Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Studio happenings

Progress has been made again. The roof goes up tomorrow, weather permitting. After that the wall connecting it to the house gets knocked down. Meanwhile, I'm working on quilts and gathering information on studio organization. What fun to be able to start from scratch. The only "furniture" I have to go in it is wood shelves and concrete blocks that I made in college in the 70's to use as bookshelves and a small desk.

Monday, February 25, 2013

New Quilt for Auction

I'm going to donate a quilt to SAQA for an auction. The requirement is that it be 12 x 12. What I did so far to make it is I scanned in fabrics that I made for my prayer flag quilt. I manipulated them in Photoshop Elements 10 and added part of a photo I took on Sanibel Island in Florida. Here is the result:
The next step is to print it. Since my printer only prints standard size, I'll have to print the background in several pieces. Then I'll cut them up and put them onto batting. I'll print the orb and the birds onto a sheer chiffon and fuse them onto the background. Then I'll quilt, hand-embroider, and probably sew on a pillowcase backing. If you've been following my blog, then you've seen some of these fabrics as I made them and you've seen some of the steps I followed to make my prayer flag quilt.
By the way, the prayer flag quilt is finished. I sent in an application and photos of it to SAQA's Text Message exhibit. Now I have to wait to see if it gets in - fingers crossed.
I made a second prayer flag quilt and only have to finish some hand embroidery and I'll submit that one to another exhibit. I think I've found my way to creating a body of work!
If the two quilts don't get accepted, I'll post photos of them here and on my website.

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Going Green

I was surfing the Internet and found two sites about making memo pads from envelopes and scrap paper. I modified the directions from both of them to make memo pads from envelopes that I get in the mail. I used the outer envelopes from bills that I get and from the envelopes enclosed in mail that I don't use. I even used envelopes that had transparent, plastic windows and envelopes that had a lot of writing on them. The security envelopes have designs in them that are like decorative papers. Some of the envelopes even have pictures on them. I figure I can write around the pictures and the text that is already on them. Here are the 2 sites: using scrap paper for memo pad  and craftingagreenworld.com . I'll be checking these sites in the future for other DIY green crafts. Since I'm all about fabric, I used scrap pieces of fabric to cover my memo pads. Here are some photos of the steps I took and the final products.
Finished memo pads with Marsha Derse fabrics glued to them
to make front and back covers. The fabric is glued
the whole way around so that it covers the folded
edges, too. I used Mod Podge as the glue.

I sliced 3 sides off of each envelope leaving
each envelope about 3 inches wide. I then folded the cut
envelopes in half. The patterned white  thing
you see at the bottom is part of a shelf liner, I use
it to keep the paper and ruler from sliding around.

Here are 3 of pads with their folded sides
glued to each other. The clips are holding the
folded envelopes together until
they dry.

flipping through to show you a page that
has patterns and a window.

Flipping through to show you pages that
have text.

Flipping through to show you pages that have cute
pictures and a window.

Saturday, February 16, 2013

Studio Progress

The cement foundation got poured yesterday for the addition to our house that will be my studio. I'm so excited!!! Today I had to photograph my prayer flag quilt and had to take it outside and pin it to a box. The lighting kept changing. When my studio is done, I'll have a real design wall where I can do the photography with set lighting.  How nice that will be.
Cement truck in our driveway
Pouring the cement. That wall to the right
will be knocked out making that room larger for my studio

Friday, February 15, 2013

Some More Photos of Monoprinted Fabrics

 Here are some other photos of fabrics I had monoprinted on gelatin. You can see other photos on earlier posts in this blog. I used regular acrylic paints mixed with textile paints because I want to use up the paint I have before I buy more. I had read warnings not to mix different brands or types of paints together to get the best quality. But it turns out I like the way these fabrics came out. They have a certain amount of graininess but the hand of the fabric wasn't changed that much. It is a little stiffer than if I had used only textile paint, but since it is for a wall art quilt and not clothing or a bed quilt, that's OK with me. Plus these fabrics will be used to represent rocks and windy skies so the texture will work well for that purpose. I think I will make more fabrics this way for my series.
Gray Paint Monoprint with string masks. The droplets were made by spraying the painted gelatin surface with water just before pressing the fabric onto it
Gray monoprinted fabric with Shiva Paintstiks(white, teal, and russet) rubbed onto in with stencil brushes after it was dry. This softens the texture and adds interesting patterns.

