Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Masters Art Quilts vol.2 Give Away part III

Last year an exhibit I participated in, The Ever Changing River, was exhibited at The National Quilt Museum in Paducah. A group of us went up the week end of the opening and had a tour of the museum given by Judy Schwender. Judy is the curator. Our exhibit takes a fair amount of space but there was a lot of wall space left to fill. Judy decided that she wanted to have the whole exhibit to focus on rivers. After all Paducah is located on the mighty Ohio River.

Among the many wonderful pieces of art hanging in the exhibit was a piece by Karin Franzen.

Pirouette III
49 x 42

Pirouette IV
49 x 42

I believe this is the piece that was hanging in that exhibit. Photographs can not do this piece of art justice. I can't begin to describe it either. I can tell you a little about her work as described in Masters Art Quilts Vol 2.

Karen's backgrounds are pieced or built up from multiple layers of silk organza, which she dyes, discharges, and screen prints. She fills each piece with details, which draws viewers in.

I totally agree with that comment. I could have spent the whole day looking at this piece. I would have then walked away still not knowing how she was able to accomplish her work.

I could go on and on but will just show you another piece of her work.

A Time to Dance
49 x 45

Leave a comment on my blog and you might be the winner of this wonderful book. I will draw a name at the end of the day tomorrow.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Masters Art Quilts vol.2 Give Away part II

More Eye Candy. Post a comment for a chance to win this beautiful book.

Jim Smoote

Isabella Baykova

Isabella Baykova

Tomorrow I will post my very favorite artist and some of her work.

Monday, August 29, 2011

Masters Art Quilts vol.2 Give Away

When I was asked to write a preview of Master Art Quilts vol 2 and participate in a blog hop I decided that I wouldn't look at any of the blogs scheduled ahead of me. I didn't want to be influenced by what others thought.

While I stuck to that I've decided not to write a preview but to feature a few of the artist that really caught my attention. I'm sure that if you've been following the hop you've already been told what eye candy awaits you in this book.

I'll warn you ahead of time, since my interest lies in people and portraits my choices have been with that in mind.

Carolyn Crump

Carolyn Crump

Genevieve Attinger

Blogger is acting up tonight won't let me add more photos, hope to finish tomorrow night. I will be giving away a book on Sept. 1. Write and leave a comment and how to get in touch if your name is drawn. The book will be shipped to you from Lark Craft Inc.

The list of artist participating in the blog hop is below:

8/29: Diane Lochala-
8/30: Sue Bleiweiss-
8/31: Gerrie
9/1: Marilyn Wall-
9/2: Laura Wasilowsk-
9/6: Sherryl Buchler-
9/7: Cheryl Lynch-
9/8 Deborah Boschert-
9/9: Brenda Gael Smith-

Thursday, August 25, 2011

"Lost in the Music"

I belong to an online group called Fast Friday Fabric Challenge. The last Friday of each month a challenge is issued and theoretically you have a week to get it finished. This month I was able to get the top made but didn't have time to do the quilting. I finally got around to it today.

The challenge was to us the word "Solitude" using abstract realism. I came up with this piece of my granddaughter, Ellington in a dance recital.

I decided to echo the quilting lines and have them get wider to the right side of the quilt. This represented movement. I used YLI thread for the echo quilting in a color call "thunder". I love the way this thread changes color every inch. The variation of color also show movement.

I thought I might walk you through the steps I took to make this piece. To get my pattern I usually enhance a photo in PSE8. I make a pattern and place it under my applique sheet or on a piece of parchment paper. For this project I started the dress first and constructed it on my design wall.

I then took the dress down and laid it over my applique sheet on my table. This made it a little more convenient for me to work on. Here I have started her head and hair and hair as well.

I've combined the body and head but the top of her dress is wrong. I usually keep the original photo handy as a reference to help me see what the problem is and make the adjustments.

Now I'm happy with the neckline so I iron the pieces together. I always make sure that everything is in the right place before I place the iron to fabric. Misty Fuse is pretty forgiving and it's possible to take a piece or two off to move it around but if you check everything twice you won't have to do that.

I then placed the body on my background fabric and iron in place. The black with a little mottled gray was just the right piece of fabric to depict a stage curtain.
This was one of my favorite challenges. We will be issued another one tonight at midnight. Can't wait.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Finally, Some Time In My Studio

Yesterday I had two hours to spend in my studio. The first in about a month, with the exception of helping my two granddaughters make a little project while they were visiting. It felt so good to be in there working again.

