Thursday, June 22, 2017

June Travels

June has been a busy month.  I traveled to Northern California to visit with friends and attend a SAQA regional meeting.  The meeting was held at the Grace Hudson Museum in Ukiah, California, where the SAQA exhibition, Wild Fabrications was on display.  Meeting the  members of the Northern CA, Nevada region was a treat. The Pixel Ladies shared some of their thoughts and processes with the group.  Deb and Kris are a collaborative team that works with computers and cloth to create their visions.  Theirs is an labor of love.

SAQA - Wild Fabrication Exhibition
Pixel Ladies - Detail
After time in Sonoma county, I was able to spend six wonderful days at a friend's cabin in Arnold, CA.  The cabin sits at the 4,000 foot elevation.  The day I arrived it was snowing.  Once the storm passed through the area the remaining days were a wonderful 80 degrees.  
Building in Ukiah, California

Sonora Pass, HWY 108



While in the Serria Nevada Mountains, I was able to begin hand stitching a new piece.  Below is a sneak peak at a section of the work.   This piece was created as an abstract with little to no plan, a method called improvisational art making.  I started with hand dyed fabrics and then added commercial fabrics of similar pallets.  The entire piece has been machine stitched in the ditch to a foundation of wool batting. 




Sneak Peak Detail
Happy travels ...

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Eco Print, Rust Print, Wool and Silk Panel

This piece has been in process for a long while ... over a year now.  It is time to bring it out in the light and post it.  Wool felt was used to eco print.  Guava, oak, eucalyptus, and creosote leaves form the prints on fiber.  The reds are from the dollar eucalyptus leaves. The green is from the creosote leaves.  And the purplish gray tones are from the oaks leaves. The bundle was steamed for a 1.5 hour.  When rolling the bundle freezer paper was place on the wrong side of the print and rolled with the wool.  The barrier kept leaf prints from bleeding into each other.
Eco One -Side One
Eco One - Side Two
Silk was used for rust imprints and eco prints.  These bundles were tied and immersed in a bath containing onion skins.  Some of the rusted elements were sew onto the silk prior to immersion into the boiling water.  A turkey roster was used for steaming and boiling.

The piece called Eco One is two sided.  The first side is strictly eco printed with some hand stitching.  If you look closely you can see the lines resulting from the string used to tie the wrap of the bundle. This shows best in the detail pictures. The second side is created with dyed and rusted panels of silk.  Hope you enjoy the images.

The panel measures 16 wide by 49 long inches.

The details show a closer look at  the rusted and the eco print results.
Detail - Rusted, Eco Printed
Detail - Eco print and stitch
Detail - Eco print back ground, attached rusted metal
Detail - Eco Print on Wool


Friday, May 19, 2017

Dawn to Dusk Panels - Journal Entry #1

Three Panels - 45 by 65 inches
The Inspiration Story:

The newest textile is about the light seen at dusk and at dawn of the day. The inspiration for the creation was SAQA’s announced call for entry, Dusk to Dawn. The panels came together quickly and easily, as if they were made to go together. The combination of the hand dyed whole cloth panels remind me of the light at the beginning of the day and the tonal hues seen at the end of a day. As a photographer, I am aware of the transforming effect of light at different times of day.  Dawn and dusk are magical times of the day. Each panel was made at different times employing two different processes of textile dying.

I plan to document the making of the piece from piecing to finish.  The idea started in a small group discussion with friends, other creative souls, that meet periodically.  Not knowing how I wanted to stitch, I engaged the assistance of these friends.  They are my go to girls when I am stuck.  We were discussing ways to quilt the panel piece and one of them recommended documenting the progression of the work.  By blogging I will record the details of the making. This a good discipline for me and a way to journal the layers through time by documenting my processes.

Construction Notes:

The piece is 65 inches wide by 45 inches long.  It is constructed using three hand dyed cotton fabrics.  The center panel was folded, clipped with surgical clamps, and then ice dyed.  The outer panels were dyed using soy wax as a resist with letters added with a thermofax screen and textile paint.

After the panels were sewn together, the first level of basting, 505 spray and fix, was applied to the fabric.  An iron set at high stabilized the panels to the wool batting.  Then the panels were machine basted with a home Juki sewing machine. Stitch length was set at 6 and sewn at six inch intervals.  One good tip Cory, a professional long arm quilter and friend, recommended was to stitch in the ditch between the panels.  This added stitch will keep the line between the panels straight as quilting is added. The panels are securely attached to the batting and ready for the next layer, hand stitching.

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Sargasso Sea ~ 1st Place at Desert Quilters of Nevada Show

Desert Quilters of Nevada hosted their annual quilt show at the Henderson Convention Center this past weekend. With over 230 entries, the show represents works from their 450 membership. 

Sargasso Sea, my most recent textile art piece, received a first place in it's category, Non-Representational Art Quilt. During judging there was some discussion about the legality of the piece. Did it fit the definition of a quilt, having three layers with stitch through all three?  Recently, I have been putting a layer of organza silk which is somewhat see through of the backside of my fiber art.  This allows the viewer to see the backside of the stitching. In quilting circles this is considered a false back, one that has not been stitched through.  Ultimately, more discussion is needed to define what is an art quilt.  What I know is that it is not a traditional quilt.  Therefore I question the norm of judging it as such.  I hope someday in the near future Art Quilts will be judged as art with a focus on design rather than traditional quilt techniques alone.

Sargasso Sea was inspired by the distinctive color elements found in the Sargasso Sea, the yellow Sargasso kelp and the aqua blue sea. The two panels together measure 36 by 52 inches.  Each panel consists of hand dyed of cotton, linen and silk. Paint and hand stitch emphasized currents found in the sea. The two panels together measure 36 inches wide by 52 inches long.

I love the process of creating and working with fiber, dyes, paint, and stitch. In the beginning of a piece, I usually have a conceptual idea which morphs as the work progresses.  While the work is in process it hangs on a predominant wall in our family room.  Daily viewing helps me determine where more stitch is needed. I love painting and absolutely enjoy hand stitching and using simple stitches to create movement, add texture, and apply more color.    The totality of the process feeds my soul.

Below are more pictures showing the paint and stitch details.  Enjoy !!!

Sargasso Sea - 2017
Selection of Blocks

Stitch detail #1

Stitch detail #2


Stitch detail #3

Stitch detail #4

Sunday, April 2, 2017

Two Shows in Vegas ~ Light Play at CSN and Quilt Las Vegas in Henderson

This weekend two very different yet equally enjoyable happens opened this weekend in Las Vegas.  Light Play by Robot Army and Quilt Las Vegas by the Desert Quilters of Nevada.


Light Play by Robot Army, created by Sarah Petkus and Mark Koch,  exhibition opened at College of Southern Nevada on Cheyenne Campus.  The remarkable and brilliant pairing of technology and art can be seen at the CSN Art Gallery from March 31 to April 29, 2017.  Check it out on youtube.  The collaborative pair of creative souls, Sarah and Mark, are worth keeping an eye on.  Looking forward to what comes next!

Graphic by Sarah
Graphic by Sarah

Light Play
















Desert Quilter's of Nevada annual Quilt Show, "Urban Lights" held at the Henderson Convention Center represented some of the best work by quilters in the Southern Nevada area. I enjoyed seeing the traditional quilts, the modern quilts, the figurative sculptures  and the art quilts.

Sargasso Sea (Left) in Art Quilt Gallery
Main Hall Quilts