Sunday, 17 April 2011

Gulf Streams 2 and Beyond

What a fabulous day for a Sunday and I got to chat for two hours with youngest daughter while simultaneously embellishing Gulf Streams # 2 on speaker phone. I too was on speakerphone as  she prepared, whipped, racked and beat a host of gluten free goodies for the week. The time went so .... fast.

Turtles in the Gulf ...

Coral spawning

Jan Pike's hand dyed lace remnant being consumed by sea creature

Saturday, 16 April 2011

Wahatoyas of Colorado

The Wahatoyas are located near La Veta in Colorado and take your breath away as you drop into La Veta from Walsenburg. Buttes abound in this geologists paradise. This is a part of Colorado where big sky gives way to incredible sunsets and the suckering aspen prepare to turn in September. This piece is the "other half" of Bushfire and created \using similar techniques.

From Floods to Fires

Bushfire at Maroota
This is a piece I am working on inspired by the fires around Maroota and Glenorie (New South Wales) some years ago. I will never forget riding through the devastation a few weeks later and experiencing, for the first time, the baldness of a charred landscape that stretched to the Blue Mountains some 50 kms (about 35 miles) away to the west of where the Wisemans Ferry Road intersect with the Old Northern Road at Maroota.
[acrylic paints (cool yellows and reds), tissue paper, felt, metallic threads and sheer black nylon]

Dyeing for the World Quilt

A great day dyeing and these are the last pieces drying. Some were pre-rubbed with shivas and others not - all will now be enhanced with more shiva and some gorgeous play stuff I got recently from The Thread Studio. The World Quilt entries are due by 20 May 2011 - so I'm getting a wriggle on - all the details are available on Sue Dennis' website under the tab World Quilt.

And now it's back to the studio after finishing the WMBMs muffins for the week ... flavours in use included apricot, currant and mysterious other ingredient in jar ....

Art Quilt a la 1991

It's a drizzly cold start to the weekend and the perfect excuse to look in a few trunks and remember what's in there (which is an exercise in futility but fun nevertheless).
On another fairly drab weekend back in early 1991 I went on what would now be called "retreat" with about 6 other quilters to Griffith University's Nathan campus with Ruth Stoneley. No ordinary quilt weekend - we were to try unconventional, non-traditional just-do-it patchwork and quilting. Not a pink or green floral to be seen. The house was my first home as a married person,  a 3 bedroom highset carved into a rather steep block of land with three levels of gardens and a rotary clothesline at the side. Each of the other participants shared a small piece of fabric with me from which the quilt hanging on the line was created. 
The bee buttons were given to me by a friend and inspirational mentor who still works at Griffith University - they came from England (the buttons) and had travelled far to be part of my first art quilt.  I'm about to make a cuppa and think about the journey since 1991 ......

Friday, 15 April 2011

Beading Sampler grows

Another week has fled from my life and it is hard to believe it is Friday. A self imposed long weekend awaits and today it involves Dyeing with Ankie - and some applique and some gutta resist work ... can't wait.
Here's a quick look at the most recent additions to the beading sampler family. The group is a talented bunch - and I'm inspired to think creatively rather than in terms of beads and lines ... still having a hoot with this. Time to pack the vehicle and head over to Ankies ...

Sunday, 10 April 2011

Gulf Streams progress

There are three prints in the Gulf Streams series - one of which is now part of the SAQA benefit auction (click on page 2a) and you can find the work of many other textile artists, including Sue Dennis and Bonnie J Smith who are featured on page 1a. One day I want to be on page 1a.
Sometime between getting my washing done and the bread into the oven I am going to sit down and work simultaneously on Colour Streams Nos 2. and 3. Now that will be an achievement.

