Friday, June 20, 2014

Line Study Evolving

     Do you feel pressure trying to decide which colors to use in a piece of art? Or which arrangement to use in a composition? I always do. I wonder if there would have been a better choice. Maybe it's because I don't have a formal art training background. Well, for now, I've found a solution that frees me up from worrying about making an irreversible error. I go back and forth between digital and real media.
     In my last post, here, I showed you lines I had sewn onto white crinoline and I was trying to decide what to do next. I showed you this image that I had created with a combination of ArtStudio and Snapseed Apps on my iPad.
digital image from ArtStudio and Snapseed

 Both Apps are so much fun. ArtStudio is very much like Photoshop Elements. In it I used tools to paint over the photos of my crinoline gong interpretation and my crinoline Buddha. Snapseed doesn't take any work or much imagination. It does all the work. You just click on different screens of your photo and it manipulates it all by itself.
     Then I got to work with actual paints on the crinoline that was sewn onto batting.
Paints and GAC 900 on crinoline
I also painted the crinoline sewn Buddha. Then I hand-appliqu├ęd the Buddha and sewed on beads.
In process

 So now I'm again at a stage of not knowing what to do next. I started to square off the piece with a rotary cutter but when I had three edges cut, I paused before I cut off the bottom. I liked the uneven bottom edge. I have to decide whether to paint that bottom edge of fabric, cut it off, add another piece of fabric on top, hang fringy something or other? How to sew on those brown squares. And of course, I need to decide how to edge it. Probably a pillowcase finish. 
     My next step will be to take this last photo back to ArtStudio and paint up the bottom edge various ways to see how it looks. Light, dark, medium values. Teal, brown, mottled, etc.
     I'm linking this to Off The Wall Friday  where you can find other art quilt blogs. Please make comments on their posts to let the artists know you stopped by.

Friday, June 13, 2014

Line Study

     In my latest art group, ArtsEtc, meeting we did an activity exploring how different media can be used on crinoline to express lines. The basic method was to sew the lines onto the white cotton crinoline in black thread and then use various paints afterwards.
NOTE: I prewashed my crinoline to remove any chemicals so that it would take paint well. I drip dried it.
We were supposed to bring some sort of design already drawn out ready to sew. I had no idea what I design I wanted work with and drew out several but didn't like any of them. Then I went through photos I keep in a file that I think I may use for surface design.
     One of the photos is of a gong. It has a nice texture and I do love circles.  So I played with the gong photo in Photoshop Elements and found edges and lines and sketched those out and decided that is what I would sew. I cut out a piece of crinoline and batting and in the meeting I free motion machine stitched this.
gong lines
A good start. But where to go from there. A few days later, I was walking by a Buddha incense burner we have and decided to stitch that too. It might go well with the gong.
incense burner

stitched Buddha on crinoline
To stitch the Buddha:
1.) I made the photo of the incense burner black and white in Photoshop Elements, and increased the contrast.
2.) I inserted it into a WORD document and changed its size until it was a good size to fit nicely onto the stitched gong lines. 
3.)  I printed the WORD document.
4.)  I put tracing paper on top and traced the lines of the Buddha that I wanted to stitch using a mechanical pencil.
5.) I pinned the tracing paper on top of the crinoline and free motioned machined stitched it.
6.) Using tweezers, I carefully pulled off the tracing paper. (I removed the tracing paper before I stitched the "hair" of the Buddha".)
     There remained so many possibilities of how to paint it and how to collage it that I decided to play with the composition with my iPad using ArtStudio and SnapSeed Apps first. 
This is what I ended up with as a digital collage using photos from above.
digital collage
So now I will get out the actual paints, beads, and others and play with my actual stitched pieces. The whole thing is about 7 inches square by the way. I'm linking this to Off The Wall Friday where you can find other art quilt blogs. Please make comments to let the artists know you stopped by.

Sunday, June 8, 2014

Special Post

I don't know if this is appropriate or not since my blog is about art quilts. But since I've traveled a lot to other countries, I care about people all over the world. Sometimes I like to look at the stats and see from what countries my viewers are watching. Awhile ago I saw that I had a viewer from Ukraine. And then when the unrest there got going that viewer disappeared. I got very worried about her or him. And today I see that they are back! Yay! I just want to say welcome back and I hope you and your family are alright and that things will go the way you want. That's all. Best wishes.

Friday, June 6, 2014

Small Additions

     While sketching out and thinking about new quilts, I've been working on small crafts. One of the things lurking about the studio are jars containing thread snippets that are too lovely to throw away. Also fabric snippets and selvedges. I hope someday to think of a use for them. Maybe I can coerce my art group to come up with a challenge to use up such odds and ends in a quilt. But that would mean that I'd have to come up with a creative quilt using them and I've been avoiding that. In the meantime, I've decided to use them for a decoration. The jars I've been storing them in are plastic and have orange lids. Orange just doesn't fit in with the colors in my studio. So to fix that, I gathered fabric bits that I had monoprinted, sheer fabric, matte medium, an old sponge brush,  paint, and scissors.
jar with thread snippets
     I cut pieces of fabrics, and sponged them on with matte medium.

lid in process drying
When it was dry, I painted on Lumiere paint along the lines of the intersections of the fabrics. When that was dry, I cut a circle of sheer fabric and sponged that on top to smooth it all down with matte medium.
finished jars sitting on their shelf
The jars seemed to need a little more so I topped them off with Little Treasures I had made before. These were featured in Quilting Arts Magazine, Winter, 2005 by Carol Fletcher.
a Little Treasure
And here they are adding some style to my studio and giving me an excuse not to dig in and use them up.
All topped off
Until Opus, my cat, finds them and knocks their tops off. Have any of you created anything wonderful with loose thread bits? I'm linking this to Off The Wall Friday where you can find other art quilt blogs. Please leave comments to let the artists know you stopped by.