31st August 2018

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The

Undercover

Tourist

Well hello and welcome on the final day of August and my third instalment from behind the studio door of a textile artist. This week I want to explain a little bit about what inspires me, what takes me to rush to rummage for the perfect piece of coloured fabric to adorn my next creation. My single greatest driving force for inspiration is simply like many artists, my surroundings, I live Eastbourne in Sussex, with the rolling hills and countryside of the South Downs and the eclectic mixture slightly washed out seaside towns, I never fail to find inspiration in the everyday. 

Eastbourne Pier - White.jpg
The Promenade- Close up.jpg
Lighthouse - White Main.jpg

I explained in my previous post 'Let's cut to the chase' that I gather research for my embroideries by collecting information either in my sketchbook or on my camera. I have been asked if I've ever stitched on the beach before and the urge to say not without a really long extension lead for my sewing machine did come over me,  but I just politely said no and explained I mainly work from photographs and sketches.

I believe it's important to my work to actually visit my destinations, I've been very lucky over the years and have had the opportunity to visit many British seaside towns as part of my job, including a trip paid for by a client to St.Ives, Cornwall, where my hotel room overlooked the harbour, how could you not be inspired by that!

The Undercover Tourist, well that’s me I move about with stealth, snapping and sketching along a promenade, it’s great as no one suspects what I’m actually up to, I’m just another tourist looking for the perfect Instagram post, right!?! I feel the dodging seagulls while eating a bag of chips is all just part of my undercover work.

My aim is to capture as much information as I can, I want to create a recording, much like a snap shot in time, a memory, a holiday snap. I'm looking not only the architecture for a linear structure but also the people, their clothes, the shops, the street vendors, the street furniture, anything of interest to use to decorate my composition. I have been known to follow people of interest even sometimes just because she had a stripy hat on!

The architecture is sometimes just a mere background to my embroidery, I enjoying recording the people who decorate my surroundings

The architecture is sometimes just a mere background to my embroidery, I enjoying recording the people who decorate my surroundings

Coming to a canvas near you soon! ;)

Coming to a canvas near you soon! ;)

So whilst the sun still shines I’ll be out gathering information I’ve big plans for a new collection in Autumn but I’ll keep you posted. Please feel free to have a browse of my current collections available in my shop.  Until next time, I’ll sneak back behind the studio door....

Gillian BatesComment