Friday, July 25, 2014

NGG pieces in New Gallery "Arts HQ" in Surprise, Az

Four of us in NGG, our studio art quilt group got pieces into the new Surprise, Az gallery show, "Blank Canvas". Frances Murphy, Sandy Branjord, Anna Marie Peterson (Mom) and I were all juried into their first art show. There was only one other fiber piece in the show. 300 people joined us in celebrating their opening, which included all media from sculpture to our fiber! Anna Marie's piece, "Old Moster Church":

Here is Sandy's "Reality is just a Rorschach ink blot":

 And here she is standing with her altered book, "Breathless":

And here are Francie's pieces," Welcome to Twilight Trails" and "Moonsong" are pictured here. Too many people to get good pics. You can see them on her FB timeline.( Wish I could figure out how to link)

My piece," Phloral Phantasm":

And "Sun And Shadow":
I had never felt happy with this piece so played with it and added more movement by adding pale yellow leaves moving from bottom to top. Now the composition is better. People were fascinated with it last night. It has two 3D lizards playing on the surface among the 3D leaves. Here is a close up of Shadow, the chameleon:

And a view with its closest friends: It really played well with its neighbors!

 And here it is from across the room to give you an idea of the size of the gallery: 

And my other one across the gallery from it: This is after the huge crowd cleared out a bit.

My beautiful "peeps"!

And a picture of my teaching studio ready for tomorrow's free motion class!

I have room for 8 students. It's a very happy place!

That's all for now. More later. I have pictures of the facing I applied to Phloral Phantasm.
Happily quilting and teaching...

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Phloral Phantasm and Sun And Shadow

Phloral Phantasm and Sun and Shadow have been accepted into the "Blank Canvas" show at the new Arts HQ gallery in Surprise, Az.

This is Phloral Phantasm, a digital print on silk, of a painting I did a number of years ago. I overpainted almost the entire piece of silk. The original painting was too pastel for my liking...
I deepened all the colors with acrylic paint and textile medium which did not affect the "hand" of the fabric. I still needed to bury my threads. I used red thread on the back and changed the threads on the front to match the colors of the design. I experienced some "tension issues" with the front thread showing here and there on the back. Better there than on the front. 


The photo on the right is the original painting that I had digitally printed on silk.

The needle disturbed the surface of the silk so I used a fabric pen and "tickled" some color in next to the thread where the surface was showing light on the dark areas. A fabric pen in the same color as the background fixed it up.

The thread tails on the back needed to be buried. This is how I do it.  I use an easy threading needle made by John James. It has a notch on the end into which I thread both short tail ends. You just put the needle into the fabric right at the point where the tails come out:

Then you pull the threads into the slot in the end:

Then you pull the threads thru and trim them off. I usually aim my needle at an area of stitches so that the thread is "locked" in.

I snip with my favorite everything scissor...and EZ cut scissor that has a curved tip and you squeeze instead of putting fingers in the holes. It sits on top of my sewing machine, next to my iron and about 8 other convenient places.   :)

The other quilt that is going off to the show is Sun And Shadow. There are two lizards playing on the surface in the swirling leaves and in the shadow of a tree. This was a project I called Jigsaw puzzle piecing.

 A drawing ( a doodle) was made on freezer paper, traced onto Craft Fuse, fusible side up, with pencil and then the freezer paper was cut into pattern pieces and ironed onto fabric. Each piece was trimmed a slight bit bigger than the freezer paper. Then each piece was ironed onto the Craft Fuse with a small tip iron. What happens is it looks pieced. Edges can be appliqued down or it can be appliqued by quilting the edges.

After I fused the pieces down on 8 identical large blocks, the blocks were rotated in two different ways to create two different pinwheels. The pinwheels symbolize the dust devil winds that play with our leaves here in the southwest.  I then laid organza in large pieces down onto the surface and free motion quilted a design that could be trimmed as reverse applique.

I had made 9 blocks so I used the ninth block to cut out two lizards that would "hide" on the portion of the block that created camoflage. One light one named Sol and a dark one named Sombre were the result. The only machine piecing in this quilt is the sashing and border and enveloping the quilt. (no binding necessary). It's made like a pillow. Leave an opening and hand sew it closed. I make my opening under the sleeve and close it with fusible web.

