Tag Archives: art quilts

Looking Up, Birds, and Winners

Things are looking up around here, for one reason, we are finally having our ancient furnace, it’s in the attic, replaced. We haven’t used it in several years and though we don’t have horribly cold winters, I’m cold if it’s below 75° and the hands don’t work well with they’re chilly. Space heaters have helped but our old kitty and I are ready for the warmth!

You may remember the cut collage bird I made a while ago using my daughter’s (dry) wet palette papers (mostly). The green wing needed help so I used some of my painted papers. I like it better now and it will probably end up on a notecard.

I started celebrating my birthday early; my (adult) kids surprised me with this box of Aurifil thread. It’s so pretty I haven’t even opened the plastic wrap yet!

I’m working on a project for a private class I’ve been asked to teach. I’m planning on including a stamp in the project so I’ve cut more rubber stamps and one is a little hummingbird. I decided to use this stamp in another project made especially for this giveaway announcement post.

I filmed some of the free-motion quilting for this hummingbird project but haven’t had time to edit it yet. Here are some images of the process and the almost finished piece. I haven’t decided exactly how I’ll finish it for hanging.

The photos are taken with my phone so sorry they’re not the best.

I started with a piece of Timtex cut to about 6″ x 7″ and “mop-up” painted paper towels I’ve been saving.

I placed a whole piece (one ply) of paper towel over the Timtex and tore other paper towel up then arranged it in an abstract floral design.

I set that aside and used black textile paint for the hummingbird on a piece of silk organza. Stamping outline stamps on silk organza is a hit or miss… without stabilizer organza wiggles! I knew I’d be quilting over it so it was no big deal that it didn’t turn out the best.

So that the hummer would be about where I wanted it, I center and laid the organza on top of the paper towel pieces and placed silk pins at the tip of the wing, tail, and the beak. Then I removed the Timtex/paper towel piece and dabbed paint on the stamp, lined up the silk pins with the stamp and laid the organza on top, and sort of burnished it with a little piece of parchment. Hindsight – press organza to freezer paper and then stamp down onto the fabric as usual. Sorry if that is difficult to understand, I think I’ll have to video it if I do it again.

I let the paint dry for a few minutes, then clipped the organza to the Timtex so I could free-motion quilt, starting with the hummingbird. Below is the free-motion quilting finished.

I put black felt behind it and didn’t like it at all so changed to blue (it’s actually more turquoise than it looks in photo). I tried to straighten and trim up the organza but since I’m still not sure where this is going I left it longer on the side. This felt didn’t look good without the organza over it (too bright).

I added a little embroidery around the edge of the Timtex with French knots at each corner. I think I want to add more. I’ll take better photos when it is finished.

Now the sweepstakes/`giveaway – I’d like to thank all who commented and because only two of you entered the hummingbird notecard set giveaway, I have decided to give Joy and Karen each a set of Hummingbird notecards. Whether you keep them or give them away, I hope you enjoy them as much as I enjoyed making them. Please email your mailing address to me (even if you have in the past).

Rock, Paper, Fabric, Glass

I remember someone being perplexed by quilters because we take fabric, cut it up, then put it back together again. It’s not just quilters; so much of art is cutting something up and reassembling it.

Paper – My daughter recently gave me some of her (dry) wet palette and wipe-up papers. I paper collaged this little bird. The wing was a piece of painted paper from my stash and the only part I may work on a bit more.

wet palette and paper towel papers
Cut paper collage bird

Designing and cutting up fabric continues to be my favorite activity.

This art quilt was made many years ago. I designed it for a San Diego Quilt Show challenge – The multi-color fabric had to be used in the quilt; it won first place, and though I hadn’t thought about selling it, I was approached by a couple, at the show, and they bought it, then commissioned two more art quilts from me.

Night Trails Original design, hand appliqued and quilted.

I absolutely love mosaic and went through my mosaic making period but after a few years I realized fabric is more forgiving, lighter weight, and safer!

