Thursday, June 28, 2012

Busy Early Summer

I've been taking printmaking lessons from local artist Patricia Sennott.  This is "real" printmaking ~ monotypes on good paper with etching ink on a plate, printed on a press.  As opposed to the type of printmaking I normally do ~ acrylic paint rolled over stencils right onto the paper or fabric. 

I am planning to translate the techniques I'm learning into my work with acrylics.  The monoprints I've made, or attempted to make, in the past were with thickened dye on a plate, then printed on fabric...and actually it didn't work very well.  Thickened dye is fabulous for many applications, but monoprinting is not one of them.

This first piece is a three color registration -- the plate was inked and printed three separate times.  The image is a photo I shot a couple years ago, of a pontoon dock in the Eureka harbor.

The next two pieces are one each of three related prints using handcut stencils.  These were the showiest of each set.  If you're on Facebook, check out my whole Printmaking Album.

In other studio news, today I plan to finish the first of two quilts for Fiberactions' July 15 challenge.  The second piece is just waiting to be quilted.

I've also been taking an Altered Journal class online taught by Tammy at Daisy Yellow Art.  I'm having a great time doing things to an altered book that I likely never would have thought of on my own.  I especially love Tammy's enlightened view that an art journal can be anything you want it to be.  What a terrific sense of freedom and possibility. 

So much of the material out there on art journaling seems to be somewhat formulaic ~ each author/artist has their own way of doing it and often their books or classes appear as though their way is THE way.  It's like that with a lot of art, actually, not just journaling.  And I've always shied away from becoming enthralled by gurus of any sort.

Friday, June 22, 2012

Just For Fun

This is my One Thousandth Post here on this blog!  Pretty amazing.  I really appreciate that you've all been along for the ride.  I love blogging and look forward to keeping at it for the duration.

The winner of the giveaway quilt is ~ Kristin Freeman, number 25 of the 29 entries received.  Congrats Kristin -- send me your snail mail address and your quilt will be on its way early next week.

So, about this quilt ~ in preparation for the latest Fiberactions challenge I wanted to try my hand at slice-and-dice type quilts.  This was a test to see if I like the technique.  I had no old quilt blocks to chop up, so I started by putting together a big piece of aqua and purple strips.  Then I cut that up, added black and white fabrics, cut again, etc.  I had enough of the original cloth of strips that I have two finished quilts, each 18 inches square.  This one is quilted with teal thread, the other with magenta.

I do like the technique and have plans for other quilts with modifications in the process.  I normally do raw edge piecing and applique, so all these finished seams were actually a treat. 

Have a wonderful Friday -- it's raining here on the North Coast today.  I'll be back this weekend with a new collage.

Thursday, June 21, 2012


Last day to enter the 1000th Post Giveaway.  Winner will be announced tomorrow morning.  If you haven't already entered, you can do so by commenting here or at this post.

Good luck!

Wednesday, June 20, 2012


There are two more days for you to enter the 1000th Post Giveaway, drawing for which will be this Friday.  Check out the prize and leave a comment on this post to enter.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012


If you'd like to enter the 1000th Post Giveaway and haven't yet, leave a comment here or on this post.  Drawing is this Friday morning.

Monday, June 18, 2012


To enter the 1000th Post Giveaway, leave a comment on this post.  The drawing will happen this Friday, June 22.

Saturday, June 16, 2012


To enter the 1000th Post Giveaway, leave a comment on this post.  The drawing will happen next Friday, June 22.

Friday, June 15, 2012

About That Giveaway

Mother of Pearl ~ 2010 ~ 16x12 inches
My 1000th post on this blog will be next Friday, June 22.  And I'll be giving away this quilt.  The drawing will be next Friday morning so I can announce the winner on the 1000th post.

If you'd like to enter the drawing, leave a comment on this post anytime between now and next Thursday night.  Tell me about something creative that you'll do for yourself this summer (or winter). 

