When working on a project, I have a (very loose) set of steps to fall back on if I'm not sure what to do next. The first one is; do the givens first. If you get busy and take care of the most necessary and obvious elements initially, then you're free to get more creative. At this point, I'm taking a more critical look at the quilt and letting it tell me what it needs next. What stood out to me is, add texture!! So, I unified the different elements with hand stiching in the same dark blue thread color. Now that that's done, I'm seeing that it needs some machine stitching over the top. And my question is: what to use for batting? I don't want to use the same fleece I've used for the last few projects. I'd like to find something one step thinner and easier to deal with. What about felt? I've never tried it, but maybe this is the time to take the plunge!
I started by going through my stash of hand-dyes plus a few commercial fat quarters I keep on hand. I tore strips and laid them down to audition colors, moved them around, and after a couples days of going away and coming back to get a fresh perspective my quilt started coming into focus for me. I'm starting to sew down some of the strips. I need to put similar colors into different areas of the quilt in order to give it some unity, since I started with various focal points, like the bird and the leaves. I'm also thinking ahead about more hand stitching to unify the quilt even more. . .
Here's this morning's fabric with freezer paper stenciling, decorative painting, and the words: "kind, heal, and trust". I didn't want the words to stand out too much, but I want the viewer to be able to find them upon further examination. Hopefully whoever they're meant for will see and take them to heart. Since this is for the Centura hospital show, they're to help someone (or more than one someone) with their healing journey. I plan to do some hand stitching around the leaves next for added texture.
I drew and cut out simple leaf shapes to stencil onto fabric for a healing themed quilt. I wanted simple shapes because I'm going to stitch around the leaves to add dimension. First, I ironed the freezer paper shiny side down onto the already dyed fabric. Next, I used a sponge which was on the dry side so the paint would be softly applied in light layers. Peel away and see the pretty results! Next, I'll add more elements for complexity . . .
Today is my turn to do a short demo for our new group; the Surface Design Artists of South Denver. I chose to show techniques for freezer paper stenciling because we have a lot of ladies who primarily use commercial fabrics, and I want them to discover simple ways to make art happen. So I have a couple of my hand dyes (you can see in the first picture) and a piece of fabric I bought from Jo Ann's. I drew the bird onto the non-shiny side of the freezer paper, cut it out, then ironed it (shiny side down) onto the fabric to make it adhere. Since this fabric has some gold circles, I'll use gold Lumiere paint with a sponge through the stencil. This should be a soft effect which can be emphasized and enhanced with stitching later.
I drew a sunflower in my sketchbook using pencil, then a black skinny Sharpie, and colored pencil over lines I liked and wanted to emphasize. After that, I watercolored over it. You can still see the bold, bright lines through the watercolors. Next, I photocopied it onto paper-backed fabric I bought at Jo Ann Fabrics. I'm going to fuse interfacing onto the back of it, then try some thread sketching. This is a new technique for me, so we'll see how it goes . . .
Here's one element of my "Memories of Santa Fe" quilt - the one I'll enter in the Parker Arts Center show. I cut a resist shape out of freezer paper, then brayered paint on my gelli print plate. To get the coral color, I sprayed with thinned dye, and it stayed put everywhere the resist had been.
Were we there only two days? We covered a lot of ground on this little getaway, and all of it good! If you go to Paonia, do not miss Azura winery. The view is fabulous, and the architecture is a breath of Tuscany. Lovely!!! Other great places are Fresh and Wyld Inn and Farm, Delicious Orchards, and the Wiseheart B&B. What a sweet little mini-vacation.
This is me; happy to have gotten a sideways tour of this gorgeous region.
There are a couple important regional shows coming up, and I'm well underway to create work that's good enough to get juried in - or at least the best work I'm capable of. I'm focusing on very bright colors, lots of texture, and subject matter that's close to my heart. The bird drawing on fabric is outlined with a brush point permanent marker to get the thick and thin lines. I then colored in it with Inktense water soluble colored pencils and heat set the fabric with an iron. The background is pieced with hand dyed and painted fabric from the studio.
Everyone bravely got their hands goopy with acrylic paints to stencil on the details first. When the paint was dry, it was time to spray the loose washes of bold color! I loved my ladies' results - the T-shirts turned out as individual as they are. Peggy's had a dream-like feel of the stars in the Southwest: (it reminded me of what the Native Americans call the "trail of souls"in the night sky). It had some lovely shades of cherry red with gold and teal. Carol's turned into a happy flower garden with soft pastels.Here it is in progress below.