Sometimes just talking about what I’m doing and getting my fingers into things unlocks ideas that are lurking in the back corners of my mind.
Today I went in to Techshop to get myself familiar with the CNC embroidery machine and its related software in preparation for using it to do Art.
I gave myself the easy little project of decorating the new backpack I’m making myself with some found (out of copyright) art-deco designs. The idea was to get used to how it worked and to try converting a simple file into the proper format and the sort of stitching I wanted. When I had done a simple one I learned the extra digital work to get multiple colors (though I ran out of time before I could actually embroider that one).
I think I’ve got the hang of it, including discovering how the machine will kill itself and doing a neat and simple hack (a carefully placed piece of paper) to prevent it from doing so. There is always something, and it’s best to find out what those somethings are before you do anything too important.
For me it also helps to play with a medium a bit before I have to use it in a piece. I thought there might be something I could do in contrasting digital embroidery and hand-embroidery, running in the theme of contrasting the human and the digitally mediated human.
I was writing all of this out when I discovered a good part of what that next project will be. Not revealing it yet, but it involves text. This one isn’t an interactive piece, but it is something I can do every day, a little at a time.
this is the part that is actually on my bag