Wait, Felting?

I began to get increasingly sick, tired and frustrated with trying to figure out how on earth I am supposed knit what I wanted. I guess it is a classic case of having an perfect idea of something that you want to make inside your head, but being completely unable to make that exact thing in real life.

Whilst doing ‘Field’ last year, Maggie taught me how to do some 2D felting on the felting machine. Also, whilst I was at home and speaking to someone about my work, they also mentioned felting to me. I quickly brushed off the idea, because at this point I wasn’t interested in any other ideas that weren’t the ones inside my head (terrible habit). Anyway, when knitting became difficult, these new ideas began to seem much more interesting. I had never tried 3D felting before, so I had a little google and I fell in love. I decided I wanted to know more about this so I took myself down to Maggie in textiles and asked about 3D felting, and she sent me to Steve. The following Monday he gave me a tutorial about how to felt.

I spent the whole day with Steve and he showed me everything I needed to know about felting. The only downside to this day was that there wasn’t much choice in felt colours, and also there were no felting needles available for me to start felting. This meant I had to get down to Hobbycraft and stock up. In the meantime, I decided to get looking at some artists that use 3D felting and work well with colour. Here are some that stood out to me the most:

Something that had been cropping up a lot in my feedback tutorials were questions about the context and voice of my work. Running off my plans for felting, I wanted to attempt to answer these questions and begin to get an understanding of where I would put my work, because I think I’m trying to make it seem like I have a clue, but I really don’t.

So, where would I see this piece going? What purpose would it have? Once I have developed a better understanding of the answers for these questions, I will be able to think about my objects and materials. I need to begin to think about my individual voice and what I want that voice to say, and then begin to compare this to the work of others and how they approach and tackle to subject of cancer. It would be a good idea to look at adverts involving cancer and look at what voice is given when discussing the topic.I now need to begin to make a decision about what I think my work and its voice is- the voice and the environment of the work needs to be taken into consideration.

I felt that using 3D felting would give me a better opportunity to work with size. AS you can see in the images above, I tried to imagine this piece of work being rather large, and being suspended from the ceiling. I was pretty keen with this idea, because there’s something about the viewers being able to walk within it that really interested me. This idea gave me the opportunity to have the viewer be able to experience the surface of my work and then be able walk through and see the inside. I really want my work to be interactive and to give viewers the chance to have a close interaction and relationship with my work; by placing my work suspended in a doorway where the audience have to actually walk through it in order to pass into the next room is something that appeals to me greatly. Combining this idea of interaction with my subject matter, it highlights the fact that we need to be speaking about cancer more freely, and making sure people are aware of the facts, causes and be able to feel comfortable enough to ask questions regarding cancer and its development. Overall I would hope that these combinations of work and theory would be successful; my aim being to get more people to speak about cancer, thus develop a better understanding and hopefully this will help with the process of dealing with cancer. Ignorance isn’t always bliss.

In a tutorial with Amelia and Martyn (Formative feedback tutorials a while ago) we spoke of me possibly working with 3D felting and they seemed to show concerns about the idea. Amelia mentioned that it may be a little too ‘crafty’ and that is something I should try and stay away from in project work.




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