Friday, December 26, 2008
Tuesday, December 23, 2008
I wasn't happy with the fabric lily pads when I first attached them but as I scrunched them and anchored them with stitches they improved. I used raw silk and muslin, Next time I may stick with only one kind of fabric.
I know some of you are interested in the comment above about challenging myself around what I see as a "perceived weakness". This is something I explore quite a lot in my own art making. I showed you the three pieces for the December show below- the challenge to myself to was stop (and know when to stop) before the piece was over worked. I am not finished with this exercise! I need a LOT more work on control and leaving things alone at that sweet spot where it says "I'm done!" It's so tempting to just do a little more and then that tips the scales away from the simplicity and beauty of the thing as it was. I hate, hate, hate it when I do that and must train myself to stop before it's too late. Can you relate?
Wednesday, December 17, 2008
Monday, December 15, 2008
I just sent off 14 silk runs to Hawaii for review. Lots of fun. Lots of bloopers. Lots learned. It was fun trying to make up recipes to match her colors. I am very anal about how I dye my silks, as most of you know, and Jes is much more of a free spirit about it all so it was challenging and exciting to find my way. I am looking forward to doing more in 09! Let the good times roll!
Monday, December 8, 2008
I am pleased to announce that I will be working with A'kai Silks to create some of the work you see pictured here. If you would like to look at the web site, here is a link: http://www.akaisilks.com/
Sunday, December 7, 2008
This week I will be finishing the coi fish-will post pictures soon!
Let me know if you want to be put on the January Dye Studio e-newsletter. Thank you for your lovely response so far!
Monday, December 1, 2008
I just took the three fiber art pieces you see in my last posting below to the county administration building for the December show. Pictures of them on the walls will be posted next week.
The next Quilt University class is coming up soon. Here is my schedule for the first half of 09. A QU class makes a great gift idea for you or someone you love!
January 9- Basic Cotton Dyeing
February 13- Silk Dyeing
February 27-Quilter's Palette
March 13- Fabric Painting
March 27- Tea Stain Dyeing (expanded to 3 lessons that include spices and organic matter as stain agents)
April 10- Shibori Dyeing
May 8- Gutta Resist on Silk
May 29-Quilter's Palette
June 12- Three unusual Ways to Dye
June 26- Batik
You can sign up 5 weeks before the class opens at the QU web site: http://www.quiltuniversity.com/
And now about those fish...I finally decided that I had to make a move with this piece. Just commit to something, anything and get it done. One layer of netting wasn't enough. Painting the netting was like trying to nail Jello to the wall. Silk gauze was too thick. The solution was to double it up in ripples and then machine stitch it down to the painting itself. It works. Next step is to attach the lily pads.
Had an interesting response from "Jerry The Glass Man" (you can see pics of him on our excursion earlier this year when we went out into to the countryside to get bamboo). He was looking at my blogging dilemma about these fish and has a glass alternative that I will explore later which may be exactly what I want for this concept. I do plan on doing this theme again in the future. Thanks, Jerry! When are you coming over for peanut butter and jelly?
Happy dyeing everyone!
Monday, November 24, 2008
These three fiber art pieces were done in a short period of time. My goal was to stay loose and not over work the paints.
I lost my composure on "North Wind" but was able to crop the piece and save it from being completely overdone.
The other two pieces are more planned out and more along the lines of what I had hoped would happen.
Special thanks are in order to my critique group. I appreciate their insight in how to close the book on work that is not quite "there". Marjan-better, eh???
I like these pieces. Making them was satisfying and something I want to do more of in the future. I still need more practice holding back and want to continue exercising the power found in restraint.
Next week I will post a picture of the work in the show space. I will also post a picture of the coi fish FINISHED! You can see the progression of the idea in the postings from last month.
Thanks for looking!
Saturday, November 22, 2008
Saturday, November 15, 2008
"The Ice Storm"
"Bunny Flat, Mt Shasta"
Happy arting everyone! Dye on and dye hard.
Monday, November 3, 2008
Here is the next layer of paint applied in quite a thick manner over what went before which was thinner brown paint. I wanted it to look like moss and/or dark water. I will let it dry on the plastic and then peel it off and see how that looks on top of the fish painting. I think I am going to have to you-know-what- or get off the pot with this piece. I have to commit to finishing it and I am presuming this will be the top layer I will use. In theory this is what I have been looking for- not too thin and not so thick you lose the detailing of what lies below the surface.
Monday, October 20, 2008
Here is Steve in the bathtub starting to put the tiles on the wall. If any of you have every BEEN in our bathtub/shower you will remember what it was like before this. Very scary place.