At the end I added organza leaves that are two layers of organza fused together and stitched with a vein. I am going to add some paint to strengthen the composition. I will post that in a couple days so you can see the difference.

The lizards are in the second block down on the right (shadow) and the bottom left block (sun).

Here are the lizards:

Well, enough for now. Back to doing the facings on Phloral Phantasm. I will show you how I do it in a later post...

Happily quilting and teaching....

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

So much fun, so many quilts!

In the past several months I've been creating quilts for some of the specialty exhibits at the International Quilt Festival. In the previous post I showed the floral quilt that was rejected. I made a quilt for the Tactile Architecture exhibit but did not get it completed. I can't show you the picture because I haven't decided what to enter it in. Some shows don't allow a piece to have been published. My "Big Apples" quilt was accepted into the Ruby Jubilee Celebration but did not have a restriction on showing photos. I had a quilt accepted into "Home" in Houston, but can't show a photo. I'm hoping to have a piece accepted into "Life After 40" and I entered the What's for Dinner for either placemats or centerpieces. I entered my painted paper towel bead bowl as a vase.

I've been photographing my quilts on the bed with light coming in from behind. What a difference. Photographing on a wall with good light does not do the quilting justice. Here are some photos of the quilt accepted into Houston's Ruby Jubilee opening  at the Internationa Quilt Festival: Big Apples

This was taken hanging on the wall. It is 50"x50" and this is the whole quilt, huge slices on the left and partial whole apples on the right.
Here it is taken with light coming in the window...


The quilt above was quilted with my Bernina 820 on a Grace frame created for the 800 series and was the first quilt I ever made on a free motion long arm table. I was frustrated by not being able to see behind the stitch regulator so I went out and found a long arm machine that would fit on the cradle of the Grace frame. I love quilting on a table with the 820. It has a 12" space to quilt in and has lots of great light. I have taught free motion quilting for 5 years and love quilting.

The machine I bought is a Pfaff powerquilter 16 which fits on the Grace free motion table.

And here is"Life After 40...from Constriction to Creativity"I painted canvas with acrylic paint and then free motion quilted on my new Pfaff Powerquilter 16 which I set up on my Grace frame.   My new Pfaff works beautifully on the Grace frame even tho it was meant to be used on a stationary table. I'm going to be communicating with Pfaff about how well it adapted to the moving platform.

 Here is my Life After 40: The idea was to represent the change from rules oriented ages up to 40 and the freedom found in my 50's, 60's and now 70's. The lower left shows a happy creative life with some constraints. Those disappeared as my nest emptied and I started a new career doing custom paintings and faux finishing for several interior designers. I worked for 25 years creating new environments for other people and art for the new environments. Much creative growth and lots of fulfillment between age 40 and now. In 2006 I semi-retired from crawling up and down very tall ladders (and crawling behind potties) and began playing with something new to quilting. Coming from a background of traditional quilting, I had much to discover. I've been quilting since I learned hand quilting from my Gram at age 9. From 1974 when I rediscovered quilting, appliqueing and piecing and hand quilting, I gradually got more interested in painting on fabric and then quilting and eventually I learned how to (heaven forbid) machine free motion quilt! 

I have been teaching surface design techniques and various art quilting methods and growing as an artist. My most recent pieces have mostly been painted quilts. The departure from that was the Big Apples Quilt which could have been painted, but I decided to do huge fused pieces and then free motion quilt on my moving frame with the 820. The fun I had with the moving machine led to the new Pfaff and I am now soooo excited to be able to quilt either on a stationary table with my 820 or on the free motion moving platform table with the Pfaff.

This is the full picture of Life after 40 and then details of the quilting:


I love the way the quilting adds another dimension to the painting!

I also entered another painted canvas quilt into Life After 40, International Quilt Festival. It is called  40 Isn't Old If You Are A Tree! It is painted with acrylic and was appliqued with ribbons, organza, various papers, painted fusible batting strips (red and orange tree leaf area), fancy fibers and gloss medium. It was quilted on a stationary machine.

You may notice this piece has had other names in the past. It has grown up through several revisions. The original painting that I took off its frame was the Old Oak Tree. I wish I had taken a picture of it before its transformation.

I'll be waiting to hear in August if either of these pieces will be included in the 40th anniversary celebration of IQA. I will certainly let you know!

Happily Quilting and Teaching!