Always in Stitches

Location: Algonquin, Illinois, United States

Sunday, April 22, 2007

The Void

Spring has returned to the greater Chicagoland area and with it my creative energy. In my last post I talked about being back from the void, in some ways that was truer than you could know. In reality I had been working on and in a black hole. In the past I have not cared for those times when I can’t make anything, but I am learning that it is part of the process, and the energy will return, just as spring follows winter.

There are times that I like to paint fabric to get an effect that I know that I cannot achieve with commercial fabrics. I thought that it might be fun to show you the process I take to get those results. The issue with painting fabric is that when I am done I do not want it to be stiff so I work in layers adding paint, heat setting it, and adding more paint until I reach saturation that I am happy with.

So step 1 is to lay it all out on the basement floor.

Next I wet the fabric and also thin my paint with water. I use acrylics.

Pass one is done. The paint looks fairly dark in this photo because it is still wet. As the paint dries it tends to lighten significantly.

The finished base fabric. This represents about 6 or 8 applications of paint.

Normally I only do 3 or 4 applications, but because of the intensity of the colors that I wanted for this piece I ended up doing more. The other point of note is that I only used three paint colors in this piece. Because of the layering I can control the saturation and get a wider range of values.

If you have something to say, then say it. If not, enjoy the silence while it lasts. The noise will return soon enough. In the meantime, you’re better off going out into the big, wide world, having some adventures and refilling your well. Trying to create when you don’t feel like it is like making conversation for the sake of making conversation. —Hugh McLeod

Thursday, April 19, 2007

More Good News

Yesterday in my mailbox I got some more good news. Yep that’s right Ami has managed to get out another article about the Alzheimer’s Art Quilt Initiative. This one is in the current (Summer 2007) issue of American Quilter, which is published by AQS. The article is very well written and features pictures of five quilts from the exhibit. One of the featured quits happens to be mine. Ok I will admit that I am just a bit over the moon that out of all the touching and meaningful quilts in the exhibit they decided to include mine in the article.

If you are out and about be sure to pick up a copy and please, please, please, consider heading over to Ami’s site see how you might be able to help raise funds for Alzheimer’s research.

Those whom we support hold us up in life. —Marie Ebner von Eschenbach

Sunday, April 15, 2007

Back From the Void

Yes I admit that I have seemingly gone missing of late. The demands of life have a way of intruding on art. So Ami’s email announcing that there will be a book produced for the Alzheimer’s: Forgetting Piece by Piece exhibit was just the kick in the pants that I have been needing to get back. She has graciously sent a copy of the cover of the book, which is due out in June.

So I want to encourage all of you to surf on over to Ami’s web site and purchase the book. So far this project has raised $58,680.60 for Alzheimer’s research. While this is phenomenal, I really want to see that total skyrocket in the coming months. To that end I have a little goal that I am setting for myself that I will be revealing in the next few weeks. So stay tuned.

I generally avoid temptation unless I can't resist it. —Mae West