Wednesday, September 15, 2010


I have always taught aspects of design - often to people who have no formal design training. I now enjoy empowering people to use the computer as a creative design tool. For some months now, I have been fine tuning a workshop which I can take to various art groups and intensive residential art schools here and overseas. I want to share ways of applying computer manipulated designs to practical art outcomes. The workshop requires a basic knowledge of digital cameras and computers, then I teach easy ways to do the photo editing. A lot of people seem to have  'Photoshop' software, but it is complicated and daunting for the average person. There are many simple and free photo editing programmes available on line which offer great options for a whole range of creative effects.
In my workshop, the students create the design with the help of the computer then apply the design to an art work - be it a painting, drawing, 3D work, graphic element, fibre work, garment feature, etc. I have used the technique to create acrylic paintings, artist books, fibre works, 3D mixed media works, art cards and a multitude of graphic design/promotional projects. 
I belong to two Australia wide fibre arts groups - ATASDA [Australian Textile and Surface Design Association] and TAFTA [The Australian Forum for Textile Arts]. I have worked with both organisations teaching, exhibiting, networking and learning. ATASDA has asked me to teach my Digital Design workshop in Brisbane next February, 19th and 20th, and a new arts body, TAA [Textile and Art Academy] has asked me to teach a week in Brisbane in June 2011.
This is what I have decided to teach for the first weekend workshop. It involves simple editing skills and has a practical outcome. Advanced students will have the opportunity to take the process further.
 with Japanese Kanji Characters
Stylized character for ‘beautiful spirit’ on a skirt wrap.
"Learn how to manipulate, distort, and stylize a calligraphic character of your own choosing to use in your art work. Use the design to make a skirt wrap or wall panel and some art cards. You need only basic computer skills. You will need to bring a laptop computer and your sewing machine. An easy photo editing programme and a range of calligraphic characters will be provided on a CD or memory stick".


1. Kanji for 'beautiful',
2. Kanji for 'spirit',
3. Distortion of 'beautiful',
4. Distortion of 'spirit',
5. Vertically combining 'beautiful' and 'spirit',
6. Final design for 'beautiful spirit'
7. Skirt wrap using Kanji character made with reverse applique - [new chiffon and  recycled kimono panel]
8. Inkjet printed 'beautiful spirit' cards with stitched silk chiffon details. 


  1. I have been taking weekly classes at my Apple computer store on my new desk top Mac computer-- am always blown away after every class-- then I took a 4 week online workshop on Photoshop Elements and even more blown away with what can be done on the computer-- I would love to take your workshop but is too far away and 2. I don't like to sew- never have liked to sew--I love to glue :-) (fast) but not sew (slow) - that is why I love all your textile works.

  2. N - Looks like a cool process that produces some great marks - and I love the fact that the kangi and the meanings become hidden in the new marks. B

  3. Looking gorgeous N - the elegance of the script is enhanced in its new form. I really like that the underlying kanji meaning stays with them.

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