Friday, 8 April 2011

The Sampler Series ... a.k.a. practice, practice, practice

I hadn't considered making a sampler series until recently - I do spend many hours practising skills and techniques and am in awe of those people who naturally just "do it"  or for whom such things as packet cake mix and machine applique come naturally. Not so for me. I have had some tuition from one of the Retreat Goddesses and now faithfully practice with different fabric, threads, stitch length, tension etc ... and record each of these so that when it finally is a "wooo hooo" moment I can make that experience last a whole lot longer. Well that's the plan. I have abandoned any and all hope of ever being able to make a packet cake mix, and I can live with that.

Indilogo Cabin

At a recent Boonah retreat the WMBM dropped off a bag of Indigo and rusty fabrics, dyed with Ankie King and Maxine O'Toole and waiting patiently for me to give them purpose. Indi-logo Cabin was the response and now it waits patiently to be quilted ... probably this weekend. The backing is my favourite piece of dyed fabric to date - the jellyfish  streaming across an endlessly deep ocean.

Beading with Lisa Walton - progress

I can't believe it is week 4 already and the ideas just keep coming ... the sampler takes on a new look with each passing week - I'll be oh so sorry when it all comes to an end - but ever so fired up about the possibilities for the "nested" exhibition ... which seems so far away and will be upon me before I know it.

Thursday, 7 April 2011

SAQA Visioning progress in March

 Well I finally trimmed up this piece from 2009 and gave it a proper backing and binding - and a little dignity I think.  As part of the SAQA Visioning Project and my commitment to create a body of works or series, Little Sister and I are holding our second joint exhibition  (the first being some 15 years ago, oh my!) and I need to create a number of small art quilts to complement our exhibition of ... nests. Meadow is an experiment in plastic cards, acrylic paint, tissue paper, netting and felt - that grew from the techniques, experimentation and pure letting go I experienced with Playways.

Postcard from the Isle of Man

This is the first ceramic postcard I've ever received - it includes two perfectly round buttons, a hand written message, typed address and a post mark uncannily resembling the artists seal. That's just one side! The reverse is a beautiful pattern of pressed lace ... thank you Faye, I'll treasure it always.

Sunday, 3 April 2011

Return of the Little Sister in silk

Little Sister returns from the Isle of Man in the wee hours of tomorrow morning. Today  I decided to interpret a drawing I'd done of her some months ago in beads and silk ... not sure how it will turn out and I'm trying to remember Ankie's advice that "less is more" ... this is possibly the first of a few efforts  to see how the interpretation evolves.   First step was to scan the original drawing, then stitch it (threadless) over the silk and that provided a clue about where to stitch ... the beading is something that seems to be "happening" in no pre-ordained way ... so will put it away until the order or beading thread arrives later this week from Lisa @ Dyed and Gone to Heaven.  Much learning inthe doing.

A weekend in the studio

While WMBM visited "dad-can-you-help-us-lay-the-turf" for the weekend, I was left to my own devices. Save the dogs and chooks (a.k.a. chickens or the girls), there was no one but I to keep me company. We got on just fine. We spent Friday night chilling out in the studio - sorting this and that, wondering about what a particular thing could be used for and having a party in my head. Beading the piece of fabric now known as "sampler" became the focus and after burning the 10pm environmentally-friendly bulb it was lights out on another day. Sleep really interferes with continuity!
Saturday was spent on more beading, and sorting out a large bowl of used tea bags in various degrees of "stain". One or two had gone "too far" and found themselves in the compost - the rest spent the morning drying on a tea towel and are ow stashed in a folder of plastic envelopes titled "Good Stuff". It is filed beside the tissue paper from Colorado (shoes, not State) and I'm desperate to know what the receivers or administrators will do with all that gorgeous world-map printed tissue ... perhaps I should offer to help out?


Friday, 1 April 2011

Beadier by the minute

The journal cover is taking shape - one bead at a time. Am thoroughly enjoying learning the the art of beads in Lisa Walton's online beading course - I love being able to take it up and put it down when it suits me and being part of a group that's happy to also share tips, questions, experiences and of course, their efforts. Bring on next week's treasure ....