That's it.  That's all you have to do.  Have a great weekend, and good luck on the drawing.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Image That

My latest mixed media painting ~ 8x10 on canvas panel.  I'm loving this one. 

I hate to waste paint.  Anything left on my palette gets scraped or painted onto a waiting blank substrate.  I use the same piece over and over again until the background is to my liking.  Then I'll build a painting on top of that.  That's how this piece began.  The written scraps are a torn magazine page. 

The building images are magazine photos printed on tissue paper, then adhered to the substrate.  This has quickly become a favorite way to get images onto substrates ~ after all that experimenting with image transfer, I'm liking tissue paper prints the best.  And, as you can see above, when the print is light in color, it is very transparent.  The turquoise areas on the center image are from the substrate behind it.

I'm also playing around with ink jet images printed on plain paper.  Above are two pages from NatGeo copied onto printer paper, then spritzed with water to soften the color.  I also used salt on these prints.  Dye-based ink is dye nonetheless and will react to salt like any other dye.

These are the backsides of the two prints above.  Also awesome.  I almost couldn't decide which ones to use in my art journal.

The 1000-Post Giveaway is coming!  I'll write about it later this week along with an image of the quilt I'll be giving away to the lucky winner.  The actual 1000th post will be next Friday, June 22.  Stay tuned.

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Studio Doings

This is my first real piece of finished mixed media work.  It's 12x12 inches on canvas panel.  The color is way more saturated than I'd hoped, but I am learning a lot about layering paint and paper.  I do love acrylics, all the things you can do with them.  I like the solid, finished quality...although, being acrylic, I could keep working it til the day I die.  But I'm moving on.

I had to show you what's happening with my sansevieria trifasciata (Mother in Law's Tongue).  I've been growing these plants (ancestors of this one) for 40 years and I've never had one bloom before.  There are drops of viscous nectar where the flowers branch from their stem, and the whole affair smells faintly like lilac.  What a treat!

About that weekly challenge I was doing, I've lost the inspiration to keep at it so it will be on hiatus until sometime later.  My energy really has drifted away from quilting -- although I have a stack of fabrics selected for Fiberactions' next challenge (reveal July 15), so perhaps that will get me back into my quilting groove.

It is with some amount of guilt that I realize, yet again, that pretty much once I hit my stride with a particular medium, I begin to drift to something else.  I've talked about aspects of this in earlier posts, so it might sound familiar.  The guilt, I think, is because I invest so much of myself into something -- read: so much money, so little of which I have to begin with -- that I feel as though I haven't gotten my money's worth out of that investment before moving on.

I realize that this is just life.  That there's really no way to measure intrinsic value.  And that the money-for-art-supplies-and-tools conversation isn't justified when one is responding to one's soul, one's muse.  Still, I'm just sayin'...

Last summer ecodyeing was my big project.  I still want/hope to do more, but haven't devoted any energy to it recently.  I have a big stack of beautiful ecodyed fabric, some of which I've used in quilts, some of which I've sold.  I have far more rusted things than I'll ever use, things that I accumulated through the end of last year that I'll probably end up giving away next time I so many other art things from past infatuations.

Obviously I'm still not comfortable with the fact that my artistic interests and desires shift so often.  I'm repeatedly left with a residue of incompletion.  I see this factor operating in other aspects of my life as well -- it's hard to make a clean break with a clear conscience.  I'm always wondering whether I could have done more...

But then life intervenes.

Monday, June 4, 2012

Fabric on Sale

All the fabric bundles (and handwoven scarves) available at my Textile Shop blog are now 20% Off through the month of June.  Sale prices have been marked.

Get 'em while they last, build your stash!


Friday, June 1, 2012

Giveaway, Soon

Middle of this month I'll hit 1000 posts on this blog.  I'll be giving away a 16x12 inch quilt from a couple years ago.

Watch this space for the formal announcement.

Meanwhile, have a great Friday (Saturday, for readers elsewhere) and a wonderful weekend!