Wednesday, 4 February 2015

New Zealand - The South Island - Bliss!

A print of one of the many excellent printing blocks.

After the Quilt Symposium I travelled over to the South Island by ferry from Wellington to Picton where I was met by my mateys Denise and Christine. It was soooo good to see them again. 
I had the day off the next day to mooch about with the girls then I launched into a 3 day workshop based on The Journey. It is my favourite workshop and so good to be able to spend 3 whole days on it. 

 The Pelorus river from the Pelorus bridge.

While we were mooching we crossed the Pelorus river and the girls said I had to see the view . . . I think you can see why?


The group starting The Journey. The workshop hadn't been advertised, it was an informal meeting of some of the Blenheim Creative Fibre ladies that I met when I first taught in New Zealand 3 years ago. It was great to see them again. The group of 15 was made up with friends and other textiles enthusiasts.

On the first day we got down the black and white work, the journey, the flipping out exercise and the expanded exercise. Then we went onto take sections of their designs - 2 from each exercise.
                             Denise getting started in her Journey.

All 15 Jouneys hanging longways.

Denise starting her flipping out exercise.

A floor full of flipping out exercises.

After the black and white exercises the group took sections from them using 'L' shapes and traced them onto tracing paper.

Robin having a go at flipping and mirroring one of her designs.

The designs were then painted in 2 colours.

Joan and Jan tracing off their sections, transferring them into their sketchbooks and then painting them in. 

One of Ronnie's designs and the resulting blocks. Just Fab!

We then made printing blocks from the designs using self adhesive foam and foamboard.

A fabulous 'wriggly' design and the first prints.

The positive and negative printing blocks printed off.

The group produced some fabulous blocks - 


The group printed onto paper as well as fabric.

 Having 3 days to teach this course was a great luxury, it was good to spend time with a group that the took the process so seriously.

Christine posing for the camera - gorgeous girl!!

Denise had the good idea of the group printing a and signing a T shirt for me - and here it is.

 T shirt front . . .

                                              . .  and back.

I shall treasure it.
I had the best time with this group of ladies - we had a lot of fun together.
I am trying to work out a way of travelling to New Zealand regularly. Maybe to teach Experimental Textiles - somehow!!! My thinking cap is on.
                                                   x x x

For my last 2 days Christine and I drove up to the Lake Rotoiti to join her family who were holidaying at her place there. I stayed at the lake with Christine and her husband Bob last April and in September they came to the UK and stayed with me for a few days. They are a great family.

Lake Rotoiti with duck.

I love this lake - I can't take enough photos of it. It is a fresh water lake and a joy to swim in.

The ducks are very friendly . .

This one was fascinated by the yellow towel.

The little boats lined up at the start.

On my last evening at the lake there was a competition run by Hamish who runs the water taxi on the lake. A chance for all the locals to get together and have some fun. The course was marked out by buoys. There was an F1 start where the yachtsmen had to to run to their boats and then start the race. It was great fun to watch on such a beautiful evening.

The boats are off . . .

Bob's boat has the rainbow sail. He designed and built it himself - and he won the race!!! It was a great ending to fabulous few days. 
The next day Bob and Christine drove me down to Chirstchurch for me to catch the first of four flights home. I hated leaving - Bob and Christine have become great friends, as has Denise. Still I know I will be seeing them again next year . . . and the next . . . 

While I was in New Zealand I started planning a big trip for 2017 on both the North and South Island. I have several names to contact to start the ball rolling. I hope to be there for 6 weeks.

I really had the best time - from staying with Alysn in Auckland, through the symposium right up to the lake. New Zealand has a very special place in my heart.

x x x

Back to reality now - I will leave tonight for Redditch ready to teach a catch up session for my Thursday/Friday group of ExTex girls. It will be great to see them again - we haven't been together since November. There will be many stories to tell and some no doubt gorgeous homework to see. 
Watch this space.

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