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Guest Tutor Adult Education
DHG: what are your sources of inspiration?
JENNY: the beauty of the natural world, in particular, sea life, rockpools, pebbles, markings, rock formations but also seed pods and their amazing structures. Weekly walks on the beach, photography and chance discoveries spark ideas and experimentation.
D: do you use one color more than others in your work?
J: grey appears in my work predominantly.
D: the world of textile art is wide and diverse, why has wool caught your attention?
J: the versatility of wool being so soft, magically transforming into sculptural work is an amazing process.
D: what do you express with your Soft Sculptures?
J: my work is a reflection of how I see the natural world. Shape, texture, form. My felt work is a combination of elements inspired from different natural sources, I don’t aspire to reproduce a complete vision, merely create an impression of nature.
D: is there a time of year or of the day in which you are more creative?
J: I work more productively later in the day and into the evening. The long dark winters of the UK are far from conducive, I long for the Spring time and the bulbs making their first appearance.
D: once your work is finished, how do you feel? Are you possessive and wish you could keep it all
to yourself or are you eager to share it with others?
J: this is a mixed feeling. I will only show work I am happy with and consequently love. Everything I sell I miss ... but, usually I meet the people who choose my work and it makes me feel grateful that someone else loves my work sufficiently to buy it.
D: for some people, the creative process is also an occasion for a deep self-analysis. Is this the case for you?
J: some days or even weeks, I have a creative block. Nothing seems to come together, in hindsight this is usually a period where I have other thoughts on my mind, there is a distinct connection between creativity and personal place.
D: tell us about your collaboration with DHG. Which of our fibers have you chosen for your work, and why? Is there a particular message behind the works that came out of these materials? What will you take away from this collaboration?
J: I was thrilled to be invited to collaborate with DHG, working with new fibres in new colours. Sampling different fibres was an interesting process, using the same techniques as with the wool I normally use I discovered some interesting outcomes. Surprisingly the end results were unexpected. I found the Merino Extra Fine very quick and easy to felt and yet still achieve a very tight firm form for 3D Felt Sculpture. I also sampled Bergschaf Wool which I also enjoyed working with, this achieved a very firm felt for 3D work which I will use in larger future works. I chose the Fine Merino for this particular project as I needed to create a delicate detailed surface. Working with the team at DHG has been a pleasure, it made me more aware that there are many fibres available, breaking from my regular routine, trying new fibres and working towards a different goal was very enjoyable.
D: what's your favorite movie?
J: Withnail & I.
D: what literary character do you feel is most similar to yourself?
J: a difficult question, someone insular, private & very sensitive. I don’t know which character fits best.
D: what's the sentence you use more often?
J: I should ask my students this question ... but my husband would say it’s “Let’s go for a walk on the beach”.
D: if you had the chance to choose a sound or an image to send into outer space inside the Voyager Golden Record to show aliens what life on Earth is like, what would you choose?
J: the sound of the waves lapping the sand is the most beautiful sound I know.
D: is there a place you especially love, a place which holds special memories for you?
J: the tiny chapel sitting on a riverbank, overshadowed by beautiful mountains where I was married. We return annually to sit and soak up the tranquility.
D: if you had to choose one adjective to describe yourself, what would it be?
J: sensitive, in as much as, sensitive to my surroundings, the weather, the time of year.
D: if you had a time machine and could travel to the past, which period in history would you choose and which historical figures would you want to meet?
J: I have always felt I was born in the wrong time, I am always happiest somewhere remote and quiet, a slower pace of life, at one with nature. There is no one person I would want to meet, but many interesting inspirational creative
figures in history.
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