Monday, July 18, 2011

COMA - Weeds in progress

I can't quite believe how quickly another COMA exhibition has come along, but in August there will be an exhibition in our wonderful local Library along the theme of Weeds - to coincide with Weed Week.

Living in a rural township and on a block of land, weeds are often top of mind. They grow so fast in our climate (lots of rain and often warm) and can take over pasture and native vegetation swiftly and destructively.

Barry has finished his piece and I am working on mine. Both are focusing on the nasty creeping weed Ageratina riparia (also known as mistflower). It is a native of Mexico and was introduced to Australia circa 1930, by florists, for use in bridal bouquets! Things got out of hand and now it is a noxious weed along a lot of the eastern coast of Australia.

Here is how I am progressing...first of all I need to check if my ink will work direct onto canvas. Tick!

Next I try to work out how many words I can write - the canvas in 10" x 12". I want to use my heartbeat script written quite densely so that it forms a pattern, rather than a series of legible words. Yet at the same time, the words have to be real and about the weed, so I source lots of info about the weed and start writing.

Next I try to mask off part of the canvas using a silhouette of the weed. This was tricky and I used clear contact, but am now wondering if I should have used something slightly more heavy duty.

Next job is to mark up the guidelines I will use for writing. They still need to be rubbed out and lightened a bit, then after that I only have to put pen to canvas and write. Only!

Hopefully the next images you will see are a beautiful completed piece; not a series of disaster shots!


  1. oh I don't know - maybe a series of disasters would be the best way to capture the full impact of WEEDS!
    hee hee heee

    have fun!

  2. I can tell it will be gorgeous, can't wait to see it finished.

  3. Thanks Ronnie - that give me permission to fail and is soooo true of those damn weeds. Altho in a weird way I just admire them too - they are THE best at what they do.

  4. Thanks Jane - fingers crossed. PS I love the new photo!

  5. The canvas looks gorgeous - I like the first pic with the big negative space, and the weed silhouette looks FaB xoxoxo

  6. Thoughtful and clever work Fiona.

  7. Damn' Crofton Weed!

    Does canvas "drag" and wear your nib?

  8. I know there will be no 'disaster' shots and look forward to seeing the finished result. This is a wonderful idea and I'm off to investigate this 'weed'. It sounds similar to the plague we have in the UK of Japanese Knotweed, imported by the Victorians for their gardens and now rampaging over the countryside like nobody's business.I love your calligraphy shots Fiona. They always make me want to pick up a pen and scribe... Lesley

  9. Hi N- thanks for the support; we shall see where it heads and how!

    Thanks Jo - the theme kind of forced me to go investigate and I think weeds are serious business....

    Yes Dinah - another nickname for it; shocking stuff! I used a parallel pen on the canvas and it worked smoothly; just have to go check it out on paper afterwards and see if it left any scratchy bits.

    Hi Lesley - fingers crossed for no disasters; but I always feel the potential lurks there with calligraphic pieces - books I can usually retrieve; calligraphy you can see it's wrong so you just have to start again. Happy hunting and investigating - so many things we thought were pretty are now just noxious. Glad the scripts make you smile...go well


I appreciate your thoughts and comments; thanks for taking the time.