Living This Creative Life

I have two favorite quotes. The first one is by Emile Zola, "If you asked me what I came into this world to do, I would tell you that I came to live out loud". I don't know who the second one is by, but it goes like this, "If you're not living on the edge then you might as well jump". Both of these sentiments sum up my personal philosophy of this experience we call life on earth. Enjoy!

Monday, June 27, 2011

Another, Another Finished Quilt!

Good Morning All,

Here is another quilt that I've just finished. It is a doodle quilt that has some coloring in it too.

It was made in the same manner as the last quilt, only with this one I didn't use an additional fabric between the blocks and the quilted rectangles and I colored in the flowers so that they could better act as focal points.

For the coloring, I used four colors of Tsukineko inks then after they were dry I added a sheer layer of Shiva paint in pink iridescent.

I'm very pleased with the final result. If you click on any of the photos you'll be able to see it larger.

Till next,

Friday, June 24, 2011

Good Afternoon All,

As promised, here is another finished piece. If you click on any of the images you will be able to see them larger. I'm having so much fun exploring free style machine quilting as design motifs/focal points rather than as the artistry added to finish something else.

If you've heard of Zen Tangles, these might remind you of them though I really don't use many of the movements shown in Zen Tangles. Rather, I use combinations of the stitch outs that I've been using in my free style machine quilting for years including many of the designs that I've shared with you here on my blog.

No, not all of them are original to me, in fact lots of them I've picked up from other quilts, textures, doodles and drawings that I've seen along the way. What is unique is how I'm trying to use them.

The quilt is about 16" wide by 46" long. Each of the white blocks was quilted individually with two layers of batting and a backing. I stitched them on plain, white canvas that I had ripped so that the edges are rough. I then layered up the background fabric with two more layers of batting and a backing. I cut 3 squares of red shot cotton backed with Misty fuse. These squares were about 1 1/2" larger all the way around than the quilted white squares. I positioned the red squares on the black silk background fabric and ironed them in place. Then I quilted the inner part of the red squares, where the white quilted squares would eventually be, with a large stipple and the outer 1 1/2" of the red squares with a linear design. Next I quilted the hell out of the black silk fabric which would eventually become the borders and sashing between the quilted white squares. The black silk is quilted with more than a dozen different stitch outs.

Once the black/red block background was quilted then I positioned the white quilted squares in the centers of each of the red blocks and stitched them in place. As you look at each of the blocks above, notice how I mix curve based designs with straight line based designs, sort of alternating them whenever possible. This juxtaposition of straight versus curvy adds contrast within the single color thread design.

This is just about the most fun I've ever had with a sewing machine!

More soon,

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Another Finished Quilt!

Good Morning All,

I know it's been a while, but I've been BUSY! It's a good busy but a bit overwhelming. I shot my second full length video last week. The first one was on embellishing art quilts and the second one was on fabric painting with hand made stamps. Soon I'll be carrying them both on my web site! I finished my color book and signed the Permission to Produce - so, it's off in Hong Kong being printed and I should have it in my hot little hands by mid Sept.
As I told you in my last entry, I'm trying very hard to get some new work finished for a show I'm hanging in Aug. This is another one that I recently finished. It is gelatin mono-printed then I quilted the hell out of it. The close-ups above show each of the three individual circle designs that I stitched in the negative space. It was very fun to do and I'm sooooooo glad it's finished. I've finished another one since this one was completed and am almost finished with another. I'll show you those in the next few days.
Hope you're all enjoying our beautiful summer,
Till Later,

Thursday, June 9, 2011

New Work

Good Morning All,

Today is my 4th wedding anniversary! Tom and I got married in our backyard on a lovely day just like today. Sunny, with a slight chance of showers - which I think is a great metaphor for marriage!

Here is my newest piece. I just finished it up this weekend after hosting a fabulous, two day, open house. We debuted our new hand dyed fabrics and they were a big success.

I call this piece "She was Content" and it is the 3rd in my "She Was" series. The birds, leaves and sprigs are all done with stamps that I carved and I hand dyed both the background and border fabrics. The negative space behind the sprigs is quilted in a micro stipple and the border contains a poem/statement that reads, "Three little birds whispered sweet somethings in her ear and she knew that all was as it should be. Her course was steady and she was content." I used two layers of cotton/wool batting so that the quilting would really show up. If you click on either image you will be able to see a larger version of it.

I need to get about a dozen more pieces completed for a show that I will be hanging in August (yes, this August!) So, I'll be taking a break from new stitch-outs for a while, but I will show you all of the quilting that I get done along the way.

Also, I sent off the "permission to produce" for my new book yesterday. It was a huge relief to finally be done, but kind of a let down too - well, off to new things......

Till next time,