I'm working on a very special doll. It is way larger than I thought it was going to be but I think it will work out for my project anyway. I can't show the doll yet because it is for an exhibit. I'm excited about working on this doll because as I said earlier it is special.

I am in the process of stuffing the doll and it is starting to take shape. I'm hoping to add a little unusual embellishment. I've not done the process for that yet so it will be experimental. Have I got your curiosity yet? I'll let you know when it's finished and I can post a photograph.

Monday, August 22, 2011

The New Home for Peacockiness

Last year I sent a quilt to Houston for the "In Full Bloom" exhibit. It sold while in Houston but it traveled around the rest of the year to IQA's other shows. The new owner now has the piece and she sent me a photo of it's new home.

She has been remodeling a house and picked out the lighting to go with the colors in the art work. How cool is that?

It always makes me feel good to know that when my work leaves me it is being appreciated and loved.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Student's Portraits from Workshop Today for LMQG

Today I taught a class titled "Fabricating Faces" for my local guild, Lake and Mountain Quilt Guild. We worked seven steady hours today taking only a little break for lunch. I'm tired but it's a good tired. We accomplished some really nice pieces.

This piece is a self-portrait of Christina. She has a few more things to add to this piece but not much.

This is Becky M's portrait. I have to laugh because Becky was so worried she wouldn't be able to do this class. Well, you only have to look at this portrait to see that she listened and proceeded and she did a wonderful job. She also has a little more to do to call this finished. She is going to add some whisp of hair along the forehead and a few other little details.

This is a portrait of Betty's daughter. The photograph we used to get the pattern was very contrasty. She was actually on the beach, I believe in Hawaii, for a wedding. I wanted her to be able to use this photo because it was special. She did not get the details that some of the others were able to get but I think the portrait came out well. I can see the wind blowing her hair.

This little guy is so cute. Donna C. is doing a great job on this piece. She has yet to add the details around his eyes, another layer to detail the sweater and then she can add the light to his eyes and have a wonderful portrait of her grandson. I hope I am able to get a finished photo so I can share it here.

Donna's choice of fabric for the hair has really turned out nice. The design on the fabric is actually a wood grain design but it make great hair.

Lynn has details to add to this portrait taken from very old photograph of her Grandmother. We had to scan it into the computer in order to make the pattern. It really didn't scan well but I think that this piece captures the look of an old photo.
A job well done.

Martha S. struggled and struggled with the drawing of the pattern for this piece. Her struggles came from the fact that the face was cropped out of a photo that included the little girl sitting on a swing. The cropping made the pattern unclear.

After struggling and finally getting a pattern she could use, Martha went to town and ended up with this wonderful portrait of her Granddaughter. A lot of the struggling was my fault in not saying "this photo isn't working lets find another". But, Martha ended up with a nice portrait any way.

Isn't this wonderful? Peggy is going to add a few more cut outs in the dark part of the hair to let some of the lighter highlights come through. This piece turned our really nice and I think it was a combination of right photo right fabric and attention to detail.

Isn't this little guy cute? I wish I had asked Shirley C. how old he is now. I'm pretty sure he is in college and I can see him looking at this and saying "Oh Mom".

I loved the fact that Shirley chose the blue fabric to make this portrait. The value changes are subtle but enough to work for this technique. She still has some detail, especially in the eye area. I hope to get a finished photo of this piece as well because the details make a big difference.

Now, Judy work diligently on this portrait of her fair skinned Granddaughter. In the end we decided that she was really wasting time trying to finish the piece in fabric. Again I take the blame. The photo didn't have enough contrast for a good pattern and used more than four layers to get a pattern. Because of that Judy chose white to black fabric. It just wasn't working.

We decided that she should send me another photo and I will make a pattern for her. She will then make a a new one using pink fabric. Judy understands the concept of how this is done and will be able to make a satisfying piece. No matter what was done to the white/black fabric it wasn't going to be satisfactory.

Donna was my other student but she was also the facilitator for the class. Her photograph included parts of a Teddy Bear and she decided that she wanted to make the bear black and white and the face of the girl in other colors. She didn't have the fabrics she needed, so will work on her piece at home.

It was a great day, I love to share this process and see my students amazed at what they are creating.

Friday, August 19, 2011

A Request For Help For 911 Project

This message came from an on-line group to which I belong. I think it is a great idea and wanted to pass it on to you.

Dear Friends from around the world!

