Angela Knapp – creating vibrant lifelike birds through stitch
Angela started our new season off with an inspirational talk about her distinctive machine and hand stitch birds. She explained she had a wonderful relationship with her grandfather who encouraged her to sit with him and draw. From an early stage she was told to concentrate on the detail and this can now be seen in the wonderful bird art she has created over the last 8 years.
For 23 years Angela worked for the NHS in Camberley, Surrey and there was little time for creativity. It was a turning point in her life when she moved with her young family to Somerset and started exploring new possibilities. She started making bed quilts but after attending a workshop at Midsomer Quilters (website details below) became enthralled with the idea of art quilts which were less geometric and more suitable to her style of work.
In 2015 Angela was offered the opportunity of an exhibition so this was a great chance to take her ideas further. She created 12 pictures and 10 sold. Following on from this her work appeared on social media and in magazines. Angela is a member of Contemporary Quilters West and you can find details of their website below.
Books relating to birds threatened with extinction and the countryside around her home in Somerset have inspired a lot of designs. Angela explained that she draws the image first, then collects together a variety of bought fabrics and variegated threads before free machining the feathers and other marks. More recently Angela has enjoyed hand stitching and she admitted to moving away from the machine. Angela has learnt the hard way by experimenting and now she concentrates on the creation of the bird and then fills in the background with related text in her dedicated workroom in the garden.
In 2021 Angela had an exhibition “Thriving and declining on the Somerset Levels” and details can be found on her website below together with links to how the designs were created.
Thank you Angela for a wonderful talk and for being so generous in sharing your techniques.
Report by Ros
Photos taken by Ros with permission from Angela Knapp
Angela Knapp – https://www.angelaknapp.co.uk/
Midsomer Quilters – https://midsomerq.com/
Contemporary Quilters West – https://www.cqwest.uk/