Sunday, January 24, 2016

3-D Transformation of Felt with Wire

I have long been fascinated with the seeming random quality of how leaves curl as they dry on the limb and then fall to the ground in an artful manner.  What follows is an experiment in trying to capture the feeling that I have when seeing dried leaves on the ground in the Fall.  Nature will always trump my efforts but that doesn't stop me trying.  Perhaps the following will act as a tutorial for you to make your own 3-D fiber art forms.

1.  Tools:     - 20 lb. picture hanging wire
                    - straight pins
                    - wire clipper
                    - beading foot
                    - free motion foot
 2.  Pin wire to felt.
 Note:  A pattern is not necessary.  Instead, merely started pinning the wire to the felt in wavy       lines that are meant to suggest the undulant lines of many leaf shapes.
Starting to Pin Felt to Fabric
3.  Set zigzag stitch width and length on sewing machine to 3.5 zigzag width and 1.5 length.  If you try this, you may need to set the machine width to a different number.  Just make sure that it will be wide enough to let the needle pierce the felt on either side of the wire. You don't want to dull your needle by it splitting the woven wire.

4.  Stitch wire to felt using beading foot.
Close-up of wire stitched onto felt.
How one completed leaf side and center stem evolved
5.  Pin wire to second side of middle stem and stitch, as described in #4.
6.  Sandwich a second length of felt over the wire stitched felt with the wire in the middle of the two pieces.
Layering Felt
7.  Pin the two layers together.  Insert pins so they capture the wire under them.  Use stitching line from the top layer as a guide.
8.  Stitch the layers together.
9.  After stitching around the entire leaf form, change from the beading foot to a free motion foot and reset your machine's stitch length and width to zero.
10.  Free motion quilt the leaf form in whatever pattern you choose.
11.  After completing a free-motion quilting design, use a stiff paint brush to paint the veins of the leaf form with green acrylic paint.
12.  After completely painting the leaf veins on both sides of the form, blend orange and brown      Setacolor fabric paints (or even acrylic paints, if desired) around the edges and into areas of green paint.
13.  Once the paint dries, cut around the edges of the form to "release" the leaf.
14.  Here is my resulting flat, elongated leaf form.
15.  Below are three of many ways the form can be manipulated.  Because it has a picture hanging wire skeleton the form can be flattened and reconfigured over and over again and each time it will hold its form.


Always remember, never fear to experiment.  
Sometimes wonderful things happen.
© Linda Friedman 2016.  All rights reserved

Saturday, January 16, 2016

Art Focused on Science

"Grey Matter Unveiled"
I am thrilled to report that my 36" x 36" quilt, "Grey Matter Unveiled," has been juried into the 6th Annual Art Scientifique show.  This show is is an event sponsored by California State University, Fresno, CA and is curated by Lisa Anderson and Martin Shapiro.    It will be held at the Chris Sorenson Studio at the Fresno Arch and will run from March 3 - March 31, 2016.  Yearly it features art related to some form of science and is visited by several thousand people.  If you live in the area or happen to be traveling through Fresno, I hope you stop in to view this fine art with a scientific theme. 
Always remember, never fear to experiment.  
Sometimes wonderful things happen.
© Linda Friedman 2015.  All rights reserved

Monday, December 7, 2015

Koi Drawings

As I continue developing my work for a 40" x 40" "Crossings" challenge, the red circles on the background fabric suggested bubbles to me (see  Step #1, Step #2,, Step #3, Step 4, and Step 5) .   My thoughts turned to fish.  I first conceived of salmon going upstream to spawn, but the faces of salmon seem almost mean to me.  When I think of lovely fish, koi always seem to come to mind. Koi swim over and under each other and cross through ponds of lily pads. That idea stuck with me so I set about sketching a couple of these fish. The images that evolved were from my memories of koi fish.  They are not meant to be anatomically correct. 

I first pencil sketched a couple of koi images on paper and then poster printed the sketches. 

The koi that was to become orange was printed on a 2x2 poster print setting.  The pages were then taped together and color was added with Inktense pencils.
 I also printed the koi that was to become red in the same manner; however, because of it's curve it needed to be printed in a 3x3 poster setting.
Tomorrow I will post about transferring the drawings to fabric and painting them with Setacolor fabric paints.
Note:  These posts are my participation in the 31 Day Blog Writing Challenge.  If you, too, would like to participate, link to Cheryl Sleboda's:  http://muppin.com/…/inde…/the-31-day-blog-writing-challenge/



Until tomorrow...

Always remember, never fear to experiment.  
Sometimes wonderful things happen.
© Linda Friedman 2015.  All rights reserved

Sunday, December 6, 2015

Block Printing with Foam #5

Adding Salt for Texture

(For those who are just now joining in you can follow along from the beginning by linking to:  Step #1, Step #2, and Step #3  and Step 4.)