In remembrance of the tragic events of September 11th, we invite you to be a
part of a call for peace and reconciliation. Add your voice! Create a wish
for peace for the world, in a common "Thread" of Human Fellowship and Unity.
These ribbons from around the world will be tied together and made into a
unique work of art.

Steps to participate:

1) cut a 12 inch ribbon (or fabric, yarn or other knotable material)
2) write a message of hope or a wish for the world, or just sign your name
3) mail in or drop off the ribbon at the address below:

HumanThread Center
645 W. 18th Street
Chicago, Illinois 60616

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Family Fun

It's been a while since I have had time to post on my blog. We have had our children and their families here for about two weeks. Some came and went at different time but we had them all here over the weekend. Had a wonderful time. I'm water logged from so much time in the lake.

Our last family left today, they live near San Diego so we only see them about twice a year. We had one on one time with the two grandchildren yesterday. My husband took Connor into his shop and worked with him on the lathe to make a honey dipper.

Sydney who will be eight on Thursday came into my studio to make a pillow. Sydney loves to create, when we were visiting last Feb. she came our of her room with clothing she had made for her stuffed rabbit.

I chose a pattern by Raggedy Reverse Applique titled "Bugaboos & Flowers Too". Since it was Sydney's first time using a sewing machine I chose the simple flower patter. I then told her to choose three different fabrics from my stash. When I opened the closet she exclaimed "Wow! I loved it another fiber junkie in the family.

Sydney is very intent when she does something. She listened well to my instructions and she really wants to do it all herself. She did a great job tracing the pattern on paper which she then attached to top of three layers of fabric. After following the pattern I showed her how to cut out the layer of fabric to uncover the color she wanted for each part of the design.

This is what the top of the pillow looked like before it was washed.

This is the pillow after washing and drying. Sydney also stuffed the filling and sewed the closure seam.

The proud sewer and her finished pillow.

I loved teaching her. We are hoping to spend a little more time in San Diego next year. You can bet I will have a new project lined up to teach her.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

I failed daisy beading

Yesterday I attended a beading workshop taught by Mary Stori. Mary was the lecturer at Lake and Mountain Quilt Guilt this month and stayed over for a beginning beading workshop.

It was quite obvious that Mary had taught this class a lot. She was very organized, explained herself well and most importantly wanted us to understand why we were doing what we were doing.

In the photo above you can see the set up Mary used for teaching. I know she taught this class for years with out with this technology and I can't imagine how tough it was for her to have everyone see what she was doing.

She had a camera set on a small tripod that projected her hands, beads and fabric on a screen behind her. This made it great for the student to see everything up close.

I've done very little beading in my fiber art career. Beaded the center of some of my flower quilts. One actually went to Houston several years back. I realized yesterday just how badly I had it was done.

Mary presented the class in two sessions. The first class we made straight lines with seed and bugle beads. My lines are not quite straight, but what do you expect from a beginner? Mary actually taught us a technique to straighten those lines out.

We learned about basic stitches, thread, needles and frames.

This is one of Mary's felted pieces. Obviously she loves buttons but also notice the beaded boarder.

Anything look familiar in this piece? How about those buttons?

In the afternoon class Mary taught a few of her more more difficult designs. This is were I got in trouble. Couldn't figure out the daisy design and I wanted to move on so I let it drop. I think the very next design I missed something she said and again needed help, this time I asked. Mary came over and quickly show me my problem.

As the class progressed I started thinking of many applications where I could use beads.

These are some of my favorite pieces made by Mary. My apologies for cutting parts of some of the quilts off.

I saved my favorite for last. Isn't it just like a (man) to tell us to get a hobby and tell us we're spending too much money. Sorry I didn't get a pic of the whole quilt. You do get that she is in psychologist office, did you notice the crazy quilting along the edge?

Thanks Mary for a great class.

Monday, August 1, 2011

Interesting Photographs

I've been canning tomato sauce and blueberry jam. Baking breads, desserts and entrees for the freezer. My family will start arriving this coming Saturday and someone will be here through the 17th of August.

I like to have food prepared for a lot of meals so that I don't have to spend too much time in the kitchen. I like to enjoy having them here and that helps me do just that.

So my posting will be sparse until after they leave. The only time I will have in my studio this week will will be preparing for a class on "Fabricating Faces" that I will be teach at our local guild on the 20th. I look forward to posting photos of that class afterward.

Tomorrow I am taking a breather from cooking and will take a class in beading by the bead queen, Mary Stori. I hope to have photos and a post about this class. Don't give up on me. If I don't have a post about making art I will post some interesting photos.