Textile art in saturated colour
RO BRUHN IS A VERY TALENTED TEXTILE AND MIXED MEDIA ARTIST AND TEACHER FROM VICTORIA. SHE TRAINED AS A GRAPHIC ARTIST AND DESCRIBES HER PASSION AS WORKING WITH FABRICS, PAPERS, JEWELLERY AND PAINTING IN ACRYLIC AND PASTELS.
by Mindy Cook
Ro has taught at many craft retreats and events and her work is published widely, and she will be conducting classes at the Australasian Quilt Convention in Melbourne, April 16 – 19, 2015.
When chatting with Ro recently, we were keen to get some inside information on how colours work together…
What has been the biggest influencing factor from your Graphic Design experience that you apply to your mixed media and textile art today?
I would say it’s the combining of colours and how to use them to get the best from each one. I trained before computers became the main tool, so I learnt the full potential of gouache and markers. I’m also grateful for all of the computer experience I gained later, making me proficient in programs like Photoshop and Illustrator.
How do you choose the colours you will work with on any given project? Is there a formula or is it more freestyle?
“I love colour, that’s the first thing I notice in an artwork, before the object or shape.”
I attended a two day workshop with Kaffe Fassett many years ago and I saw colour in a whole new light. I very rarely decide before a project what colours I will use, they just evolve, unless it’s a commission and the client requests particular colours. Nearly all of my projects use a variety of colours and I like to make sure that each one is repeated throughout the piece. I think this balances the work, and I will sometimes add a burst of red or turquoise to make the project sing.
Is there a limit to the number of embellishment styles one can apply to a textile art project?
I’m not sure if there are set rules for the number of embellishments, if there are I probably wouldn’t take any notice. If I’m working on a project with circles (my favourite shape), I don’t usually add squares etc, but that doesn’t meant it wouldn’t work. I don’t usually cover the whole background of a project with embellishment as I like my work to look layered.
What is your favourite medium to work with?
That’s difficult, I love so many mediums. In painting it’s probably acrylic paint. But I do love textiles, fabrics and yarns. Anything that has colour and texture appeals to me.
Finish this sentence … “I can’t be creative without….”
“I can’t be creative without colour, I’m definitely not a black and white person.”