drawing and stitching workshops at the pwrrqr

Posted on May 16, 2016

Participants had a wonderful time at the drawing and stitching workshops led by Marcia Teusink and Rosie James at the PWRRQR museum on 12 November 2014. They produced some fabulous work inspired by the museum’s collection and for some of the participants it was a chance to rediscover an interest in drawing or take the plunge and try something new.

“It was another successful workshop at the PWRR museum in Dover Castle. Alan had prepared his office with tables and paper for drawing and then opened up another room to set up as a sewing room. With tea and coffee to get us going Marcia began the drawing with a look at the exhibits in the museum, some focused on the medals others on the trenches. Alan brought out a fabulous German helmet from WW1 as well as bugles and maps and pistols. He also had a box of postcards and embroidered cards from the time. Marcia had prepared some papers printed with maps for us to draw on and develop some interesting layers of ideas. After a break for lunch we moved to the sewing room where I showed everyone how to use the sewing machines and brought out loads of fabrics and threads for all to experiment with.
The results were fabulous everyone was really enthusiastic with a have a go attitude. Thanks to Alan and Denise for setting everything up and helping it to run smoothly.”(Rosie James)

Here are some reflections on the experience:

Drawing workshop:

The best thing about the workshops:

  • Rekindled my interest in art
  • Desire to explore drawing further
  • Meeting others and taking part in an enjoyable workshop
  • I really enjoyed being encouraged to look at the artefacts in detail and up close and the act of putting down on paper what I saw really helped to feel connected with them.
  • An opportunity to spend a day off doing something a little different and challenging.
  • Drawing the weapons

The most surprising thing:

  • I still could draw a little after many years of not doing it
  • Because of spending prolonged time studying the artefacts closely I was surprised how personal the artefacts seemed to their previous owners/users.
  • That I really enjoyed drawing
  • That I could produce a drawing and did not have to be constrained by my initial imaginings of what was required.
  • How many other participants I knew.
  • How to draw without looking at the paper

The most interesting thing:

  • Attempting to draw an object without looking at the paper
  • How much smaller men (and therefore women) were one hundred years ago!
  • The existence of pliable erasers
  • Being in close contact with the objects from the collection made them feel a lot less mysterious.
  • A new observational drawing technique
  • Enjoyed how to shade dark and light

Other comments:

  • would take part in another session
  • kept my interest throughout the session
  • Very stimulating to see the range of approaches and results within the group at the end of the session
  • The access to materials within the museum felt like a real privilege and the knowledge and enthusiasm of the museum volunteer in charge was outstanding.
  • It was really interesting to see how differently other people looked at and drew the objects
  • I was really pleased to be able to produce a work during a relatively short time that I wanted to keep.
  • I enjoyed being behind the scenes in the museum and meeting Alan, who was able to shed light on the objects. Working in a group of people was also uplifting.
    I thought the art activity to be first rate. Marcia was really encouraging and managed the different levels of expertise without difficulty.
  • I found the day very enjoyable and stimulating
  • Well organised, well resourced and well attended
  • I thought that the day was very good and interesting  and I learned things I didn’t know before.

Stitching workshop:

The best thing about the workshops:

  • Creating my own design
  • The opportunity to respond to the morning drawings on an individual and personal basis
  • I was really pleased with my piece of bunting
  • Producing something that was part of a wider project.
  • I had forgotten how much I enjoy needlework
  • Being able to work the sewing machine

The most surprising thing:

  • I was more interested in working with material than I thought that I would be
  • that even those unused to ‘stitch’, can see it as an art form and as a means of mark making
  • That other people could see what I was attempting to achieve
  • Being shown how to use a sewing machine for a different purpose.
  • How few of the participants knew how to operate a sewing machine.
  • That you could go back, forwards and sidewards without taking it off the machine

The most interesting thing:

  • Learning new techniques and applying them
  • Bondaweb!!!!! Will buy some.
  • the way in which participants used cloth and yarn with such varied approaches
  • That having spent the morning studying various different objects from WW1, how straightforward it was to use that knowledge to produce something new.
  • How individual the approach to the task was from the group and how effective the end results.
  • Combining both drawing and stitching together

Other comments:

  • I would like to take part in another workshop and have a go at using the sewing machine
  • I found the whole workshop very interesting from start to finish and learnt a lot
  • the way in which participants used cloth and yarn with such varied approaches
  • Relaxed but thorough teaching approaches that create a good learning environment and a social cohesion
    A huge array of working materials provided, to cater for all tastes and approaches, and good organisation
    plenty of personal attention and encouragement
  • A thoroughly enjoyable event with good outcomes for all
  • Everyone had taken part in the drawing workshop in the morning and there was a really supportive and productive spirit to the afternoon. Felt very well supported and allowed to find my own level.
  • I greatly enjoyed the stitching workshop. Everyone had a very different take on what they wanted to do and it was very interesting to see the end results.
  • Excellent. Rosie was very easy-going and enthusiastic and I felt I had learnt much without really realising it at the time.
  • I would enjoy doing another of these workshops in the future as it was a very pleasant afternoon.
  • A great opportunity to spend a creative and companionably afternoon
  • I thought it was very good because I have never really used a sewing machine before until the and I thought I did well .