Sunday, May 31, 2009

All Washed Out!

I got all the color runs washed out today, and I am very happy with the results. It was good practice, a good refresher course in how some of the single shade dyes behave, and good practice with some different LWI methodologies. And, I am very happy with how the new Robert Kaufman Kona muslin dyes up. I am so glad to have a high thread count fabric that I can get locally!

I now have lots of different greens and violets!

I'm especially happy with how the violets came out- they are violet, not fuschia or light red overlaid on blue. The texture on these is very subtle, kind of like a Moda marble. The greens have more definitive texture and color variations.

Now to get these in my sample and record book, and write up the information that is percolating in my head.

Saturday, May 30, 2009

Sixteen Yards-

and I'm tired. I have been dyeing samples and color runs for a class in August. By the time I'm done, I'll have samples of greens and violets from every color combination possible with the single shade dyes from Dharma. Plenty of new information for the record book!!

I'd post a picture of my wet studio with all the fabrics batching, but the shutter button on my camera decided to fall out, and I have not a clue where it might be. So I will be calling local camera shops today to see if they can do this simple (I hope) repair.

So that's it- I'm off to shower, figure out what I need at the grocery store, and then come back and start washing out the ones I got dyed yesterday. If I'm lucky and the camera gets fixed, I'll have pictures. If I'm not, you'll hear me crying!!

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Home Again

We got back home from Moab this afternoon, after a good breakfast at Jailhouse Cafe- pricey, but yummy. Then we decided to drive around and see some of the easily accessible petroglyphs around Moab. First we went out the Colorado River to Moonflower Canyon. It's a campground, with petroglyphs on some of the rock walls.

Here's one of the more famous figures on this panel. Unfortunately, there was also a lot of vandalism on parts of the wall.

Right next to it was a chimney up the rock- the locals call this the Indian ladder. There were still logs in there with notches, all the way to the top. Don't think I would fit in it, however!

On the way back, I got a view of this arch in the rim on the opposite site of the river. Love the colors!

Then we drove south of town to the golf course, to see Moab Man. Apparently his image has been used on lots of items to advertise the town. He's the one with one hand pointing up,and the other down.

There were lots of other good petroglyphs here too. Even out of the sun, I had a hard time getting good images.

Tomorrow, an early morning trip to Ikea, then home the rest of the day. I'm trying to do the math and planning for the dyeing workshop in August, and planning dye weekends for my samples. Summer dye season is here!

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Moab Art Show

We were at the park before they were officially open this morning- believe it or not, this is the same park we were at in April for the car show!

There was live music all day- here's a bluegrass band that started the festivities off. There were painters, photographers, pottery, and my favorite- all the jewelry. We walked through the whole show before I chose a couple of earrings at one place, and a necklace and earrings at a second. Love them both.

There were a couple of fiber artists. One was mostly wool yarn, felting- some nice stuff. This one caught my eye- she dyed a lot of hats, scarves, and sarongs.

Later in the day, we watched a local drumming group, Taiku Dan. They had both students performers, and adult. I thoroughly enjoyed them.

And, as you can see, the young boy in front of the stage, felt the same as me. He played along with them with his own set of sticks!

After we left the art show, we went and had a late lunch/early dinner at the Moab Brewery. When we came out, the sky was an incredible shade of dark indigo. It was awesome against the red rocks!

We headed home, and watched it roll in against the rim. We saw some incredible lightning strikes on the way.

A little later, it rained hard for all of about ten minutes. All in all, a lovely end to a lovely day. Tomorrow, breakfast at the Jailhouse Cafe!

Friday, May 22, 2009

Back in the Red Rocks

Shannon and I are in Moab for the weekend- it's the annual art show, so it's a good excuse to make the trip again. NOT at night, thank you- we left this morning and got here before lunch.

It looks like it will be a coolish weekend, with some chance of rain. So I hope the artists all have good, sturdy tents. There's the usual assortment of painters, clay artists, photographers, metal workers- and a couple of fiber artists, and one who does dyeing. And, there is an exhibit of art quilts at the museum. So, hopefully I will have plenty of pictures tomorrow.

Hope your weekend is a nice, art-filled one!

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Dyepot Results

I washed out the last of the dyepots today, got them all ironed and photographed. I love ironing newly dyed fabric- looking at all the patterning and subtle color variations.

Almost all my playing this weekend was done with golden yellow and charcoal gray (Dharma colors). I got some spectacular results using them last year, and wanted to see if I could replicate them to some degree.

The eight pieces lined up on the left are a color modulation and value gradation from Katy Widger's book. The amount of golden yellow in the dyepots remains constant, while the amount of charcoal gray moves from a tiny bit to more than the amount of yellow. This is the one I'd done before, and these do look very similar to my previous results.