Palm tree mosaic mirror
Abstract mosaic extension to our front porch.

And finally, I get to the “Rock,” which actually began as Gator Board to go around my roadrunner on painted fabric. I wrote about finding this piece of painted fabric in a previous post and that I had an idea for an unusual finish.

Roadrunner at Red Rock. My daughter drew the original roadrunner but I slightly altered it.

I have to admit to being very pleased with the roadrunner piece. I think I succeeded in finishing this art quilt in an unusual way! It is wired for hanging.

Have you cut anything up lately and put it back together?

Reminder – Next post I’ll announce the giveaway winners from the August post.

Painting Fur Fabric

Even with temperatures here around 90­° I found out that (homemade) texture paste takes a long time to dry and when rushed it cracks. The texture paste is going on my roadrunner piece, which won’t be done this week, so…

In the meantime I started something new… I was filming a How-to paint fur fabric tutorial but it went wrong so I just finished painting the fabric. On the left was the first layer, the fabric was painted damp so the paint really moved and lightened. I knew it wasn’t enough and a couple days later I painted it again, this time with dry brushes.

Using a photo of our cat, Kona, I made a pattern. The plan was to use only the painted fur fabric, I ended up adding a piece of hand painted green fabric for the blanket and the eyes.

There were a few changes to the pattern as I built the piece and I took plenty of artistic liberty. This is what is left of the fabric, I think there’s probably another animal in there, maybe a hamster or guinea pig!

Close-up

Part of me wants to just leave it as is, though I haven’t fused the pupils because I’m thinking about painting them or maybe I’ll stitch the heck out of it and fill them with thread.

Next week I’ll announce another giveaway, so stay tuned. Thanks for stopping by.

Surface Show

I hoped to have my roadrunner piece finished but between the designing, cutting, and next drying time, it’s going to take longer than I thought it would.

So, I’m sharing some pieces here, I’ve used different painting techniques on them. I’m sure I have shared some of them in the past but I think they are a nice reminder of what we can do when starting with white fabric. They could be done on printed fabric or painted fabric, again. I may not be completely sure what techniques I used on some but I’m sharing as much as I can remember.

Starting with the sweet one…

Chocolate Sauce and Wrappers. I pulled a thinned pint color, with a cheap brush, onto dry fabric and then wet the fabric and did a wash. The “chocolate sauce” was probably done with an eye dropper and then tilted. I hand painted little white highlights to give more dimension. The wrappers are metallic painted fusible in silver and gold.

Clothespin resist painted not dyed. I remember this being really fun to make!

I used the clothespin resist in this abstract that I then over painted. I remember starting to quilt it and not liking where I was going, so I think I put it away or maybe I cut it up! I probably should have just stretched it on a canvas.

Detail from Fallen

For Fallen I used real leaves for stamps and a credit card for the lines. I think I used a pointed round paint brush for the dots. This was a fun one to quilt.

Fallen one from my Photograph on Fiber series.

Detail of Above Lake Cuyamaca

In previous post I shared the how-to quilt and then paint the border. I painted the sky and water and I think the quilting worked well for the ripples in a lake.

Detail Drift and Flow

Drift and Flow has wool batting. I quilted the heck out of this piece on my domestic sewing machine; the last piece I did before getting my sit-down quilting machine. I’m glad the quilting shows in the photo because the black thread on black fabric is difficult to see in person. The black and gray on the right (above) is pole wrapped (same piece as the larger on the left below), and I was thrilled with the results, particularly in the gray area. It looked like hanging leaves. The square (ish) pieces were made by throwing paint down while thinking of sciencey things. The curvy lines are satin stitched and the gold drips are metallic paint tilted to let run and then the piece was cut into four squares.

Dwell detail… Dwell is a painted wholecloth and my most favorite quilt, ever.

Dwell back, this is the quilting that runs the width of the lower back. Sadly, it doesn’t show on the front.
There are simple embroidered “steps” leading down from the silk.

