Friday, November 16, 2018

Off the Wall Friday

As my time here helping my parents draws to an end, I started reflecting on family and how important it is to our lives. There might not have been a lot of creative time this week, but we had a whole LOT of family time and that's important too.  I want to thank everyone for your prayers and encouragement through the last couple months.  You all are great!

So What Have You Been Up to Creatively?

Friday, November 9, 2018

5 Things You Didn't Know about Georgia O'Keefe - Off the Wall Friday

Sitting in my parents' cabin, I watched as fall turned into November.  I've gotten a lot done on my pinwheels quilt and have found it very therapeutic.   I also started thinking about the exciting things that are happening this month.  The best of which is the upcoming exhibit at the Cleveland Museum of Art entitled, Georgia O'Keefe, Living Modern.  Its going to offer  "a unique look into the fascinating connections between the paintings, personal style, and public persona of one of America’s most iconic artists."  The idea of connecting her work with her clothes is really interesting to me.

So with this in mind I thought I would do a little research into Georgia O'Keefe.

5 Things You Didn't Know about Georgia O'Keefe

1.  She painted more than close up of flowers.  In fact, the flowers series only accounts for 200 off her over 2,000 paintings.  She also rejects the popular sexual interpretation of her flower paintings.  In 1943, she said, “Well—I made you take time to look at what I saw and when you took time to really notice my flowers you hung all your own associations with flowers on my flower and you write about my flower as if I think and see what you think and see of the flower—and I don’t.” 

2.  She loved to paint in the back of her car.   She would turn the passenger seat around and place the canvas on the backseat as an easel.  The car was mobile and kept her out of the hot desert sun.

3.  She painted in all sorts of weather.  She was known to paint in the hottest heat of summer, under tents during downpours and with gloves on when the weather turned cold.  She loved nature and enjoyed totally immersing herself in it to create her art.

4.  She married the art dealer,  Alfred Stieglitz who propelled her to fame.  In fact, he divorced his wife, to marry her.  Their love affair not only included over 25,000 pages of love letters but also many extra marital affairs.  Still they stayed together till the day  Stieglitz died.

5.   She quit painting three times - once while she took jobs to help support her family, once while hospitalized during a nervous breakdown and finally at the age of 95 with her failing eyesight.  She then took up sculpture.

My favorite quote from O'Keefe is "I've been absolutely terrified every moment of my life and I've never let it keep me from doing a single thing I wanted to do."  I can totally relate!

I definitely plan on getting to Cleveland this holiday season and I hope you do too!  The exhibit runs November 23, 2018 through March 3, 2019.

So What Have Been Up to Creatively?

Friday, November 2, 2018

Back to Upstate - Off The Wall Friday

Well, I'm writing this from my cabin in upstate New York...again.   Helping family is always a worthwhile pursuit even if it is in the middle of no where.  At least they have WiFi ... grin!!  I've been pretty busy here, but  I did take time to lay out all my pinwheel blocks and reevaluate where I'm going with this quilt.

After looking at it, I really do need to do some more Medium values.  I still have a big pile of lights that is not laid out and a big pile of darks that aren't laid out - but no mediums.  I do like where this is going.  I think when I do the final layout I'm going to let it happen organically.  Just let my eye work the gradations between values.

Laid out on my parents rug

Ohhhh speaking of that, I also need to make up some transitional blocks.  So that will mean half and half blocks.

I'm really glad I found this project again after such a long time lost.  Its the perfect thing to fit in while helping my parents.

So What Have Been Up to Creatively?

Friday, October 26, 2018

It's Off The Wall Friday !!

So here's my story of the day.  This morning  I woke up and stretcheddddddddd and thought WOW Thank God it's Friday!!  After being at my parent's cabin this month, I took the week trying to catch up on things around my house.  It's been hard to get back into the routine.   By the second stretch, I started to think what do I need to do today....and I thought OMG its Friday and I didn't write a blog!!  I didn't even THINK to write a blog.  How crazy am I !!

MenoFog!!  That's my only excuse I swear!!!  So I apologize!!

So What You Been Doing Creatively?

Friday, October 19, 2018

English Paper Piecing Tutorial - Off the Wall Friday

My parents cabin sits on the bank of a creek
Hi Everyone!!  I want to thank you all for hanging in with me as I had to take a little break from blogging.  I've been up at my parents' cabin in upstate New York helping with the recovery of my father's open heart surgery.  Thank God, he's doing great and is now well on his way to his old self.  Its weird to take a break from your normal life, but I'm thinking, not a bad  thing either. 

Anyways......Here's my story.  So back in 2009, I started another one patch quilt using a trapezoid as my one patch.  The trapezoids were pieced together into tessellating pinwheels.  I thought it was a perfect "take along" project to do by hand using English Paper Piecing.  I worked on it little by little and got it half way done.  Then one day I set it aside and didn't pick it back up.

Wellllll...I would have picked it back up but I lost it!!  I mean when you live in a 14 room Victorian with a ton of storage sometimes things get lost but normally not for very long. This project did though!  Luckily, I recently found it squished way back on the top of my bookcase so I could take it with me to work on here at the cabin.  Its so nice to "find" it again and I've been having fun working on it in my free moments.

This was about as far as I got!  Or Maybe a little farther

So I thought I would do a quick tutorial on how I do English Paper Piecing.  Even though its a labor intensive process, I love the routine of it and its easy enough to do when you might get distracted by what's going on around you. 

Step 1:  Pick your pattern.  Pick your patches.  Figure out what kind/size templates you want to use.  For this quilt, I just drafted the template on my laptop, replicated it into a word document and then I had a master sheet with several of them on it.  The templates needed to be individually cut out.

Step 2:  Cut a patch of fabric (I used scraps for most of this quilt) that is about  1/4" around your template.  You can eye it in - it doesn't  have to be perfect.

Step 3:  Use contrasting thread to fold over that  1/4" seam and sew it to the template - yes - TO THE TEMPLATE.  Remember to fold the corners do they make a nice crisp point.  I do not knot the end when I finish .... I just leave a big long thread.

Step 4:  Take your several one patches to form a "block" or a section.  Figure out the configuration.

Step 5:  Use a running stitch or whip stitch in a matching thread to sew the pieces together.  You need to take tiny tight stitches that go through the fabric but NOT into the paper template.

Step 6:  You can remove the paper now or you can stitch all the blocks together and then remove the paper - which is what I do.
If you look close you can see some of stitches - That's why you use matching thread!!

Doing a whole quilt this way takes a long time, but I find it so satisfying plus its super accurate.  Its a great way to use scraps and when you're done people will say, "Wow!! You made that by hand?!"

Hopefully, I can finish this quilt before losing it again!!  To tell you the truth, I still think that I'm missing some blocks.  Maybe I'll  have to move that bookcase and look behind it!!!

So What Have You Been Up to Creatively?

Friday, October 12, 2018

Off the Wall Friday

So What Are You Up to Creatively?

Friday, October 5, 2018

Off the Wall Friday

So sorry this is late!  I've been called away on a family emergency!

So What You Been Up Creatively?