Our October meeting was a talk by Gillian Travis.
One of Gillian's more recent achievements had been publishing a book about her work and this contains many examples of her work and inspiration. Copies of her book are available by contacting Gillian at gilliantravis.co.uk where you will also find her excellent blog and details of her classes.
Gillian trained as a landscape architect - a fact which is well illustrated by the nature of many of her pieces.
After having her three children, she found that she missed the creativity of her work and started embroidery. This led to City & Guilds, a teaching course, and then becoming a tutor at Huddersfield College where she taught City & Guilds on a variety of textile-based courses.
She was also at one time, Chairman of the Halifax Branch of the Embroiderers' Guild. In 2006 Gillian was made redundant, and around this time her husband bought an old foundry on Elland Road in Ripponden which eventually became their home and both of their places of work, with Gillian opening a workshop where she now teaches her own classes.
Alongside the teaching, Gillian told us that she had always enjoyed travelling, and found a lot of inspiration for her own textile pieces from her travels, initially around Asia and then mainly around Europe, taking advantage of budget airline prices and cheap hotels.
Her work has focussed on subjects as diverse as the houses in Burano and Balkan socks, and she showed us many photographs illustrating where she found her inspiration and how she had interpreted this in her work.
Mainly working in painted fabric and machine embroidery, Gillian had also joined a contemporary quilt group where the members produce a piece of work every month, each year with a different format (this year being 10" square), which had helped her to produce a large body of work.
This in turn had led to her entering competitions both nationally and internationally, and winning many awards and prizes, including at the acclaimed Festival of Quilts at the NEC.