The background fabric was stretched on a frame and painted. The windmills are made from a handmade stencil, the brick rectangles are purchased hand dyed silk, and the gold frames are painted fusible. The binding fabric was painted especially to continue the colors from the main cloth.

I hope you enjoyed this little quilt show and the these pieces have given you some ideas for techniques you may want to try.

Focus

I’m working on another project for Visions Art Museum Stir Crazy Member Challenge. I like to make a How-to video to go along with the project, it’ll be out in October and I’ll share it then.

I had a slight mishap in the studio (roller cart tipped over when a caster came unscrewed). My (adult and honest) daughter was trying to move through my studio yesterday and proclaimed “This studio is a disaster!” I can’t argue with her, but I’m working on it… It could have been so much worse.

I also got new eyeglasses which are wrong, and so I’m waiting for new, new glasses. Needless to say, my focus has been all over the place!

I did find this piece of fabric while looking for another piece of fabric. I don’t remember painting it and I don’t remember where the top water and/or sky ended up either, but I liked it enough to hold on to it.

I quilted a roadrunner on it; the original drawing was by my daughter but I altered it slightly, and I’m going to quilt it a bit more.

I have an idea for a unusual finish, hopefully it works out, I’ll share it in a future post.

It’s a Fabric Wrap

I have painted pole wrapped fabric, and dyed a wrapped rope, and I’ve never been disappointed with the results, there is always something good that can come from them.

A few things to keep in mind – Traditional pole wrapping, Arashi shibori, is not what I’m doing. I use paints and don’t follow the correct wrapping and stringing process, so I realize my results will not look like the real thing. Paint stays more on top, whereas dye bonds and soaks through the wrapped layers.

I recently used rainbow colors and instead of my usually 4″ ABS pipe, I used three PVC pipes taped together, making a triangle. Here are pictures of the process, the result, and some finished works.

This makes me think of the lower leaf filled branches of a tree. May have to try that all in greens sometime but turned it looks like fish. It’s like finding images in the clouds!

I usually put fabric under to catch the drips but this time I used several paper towels.

First paper towel caught the most, of course. This will be fun to use in collage.
Dye does give a richer, more even, and more beautiful result. Paint is just easier for me.

Have you made any pole wrapped fabric?

Next time I’ll share at least one other painting on fabric techniques. Thanks for stopping by.

Beyond Snapshots

I remember telling my son I wanted to use his photographs in my art quilts but I didn’t mean printed on fabric; I meant the actually photograph. I know I’m not alone in wanting to use photographs in combination with fabric and fibers. In today’s post I share a few from other artists and I thank them for granting me permission to share their work here.

If there is a quilt maker in a family there’s a pretty good chance at least one memory quilt has been made that includes special photographs celebrating a person, a day, or an event.

Fellow quiltmaker Ruth O’Neil shared her bookshelf quilt top. It has a photograph printed on fabric of her brother along side her niece’s daughters and books with titles (all but one) from a her niece’s favorite author. The plant near the top has 3 dimensional leaves.

Ruth made the quilt below after a safari trip. I think the pattern and fabrics work really well with the photographs.

Ruth O’Neil artist

Ruth also shared this quilt. Her daughter gifted her fabric printed with these photographs and the blue batik. Ruth and her fur baby obviously are fans of this guy!

Ruth O’Neil artist

Susan Lenz is a prolific artist of unique work. Many of Susan’s pieces include vintage photographs or her own, some she digitally alters before they are printed on paper or fabric. To the printed photos she will add stitches and embellishments… sometimes framing them because Susan is also a professional framer. Susan always posts excellent stories and explanations about her artwork and her travels, if you haven’t already, I suggest checking out her website and blog, where the below images can be seen in greater detail.

Susan Lenz artist
Susan Lenz artist (detail of Palmer-Epard Log Cabin), see her blog for full image. Note all the hand stitches in the sky!

