Essex Guild of Silk Painters
Essex Guild of Silk Painters

Workshop and Tutor Details: Saturday 13th

Below are details of each workshop and the tutor or tutors who delivered it.


Tutor biography:

Anethia Sellars













Tutor biography:

Melinda Berkovitz









Tutor biography:

Sue Pearl






























Tutor biography:

Patrick Moriarty











Tutor biography:

Mary Day















Tutor biography:

Sue O'Hea






Tutor biography:





Tutor biography:

Stephen Gibbs




Fish Seascapes: with Anethia Sellars


In this workshop we created a fantasy underwater world using a combination of silk paints, gutta and metallic fabric paints. This was attached to a back board, a mount added and finished with a selection of pre-fired glass fish. 


Anethia has produced beautiful art over many years using a variety of mediums, teaching ceramic decoration, silk painting and fused glass techniques. Throughout this journey it has always been the thrill of the vibrant colours and the variety of ways with which designs can be produced that has inspired her work. She now works exclusively with silk painting and fused glass and whilst both can produce equally inspiring art, she developed the technique of combining the two mediums to produce an original range of classic seascapes, incorporating wave designs, seascape panels and jewellery.

Imagine the Sea: with Melinda Berkovitz


A one-day practical textile workshop exploring painted surfaces and textured effects. This included iron-fix silk painting and various other “textile – art” materials to produce interesting and colourful surfaces. An element of print, surface decoration and hand stitching was included.

Our aim was to capture the essence of our design source – a response to the sea imagery rather than an exact replication. Participants were asked to bring photographs or images (ideally their own) to start the design process and a small selection of sea related “found” items. Suitable for all levels.


Melinda has been teaching and working as a textile artist for over 25 years. She is a founder member and past Chairman of EAST – (East Anglian Stitch Textiles) as well as a member of several other textile based organisations and Guilds.

Melinda regularly lectures and provides study days for specialist groups, in the UK and abroad. Her knowledge and experience of the subject guarantees an interesting and dynamic course for everyone.


Eco Print dyeing: with Sue Pearl


Eco print dyeing is a fascinating way of printing onto fabric. Using flowers and leaves from gardens and countryside, this is a direct contact printing method that allows the flora and foliage to give up their colours and patterns. It is amazing the effects and results that the most mundane of plants can give. This is not vegetable dyeing but an art of the surprising and delightful effects that can be achieved just by wrapping plants in cloth and steaming the bundle.

The fabric that was used was either a fine Habotai silk or a very fine Merino weave. The colours are fast and a gentle hand wash is all that is needed to keep the scarf looking beautiful. Each scarf is unique in its colour and pattern.



Sue has been a felt maker since 1996 working in schools around the country as well as running adult workshops, working with special needs and team bonding programmes. Her work includes wall art,  felt scarves, hats, bags, slippers, interior accessories and sculptured felt creatures. Sue has worked internationally running workshops in New York at the Cooper Hewitt Design Museum, giving presentations and workshops at Felt Symposiums in Israel, workshops and talks in Melbourne and Sydney, Australia and workshops in Japan. She has also taught feltmaking to Algonquin Indians in Canada as part of a micro-economic enterprise. Sue is a tutor for the WI at Denman College and also at Ardington School of Crafts, Oxford Summer School and Missenden Abbey.

Sue has developed a technique for printing leaves and flowers onto fabric. She calls it eco-print dyeing and owes much to the wonderful work of India Flint, the original Botanical Alchemist.


Designing Printed Textiles (½ day): with Patrick Moriarty (Paisley Power)


Transforming our painted silk with the help of a scanner, hand drawn motifs and/or hand cut shapes into an eye-catching textile print using Photoshop software. We created repeat patterns by hand and learnt how to create them digitally for printing. At the end we had digital design files to take away and could order a sample printed fabric in our pattern, which was be posted out to us later, through Patrick’s partnership with Spoonflower.


He graduated from Central Saint Martin’s School of Fashion and Textiles in 2001 in Textile Design after a career as a successful musician. His areas of study were print, weave and knit,.and since then he has designed prints for several European design studios that have sold his designs to major retailers worldwide. Designing prints nearly every day for the last 16 years he has become extremely experienced at creating seamless repeats. He has also taught many students to perfect the technique and teaches evening workshops at Metal Art School in Southend.


Silk Cowl Infinity Scarf (½ day): with Mary Day


The softness of fine silk knit tricot lends itself beautifully to being hand -painted.  In this workshop we learnt how to combine our own range of colour blends to paint a generously sized silk knit cowl.  The finished silk can be worn in many ways such as a snug neck wrap or snood to keep you cosy in winter or as a stylish infinity scarf which can be tied to a specific length as well as being decorated with a jewellery pendant when you want to have a more dressed up look.  


Mary trained in embroidery and design at Loughborough College of Art and Design and in adult teaching at Nottingham University. Afterwards she specialised in silk painting with embroidery, and has taught in local education authority classes, in residential colleges and, since 1985, in her own studio in Chipping Campden.

As well as having work featured on BBC television and being been filmed on Granada Sky satellite TV, The Discovery Channel, and Ideal World TV, Mary was appointed guest professor for silk painting projects for the Shanghai Arts and Crafts Research Institute whilst living in China (1988 to 1990) and wrote the syllabus for the City and Guilds Creative Skills Certificate for Silk Painting.


Microwave Magic (Beginners ½ day); with Sue O’Hea


Beginners and developing painters experimented with colourful steam fix dyes in this half-day workshop. Sue took them through some basic techniques for applying and blending dyes on a pre-sewn silk scarf, using microwave steaming to fix the colours. No painting or drawing skill was needed- just old clothes for some messy fun! At the end attendees had at least one finished scarf to take home.



She is one of the founders of the Essex group, and a textile artist based in the Loughton/Buckhurst area of West Essex. She is very active running workshops and selling scarves, silk jewellery, covered books, bags and all sorts at Guild events and stalls. She offers group lessons and -occasionally- commissions.


Screen printing (½ day Sat morning);    with Samantha Andrews (SEC)

Attendees tried out screen printing onto cotton or silk or paper to make simple paterns and images.


Whilst some of the day-long workshops contained an element of screen printing, this workshop was dedicated to exploring it from the basics and trying out different ideas on cloth and/or paper. 


The tutor is a lecturer at South Essex College for evening and weekend classes. 


Cyanotype Printing   (½ day Sat afternoon); with Stephen Gibbs (SEC)


The students coated paper and fabrics in the Darkroom in preparation for Cyanotype Printing. We used a UV light and natural daylight to expose different papers/fabrics.  The students created their own overlays using hand drawn images on acetate or photocopies of their own work. 


Stephen is a member of the Society of Graphic Fine Art. He started exhibiting artwork in 1978 and has continued ever since. His art has been shown in London exhibitions and in his local art gallery, the Beecroft in Southend.


He has two paintings in the Beecroft’s permanent collection. The paintings are visible through the Public Catalogue Foundation’s website in conjunction with the BBC here.


Stephen says “I create art in watercolour, acrylic and oil paintings, etching and linocut, pencil, chalk and pastel drawing and sculpture.” He also teaches at South Essex College.

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