While the fabric was still saturated with layers of Setacolor fabric paint washes, I took out my improvised shaker of kosher salt that had been a taco sauce bottle.
Converted Taco Sauce Bottle

To make the bottle into a shaker I used an awl to punch holes in the lid.
Bottle Cap Top with Punched Holes
I then sprinkled salt all over the wet fabric.
Shaking Salt onto Wet Paint Washes
I usually do this step with the fabric in sunlight, but it was night and I wanted to see if the salt would draw up color without the benefit of the sunlight magic.  It worked, although not as dramatically as if the sun had been on it.  For the purpose of this work, the result was fine.  Yay!  Hard "edges" of color were softened and visual texture was created.
Close-up:  Result of Adding Salt to Paint Washings
Tomorrow I will post about a couple of images that I want to applique to this block printed,  painted background fabric.
Note:  These posts are my participation in the 31 Day Blog Writing Challenge.  If you, too, would like to participate, link to Cheryl Sleboda's:  http://muppin.com/…/inde…/the-31-day-blog-writing-challenge/



Until tomorrow...

Always remember, never fear to experiment.  
Sometimes wonderful things happen.
© Linda Friedman 2015.  All rights reserved

Thursday, December 3, 2015

Block Printing with Foam #4

Three Layers of Transparent Wash
The first picture in this post is the printed fabric with three overlays of color.  It's rather like eating dessert first and then having dinner.  What follows is how the wash overlays were accomplished.

If you have been following along with my series of 31 Day Block Writing posts about block printing with foam, please bear with me as I reference earlier steps for those who are just now joining in.   To follow along from the beginning link to:  Step #1, Step #2, and Step #3 here.

Step 4 of using the block prints in a large work involved using simple tools.
Tools
Spray Bottle with Clear Water
 
Inexpensive Brushes from a Home Improvement Store
I first sprayed the entire piece of fabric with clear water to make it quite damp.  In a canning jar I then made a mixture of Setacolor Lemon Yellow a very few drops of Setacolor Bright Orange transparent fabric paint, and then mixed it with clear water in a 1:1 ratio of paint-to-water.  Then the paint brush was dunked into the paint/water mixture and washed across the entire fabric.

Partial Overlay of Yellow/Orange Wash
Once the fabric was completely washed with the Yellow/Orange color, the fabric was quite wet.  That actually turned out to be a good thing because it allow the next wash of Setacolor Cobalt Blue to migrate in a serendipitous manner into the Yellow/Orange wash .  I mixed the blue fabric paint in the same 1:1 paint-to-water mixture as I did with the yellow/orange fabric paint.  Here it is, ready to use, in a canning jar.

Jar to Mix and Store Fabric Paint

Partial Wash of Setacolor Cobalt Blue over 1st Wash of Setacolor Yellow/Orang
Here is what the two transparent layers of washes over the block printed fabric looked like.

Setacolor Cobalt Blue Randomly Added
Note:  My work surface was not wide enough to lay out the entire fabric, so I covered 2" thick insulation board with a plastic drop cloth, put that on top of my table and it was a perfect size to work on.

I failed to mention in my earlier posts that because of the to-be-announced theme, I believed that there needed to be intersecting lines.  To achieve this, I taped 3 pieces of 8.5" x 11" card stock together lengthwise, cut out a 7/8" strip with a craft knife and used it as a template to paint black strips to visually define the levels

Tomorrow I will blog about the finishing touches to this background piece.

Note:  These posts are my participation in the 31 Day Blog Writing Challenge.  If you, too, would like to participate, link to Cheryl Sleboda's:  http://muppin.com/…/inde…/the-31-day-blog-writing-challenge/
 Until tomorrow...
Always remember, never fear to experiment.  
Sometimes wonderful things happen.
© Linda Friedman 2015.  All rights reserved

Wednesday, December 2, 2015

Block Printing with Foam #3

Auditioning Color Overlays

If this is the first time you are visiting my blog about Block Printing with Foam, you can find the beginning stages of step #1 HERE and step #2 HERE.

Today I am going to take you through the process of auditioning colors that I might use as washes over the initial printing.  I first printed 4 blocks that would be used solely to determine colors for the 40" x 40" piece that I am creating.

In each instance Setacolor transparent fabric paints were used to make washes with a paint-to-water ratio of 1:1. On all but one of the blocks I first laid down a wash of Lemon Yellow.  No picture is shown for that. 
Option #1
Lemon Yellow with a Swath of Cobalt Blue
Option #2
Lemon Yellow with 3 Drops of Bright Orange and Cobalt Blue around Circles
Option #3
Yellow with Light Wash of Cobalt Blue and Denser Diagonal Swath of Blue
Option #4
Cobalt Blue Wash--No Underlay of Yellow
Ultimately, I chose to work with a combination of the colors in Option #1 and Option #3.  When I am able to show the finished work in the future, it will become evident why I chose those colors to augment expression of the theme.

Darn it.  I wish I could tell you what the theme is so that you might better understand what influenced my choices. Ah, such a mystery.  I assure you that the final work will be shown in the future.  For those of you who follow along, you will know exactly how it came to be.

