Updated: Oct 24, 2021
Thanks to the 2020-2021 quarantine we all have a lot of time on our hands. So we thought we would take the opportunity, over the next couple of weeks, to look at some of the felting workshops available online. After all, there’s no time like the present to try something new.
Recently we spoke with felt :: feutre canada, Lyne Filion, about the workshop she’s taking with Fiona Duthie. The former president of felt :: feutre canada is a well-known instructor who has taught workshops at symposiums around the globe. She is well known for her lovely smile, generosity, and warmth.
Fiona lives and creates on Salt Spring Island in British Columbia. Her work is known for its intensive use of surface design and textures. In her art she uses textures as tactile metaphors to embed narrative. Her work has been exhibited nationally and internationally and has been featured in a variety of international fibre magazines.
Back when we used to travel—seems so long ago now—Fiona was know for her fabulous Shetland Island felting retreats. These retreats are a truly one-of-a-kind opportunity to learn in a place where people have been creating with wool for centuries. Since travelling is not in the cards, we encourage you to try one of her online workshops. Be warned, her workshops have a tendency to fill up quickly.
What do you like about Fiona’s teaching style?
What do I not like? That Fiona lives so far away from me? I have taken four of her online workshops; Surface Design (the bull at the top of the page), Felt Bag, Colour and composition, and Paper and felt (the vase, image below) and attended the Nova Scotia Symposium in Cornwallis. I’m like one of those rockstar-groupie mega fans! lol
When I met Fiona in person I was so in awe of her genuine, sincere, generous, love, and joy of sharing the craft of felting. I’ve worked in elementary schools for the past 21 years and have run the Art Club at my school, so I have always had a passion for art and teaching children, and I see that in Fiona her gift of teaching, and she is incredible at it!
What do you like like about her online workshops?
What do I love?
The the incredible amount of detail!
The video instructions are so helpful!
The step by step instructions.
The material lists, where to find them, what works best, etc.
The photographs of the process.
The way she sets out her lessons so it’s not overwhelming.
And the format of how students from around the world share and exchange information, inspiration, ideas, support etc.
Fiona’s input and advice is always objective and she has a good critical eye! I trust her opinion. And she is very generous with her process as she always adds extensions to her courses about how to take what you’ve learned and apply it in different ways. Like extra projects for us to learn and do etc.
What I love about online learning?
I like that I can do it on my time and schedule. What I don’t love about online learning is that sometimes it’s hard to fully immerse yourself in the process. Life gets in the way! I do not have a studio but I’m working on a she-shed/art studio idea. I’m hoping that will happen in the near future! Either that or one of my adult daughters moves out, so I can take over their bedroom and turn it into a studio! Whichever comes first?? lol
To learn more about Fiona’s online workshops visit: https://www.fionaduthie.com/workshops/online-felting-workshops/
Currently there are still spaces available in Fiona’s Raised Surfaces Online. It runs from April 5-30, 2021. Registration is now open. This is an intermediate-level class—for those with some felt-making experience. Also be sure to sign-up using the form at the bottom of this page for Fiona’s newsletter. It’s a good way to learn about workshops. Plus her blog is a great read with news and tutorials.
Thanks to Lyne for sharing her thoughts with us. The photos are all of projects she made while working with Fiona.