Sunday, 13 April 2014

Gelliping at Art van Go

Lets start with a definition:  'gelliping' - a verb, meaning to play with, paint on, obsess over and generally have a jolly good time with a gelli plate.
And that was the essence of the workshop I taught at gorgeous Art van Go last week. We were working with canvas and started by putting molding paste through stencils on to paper and then subsequently cutting or tearing these papers up and re-arranging (you can see my patchwork roots here!). These bits were arranged and then stuck down with gel matte medium (aka 'sticky under' )  onto a blank stretched canvas. Areas were also worked with appliglue to write and draw dimensional lines. We were blessed with sunshine and so were able to put these outside to dry .. hence the rather gorgeous shadows on some of these ...

this shadow is so beautiful that I suspect this image will get repurposed somewhere along the line

While these were drying, we got down to some gelliping, using a variety of green stuff snitched from the AVG garden, together with stencils, stamps and textured rollers. As is my favoured method, we printed using opaque fabric paints and then washed over those prints using dye. We also used markal blender and  neocolour 1 to add some resist in the 'negative' prints. If all that sounds like gobbledygook .. scroll back through the blog posts for more information.
Then - whilst gelli prints drying, the girls painted their now textured canvas, using a mixture of acrylics, fabric paint and metallic powders .. I didn't manage to catch many before they got prints added .. but here are a few .. yum
you can see we worked in several layers .. adding glazes and metallic highlights as we went .. brilliant fun
many of the canvas could stand as pieces in and of themselves at this point and in fact one student (my wild child Christine) did just that .. just adding huge dimensional glops of appliglue and many many layers of glazes rubbed back to produce these two beautiful pieces ..
We also looked in between times (when I thought they looked as though they might think they were going to relax) on getting rid of blank sketchbooks and using those gorgeous beasts to actually serve their purpose .. we dyed, glued, pasted and scribbled in out sketchbooks .. realising that we can do exactly as we like .. they are ours ..
and also started mounting our treasured gelli prints on to the canvases


what I find so exciting is that the pieces evolving are all so very different and nothing like mine .. I can see the artist in each of the students finding a safe place to have a voice and that makes me a very happy girl
we looked at using neocolour 1 crayons, appliglue and glazes again to add definition, contrast and detail to the pieces .. it can make an amazing difference  .
Obviously the girls didn't finish completely in two days - especially as they were all working on at least two separate canvas and their sketchbooks .. but they got an amazingly large amount done






I think you have to agree these are quite stunning .. and I am certain all the girls will finish them by adding stitch .. and then send images to me!! - please .. I would hang any of these on my wall, with immense pride. All the class worked incredibly hard and were no doubt exhausted  .. but what brilliant results and what a lovely group .. thank you all.
I promised I would go through how I alter images on the computer to get further leverage from my prints .. and that will be the next post. For now though .. thank you for joining me ...  Hilary xx

Tuesday, 1 April 2014

Summer School 2014

Crikey - I am getting organised ... well sort of anyway. Here are details of a 3 day summer school I am running at Redditch Needle Museum this August. It should be a wonderful few days - I have told Jo-Ann at the museum to book us sun, so we can sit in the beautiful gardens to work!! Booking details are at the end
From Gelli to Canvas

Make a stitched textured mixed media canvas using gelli monoprints

3 day workshop with Hilary Beattie

At Redditch Needle Museum: 21/22/23 August 2014

Cost: £150



Come and enjoy three days at beautiful Bordesley Abbey and Needle Museum experimenting with a variety papers and fabrics as backgrounds for monoprints using a gelli plate and then using these, together with a variety of other media to create a unique stitched canvas.

Day One

On day one we will prepare some textured papers to cover our canvas and then spend the day finding out just what that gelli plate can do. Using the abbey grounds and museum as inspiration, we will make and use stamps, stencils, masks and natures’ bounty to make a lovely pile of totally unique prints

Day Two

On day two we will look at options for design layouts and try out ideas and layouts in our sketchbooks. The emphasis here will be on keeping calm and enjoying the process … rather than aiming for a specific, pre-imagined idea! Guidance and prompts will be given so you will not have to dread the blank page moment – I promise. We will then use a selection of our materials from day one to make a mixed media collage on our prepared canvas.

Day Three

Day three will flow on from day two ... allowing a fair degree of freedom for students. We will also experiment with adding crayon, charcoal, pencil, appliglue and anything else you might fancy to our piece and then look at completing the work by adding elements of stitch. Once complete – we will seal the work with medium to enhance and preserve.

You will end the two days with a beautiful and unique mixed media collage on your canvas, plenty of further ideas in your sketchbook and a large stash of wonderfully personal materials to play with in the future


Warning: these three days are likely to be enormous fun and very addictive – you may well develop a lifelong addiction to this way of working!


Booking is with Hilary – please email to: and I will raise a PayPal invoice for you, or arrange for cheque payment if you prefer

Alternatively, you can book via Hilarys’ website shop  ... just add workshop to basket

Places are strictly limited to 12, so please book early to be sure of your spot
I've also discovered that for some reason the blog is not sending out emails to all those of you who have signed up for updates. So whilst I try and puzzle this one out, I have put a followers gadget on the page - if you click to follow, then you will get updates when I have blogged .. I hope!! I'll also post this on facebook, and hope I catch most of you. Talk again soon - Hilary x