Tag Archives: learning

Creative Apps, Tools and Tips

I thought it may be helpful to share some creative apps, favourite tools and tips for use in visual arts and design.

CamScanner App

A great convenient, ‘on the go’ tool for scanning using your phone and the CamScanner app. You can either take a scan/picture using the app or can import an image to convert that into a scan. The app locates the boundaries of your image and adjusts the light so you can even scan in low light. It’s a huge time saver and has a good memory capacity before it requires any payment. You don’t get bugged by ads. CamScanner is ๐ŸŒŸ๐ŸŒŸ๐ŸŒŸ๐ŸŒŸ๐ŸŒŸ in my opinion.

CamScanner App screen grab
Screen grab of my CamScanner latest work

iPhone XS

My phone is a key tool in my work, for photographing, drawing, editing. The camera on this phone model takes beautiful images and the ‘portrait’ mode is a useful feature for product shots and photographing work. I like the ‘pano’ feature for creative shots. Couldn’t function without this. Great size, weight and stable when used with a tripod. iPhone XS ๐ŸŒŸ๐ŸŒŸ๐ŸŒŸ๐ŸŒŸ๐ŸŒŸ

Screen grab of my photo album.
I take a LOT of photos and create new designs on my iPhone

Pixelmator App

How I love Pixelmator. I can’t say how much I use it as it’s seamless in my work. I’m probably across in the app 5 times a day. Layering images, drawing, adding text, creating social media ads, resizing, mocking up ideas, creating repeat patterns. The app is intuitive, making it easy to learn and to use. This is a corker of a creative tool ๐ŸŒŸ๐ŸŒŸ๐ŸŒŸ๐ŸŒŸ๐ŸŒŸ

Pixelmator App Screen Grab Showing Layers of a Design.
Pixelmator App Screen Grab Showing Layers of a Design.

Bernina Sewing Machine

I would never have thought that I could love a sewing machine as much as I do my Bernina. It’s reliable, compact, and with the digital display I know what the machine settings are at a glance. I want to make the marks myself so I’m not interested in sewing machines that take over and do the sewing themselves. Swiss engineering is renowned and my Bernina is a fabulous example of this that runs like clockwork. ๐ŸŒŸ๐ŸŒŸ๐ŸŒŸ๐ŸŒŸ๐ŸŒŸ

Bernina B215 Sewing Machine sewing an ice cream themed fabric that I designed

Bernina B215 Sewing Machine sewing an ice cream themed fabric that I designed.

YouTube

A learning gateway for everything you might ever want to learn about, where someone always seems to have the answer for using a new product, or technique. I’m going to give YouTube ๐ŸŒŸ๐ŸŒŸ๐ŸŒŸ๐ŸŒŸ as the ads can be annoying, but then again it’s ‘free’. YouTube is about the people who take the time to share their experiences and knowledge. Of course it’s best to watch a few videos for any given subject to be able to gather a few perspectives/ methods.

I’ve always enjoyed making films so I love that I can share my movies and reach people through YouTube. Here’s a link to go to my channel.

Inspire by Kim YouTube Channel screen grab
Inspire by Kim YouTube Channel screen grab

50 Ways to Draw Your Beautiful Ordinary Life

This book is like a hug of a drawing course. The creators of Flow magazine have done something magical by bringing together exercises from their illustrators to make this big beautiful collection of inspiring, drawing skills inducing delight. Love it with some good TV and a pencil or fine liner. โค๏ธโค๏ธโค๏ธโค๏ธโค๏ธ Flow Magazine.

Collage of the cover and pages of my drawings in the book.
Collage of the cover and pages of my drawings in the book.

Instagram

The place to see image based posts, as opposed to more wordy content. A window on creative studios, processes and what everyone is working on, it’s such a creative time that we live in. Instagram makes the world shrink to the size of the app and I love how we can connect with kindred creatives and find people with shared interests. And there’s always someone somewhere on Instagram, even in the middle of my night – when the darkness becomes a blank creative canvas for new idea seeds to germinate in my mind. Hoping the ads, which have increased in frequency, don’t takeover, like they appear to have on sister site Facebook ๐ŸŒŸ๐ŸŒŸ๐ŸŒŸ๐ŸŒŸ๐ŸŒŸ

Inspire by Kim Instagram Screen GrabInspire by Kim Instagram Screen Grab

Also I have to mention PicCollage, which now allows a mix of still images and videos in collages, and WordPress for my blog.

