The Giles November 2016 meeting was a presentation by Jane Varrall, an Alresford resident, and also the daughter-in-law of one of our Giles members. Jane explained her all-absorbing hobby of painting on silk, and how this has developed up to the present day. Undoubtedly a skilled artist, Jane has written several books relating to her silk painting.
Starting from the silk scarves, and a beautiful camisole showing a tropical bird and flowers, Jane showed how her painting had progressed through phases with Egyptian and Turkish patterns, and then how adding quilting added a texture. More recently the paintings have involved adding photos – printed onto specially prepared material – and then stitched onto the silk.
There were other examples on display, for example in a Jane Austen themed set of pictures, and a collection of portraits of Burmese ladies photographed on a recent holiday – then these photos were built into colourful silk pictures. One young lady was presented in her wedding dress, looking particularly attractive in a flower garden – Jane had painted out her groom, who had been standing by her side at the time! Since then Jane has moved on to using similar printed material appliqué-ed on to the silk, for example with pictures of tulips.
Another holiday had been in New Zealand, and this time Jane did allow a man to appear in one of her pictures! Which is not quite fair, as there were several images of Ian Morton, on one extended (long) picture showing the careful restructuring work that created her garden, when the family moved to Alresford.
The meeting was the best attended of the year, with over 35 Giles Group members crammed into the Community Centre: even the Town Minibus was over-subscribed, and had to make two trips! Many thanks to Jane, whose really interesting talk was much appreciated.