Having studied Fine Art at Exeter College of Art in the 1970s I spent the following years teaching and working as a practicing artist.
I have always enjoyed working with a broad range of media but have specialised in oil painting and more recently free machine embroidery. Ideas created in drawing, painting and sculpture have been developed further by ‘painting’ with thread on the sewing machine.
The wonderful thing about living in Devon is its constant inspiration :
the big skies, powerful tors, beautiful rivers, sweeping vistas and the colours, textures & moods each season brings to the moors, valleys and coastline.
I trained in ceramics and followed with a career in art education.
Textile arts are a new focus in my creative direction. These works are the start of my journey in wool & thread; an exploration of the painterly effects of fibre as well as its tactile qualities.
I travel hopefully!
I initially trained and worked as a textile designer, specialising in silk jacquards and fabrics for period costume design.
After a long career in Design & Art education I am now in the fortunate position to be able to concentrate on developing my own skills and creative art practice.
I am a multi media printmaker and illustrator with a continuing passion for cloth, thread and fabric construction.
This print was created as a two plate photopolymer etching. The initial image of the crocodile was based upon studies made at the wonderful Tring Natural History museum http://www.nhm.ac.uk/visit/tring.html
The original artwork was made using a propelling pencil, fine liner and watercolour (similar to examples)
The artwork is transferred on to acetate or tracing paper then clamped against a pre coated photo etching plate, available from Intaglio printmakers - http://intaglioprintmaker.com/
The plate is exposed to good sunlight for several minutes (on a clear sunny day 4-5 minutes usually does it). A silk screen exposure box works just as well.
The plate is then washed quickly & vigorously in warm water.
The exposed areas have 'hardened' due to UV exposure. Those areas protected by the image wash away in differing degrees creating an outstanding etched plate.
The process, once mastered is so reliable and the etched plate really durable that dozens,
if not hundreds of images can be made.
Get the artwork and exposure timing right and you can have high quality intaglio prints without fume cupboards, lethal chemicals and all the related health hazards normally associated with etching.
The second plate was created using a combination of drawing & collage to develop the time image.
The script (from "Alice ....) was scratched on to glass pre coated with relief printing ink allowing UV light to penetrate on to the photopolymer plate.
The plate was exposed twice before washing.
The photopolymer etching plates are NOT cheap but once you have mastered the process there is VERY LITTLE wastage, no chemicals to buy and the process has a minimal environmental impact.
The plates can be used to create relief prints. This was how they were originally intended to be used in commercial printing.
Shoebill - Image created by scratching through pre coated acetate to allow UV light to penetrate. The acetate and plate were exposed and the background washed away completely. Once printed watercolour was added to each impression. All artwork by Douglas Anderson
Artists outside the classroom - the new website is finally up and running.
It does require some work so please be patient.
It's a new year and I'm using this as the opportunity (and kick up the backside) to finally start work on the website for Artists Outside The Classroom.
I've been teaching in higher & secondary education for almost 30 years.
It has been a constant source of fascination and frustration to see the lack of encouragement, support & value given to arts specialists who wish to continue to develop their creative professional practice.
I have been very fortunate throughout my teaching career to have had unique opportunities and a supportive partner ..............
which have allowed me to develop my skills as a ceramicist, sculptor, printmaker and textile maker.
I've worked with amazing artists, spent years in evening, weekend and summer schools and enjoyed sharing the journey with so many creative, inspiring makers.
Why is this important?
* I am a better, more confident and knowledgeable teacher
* The thousands of students, trainees & teachers who have passed through my 5 departments have had access to a huge range of art, craft & design experiences I could never have offered with simply my training & commercial experiences as an industrial textile designer & a PGCE in Art Education.
* I hope I have been able to support & encourage young and older makers along the way to continue their creative journeys.
..... And the exciting bit of it all is I'm still learning!
Artists Outside The Classroom was conceived as an idea (many years ago) to bring together
teacher-makers who could share, encourage and support others who wanted to
....... continue developing their own creative professional practice.
In 2015 nine teacher-makers exhibited in a successful Mayfair show.
I'm working with another group of textile teacher-makers on our next big exhibition.
In 2017 three makers (retired teachers) are showing work at RHS Rosemoor.
Hopefully the new website & media links can provide new opportunities for a wider community of teacher-makers to:-
share, support, encourage & promote
the importance of continuing creative professional development.