Thursday, June 12, 2014

The Story Behind, "It's a Beautiful Day"

It began with this photograph of one hydrangea bloom in my garden. Hydrangeas are one of my favorite shrubs. We have over forty varieties in our garden. Yes, I have a husband who also loves to garden.

I've always enjoyed isolating a blossom and photographing it until I get an image that makes me happy.

I decided to crop the left side of  the photo for my final composition.

I enlarged the photo to the size I wanted my finished image to be and then traced the outline onto a piece of light weight interfacing. I auditioned my fabric and attached Misty Fuse to the back. I then traced the pattern, beginning at the back of the flower and began cutting out the pieces. I work one piece at a time. Some people like to create all their pattern pieces and cut out all their fabric before they begin putting the design together. I like the instant gratification of seeing the design develop. It also gives me an idea that I'm headed in the right direction with color, etc.       
The bloom is beginning develop well. I seem to remember that there were a few places, that I wanted to watch, and decide later if I wanted to change a piece of fabric here or there. 
I've finished the bloom and added a few leaves. I see in this photo the problem I mentioned the paragraph above.  Note the bright turquoise in the above photo just to the left of the bright blue petal. It's missing in this version. It was just a bit to bright. The next stage is to fuse this down but, only after I give it a once over to make sure everything is in the right place. With that done I begin to add paint in areas to give depth of the design.
I use many different types of pigments to create the depth in my flowers. I like watercolor pencils, inks, acrylic paints, anything that works for the effect I want.
I knew when I began this piece that I wanted to use a confetti background. I had used that technique in the two pieces I had just finished and I really liked the effect. I had discovered that I didn't like to add the confetti pieces to the batting. Many quilters who use the confetti technique crate directly on the batting. I wanted to have some fabric showing between the little pieces of fabric. I decided that I would find a piece of fabric similar in color to my background. I then added Misty Fuse to the front of the fabric. he Misty Fuse also helps keep the pieces in place. I placed the fabric on top of the batting and backing. I then began to add the little pieces of fabric. I made a blend of greens, etc. until I had the design I was looking for. I had traced out the design of the bloom so that I didn't place the pieces in that area. Once I am happy with the design I lay a piece of tulle over the confetti and pin the layers together.
"A Beautiful Day"
My friend and fellow art quilter, Gail Sexton and I collaborated on this piece. she crated the beautiful quilting.
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  1. Marilyn....this is such a great your choice of inspirational.