Alison King

artists and tutors sharing ideas imagination and skills

Alison King noticeboard: courses

Two Day “tailor made” Courses

Held in the intimate setting of my Edinburgh studio – (small numbers-maximum 5) on dates that suit you. Can be extended with further sessions to develop themes and techniques to an advanced level.Better still why not find four or five like minded friends and enjoy working together in a relaxed and encouraging atmosphere?

Woodlands and Rivers

Suitable for the enthusiastic beginner and those experienced in working with textiles.Drawing on the beauty and texture of birch trees and water, we will use a variety of techniques, first of all creating surfaces with paint, some simple over printing and mark making with a range of medium. Then we will be needle weaving onto wooden frames with strips of fabric, string, threads – predominantly with neutral, silver, blue and grey fabrics. To this we will add in wrapping and decorative hand stitch to evoke the mood of the riverbank and the silver birches.

Meaningful Structures

Working expressively with 3 dimensions

“I think colours are as important in our lives as words are; and words cannot be used as substitutes for colours. Colour is the most obvious and immediate visual stimulus and to those who can speak the language of colour it can express the whole gamut of human emotions in quite a different way from word.”  Bernat Klein As Bernat Klein says, if you can speak the language of colour, you can express many different emotions. The same is true of other visual languages such as that of line, form, texture, pattern and scale.

In this workshop we will be looking more specifically at ways of creating shapes that communicate feeling. To begin with we shall investigate which visual signals can trigger specific responses. Then we will experiment with some paper engineering to develop structures that resonate with emotion.

They could take the form of containers, sculptures, even some kind of garment! The choice of structure is yours. You may not finish your piece completely during the course but you should be well on your way to produce something really unusual.

This may all sound rather serious but this course is not meant to be too emotionally draining. Hopefully we will have a lot of fun on that journey through gloom, joy, pain terror, ecstasy and so much more!

Stripping Back the Layers

This is a theme that can be interpreted at many levels – not only in a physical way but also philosophically.  It can deal with a notion such as decay, the peeling back of layers through time and the distressing of surfaces. It can also deal with the idea of tearing back layers to reveal something hidden, precious, new. It might make you think things that lie beneath a surface- archaeological finds, veins beneath the skin, vegetation like bulbs, onions, celery.  It is a theme perfectly suited to the contrasting of different textures and the construction of unusual shapes and forms, the building up and cutting back of material layers.

Exits and Entrances

Through my work in Sicily I looked at many beautiful buildings. Often they had magnificent entrances, doorways or fantastic gates. Looking in through these could be seen rich interior and from inside, landscapes that were lush and green. I would like to take the theme “Entrances and Exits” for the day school, working with two layers on quite a small scale. The top layer would be used to create the doorway, gate or entrance and the second for the view through, perhaps to something mysterious, open or enclosed.  I hope to show you a number of techniques that can be used to build up the different layers.


The theme of “Reflection” can be interpreted in many ways and can be developed in a very literal way or as a totally abstract image. The familiar physical characteristics of reflection such as distortion, repetition, and symmetry are rich sources of inspiration.With this in mind I would like to start the workshop by looking at these different aspects , starting with a few small exercises using small mirrors. Then with a simple printing technique, we will explore the nature of reflection. I would hope that from these experiments you could develop a number of visual images, both abstract and figurative.We would then manipulate and develop these images further using a variety of techniques including machine and hand embroidery.

Cutting Across

Experimenting with line, colour and composition

A simple workshop that investigates the importance of the basic elements in creating your own designs. This workshop is a good follow on from the lecture Good Design – The Nuts and Bolts

Workshops  fees on request

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