Monday, September 01, 2008

A Mixed Bag

I finished all my pieces yesterday. The batik was a smashing success, I got crackle and better control of my lines. After waxing the entire surface of the sunflower pieces, I scrunched them (trying to avoid the leaves) and applied some chocolate brown dye. After ironing out the excess wax (quite the process), I steamed them for close to an hour. After drying, here's what I got:

I think with some quilting and beading, these are rather respectable practice pieces. Next, I want to try a more abstract look without thickening the dyes. That will take planning, not my strong suit.

The red kitchen utensil batik also looked great after I knocked down the in-your-face red a bit.

I think I like the movement those straight lines add to the piece.

The deconstructed screenprints are another story. I obviously did something wrong, because the dye washed out almost completely. Here's the turquoise piece after steaming. Up close, I can see bits of the green- but that's about it. Compare this photo to the one in the previous post and you'll see what I mean.

On the white pfd, the green became a very pale, ghostly gray; on the multi-colored hand-dye, it pretty much disappeared. I'm not sure if I didn't get enough soda ash in the print paste, or what. Next time I will use dried, soda soaked fabric. Despite this disappointment, the process is too much fun to give up.

An additional note- Ive been thinking about what I did with the deconstructed screen prints, and think I have figured out why they washed out. I re-read the instructions for making soda print paste, and realized I just stirred the dry soda ash into the paste- I neglected to dissolve it in water. Dumb, dumb, dumb. There is a fine line between working quickly and intuitively, and being just plain impatient, and I crossed it yesterday. Hopefully the soda ash will have dissolved by now, but if I still see granules I'll add some urea water. AND use soda soaked fabric until I use up that print paste!!

We have gone from 90's on Friday and Saturday, to 60's today, with rain. Funny how a temperature that feels balmy in the spring can feel downright cold at the end of summer. We have tickets to see Three Dog Night tonight- in an outdoor venue. Here's hoping the rain goes away so the concert can happen. I love taking my kids to see the bands from my youth in the 60's!!!


norma said...

They really came out good. i especially like the second sunflower.

kathy said...

These are really awesome, Beverly! Fun, fun, fun.

Rayna said...

Love the batiks and don't know what to say about the deconstructed pieces. Also, turquoise is very tempermental.

KarenF said...

Cool stuff!! Your sunflowers turned out nicely. I just got Rayna's book too...isn't it awesome? I think I'm going to play with gelatin printing first (just as soon as I get two quilts finished up)

Miles Johnson said...

The kitchen untensil piece is a winner! Reminds me of cat scratches and balls of yarn... I must have kitty on the brain.


Marilyn said...

What fun! I just got my copy of Rayna's book--what inspirarion is in there. So I built a screen and printing board and am ready to go. Your pieces are lovely and I like how you are using so many "implements" for their unintended purpose, clever girl!