Teal Paint Monoprint. The ovals were made by pressing a toilet paper cardboard into the paint on the gelatin surface before pressing the fabric onto it. Note the graininess of the texture in most places. The mottled areas are where water droplets were added to the painted gelatin plate before the fabric was pressed onto it.

Here is a link to an interesting blog that Ill be following: http://ninamariesayre.blogspot.nl/
Have a good weekend.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Some Details of the Prayer Flag Quilt

I've completed the prayer flags and the focal point of the quilt. It took me a few days to decide on the exact design of the focal point. My original idea stuck out too much and I had to figure out a way to make it blend in more with the rest of the quilt. I'm very happy with how it works now. Actually, I'm very happy with the whole quilt so far. I think that I am developing a unique style. It will be interesting to see how the next quilt in the series compares to this one. Well, anyway, here are a couple of photos of details.
detail shot of part of the focal point
 with a prayer flag behind it
detail shot of a prayer flag

The next steps are for me to hand-embroider some of the background, block the quilt, and finish the edges. I should be finished soon. :)

Friday, February 8, 2013

A Music Video about Fiber

This was sent to me today. It is quite amazing. Good music, good cinematography, and pretty fibers.
YouTube fiber video Enjoy.

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

It's Starting to Look Like a Real Composition Now

Well, my prayer flag quilt is starting to look like it's coming together nicely now. Since I last posted photos, I've added some more Shiva Paintstiks in white and blue to blend the areas more. And I've machine quilted most of it. (I'll need to add quilting after the prayer flags are added). I quilted the top portion in horizontal wavy lines with beige thread to give the feeling of wind. I quilted the botton portion in circles with a light russet thread to give the feeling of rocks and cobblestone.
bottom part quilted
orb with the quilting

the entire piece quilted
I think this is the last time I'll show the whole quilt on-line. I will add the prayer flags and show you a few of those up close. Then I'll add the actual focal point and finish quilting and then finish the edges. The reason I won't show the whole quilt is that I want to enter it into some shows and I don't think the quilt should be unveiled until the show (if it gets accepted). If it's not accepted, then I'll put it on-line for all to see. I hope that you are enjoying watching the process of making an art quilt.
It was particularly difficult to do the machine quilting last night because my kitten kept jumping up on the table and darting underneath the quilt, burrowing under the machine table extension, and popping out on my lap. I had to set up a tent with an afghan for him to play in to keep him away. He loves watching the spool of thread vibrate when the machine is going as soon as he hears it, he stops what he is doing and comes by to entertain me. There is no way I can get angry, though. He's just too cute. 
So what do you think about the quilt so far? What do you think about the process?

Friday, February 1, 2013

Creating an object for the Background

Hello Everyone,
Please leave comments for me. It's much more fun to blog if I know people care about reading my blog.
I hope you are all having a wonderful artful day. I spent the morning trying to figure out how to make my Epson scanner work with the new OSX system I downloaded from Apple. A nice young man from Epson walked me through it and now it's fine again. But I digress...
In a previous post I showed you the background fabrics I'll be working with for this quilt on prayer flags. I thought my next step would be to quilt it, but luckily I thought it out more before I began sewing. I realized I want the quilting to go over an object that will be placed onto the background. So I had to paint the object onto fabric first. Remember I wanted an ethereal look, so I experimented with different fabrics.
Here is my end result.

And here is my experiment which involved a bit of serendipity (I love when that happens).
I placed white cotton muslin on my plastic sheet to protect the table. Then I put a piece of voile (a thin fabric on top. Then I put a piece of chiffon (even thinner) on top of that.
I used teal and russet textile paints from Jacquard, white acrylic paint, and yellow ochre Golden Fluid Acrylic paint, and GAC from Golden. I used those brands and types because that is what I already had and I must be frugal these days.
I just started painting on top of the chiffon (the topmost layer) and added water when needed. When I liked the way it looked I separated the layers and let them dry. Here are those results:
the painted muslin
the painted chiffon
the painted voile

I tried using different combinations of these three, but there was too much orange to go well with the background. And then I glanced over at a piece of muslin that I had been using as a wipe rag for awhile to clean my brushes. It had just the right amount of all the colors I wanted. Perfect colors.
the painted wipe rag cut into a sphere
 So I put the painted chiffon on top of it and that is how I got the orb I needed for the sky. So now I can quilt.                                            Please leave comments. My stats are showing there are readers of my blog, but I'm getting lonely here. :)