Mizuhiki cord as fringe

Detail

Detail

SAMPLE 13 - two layers of stiffened cotton bonded with Bondaweb. Holes and folds cut out to reveal the other side. This needs to be a bigger sample to have enough fabric to fold and manipulate but it gives the idea of what is possible. The play of light is really interesting.

SAMPLE 13 – two layers of stiffened cotton bonded with Bondaweb. Holes and folds cut out to reveal the other side. This needs to be a bigger sample to have enough fabric to fold and manipulate but it gives the idea of what is possible. The play of light is really interesting.

Detail showing both sides and colours.

Detail showing both sides and colours.

SAMPLE 14 - Cotton with masked off areas over digital print and multiple screen printing to build up pattern in silver for light reflection.

SAMPLE 14 – Cotton with masked off areas over digital print and multiple screen printing to build up pattern in silver for light reflection.

Detail

Detail

Whilst I was working with the samples I noticed that I was starting to incorporate techniques and ideas that I had explored on a Paper Engineering workshop and realised that with more time and further sampling I could combine stitches and stitched structures using stiffened fabrics and paper type “fabrics” to create some interesting forms.  I have also been influenced by Ealish Wilson and her contemporary take on smocking and to my surprise found the process less time consuming then I thought. I encountered some difficulties with fabric suitability and depth of fold and how to secure the folds but I like the way each pocket reveals a shape, the curve of the circle in a ridged angular form. Once again I would like to work with this idea larger scale to be able to incorporate detail within the scale which hasn’t been possible with a small sample suitable for sending. I was also disappointed with one sample that I had printed onto transfer paper as a domestic iron is not hot enough to transfer the image properly ( the shibori sample) but the idea is there. Thinking along the lines of using sublimation printing I had also wanted to print a digital transfer image onto plywood as I have done this before with good results and also to extend my experimentation with wood textiles that I had touched upon for my African triangles, but not having the equipment meant I couldn’t investigate this sampling as I had wanted to. Instead I decided to print my image on fine satin and laminate it to the wood with acrylic wax before stitching to give the impression of transfer printing. I do not like the drilled holes as these are distracting from the stitches and disappointing as the paper sampling was more successful in that respect so for further investigation I would have to look at other substrates or ways of refining this, for example the bradel holes I made to mark the holes may have been better. It is still successful in its own right but not as developed as I would have liked. I had one very dramatic error when I mixed Indian Ink with Puff paint to make a circle on a large circular print but after heating it looked like it had been left outside with pigeons all day long – a lesson learnt ( in sketchbook). Generally I feel I have made a good start to “thinking outside the box” techniques for manipulation sampling but there are so many more possibilities to try.

I have also made a folder to contain the finished print outs from this exercise using one of the large scale digital prints as “wallpaper” as I was intrigued to see how effective the design was in this context and how durable the product was. I am not sure yet if I may continue with this idea for my personal project but I like the idea of digital printing and creating a wall paper or even products using this material for market. I am also working through ideas of using some shibori prints.

A3 Folder made from fabric wallpaper to contain my final prints outs. This is a trial to see how durable the material is as I am thinking about it for a future product.

A3 Folder made from fabric wallpaper to contain my final prints outs. This is a trial to see how durable the material is as I am thinking about it for a future product.

Before starting Digital Textiles I was unsure of how I would feel about it, apprehensive of learning something so complex, disengaged with using something so detached from hand skills, but recognised that digital processes will increasingly play a part in the future of textiles and textile developments and so I was determined to overcome my frustrations and lack of knowledge and persevered with the designing. I am so very glad that I did. There is still so much to learn but I feel comfortable now with developing an idea digitally to achieve some unexpected results. After all, my collection of designs were all developed from 3 Henry Moore samples and yet I have created many different options. And now, having returned to hand skills to develop them further my samples are so much more than I feel they might have been had I just relied on hand skills. I don’t feel I could ever design solely with software and, as mentioned previously, I would still prefer to trial imagery and scale by hand at the start.   I found using Photoshop  too time consuming when auditioning shapes with backgrounds and felt quickly placing them on a background in real-life would be better to asses their potential and then I could develop them more methodically with software. I’m sure this would change with more experience and understanding but the next frustration I anticipate would be not having all the printing and laser cutting equipment at home!

This entry was posted in LEVEL 2 - P4 - Digital textiles - Assignment feedback - Digital textiles, LEVEL 2 - P4 - Digital textiles - Project - Digital craft, LEVEL 2 - P4 - Digital textiles - Project - Digital craft - Exercise - Enriching your digital samples, LEVEL 2 - TEXTILES 2 : Contemporary Practice, Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

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