Originally uploaded by MadeleineS.
Finally got to do something last week that I'd wanted to do for well over a year - meet India Flint, see her dance costumes in action and attend one of her workshops. The first two happened in Edinburgh during the 2012 Festival. Then I headed off to London for two days of dying, stitching and felting with 16 other eager students, some of whom had travelled considerably further than I had.
The workshop reinforced what I'd already learned from India's books and provided lots of fine detail you don't get in print. We covered eco-printing and the landskin concept - as scarf or wrap that travels with you and has prints, dyes, stitches etc added along the road. I now have a sample size landskin ready for the trail and a bigger one waiting to by dyed with leaves I've collected in London Zoo and RBGE.
However I'm not sure I'll be transferring these techniques straight into my own practice right away. For one thing I have a big stash of materials that aren't appropriate to this work. More importantly though, this is a very distinctive style that India has rightly made her own. There is no patent or trademark to infringe but individual pieces are bound to look derivative. I'd been experimenting with the ecoprint before the workshop and will continue to do so but it'll be a while before there's a coherent set of pieces I'd be happy to call my own.
In the meantime I'm very happy to have my two scarves to work on and the time to assimilate what I've seen and learned.