Large section part way done. It's going to be nice! I am planning on using grout that is scum colored for obvious reasons. I asked the Home Depot guy which gray looks most like scum and he didn't even stop and look at me or smirk or balk but said something like "you'd be safe with this one or this one. " Maybe this is a question he gets a lot of the time. I do plan on reforming my ways with this new redo. Some day we may get a water softener so that this is not an issue. Someday.
Have a great week everyone. Happy dyeing.
Monday, October 13, 2008
This is Joel sitting on a tractor. We started taking pics of him on large scale machinery at an early age (and his sister too) which is all a part of living in rural America I suppose.
Monday, October 6, 2008
Here are a few of my most used recipe books. If you are starting to purchase my Dye Studio Workbooks, you won't be like me and be so disorganized about this aspect of the process. You will be able to keep the books clean and your notes much more concise.
Here is one of the easier pages to read. Things to note and NOT do...make sure you attach the fabric swatch to the page and do not wad it up like this. If you leave it loose and then drop the book, you run the risk of all the fabric falling out and not knowing where the samples go.
This is the worst (or best) example of a hard to read page in that I have multiple ways to do the same thing and the adjustments I have made to that recipe over the years. I know what to do and where to look but someone who would want to use this page would never be able to figure out my calculations. Maybe that's a good thing???
I hope that you are able to be much more organized than I am.
Wednesday, October 1, 2008
Hard to see the cheesecloth from this distance but I really love the rustic look of it and the loose weave. This has possibilities. It dyes SO beautifully. In the new class that I will be developing for Quilt University, cheesecloth will be on the list of "Fantastic Fibers" we play with along with bamboo and on and on...but... I digress...
Next up is the dyed silk gauze. This, while fairly dense, is beautiful as well. I like the contrast that happens in the spots where the coi have broken through the water. You lose that with the cheesecloth.
So my next round of work on this piece will be to make more lily pads and pin them onto each overlay and make a decision. Next week- what I decided.
Thanks for looking!
Monday, September 29, 2008
My scarf is on the last page at the bottom- gold silk with iris and I describe making it on this blog but back a ways.
I have some pics for you to see but am running fast today. More tomorrow, I promise.
Monday, September 22, 2008
Monday, September 15, 2008
Here is a detail.
I moved on to the lilies. I cut out some silk shapes to add to the cotton and now I know for SURE that not only is the silk a pain in the rear to sew this small (and then top stitch), but these colors are TERRIBLE. I didn't know they would be SO bad until I tried a few. Wow. Violent reaction! I am going to need to hand dye some more olive and dark olive green cotton as I am convinced that this needs to be an all cotton piece. Back to the tubs I go. More next week. Thanks for looking. Leave a comment if you want.
Tuesday, September 9, 2008
Here is a detail of the machine stitching which adds so much to the interest of the piece. I intentionally did NOT put in a lot of painting details as I knew I was going to do what comes next and it would be lost so why bother...
Next step was to pin on a layer of silk gauze that has not been dyed. What I have been toying with is how to create a piece that looks as if we are viewing the fish through water. I'm not sure this is where I need to go with this but I need to experiment. Maybe glass would be cool. Then I would paint leaves and grass on top of the glass for dimension but can I get Jerry The Glass Man to cut holes out of the center of a piece of glass? Does that work? Can that even be done?
Here is what it looked like with holes cut into the silk. Kind of cool but I am sad that SO much detail is lost with the gauze. Is there an even thinner fabric that would be better? I'm thinking, thinking, thinking.
So how will it look if i start to build up a layer outside of the gauze so that there is more detailing on top of the silk. Hey. Not bad. Need
to add some more leaves. I may paint detailing on the leaves or may just do stitching instead.
After studying it a bit I am wondering how it would look without the silk...
Not bad but the value of the leaves and the background are too much the same and it just looks flat. Back to the silk...
Yes, this is more interesting. There are good things about it and not so good things about it. First of all, I am losing the detailing but I am gaining interest. It cuts the light but that's what water does. Can I get the same effect using something thinner or more transparent? Do I want the hardness that glass would bring to this piece?
At this point I have to stop and take a break. I came up to the office to post this blog and eat lunch. This is when my art starts to "cook". The ideas percolate around in my head and as I go about other things the ideas start to mature and when I come back later to see how it looks, most of the time I will have the next piece of the puzzle. It may take a few days or a few hours. I'll let you know what happens next.
Hope you find this interesting. I find it most fascinating to watch the development of a process. You don't get to see it very often in artist's studios. You MIGHT see the preliminary drawings and the finished piece but rarely do you see the development so I wanted to share that with you.
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