Saturday, 9 February 2013

Day 40 - Come and meet the lovely Lynn.

Saturdau 9th February

Arran is wearing its misty shroud today and the trip to Brodick was a bit tricky. George and I went armed with a long list of things to get. Most important was a present for George's dog Fly. Once he was happy with his purchase we started ticking off the list and clock watching. Today is rugby day and it is important for me to take my seat in time.

Scotland has just won their match with text book rugby and some great individual performances. When I come back again I want to be a man so that I can play rugby. I know girls play rugby but I want to be one of those massive men that can take anyone down.

I am delighted to introduce my second guest blogger. I met Lynn many years ago when my mother was taking her spinning and weaving courses. In recent times the craft industry has made a big fuss about its green credentials. But Lynn has been way ahead of this campaign and I always thought she was ahead of her time. Last week we met Angie who is just starting out but this week we welcome the very wise words of Lynn who has really done it all. Enjoy!

As an artist Arran captured my soul. I came here for the first time in April 1975 during a short trip home to Kilmarnock and discovered a vibrant craft community where I could practise the textile arts I studied as a hobby in Sweden, as relief from my
academic studies. It took the rest of that year to finish my degree, pack up my belongings and move lock, stock and weaving loom to the island with my 6 year old daughter.

Making ends meet was not always easy, but gradually my studio developed and I used my teaching experience to run workshops on the island. From the time I moved here my weaving drew inspiration from the magical environment which was our everyday experience. In trying to capture the colours, textures and forms around me, I felt a resonance reflected between the amazing surroundings and the inner me which exists to this day, even though I can’t physically produce textiles any more. I can still share the experience with others through my writing and find great satisfaction when someone I taught “gets” the connection between themselves and the island through their art.

I’ve written about this connection in my book “Practical Weaving on a Frame Loom” which will be published later this year, bringing together techniques and the magical experience of weaving. The yarns and dyes I choose are influenced by the environment that surrounds me from the mountains to the ever-changing beach and sea and the human structures such as the stone buildings and fences marking off fields.

I am grateful to have experienced this synergy between me and the island and to know that I am in the place where I belong. That I can communicate this through my work is a much appreciated gift.

Some inspirational photos from the island and a piece of weaving in progress -

For me Lynn's determination to succeed in a difficult industry shines through and now it is up to the rest of us to follow her lead. Thank you Lynn for an interesting post. For those of you who fancy learning weaving from the best out there grab a copy of Lynn's book called Practical Weaving Techniques available from Amazon - just click on the link. Lynn's website is absolutely worth a look as well. For those of you who love knitting you can get a pattern from the Arran Knitting Company.

We will hear from Lynn later in the year when she tells us what it was like raising children on the island.

I will end confirming that my 37 acts of kindness is underway. Check out my page at the top of the blog to see what I have been up to. Speak tomorrow when I hope to report snow and sledge success. xx

Picture is of some fabulous trees at Brodick Castle. They really have more than their fair share of lovely trees. xx