We move forward from two successful exhibitions in 2016 in Prague and in the USA to the challenge of an exhibition in the Netherlands in the Autumn. We continue to work on A2 sized pieces in portrait format and will be producing four pieces over the year with the theme of 'Freedom'. An essential part of our art is working in series to a common format which does give us all a framework for our creative endeavours.

Wednesday, 27 March 2013

Indian Textiles

Here is my next quilt in the series inspired by Ethnic Textiles. This time it is India

There is something about seeing a pile of textiles in a a market that I love. Carpets in Morocco, Kelims in Turkey and bits of textiles in India. I seem to have a large collection of these photos.

I wanted to make my quilt look like a pile of textiles which proved to be quite a challenge. I padded each row.

I have used screen printing, block printing and stencilling to make the individual "quilts".
The cowrie shells and buttons are screen printed. I added a little hand stitching.

Here is one of the photos I took in a shop in India

I want to try to make a much larger version of this for the Contempoary Quilt Group Challenge - Horizon, to be displayed at Festival of Quilts in August


Sunday, 24 March 2013

At the pond

Here is my second quilt with the theme trees. This time blossom trees next to a pond - hoping that spring will come at last :-). At the moment I am taking an online class with Katie PM and decided to use the first assignment for this group as well. Because it is a class piece there were requirements which otherwise I would not have used. For instance on top of the 6 colors of the background all colors of the 3 (12 step) color wheels had to be used. More colors than I would normally have used. All colors are hand dyed. To attach the snippets of fabric which are the blossoms I attached each one with a seed bead. The other option would have been to cover them with tulle and stitch through that, but that would have had an effect on the color.

Saturday, 23 March 2013

I have decided to use my Indigo fabrics as my series for this year. Some I have acquired, others I dyed myself during one of Magie Relph's classes.
 The background fabric was folded and secured with paper clips before dying. The result was a linear, watery, reflecting effect. I fused and machine appliqued the suns and the moons. The piece was bisected with a vegetable dyed fabric to represent the desert. I embroidered the out line of the Tuareg and camels then painted them with acrylic paint.  The sun rays were quilted using rayon thread.
Though the piece is predominately blue it is interesting how 'hot' it seems!   The small figures and the large eclipses emphasizes the vastness and loneliness of the desert.
The Tuareg are known as the 'blue men'. The indigo from the robes they wear impregnates their skin making it blue black.


Tuesday, 12 March 2013

The Wedding Guests

As a new member to the group I am excited about a series of new work. I have decided to take the theme 'People, Places and Patterns'. It is quite a big theme to tackle but I want to concentrate on featuring the people that I meet on my travels and adventures alongside the traditional patterns in the fabrics or architecture that pertain to those places.

The first piece that I have done is called 'The Wedding Guests'. I was in Goa and was accidentally invited into a wedding celebration in a temple.  The bride and groom were just getting their photographs taken. Then the mother of the bride and groom were invited into the picture. It is a serious business having your picture taken in India and this is reflected in the piece that I have done. Or perhaps it was not such a happy arranged marriage - who knows! The block printing down the side of the piece is a tradition throughout India and of course there is a sprinkling of sequins and glitz on the surface of the little quilt.

Sunday, 10 March 2013

Wave inspired by Hokusai

I have finally decided on my theme for the next year. I hope I can make it work. I will be working with water, in all it's many forms.

This first piece is inspired by the Japanese woodcut print of the wave. I used Procion H dyes to paint the cotton cloth. This is something new I have learnt this year, and I find it exciting to be able to directly apply the colour, instead of having to appleque or embroider it on.
Here is the piece before embroidery.

I then accented it with emboroidery and quilting. It took longer than planned, but I think I am happy with the results. I do need to learn new ways of finishing the piece.

Detail of the finished piece.
Now on the the next one.

Sunday, 3 March 2013

Under the Surface

A  photograph of pebbles reflecting light underwater was my starting point for this piece. For this series I wanted to explore further using concentrated dye pigment on wet fabric without using thickener to get looser  effects. So I worked on damp cotton then loosely painted images which when dry I then discharged a little - in this case to get a mottled lighter effect for the pebbles.  I then used dye pigment sticks almost like crayons to add more colour ( Inktense, and Conte Wax aquarelle) and shadows to the pebbles, (again on damp fabric).

 I find for this technique I need a high thread count cotton like pima cotton or lawn for it to work well, it needs to have a smooth tight surface to work.  I use a very weak solution of matt medium after I have iron fixed the colours to ensure they stay fixed! It does affect the handle a little but for this size piece I am not too concerned.

The whole piece was machine quilted to emphasize the outline of the pebbles using a variegated thread. The light reflection was added last using flecks of gold leaf applied with ormaline.

The detail will hopefully show  the discharged speckles and the added colour a little more clearly.

Whilst I am pleased with the overall effect of the pebbles I would like to work on the background more on another piece. The photo had the light, soft and smooth sand as the riverbed but I think with a little artistic licence I could jazz it up a bit!

Faces of Old

I procrastinated about what my theme would be this year. I am working hard for an exhibition temporarily called France to be shown later this year and I don't want too much time taken away from the  main game but on the other hand, after April most of the work will be done and then there is still another 4 pieces to be done for Voyageart for the rest of the year, so whilst i wanted to do something french initially, it need not necessarily be so for the whole year.  So I decided on faces of old- I am fascinated by how the madonnas and humans have been  portrayed over time ( some of them made an appearance in last years work) and I decided I wanted to continue in that vein, exploring different ways of creating them and exploring different aspects. The piece I made for Feb is  figures form the Western portal of Chartres Cathedral. I have photographed them a number of times and every time I see them again i take yet another photograph.
They look out into the world, three men and one woman, they are said to be royal and a mix of the romanesque and gothic hence the very elongated figures.They stand atop columns which are decorated with  simple shapes one of which I made into a linocut so I could print some fabric. The photo was photoshopped with the fresco filter and then printed onto white fabric painted with Inkaid  which I diluted with water to see what effect it would have on the  resulting print on the fabric. Inkaid does change the hand of the fabric but it is still possible to stitch the resulting print both by hand and machine.I painted the fabric some time ago ( can't find my bottles of Inkaid and would really like to find them!, they disappeared in the moves). So here is the result...