I hope this proves helpful. Wanted to share these findings and also this is a way of expressing gratitude for this tremendous tech and fabulous phone based functions which are my fundamental tools.

Please stay and see some more posts here.

If you’d like a street these are my favourite ones.

Fabric Design Doll

Fabric Birds

Workshop – Testimonials

Reflecting on 4 Colour Full Years

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Fabric Design Steps

This image shows the three key stages of fabric design that I’ll be demonstrating and sharing at my workshop on Sunday 2nd June in Sheffield.

Step One is a design worked out on paper.

Step Two is to create the design in heat sensitive dyes on paper.

You can apply the dyes to paper using paint brushes, or you can collage painted papers or you can stamp the dyes onto paper. No drawing skills are required but some thoughts on composition are worthwhile.

The colours in this stage of the process are very different from the final outcome, as demonstrated in this short colour sample video.

 

Like any art work you can spend as much or as little time on your design as you wish. You can print your design and then move the design and over print if you like.

You can print a number of times from the dyes, although each later print will be slightly unique from the previous one, but we experiment with time and colour during the workshop.

Step Three is to press the paper with the heat sensitive dyes together with your desired fabric at high heat for a few seconds. This will activate the dyes and make them turn into gas, to wrap around the fabrics fibres and thus transferring them.

In seconds you’ve got your designed fabric and it can become whatever your imagination will allow.

If you’d rather watch than read – See this process in less than 40 seconds in this video. https://youtu.be/xnt9NKFmhKo

A second example

As a recap on the process here’s an alternative design, a small coastal landscape design made by collaging torn papers which had been painted with transfers dyes.

Step One: I had a seaside composition in mind to fit into a greeting card window.

Step Two: I collaged torn paper to compose the picture. Note I have not drawn anything in this piece. For many people drawing skills, of their perception of their skills can be a barrier to them enjoying art. That’s a shame as there are many other ways to make marks and create. This is just one suggestion.

Step Three – I heat pressed the design onto one, then another piece of fabric.

I’ll be sewing into the design next before mounting it in into the greeting card for a unique, handmade, frameable gift.

If you’d like to try these techniques for yourself you can book at the Stitched Up and Fleeced website. Stitched Up and Fleeced is a lovely studio with great facilities which are ideal for our workshop.

The workshop will be from 10am to 4pm giving chance to learn techniques and enjoy exploring them and developing your ideas using these new possibilities.

Whether your a textile artist, crafter, designer, or just fancy trying something new you’ll be creating in no time and will have a number of fabric designs by the end of the day. Your fabric designs could be framed, appliqued, made into accessories such as zip bags, glasses cases, cushions, home decor, gifts and so on.

You can see more details of the workshop day at this post. When you’re ready to book you can do that here.

See more fabric design ideas to spark ideas of what you might like to create:

Fabric Design Highlights

Heat Press Inspiration

Don’t just take my word for it, want to hear how other people found my live workshop:

Workshop – Testimonials

And something cute to complete this post:

Fabric Design Doll

Hope to see you on 2nd June.

Bye for now x

#fabricdesign #sheffieldartist #surfacepatterndesign #textileart

Fabric Design Highlights

It’s a year this week since my Heat Press machine arrived and made it possible for me to press my painted designs from paper onto fabric.

I’ve been reflecting on the work and continue to enjoy exploring the potentials of this colourful science of heat sensitive dyes.

Here are the highlights of the work using these fabric design techniques.

Heat Press Machine uses heat and pressure with special heat sensitive dyes.

Most recently this colourful doll. All the fabric was white when I began the work. I added colour and stitch inspired by my favourite things.

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One of the first things I made with my machine was this miniature bunting. img_4125

As I wanted flowers to always be at our Juliet balcony I created this tulip box draught excluder.img_6089

To help me relax and snooze whilst travelling I made this pretty eye mask, printing the fabric and the bias binding with my hand painted designs.