The two series to the right of that one are a color modulation in two values. In this series, both values change, with the middle one having equal amounts of yellow and gray dye. It's done in two value series, a light and a dark.

Both of these have lots of crisp, distinct patterning- I soda soaked the fabric before I dyed it.

Here's a sequenced overdye- day one, I created a 5 step value gradation of golden yellow. Day two, the fabrics are re-sorted, and overdyed with a five step value gradation of gray. The patterning on these is softer, more subtle- I added the soda ash after the dye had a chance to move around the fabrics some.

I had plenty of yellow and gray dye left, so I stirred up some lemon yellow and light red. I had six large fat quarters left, so I decided to play. I laid them out on plastic, squirted the dyes around, and squished them with my hands. I left them covered overnight, then uncovered them so they could dry before I washed them out. First are two pieces with just golden and lemon yellow; second is the two yellows with the red on one piece, and gray added with red on the second. Last is more with the two yellows and gray. All of these will make good backgrounds for printing.

I may be teaching a one day dye workshop in Grand Junction this summer, and want to have plenty of samples. So I will be playing with colors and methods of dyeing between now and then. Too bad!!!

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Patrick Moore Gallery show opening!

All I can say is WOW- art openings in Salt Lake are a whole different animal than in Provo! We had great crowds, and the show looked fantastic! Polly and her assistants in the Surface Design group did a great job putting it all together.

This is the first room you see when you enter the gallery. Sidney, from my WAQ group, is signing the guest book. Out of the Blue (formerly known as Blue Tsunami) is hanging next to Jalaine's Bumps. Jalaine is also one of the WAQ group.

Here's the room with the food. The photo is fuzzy, but Jan Tolman did the small tree batik; below is is a piece by Patti Pitts. Chris Bramhall did the felted piece in the big frame, and the fiesta colored piece is also by Jalaine Taylor.

Here's a piece in the small room next to the 'food' room. Unfortunately, I can't remember who did it!

This is the largest room. I could not believe how well the fiber and clay pieces worked together!

The Best of Show piece is just to the left of the red outfit on the mannequin. It's Canopy, by Robyn Moriarty Kruppa- she's also part of our WAQ group!

Another WAQ member, Kathleen Deneris, had this piece haning opposite Robyn's. There is no way my photo can do it justice,you have to be close to appreciate this piece.

Sorry the picture is so fuzzy- this is hanging opposite Out of the Blue, in the first room. Patti Pitts did the yellow piece on the left, and Susan Madden did the tree quilt. Love the colors on both of them!

It was a wonderful evening, exciting and inspiring.

Now I am off to do the washouts on yesterdays dyepots, before I head off to Sunflower and Costco to grab some groceries. Results of the dyeing will be posted later!

Friday, May 15, 2009

Dyepots, and More from HMQS

I've been up since 6 am, and busy every minute. Took the dog for a walk, then came home and started some dyeing. I have some Kona muslin from Joann's that I want to try. It is 200 thread count, nice hand, and bleached. I really want to find some nice fabric to dye that I can buy locally, with shipping charges going through the roof. So we'll see.

Here's the dyepots, ready to go out on the driveway to bake in the sun. It's supposed to be a nice day- not hot, but nice.

Both sets use the same two colors- golden yellow and charcoal gray. The big pots are just the first dye run in a sequenced overdye set from Katy Widger. I love the effects I get with this system, and am hoping to replace the fantastic greens I got with these two colors that are pretty much gone.

The second sets are two value runs, dark and light, of a color modulation between golden yellow and charcoal gray. I'm also hoping to get some good examples of the difference when you soda soak fabric and when you add the soda ash after the dye has had some time to migrate around the fabric. The big pots had the soda ash added, the small pots were soda soaked. I'll be up early tomorrow morning for the washout.

I thought I would post some more pictures from HMQS last weekend. I think they make some interesting points that were discussed on the Quiltart list recently.

First, the best solitaire--

I'm sorry some of the label pictures are out of focus- but hopefully you can read it.

Next, the best duo--

And finally, the Best of Show- which was nothing short of spectacular.

The point these quilts make is that this show is all about the quilting and threadwork, and these three are certainly magnificent examples of that. Understanding that, I now have a choice- enter a quilt that doesn't have threadwork as a centerpiece, knowing that it probably won't fare well in the judging, or change my work to meet this expectation. I don't know that the latter is an option for me, simply because the work of my heart and head doesn't go in that direction. Not that I won't try to continually improve my quilting skills, and my understanding of how it can impact a design- but for me, it's more about the fabric, meaning fabric that I have created. Understanding this was a bit of an epiphany for me.