Joanna Mack aka The Snarky Quilter takes photographs that often capture textures, shadows, and light. She sometimes uses filters in photoshop software to alter her photos. Always learning as much as she can, Joanna explores and produces projects using a variety of techniques and methods.

I wish I could say that we collaborated but this piece is entirely hers. Joanna won a small, painted fabric landscape in one of my blog post giveaways. She started with a photograph she’d taken of a rusty textured (outdoor fireplace) barrel, altered it in Photoshop, had it printed on fabric, and later cut it into strips.

She cut the landscape fabric too and stitched it to her barrel pieces and then, as she writes on her blog; “I quilted it to resemble chain link fencing covered with the stems of weeds. The edges are finished with paint and yarn.”

“A Cell With A View.” by Joanna Mack

I appreciate that Joanna has had some of her photographs printed on different types of fabric and shares her thoughts about each one on her blog. To read more about “A Cell With A View” and see her other projects and be inspired, visit her blog.

Petra Heidrich is a textile and mixed media artist in Germany. She embellishes vintage photographs, postcards, and sometimes paper, using thread and floss. Petra’s embroidery layer draws me in, and then I look past it and notice the photograph. I think the embroidery stitches and photographs play and work very well together.

On her website, Petra writes – “I like to refer to embroidery as “painting with thread.”

Petra Heidrich artist
Petra Heidrich artist
Petra Heidrich artist

I recently rediscovered a box of postcards I’d gotten years ago from my parent’s estate. In the box I found a postcard that just called to be made into a photograph on fiber piece. I contacted the photographer, Bill Banaszewski, to ask for permission. So that he’d have some idea of what I had planned I attached two images from my Photograph on Fiber series. Not only did he give me permission to use his photograph but he also wrote that his wife is a quilter!

In my original Photograph on Fiber series pieces I mounted the photo under/onto plexiglass, I don’t use it anymore, otherwise the process is essentially the same. My landscape is mounted onto a acid-free board for hanging and for this piece I slightly edited a scanned and printed copy of the postcard’s back to use as the label.

Label on backboard.

Bill has been photographing New York’s Finger Lakes for years. To see his photographs and learn more go to Finger Lakes Images.

The photograph, in this piece a postcard, is mounted about 3/4″ (not quite 2 cm) above the art quilt.

“Finger Lakes” Photograph on Fiber, mixed media art quilt by Ann L Scott. Postcard photograph, by Bill Banaszewski.
“Finger Lakes” detail.

I hope the pieces in this post have inspired you as much as they have me.

Until next time, thanks for stopping by.

A Little Furry Fun

I’ll start by letting you know that I’ll be announcing another giveaway next week. May got away from me!

Long ago I asked my daughter created cards that I would sell at our local quilt show. She helped me work the show for years when I was the registrar, and when I held other positions for that show.

We had a Blue Point Siamese kitty around that time and her name was Measha (loud “e”), she was with us for almost 18 years.

She was leash trained and very smart… as you can see. Why walk when you can ride.

She inspired some of my daughter’s cards and my some of my quilts.

Card
I made two of these quilts for my kid’s bed, Measha helped during the binding.
Card

This was a small art quilt top, hand painted with commercial fabric sash and border. I wish I had a better photo but it was ages ago and it sold. I never found out if/how it was finished. I call it Mouse on Swiss with a Siamese Chaser.

Art quilt top

We like dogs too…

Card
Very small art quilt by Ann

I hope you’ll stop by next week to see what artistic finds I’ll be giving away!

Starting Point

There’s always a starting point and in quilt making it often begins with a main fabric. When I was working on my Photograph on Fiber series, rather than start with a main fabric and grab other fabrics to coordinate with it, my starting point was an actual photograph. I would decide if I’d be echoing the photo or extending the background out from it. I’d think about fabrics and how I could paint, stitch, and maybe add applique as well.

This is an example of echoing the photo. Title: Leaf

This series is comprised of photographs that have been applied to plexiglass and mounted on spacers 3/4″ above the fabric/fiber background and through a board, then wired for hanging.