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In a campaign to raise awareness of bell pepper allergies and intolerances I created this piece by painting then free motion embroidery.

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I collaged pieces of painted paper to create this portrait.

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Blue Hair Tulip Lady

My latest make was tennis themed bunting, joined with heat pressed ribbon, as part of promotion work for a tennis club.

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In February I created samples to show different techniques and shared these at a half day workshop. Thanks so much to the workshop attendees, it was wonderful to see how you enjoyed putting your designs onto fabric. I can’t wait to see your creations with the fabrics you designed and made.

One of my favourite creations was the miniature cheese plant. Using hand painted leaves I pressed them onto satin, and using wire I stitched them and arranged them into this pretty home decor gem which doesn’t need watering or tending.

There’s the opportunity to play with these techniques and design your fabric for a craft, fashion or home decor project at my next workshop.

I’ll be demonstrating and teaching these techniques at a one day workshop in Sheffield on Sunday June 2nd. The workshop is at Stitched Up and Fleeced studio from 10 – 4pm, ยฃ60.

The one day workshop will bring stitch techniques into the process to explore how stitch can be used before and/or after pressing the designs onto fabric, to achieve some beautiful effects.

The workshop can be booked at the venue website. Just complete the contact form to ask any questions or to book. You can of course ask me any queries at inspirebykim@outlook.com

We’ll be exploring how we can reuse and upcycle existing fabrics that you already have, to breathe new life into them.

Here are testimonials from workshop attendees.

Can’t make that date? I also offer Fabric Design one to ones. Just message me for more details and dates.

So here’s to another year. I’ve some new ideas I’m developing, so watch this space. You can see my work in progress through my Instagram and Facebook.

These are related posts, enjoy. Thanks for being here.

Fabric Design Workshop – 2nd June, Sheffield

Fabric Design Project – Window Box Tulips

Workshop – Testimonials

Satin Cheese Plant…

Fabric Design Doll

Heat Press Inspiration

With just a week until my fabric design workshop here’s some inspiration of the lovely things that I’ve created using the techniques I’ll be sharing on Saturday 9th March.

Oo and I have a new recipe (description ) for what I do:

Main ingredient of sunshine, dose of nature’s wonder, spoonful of heartwarming colour, a delight of details and sprinkle of nostalgia – art to uplift.

โ˜บ๏ธ

The sublimation printing techniques for transferring colour into fabrics have been used in the following projects, you can click on them to learn about them…

Miniature Cheese Plant
Miniature Cheese Plant Made of Satin
Designer Doggy Coat
Cute Designer Dog Coat
Bird and Flower Cushion
Bespoke Bird and Flower Cushion
Passiflora in textiles

Passionflower in Textiles

For even more inspiration take a look at

Sublimation Samples

Sublimation Samples

For all the details of the workshop click here.

To read testimonials from my workshop ‘trial run’ click here.

To book visit the Stitched Up and Fleeced textile studio venue website.

This art workshop is supported by the wonderful, colourful, Sheffield company Colourcraft Ltd.

Have a wonderful week. I’m so looking forward to the workshop, to sharing the lovely techniques and seeing the magic appear on the fabric, and the joy that brings.

Happy Days

Kim

Sublimation Samples – Workshop Soon

With just a month to my lovely Heat Press workshop (10-12:30 9th March Sheffield) here are some examples and samples of what you could choose to make.

Of course there really aren’t any limits, the possibilities are infinite.

Whether you want to paint, print, cut paper pieces, make patterns or pictures – it’s your workshop and time to indulge in play with colour and fabrics.

Click here when you’re ready to book

 

Here are the workshop details…

 

Book your place now at http://www.stitchedupandfleeced.com/workshop

So excited to show and share these techniques and see what everyone makes.

Sublime Sublimation Stories

Miniature Cheese Plant

Bird and Flower Cushion

Designing a Dog Coat

Textile Passion Flowers

Hope you can join us for a fun workshop.

All the fine detail is at this link…

Heat Press Workshop – All you need to know.

