Friday, October 31, 2014

Around the World Blog Hop - Off the Wall Friday

Better Late than Never - I submit my post on the - "Around the World Blog Hop".  I apologize to Gurli Gregersen that I'm late AND I couldn't find a blogger who wanted to be my next stop (read fail!) - but its not a bad idea to share where I am at this point in my creative journey.

So what am I working on?

OMG - the better question is what aren't I working on?

I'm finishing up my year long master class with Elizabeth Barton which has left me exhausted happily filled with so many ideas and new concepts that my head wants to burst.

I want to continue my exploration of the abstract - especially this whole curve idea.  I love, love, love working big, playing with color and value.   I can easily  see that's where my work is going over the next few months.

Sacred Threads is coming up and I need to get my piece done for that since spiritual communication is near and dear to this God's Girl's heart!

How does my work differ from others in the genre?

Well if you'd had asked me a few months ago I would say - it doesn't.  I didn't think I was doing anything special.  Little did I know that a large part  of textile artists had move to collaging and fusing their work.  I like to piece and applique with little or no fusing.  I like to plan before I do a piece and pretty much never work intuitively.

Why do I create?

Why doesn't everyone? I just thought it was a part of life  - like eating. (except with fewer calories and better gadgets)   I can't imagine how people get through life without creating something.  Maybe those are the mean people.

How does my creative process work?

  • Get idea  - from anywhere and everywhere
  • Plan, plan, plan some more 
  • Realize those plans suck  - throw them out
  • Plan all over again
  • Pick a palette, block out idea
  • Realize it sucks, whine on blog about it
  • Rip apart - add to scrap pile
  • Put on big girl panties and make it work
Hmmmm - maybe I should write a book about the process - LOL!!

 side note - Tessa reminds me that they don't sell big girl panties at Walmart - you need to dig deep and find them for yourself!

So sorry that my blog hop doesn't hop somewhere - but if any blogger on OTWF  who wants to continue the hop - please let me know and I'll post a link here!  Email me!

So what have you been up to creatively?

Friday, October 24, 2014

!!ScaTTereD!! Off the Wall Friday

The Orange Princess
Am I the only one that feels scattered?

 I can't seem to settle into anything and when I walk into my studio there are a bunch of projects all half done.  Now I know that most quilters and artists, tend work this way, but I don't.  I'm a Start - to - Finish type of chick.  I like the routine of it - the security of it - the predictableness of it.  But lately my studio has been anything but predictable.  Between family projects, lost sewing machine pieces (that are found just when the new one arrives - of course!) and unfinished pieces  - the chaos is getting to me.

 And whose to blame for this chaos - me!

 I haven't been saying No enough.  I never had a problem saying No before - but lately I must think I'm wonder woman because I can't get it all done.  So today I decided to say No.  Ohh and start finishing up some of these projects!

I backed out of Sandy's great open studio and decided only to finish up the one little leaf quilt which I actually like.  I just have to face it at work tomorrow.

I also blew off my Master's class assignment - because let's face it - its a  HOT MESS.  I handed it in knowing it was a hot mess and needed to be scrapped and started from the beginning  - but just didn't have the heart to do it this week.

What I did do - was work on the Curves  - which by the way - I've been wanting to do for a month now.  I finished up the quilting.  I also took out quilting due to puckering and requilted ( I swear that is a job that required the patience of a saint - swear being the key word there!)  Now all I have to do is go over the main edges with more stitching and I'm done.  I entered it into Amy's Blogger's Quilt Show.

Now if I want to - I'll re-do my masterclass assignment next week - but maybe I won't.  and that's okay.  You know I originally cut this out of a magazine (its the new Pantene ad campaign) for my teen daughter but I think I need to put it up in my studio too!

So What have you been up to creatively?

Thursday, October 23, 2014

The Curves - The Blogger's Quilt Festival

The Curves
56" by 46"
Machine pieced, rough edge applique
Hand dyed fabrics by the artist
Rayon and Polyester thread 
Machine quilted on a home machine

This piece was conceived under pressure at this summer's Master Quilt class at QSDS in Columbus, Ohio with Sue Benner.  I went to the class wondering what I was going to make and one week later came home with this half done.   
Now I bet you are wondering how did I do that?  Well, it wasn't all that hard - honest!  I have a
nice collection of inspirational photos on pinterest.  I took an architectural photo from there - traced it and edited it changing curves to the way I wanted them - taking out lines and adding others.  Then I had that blown up into a pattern at Staples.  (I usually use an overhead projector but that was at home!)

I chose a palette also using my pinterest boards for inspiration.   Did improvisational piecing and cut out the shapes.   I then fit all the shapes together on a batting/backing sandwich.  I sewed them down with invisible thread.  Then quilted it.  Ta-Da!

I thought I was done - but No - sighhhhhh - Although its suppose to be rough edge applique - its a bit too rough edge for my tastes - so now I'm going back and putting some nice thread work along the edges of the big pieces.  And then it will be done.  I hope.  

But I thought it was done enough to show at least in Amy's Blogger's Quilt Festival in the Art Quilt Category.  

Are you an inspiring art quilter too?  Feel free to join my weekly  Off the Wall Blog Link up  - with any creative blog post!  Its open Friday - Monday!

The Beauties Revisited - Blogger's Quilt Festival

Now I've been participating in Amy's Blogger's Quilt Festival for five years now and I realized that I've mostly shown my traditional work - not the "artsy" stuff that has dominated my time lately. So this time around, I thought I would enter this in the original design category.

