Thursday, February 19, 2009

Work in progress

The Nile (sold)

During the show at the Copper Tree Shade Gallery several people asked me "how did you do that?" referring to a couple of my art pieces so I thought I would give you a sneak peak at the latest piece of a series called "On the Nile".
This is the 3rd piece in that series. I was hoping to have it finished by now but life got in the way and in a couple of hours I leave on a trip so you will have to come back to see the finished (quilted) piece.
I start with an idea that in this case I got from photos and a stone I brought back from my trip to Egypt last year.
I then choose the colors based on those 2 items.
The photo has been changed in a very subtle way to look like tiles. It helps me see the lines to define where I will change colors. I don't put much thought into the whole process because I work intuitively. I'm sure there are other ways or processes to do this, but this is the way I work.

After deciding my color scheme I pick fabrics and I cut 1.25 inch strips. Again, I don't worry about being perfectly straight. Once you piece and quilt everything together it won't make a difference. For this piece in particular I'm using hand dyes, commercial batiks, silks and rayon. I use whatever is at hand as long as it coordinates with the color scheme.

After cutting like a ton of strips I start piecing them randomly. I do look a the picture every now and then to give me an idea of how much of each color to sew.

I work on a 24x24 format so once I get to those measurements I square the piece and I get it ready to quilt. This is where the fun starts. Although the piece is rather small (I'm used to quilting full size quilts) I mount it in my long arm machine and quilt it using variegated threads. I try to match the thread to the fabric to bring everything together. That way the thread becomes secondary to the design.
Unfortunately, I have to stop here. I need to pack a couple more things and then I'm on my way to the airport. Fortunately, it is a 45 minute flight to my destination and not several planes and hours as on my trip overseas. To be continued......

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Opening night at the Copper Shade Tree Gallery

After much anticipation Friday evening arrived. I drove to Round Top, TX with husband and a friend to attend the opening of the Fiber Art Exhibit at the Copper Shade Tree Gallery.
By the time we arrived in Round Top after a required stop along the way to buy coffee, the Gallery was already full with people munching goodies and drinking wine. We followed their example.
The gallery had been transformed with all the fiber art pieces displayed on the walls. Gerald and Debbie, the owners, did a wonderful job coordinating fiber art with all the beautiful pieces they generally sell in their gallery. The place looked awesome!!
I visited with friends from the Austin Fiber Artists group while husband took care of the photos. I also met some of the other fiber artists from Houston, San Antonio and the surrounding areas. I was having such I good time that before I knew it it was time to head back home. On the way back we made another stop at the place with the big yellow arches for a java latte. No fancy coffee places on this stretch of Highway 290. The coffee kept us alert for the drive home. Needless to say that with all the excitement and caffeine I had that day I had a hard time falling asleep that night.
I hope you enjoy the photos and please visit the Copper Shade Tree Gallery to view the fiber art created by 18 artists from Texas.

Gallery owners Gerald and Debbie and Gerald's sister Kay Tobola

Fiber artists Barb Forrister, Martha and Carol Ikard, Executive director of the Texas Museum of Fiber Arts

Fiber artists Barb Sandberg, Martha and Doll Maker and fiber artist Jen McGahan

Carianne Shulte, jewelry maker, and Moi!

Fabulous Fiber artist Susan King and me again!! (It is my blog after all :)

3 of my pieces at the gallery

The photographer coordinates with the art