To book click here๐Ÿ˜Š๐ŸŒ ๐ŸŽ‰

Kim x

Satin Cheese Plant…

I had an idea to make a cheese plant, this was inspired by seeing the cheese plant when doing Yoga With Adriene. I didn’t want a cheese plant that would grow too big or might result in soil spilling onto the carpet, so decided that a mini one would be ideal.

My favourite fabric at present is satin, I love how the light catches it and used it recently for theย Bird and Flowers Cushion. The cushion featured leaves and so I can recognise the idea flow through these projects.

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The Bird and Flowers Cushion

Following this commission project I made a bookmark, a pretty lady emerged, and then an eye mask.

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So botanics were a theme flowing, or should I say ‘growing’ through my work, largely this was inspired by Botanica – Encyclopedia of Inspiration by Uppercase Magazine, a book I love. My garden is also a huge source of inspiration and vital to my creative process.

Here’s the cheese plant creation process in a one minute video. Including a quick animation that I was inspired to make. This quickly shows the steps to creating the miniature cheese plant…

This video and my growing collection of art videos can be seen on my YouTube channel.

I’m really pleased with this outcome and eager to see where this leads on to, I have some ideas but not ready to share them just yet.

image 3
Cheese Plant in Satin – Copyright Kim

Related creations that led to this work are:

Bird and Flower Cushion

Eye Mask

Mini Bunting

My Life in Paper

Thanks so much for being here. If you know someone who would enjoy seeing my work and maybe they like creating too, then please share this with them.

Enjoy creating…

Bye x

All the images are copyrighted.

Instagram Highlights

Here are my latest Instagram highlights

Art for the heart: Count your blessings. I digitally overlaid this lino print onto a bright bubbly surface that I created digitally from one of my images. The woman is looking out hopeful to meet her love, and the man looks ahead hoping, the third series of cuts brings them together.

image 99-1I rarely use watercolours but do enjoy painting on holiday so captured a scene from our holiday in the Mediterranean.ย image 199What’re lovely location for painting than a subbed overlooking the sea! I created an ink line drawing from memory then painted it.img_8197

img_8209I didn’t want to take my phone on the pedalo and to the jet skis so I drew the events from memory as a way of illustrating and captuirng these fun parts of our trip.img_8227An unexpected art opportunity was the sculpture park in the resort of Ayia Napa. Acres of wonderful statues. Here are my favourites.

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This was the only sculpture with colour but it was just my colours. I framed the shot for the wings to be cradling the moon as the early evening came.

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I had a play with hand written lettering taking it digital as practice for the Illustration course I am studying. I overlaid the hand lettering in inverted colours over a watercolour sample to illustration three words, Freedom, Flow and Fun.

As exercises for the illustration course I have been working on illustration written articles. The first was a study that found that young children learn language more from speaking than writing practice.

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This article is about baking, I chose a Bake Love – as in Bake Love not war angle inspired by The Great British Bake Off

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Well that’s all for now, you can see more at my Facebook page and Instagram feed.

have a great day.

Kim ๐Ÿ™‚

2016 in Pictures

2016 has been a year of colour, creation and challenges for me. Here are the highlights of the year in pictures. (You can click on the pictures for the full story on the different elements).

First Art Exhibition in March

First Solo Art Exhibition
First Self-Portrait

First Painted Self Portrait

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Self Portrait – Acrylics – Copyright Kim
First Oil Painting

Underwater Calm Lady – Copyright Kim
First Retail Placements


First Art Projection – this link directs to the Exhibition which featured this artwork.

 

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The Light of Inspiration – Copyright Kim

Ice-Cream Paper-Cut Picture Completed

Hot Days Eating Cool Ice Cream – Copyright Kim
First Jigsaw

 

First Art and Design Competition Win and Media Coverage

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Article from The Star newspaper, Sheffield.

First Book

 

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Sam – The Dog Who Wanted To Fly – Copyright Kim

Here’s the 58 seconds movie of my First Art Exhibition.

My largest artwork in 2016 is a commissioned artwork which I’ll be revealing here very soon.

I’m astounded that my blog has been viewed in 82 countries in 2016, I love the idea of my art reaching out across the globe. Thanks to everyone who followed, Liked, commented, bought and visited my art in 2016. I appreciate everything.

I dedicate this post to my dear Grandad who left us this year. 