Most of the photographs were taken by son who thought I was nuts when I told him I wanted to use his actual photographs (not printed on fabric) in my fiber art. I had to make a tiny prototype for him to “get” it. And then he really got it!

This is an example of extending out from the photograph. Title: Awaiting Occupation (Private collection)

Photograph of the very textural Rex Begonia.

Photograph by C.B. Scott

The commercial fabrics in Rex Begonia are the black border, the black and white swirls background, and dotted fabric which I added paint to.

Rex Begonia
Rex Begonia detail

Many of the pieces were exhibited in a number of venues, including a solo show at VAM in 2013. I was asked over and over about the process and so decided to developed a way to make a Photograph on Fiber piece without the plexiglass; a much more doable project and one that I could teach. The photo is still above the fabric/fiber but, in this much easier process, the piece is placed in a frame, (sort of a shallow shadow box but not as deep), and the photo is mounted but doesn’t touch the glass.

This photo, taken by my cousin, was the starting point for the three (wip) pieces below. Notice that there are actually more options than only echoing and extending, all to showcase the photo.

Original photograph Rose Window
Rose Window 1 wip

Two commercial fabrics and painted cheesecloth leaves make this the easiest and quickest design. the photo is actually about 3/4″ above the red fabric. The detail below shows the finished quilting, which also held the leaves on (they are squished from being in storage).

Rose Window 1 detail

The piece below was a wip when photographed, using fabric where the frame would be. All of the fabrics are commercial, the roses and leaves have been “clever cut” (think fussy cut). Again, very easy, just more time consuming. I stitched the thorns using free motion quilting. I didn’t quilt the rose heads but looking at it now I think they need it.

Rose Window 2 wip
Rose Window 2 detail

The final piece has roses and leaves that are made from eco-felt (sheets), the cut pieces have been burned around the edges. The stems are made from a grape vine wreath (soaked, straightened, dried, and stitched on). Nothing touches the glass. It also has commercial (Stonehenge by Northcott) fabrics that I’ve quilted.

Rose Window 3

The detail photo was taken using my phone and the piece is behind glass, it’s not very good but it shows a bit of the dimension and some of the burnt edges.

Rose Window 3 detail

The Photograph on Fiber series photographs were applied to the plexi by me, using a special double sided film and a hand turn, cold roller laminator. After about nineteen pieces it got to be too stressful for me so I paid a professional company to apply the photographs, which of course, added to the cost/price. From inception to finish each piece involved many, many hours, and though I loved making them, (the plexiglass) Photograph on Fiber series had to come to an end. I’m very pleased that a few pieces are in private collections and some of the remaining pieces are for sale. Most of the pieces may be seen on my website under the Photograph on Fiber tab.

My son still send photos that make me want to keep going and making them definitely pushed me as an artist, but there is no more wall space in my home, and storing them a way seems a crime. Maybe some day I’ll teach the framed version of Photographs on Fiber class live.

Have you used your photographs in your art/memory quilts or mixed media projects? If you have and would be willing, I’d love to share some of your photographs and fiber/fabric art, here on my blog. Just send me an email with a photo/s of the piece/s and a bit about them. If you have a blog or website be sure to include it so I can link to it. Please note the photos used in your art must be yours or used with permission.

Snow Bunny

Looking Up

I’m from a family of sky watchers. My parents lived just up the hill from where we live and my mom would often phone in the evenings, all she’d say was “sky alert!.” I would know that meant go upstairs and look out. My folks are gone but rarely do we miss a morning or evening of looking out and up. Here are a few of those skies…

That may be why I love painting sky fabric so much, that and wanting special skies for my landscapes quilts. I can’t make much art yet but I was able to paint a mini sky fabric and make the how-to video (see below).

RunnerScape
The Power of Sun, Wind, and Water
Sunlit Canyon

Fabric Painting a Fluorescent Sky was so much fun and easy, requiring minimal supplies and materials.

Have you painted sky fabric to use in your art?