Finding Connections While Experimenting with New Mediums

Experimenting with and immersing yourself in a new medium is always fun. For years I was cutting up dishes and making my way through learning the “how to” of mosaic. That lead from making some crazy wall pieces full of ornaments and pattern, to doing more and more work, in an abstract way, playing with the basics of colour and texture. I’d say the surfaces of mosaic still attract me, the glinting of china in the sun, against the dull grout acting as a foil.

"Speckle and Stripe" ,mosaic, by Helen Bushell,

While still creating mosaic in a more abstract vein, I was also messing about with bits and pieces of stained glass and creating some abstract and colorful compositions with that. To say I loved the colours in the stained glass would be an understatement. I’m like a kid faced with “Allsorts “candies! And the layers I could make, colour over colour and best of all, the effect of the sun shining through!

"Momentum", stained glass composition by Helen Bushell,

Alongside these experimental works I was also creating with paper and collage, mixing it up with papers and texture that I’d created into, again, abstract comps. Paper collage has so many possibilities, so many surfaces and colours, movement of shape and line.

"Moving Parts" collage by Helen Bushell,

And now, with fabric, I’m finding that there is a bit of a correlation with all that I’m doing. Each set of materials presents it’s own learning curve and challenges. And I’ll admit to doing a bit more swearing while sewing. Me and machines, well, there is need for patience, I’m finding. But, the results and excitement of mixing up patterns, textures, lines and most of all colour, in fabric… well let’s just say I’m having fun but it has been a challenge.

Colourband, fabric collage, by Helen Bushell,

And I’m liking the sense of seeing that all my work somehow relates, whether in broken dishes, stained glass or paper and now fabric. So, today along with a few examples of my other forays into other mediums, I’m sharing a few new fabric collages. As with all the other mediums, often it’s finding a pattern or texture on a dish or glass or paper and now fabric, that leads to a composition.

Squares and Stripes, fabric collage, by Helen Bushell,

With these, it was finding fabric with some lovely exciting stripes. I’m a sucker for stripes.

Red Rocket, fabric collage, by Helen Bushell,

And then of course, colour. Colour is my talisman, and also the thing that attracts me every time. Like a hummingbird to a red flower. Each medium has it’s own qualities and permissions. Glass allows movement and space without having to think about how the grout will affect it all. Paper allows more texture than glass and more line. Then fabric, well, now I’m exploring creating line with thread, texture with layers and applique. More to come! But nothing abandoned. I’ll still create with mosaics, glass, paper collage and now fabric. Just more to add to the pot.

2 Turquoise Circles, fabric collage, by Helen Bushell,

A Whole New Look at a Couple of Our Mosaics

Will and I have been wondering how our Pique Assiette mosaics might look on entirely new Products, like prints for instance.  We weren’t sure how mosaic would translate into print.  Recently I posted about a table top/ wall piece by Will called Blue Fandango.

Blue Fandango Mosaic, Will Bushell,

Since we have a shop on Society6, we chose them to do our first experiment.  They do such a great job of printing on all types of products from Prints to Shower curtains.  It’s all Print on Demand so only printed when ordered.  Just click on the pic to take you to our shop on Society 6. And I have to say we were quite pleased with how Blue Fandango looked as a print…

Blue fandango art print Society 6 by Will Bushell,

So, we thought why not a Blue Fandango Pillow?

Blue Fandango Pillow Society6

And then how about a Blue Fandango laptop cover?

Blue fandango laptop skin Society6 by

Which made us think of other mosaics like the tray with the Toucan colors that I posted about some time ago.

Toucan Tray by Helen Bushell,

And we tried that as as shower curtain…

Toucan shower curtain Society 6 by

Then an Iphone case.  I actually like the way the glass marble ties in with the camera on the phone.

Toucan phone case Society6 by

and thought, hey why not leggings?  You’re never quite sure how a design will wrap around, but we were pleasantly surprised.   Look for all of our products that we’ve created on Society 6 at our Summerhouse Art shop there.

Toucan leggings Society6, by Helen Bushell,