The next post will be looking forwards to 2017. Follow my blog to see that post when it is live.

And finally…

My Story

About Inspire

Sheffield Metalwork Souvenir Prototype

Whilst developing ideas for the Sheffield Souvenir Competition for Made North‘s Sheffield Design Week I explored creating a design to represent the city of Sheffield. Here’s the process of acid etching and annealing a Sheffield steel plate to represent the city, its industrial heritage and its top athletes.

Testing a blog version of the post today. You have a choice: Watch the one minute movie or the process, or read on for the text cut and image version.

Marking the key points of the design onto the steel
Varnish painted on to resist the steel – The design features Sheffield landmarks, cutlery and Sheffield athletes Sebastian Coe, Jess Ennis-Hill and James ‘Woodsy’ Woods
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The plate in the acid to etch the design
Annealing the steel with a blow torch in the hearth to bring out the colour

Thanks so much for taking the time to read my post/ visit my blog. Wonderful to have you here. Hope you’re having a good day.ย Thanks to Mark Veevers for his support on this project.

Related posts…

Sheffield Cheese Grater

Sheffield Souvenir

Drawing in Metal

Paper-cut Pictures

Animating Paper-cut Pictures

My Life In Paper

My Story – From Injury Comes Artย 

Byeee๐Ÿ˜Š๐Ÿ˜Š๐Ÿ˜Š๐Ÿ˜Š

 

Life Drawing For Relaxation

The first time trying life drawing is an unusual experience but once you relax into the drawing process Life Drawing requires a careful process of looking, marking the paper, looking again, making marks. The careful consideration of the model’s form and trying to accurately represent it leaves little room for other thoughts making it relaxing and a way of switching off/disconnecting from our busy lives.  

I struggle to meditate, find mindfulness a bit confusing but when I’m life drawing I can find a place of conscious thinking which is also a little unconscious. Sometimes I sit back from my drawing and I wonder where it has come from and how that came about as the many small marks become a whole representative piece.

Non-judgement of the drawing during its creation calms the mind, slows the breathing and allows for an enjoyable process. I use the thought that ‘with practice the drawing will only get better’, so I try not to judge the drawing but let the process of practice deal with my development. 

I first tried life drawing 13 months ago, here are the drawings from the latest session. This session began a little differently as the model was wearing a satin gown, so we could try to capture the texture and folds of the fabric. This was inspired by the ‘Robes‘ series of artworks by American artist Jim Dine created over an almost 50 year period as a form of self portrait from 1964 onwards. (Bizarre concept but fab colours)?

It’s a very pure form of art that has remained the same process for hundreds of years. 

You can use whatever medium you wish for life drawing in this session I worked in Quink, my favourite pink drawing ink and also at the end of session oil pastels. 

I like this first drawing, I can see a film star of the 1930s in the drawing. Copyright Kim
This is the first time I’ve managed to create a number of studies on one sheet as I normally draw too big. Copyright Kim
This one was created at arms length whilst tanning. The paper on the floor and using a brush on the end of a bamboo cane. (An exercise)
I began this one using four oil pastels in my hand simultaneously marking the lines fourfold. Then used Quink ink to make the colours pop. Copyright Kim
The final drawing of the session, I’m satisfied that this captures the volume and form. I like the strength of colour as it’s very in keeping with the bright inspiring ‘Inspire by Kim’ style. Copyright Kim
The drawing is valuable practice in representing form of all kinds and aids observation skills, so it’s beneficial to all art work. If you’ve not tried it, and like me forget that you were trying to meditate or be mindful, then maybe try life drawing to achieve calm. 

Here are a range of related posts. 
Thanks for being here, have fun! 

Life Drawing – Art Challenge 44 
Art Course at UAL in Chelsea, London 

My Story – From Art To Injury

Underwater Calm Lady – Oil Painting

Garden Makeover with Art 

Getting to know my style – Life Drawing 

It is my goal to inspire people, so if you have been inspired at all Iโ€™d love to hear about that or see art or creations as a result. Thank you sincerely for your support, for following my blog, for visiting.  If there is anyone that you think might be inspired by my art please share http://www.inspirebkim.com with them, for this I would be grateful.