The opening for the gallery show I am in with other member's of the Utah Surface Design Group is tonight. We did have some judges, and as president I will be handing out some awards. Don't know who they are yet, but I'm looking forward to this. I'll post pictures tomorrow.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

The Challenge from Rayna's Grand Junction class--

Rayna has now posted all the pictures she's gotten from the design class fabric challenge on her blog, including mine. I managed to get it done last weekend, and here's what I came up with--

I decided that my way of altering the 'ugly'fabric would be with thread. It turned out to be hard to photograph, but I used two different colors of Superior's Rainbows thread on the center square. All the other fabrics are either my hand-dyes, or fabric I printed at the workshop.

I experimented with doing multiple squares, but Rayna's fabric did not want to play well with the other fabric I had. And, as it turns out, I didn't share Rayna's distaste for the pink! So I chose to let it take center stage, and surround it with character actors.

At the end, it also told me it needed beads- not a lot, but enough to add interest.

It was fascinating looking at what the others in the class created. Go visit Rayna's blog, and see for yourself!

Saturday, May 09, 2009

HMQS in Salt Lake

I spent yesterday in Salt Lake at the only quilt show we have, outside of guild sponsored events. Last year, I was mostly unimpressed, probably because the theme related to tradition. This year the theme was 'Pump Up the Color,' which meant there were a lot more quilts that grabbed my eye. So I'm posting a few of those, along with the tag that identifies the maker. Sorry some of those are a little blurry, but the lighting in parts of the exhibit hall was downright lousy.

There was a garment category this year, and I loved this jacket. I think she did a marvelous job of capturing the colors and mood of the Arizona desert.

I do have a few favorite traditional quilt patterns, and this is one. I always thought the block was Birds in the Air; this maker called it Corns and Beans. Whichever, I love the way it vibrates. I wonder how this might look in blue and lime green??

Anaother traditioal pattern, but the colors grabbed me. The turquoise against the terra cotta just sings.

This one not only has one of my favorite color combinations,but I thought the quilter did a fantastic job of emphasizing the pattern with her choice of designs.

I'm also a sucker for anything with black. This one started with doodles. I thought the quilting designs were wonderful, a combination of geometric and squiggles.

I loved this one of the mama and baby bear. She used lots of tiny fabric bits, similar to what Noriko Endo does. I took a detail picture, but it didn't turn out.

It left me with lots to think about, but I'll save that for a later post. I also dropped off 'Out of the Blue' to the gallery for our show starting next week. Some of the clay pieces that will be shown with the fiber looked fascinating.

I have made progress on the challenge piece from Grand Junction. I did an escape hatch finish, now all that is left is the quilting. And I have a pretty good idea of what I'll do. The only question is whether my muscles will cooperate.

Oh yeah, I also did a little shopping. Three sets of beads- two I'll send to Marly for jewelry, one is for my embellishment stash. I got another set of rubbing plates (I was thinking deconstructed screen printing!), and a piece of lutradur. Haven't a clue what I will do with that, but I figured $5, why not. Not bad, I didn't break the bank.

Now back to the studio while it's quiet and I'm home alone. Bliss---

Wednesday, May 06, 2009

An Addition to My Art Collection!

If you scroll down my blog, you'll see the logo for Virginia Speigel's Fiberart for a Cause. She has raised an amazing amount of money for the American Cancer Society over the past few years. I donated postcards when they sold them at the Houston show for FFAC. This year, I contributed by making a donation, and getting a lovely piece of art in the bargain, from the last year for Collage Mania.

I am now the lucky owner of China Visit II, by Sharon Eley. I loved the colors and the simplicity of the piece. I had a hard time picking- there was lots of wonderful art, some of it by 'friends' I've met online. Can't wait to see this in person!

My family is no stranger to cancer- I lost my mother and a cousin to the disease, and my 21 year old daughter is a survivor. So I'm grateful to people like Virginia who put such effort into raising funds to help fight the disease.

There's still a few collages left- why not go have a look?

Sunday, May 03, 2009

Drat, It's Sunday Afternoon

and that means the weekend is about over. I thought I would get the challenge piece from Rayna's class done- it is all pieced, I've selected the thread, and previewed some quilting ideas. But I cannot seem to get up the energy to sit at the machine and free-motion.

I have felt tired all weekend. Most of my muscle soreness is gone, except in my pecs. They hurt, all the time. I still have this dry cough I can't get rid of, and when I cough or sneeze, they REALLY hurt. How long is this going to last???

So, in the interest of quilty content, here's the threads I've selected to use. Three solids, two variegated.

One of the other few things I got done this weekend, besides the mundane like the laundry, was taking pictures of a spectacular yard near our home. The owners are previous co-workers of mine, until they retired a few years ago. They always put on a marvelous spring display. I was practicing focusing on the close flower, and blurring the background- mostly, it worked! But I hope this pictures brighten your day. Me, I love spring bulb flowers!

This last one is a picture I took of an iris in Moab last weekend, from a different, lower down perspective. I love the translucency of the petals.

I hope your week is a good one. I promise I'll be working on the challenge piece at night, Rayna!