The Beauties, 2012,  33" by 46"

Anyways, I thought I would share a favorite art quilt of mine.  It was originally made for  an invitational art show at a local gallery.  The theme of the art show was seasons.  Living on Lake Erie, we sure get all four seasons and it was fun to create two pieces that reflected them.  The Beauties was my idea of a perfect day at the beach.

I remember when making it, I complained a lot since art quilts never come easy to me. By the time it was done, I totally hated it and thought OMG why did I bother?  Still, it was chosen to represent the
art show in promotional advertisements and got a ton of press, so obviously somebody liked it.  It took me putting the beauties away for a year before I could see their true appeal.  Now they hang on my wall ever summer.

And when Fall comes I hate to put them away.

The particulars for those that are into that kind of thing is that is that its made with commercial fabric, hand dyed and painted fabric by the artist.  Rough edged appliqued and  thread painted with wool, cotton, rayon and polyester thread. Its an original designed inspired by a wood block print. Here is the whole arduous journey.

I would also like to invite all you would be art quilters to share your journey on my weekly blog link up - Off the Wall Friday.  Its a drop in easy going group and all are welcome.

Friday, October 17, 2014

A Bit Tulle Much Skirt . . . Off the Wall Friday

If I had a dime for every time someone asked me to sew them something, I could buy a Bernina.  Then I have to admit to them that I don't actually sew.  Yes, I have a sewing studio.  Yes, I have a sewing machine that cost more than my first car.  Yes, I'd rather be using it than anything else. . . but No, I don't actually know how to sew garments.  I quilt.

So when my 16 year old wanted a tulle skirt for her Spirit Days at school.  I sighed.  But Tessa is a good kid.  A really good kid and I mean that machine did cost me  thousands of dollars  you'd think it could sew garments right?  How hard could a little tulle skirt be?

So off to Joann's I went.  Tulle was on sale so I bought a lot of it. . .20 yds a lot!  She wanted it puffy, so I figured  20 yds should do it...grin.  I had no clue of how a tulle skirt would go together, but luckily I found a good tutorial on Pinterest because you know they have a tutorial for 'bout everything on there.  Now the Tut called for a 7 layer tulle skirt but  why stop at 7 when you have enough tulle for 12??

So  I spent the morning cutting and sewing together 12 layers of tulle for  the skirt.  My studio was a huge puff of orange. . . ohhh didn't I tell you it had to be bright Orange. . . yes her juniors class theme was orange jellyfish.  So Tessa wants to go as an orange Jellyfish princess (of course she does).

It came out okay - I didn't have much patience for the tulle so I just slapped it together since its was only a costume.  So Tim Gunn doesn't have anything to worry about me showing up to audition any time soon for Project Runway.

Still Tessa was happy . . . so that's all that mattered.

So what have you been up to creatively?

Friday, October 10, 2014

Say it with Color - Off the Wall Friday

I love color.  I know that I spend a lot of time saying how important value is when I'm designing but I still love color more.  So you can imagine how happy I was that this month's topic is color.  Its fun to explore how color can be used to express the mood of a piece.  Its amazing how much you can communicate  with just picking out the right palette.

How you ask? 

 Well here are some tips. . . .

Red, Orange, Yellow - Emotional Colors - strength, energy, joy, enthusiasm, passion, etc

Notice how I used these colors to express my passion for praise - the joyfulness that I feel when I praise God.

I used Blue and Purple for a calm but rich mood

Green - freshness, rebirth, harmony, newness

Blue - water and sky - calmness or storminess - serenity and sincerity

Purple - always adds richness

White is always pure for me and Black is about power

So with those general guidelines in mind I created my sketches for this month assignment.  I took Elizabeth's suggestion and made one sketch.  It was one that I'm going to do a little piece for with Open Studio so why not kill two birds with one stone??  I then interpreted it into three palettes that  - hopefully - create three  different moods.  It was fun to get out the crayons and the color pencils!  Not to mention I love working with organic shapes!

So what have you been up to creatively?

Friday, October 3, 2014

Good Things in Small Packages - Off the Wall Friday

First of all, let me say a big Thank You for the well wishes.  For the first time in months, I'm feeling like my normal self.  So many things have fallin' by the wayside, that its going to take a while for me to catch up!  I have a new empathy for people who are chronically ill - that's for sure!

So along the line of catching up, it dawned on me that Sandy's Open Studio event was less than a month away!  How did that happen??  She and I had talked about this year creating some art especially for the event.  The idea is that if the pieces were simple enough and priced reasonably enough, they would appeal to a larger audience.

Although this is a great idea, I swear, I don't have a clue of how to make something small and simple.  I mean isn't More is More??  It seems to me that I'm of the mindset that if it takes a lot of time and its really big than it must be a good piece.  Which of course, isn't true but it must be the over achiever in me!

So today I dug deep and tried to create a quick and simple piece.   I think that this piece although simple is pretty.  I always thought it was cheating to let the pretty hand dyes carry the piece, but now that I'm doing all the hand dyeing, I guess I'm changing my tune.  With some nice quick quilting to add texture this piece will be done. (please be mindful that getting handdyed fabric to photograph like it really looks is near impossible with my point and shoot camera!)

With small pieces you can experiment and  try new things.  You can use them as springboards to larger pieces.  You can sell them cheap.. . .grin.  Let's see how many I can get done this month!

So what have been up to creatively?