Note:  These posts are my participation in the 31 Day Blog Writing Challenge.  If you, too, would like to participate, link to Cheryl Sleboda's:  http://muppin.com/…/inde…/the-31-day-blog-writing-challenge/
Until tomorrow...
Always remember, never fear to experiment.  
Sometimes wonderful things happen.
© Linda Friedman 2015.  All rights reserved

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Block Printing with Craft Foam #2

This post is a continuation from yesterday's post.  Here I have made multiple printings from the three blocks cut from sticky backed craft foam.  To see the process for cutting the blocks click HERE.

These are the tools used in printing the blocks.
 
In the past I have used a brayer to apply the paint, but recently I have been using a foam roller from a home improvement store with good results.  The tray onto which I poured the paint is a hard plastic one that I salvaged from a food product package.  The paint is contained within its raised edges and it rinses off very easily.  

I marked off a grid pattern with soft pencil lines on a large swath of white fabric. Then I printed multiples of the circles block with Cardinal Red Setacolor fabric paint.
Next I printed the broad striped block over the circle block with Black Lake Setacolor fabric paint.
When that printing was dry, I printed over the circle and broad striped blocks with the narrower, diagonal strip block with Light Green Setacolor fabric paint.
I then cut rows of blocks apart, lined up the prints and sewed the rows together.  Because I am creating a work to address the challenge theme of "Crossings", I cut a 3/4" wide and long stencil  from card stock and stenciled the horizontal lines with  the same Lake Black Setacolor fabric paint that I had used  for the broad striped block prints.

Tomorrow I will post about auditioning colors to use in over-painting.  These posts are the beginnings of my participation in the 31 Day Blog Writing Challenge.  If you, too, would like to participate, link to http://muppin.com/…/inde…/the-31-day-blog-writing-challenge/


Until tomorrow...
Always remember, never fear to experiment.  
Sometimes wonderful things happen.
© Linda Friedman 2015.  All rights reserved

A New Series is Born

While experimenting with the use of household items as printing tools, two panels emerged, one that used the lid of a spray can and the other that used kitchen hand utensils and folded cardboard. These were intended only as audition pieces; however, after they lay a couple of weeks on the work table, the concept of pulling the panels together with a figure emerged, and that was the beginning a new series with a signature silhouetted figure and circles. Now my sketchbook runneth over with new ideas.

Flying Free

Flying Free
A New Series Begins

Wonder

Wonder
And There Was Light

Recognition

Recognition
Eden - 15"x24" -
Machine appliquéd photo transfer figures of Adam and Even atop a field of multicolored strips with a raised and glossy epoxy serpent binding the figures. Net overlay with outline quilting around stamped boarder motif. (15”x24”)

Alluvial Shadows

Alluvial Shadows

Alluvial Shadows


Appliquéd freeforms suggest fluid, shadowy overlays. Heavily beaded and embellished with coiled wire connecting levels. Batik fringing with beads.
(21 ½”x25”)

Celestial Order

Celestial Order

Couched yarns and threads meld with a felt star lit night sky to sing to the wonder of the firmament. (9”x13” excluding fringe)

Cherry Jubilee

Cherry Jubilee

Cherry Jubilee

Traditional needle turned appliquéd cherry tree branch highlighted with embroidery and beads atop a free motion quilted and triple bordered background. (12”x13” excluding frame)

Seaside Idyll

Seaside Idyll

Seaside Idyll

(In Blum Private Collection)
Heavily quilted, original fabric painting atop hand dyed background depicts two elegant women meeting upon the shore with fanciful pets that are fashioned after classic carousel figures. The Westwind breathes life into the figures and sways the willowy seaside flora while parasols offer protection from both sun and sand. (46”x19½” hung from fabric casing on reverse)


Heart of Pepper

Heart of Pepper

Heart of Pepper

Original needle punched botanical design on background of dense free motion quilting. (12”x12” excluding frame)

Cozumel Musings

Cozumel Musings

Cozumel Musings

Mixed media original underwater design. Hand dyed background overlaid with card woven feature. Fused, appliquéd and thread painted fish. (21”x39” excluding fringe)

Mi Corazon

Mi Corazon

Mi Corazon

Patchwork heart dotted with French knots atop hand quilted tree of life design executed with paintsticks and a variety of thread embroidery and yarn embellishments. (13 ½”x13 ½” excluding hanger)

Garden Fantasy

Garden Fantasy

Garden Fantasy

Single needle felted botanicals on a back-ground of quilted patchwork and bordered by prarie points. (22”x18” excluding antique hanger)

Koi Reflections #2

Koi Reflections #2

Koi Reflections #2

Hand painted koi fish with dense echo quilting. (21”x28”)

Koi Reflections #3

Hand painted and thread “painted” koi fish set on hand painted background with dense echo quilting. (21”x28”)

Koi Reflections #3

Koi Reflections #3

Appleseed Mirror

Fused and echo quilted apple with lame leaves on a freemotion quilted field of reds. Reverse mirror of “Apple Seed Mirror #2” (12”x12” excluding frame)