Portfolio of older work

Friday, June 28, 2013

Friday Favorites--It is all about abstract

Elizabeth Barton has a whole post on her blog about the trend towards abstract art.  She does not need to convince me how great abstract art is.  Just check out my prints and my inspirations!  I was an abstract artist before it was popular, I am thrilled that it is popular again, and I will still be an abstract artist once it has gone out of popularity again. 

I have borrowed a quote from Elizabeth's blog but please do check out her entire post.

"So what can we as quiltmakers do with this current revival of abstraction? I think we should be loud and bold! Let's grab these ideas and run with them! Let’s show how cloth can Do it Better!! Let’s reinvent abstraction design ourselves – don’t tie yourselves to old tired predictable patterns, let’s show the painters of small abstract works (many are really tiny!) and all the other timid little abstract painters (!) how absolutely fabulous those same ideas would look Large and in Fiber with all the beautiful textures we have at our fingertips!"

Again, she is preaching to the choir with me.  So, for today's Friday Favorites, I went looking for some abstract fiber artists to feature as inspirations.  I hope you will enjoy!

Friday Favorites

Aryana B Londir describes herself as a modern abstract artist.  Her art work reminds me of that of Lisa Call although Lisa applies paint and I did not see that in Aryana's description of her work.  Aryana presents three series at her website for us to see.  My favorite series is the Compartments but my very favorite piece is Connections #5.  The fiber work appears to be traditional piecing with an emphasis on repeated pattern much like Nancy Crow's technique. The technique is closest to traditional quilting.  Her love of line is clear. She has a blog but it does not look like she posts regularly.  Here is part of Aryana's artist statement.  You might compare it to the challenge that Elizabeth suggests above.
"I work in the abstract by choice; it challenges me, and invites viewers to evoke their own personal experiences and emotions.  It is natural for me to create fiber constructions which integrate my love for line, color and composition, and allows me to compose in the larger scale I crave. I love the sensuous feel of fabric, the ease in which it is manipulated, and its ability to take color in dye and paint."

Sarah Symes, a contemporary abstract fiber artist, is the second artist I want to feature.  She has posted pictures of her fiber work on Pinterest. She has also posted the step by step process she uses to create her art. Thank you, Sarah!  Her work appears to be machine applique much in the style of Elizabeth Barton's technique. The technique is closer to collage work than traditional quilting.  Her love of color and layering is evident in her work.  Here is part of her artist statement:
"I aspire to recreate my internal experiences of places and people through my work. It represents an abstraction of real life, infused with memories and ideas evoked by the subject. I try to conjure emotion through color and manipulate composition to suggest familiar forms and landscapes."

Deidre Adams is an artist I talked about a few posts ago.  While using fiber, she is more of a mixed media artist using paint on top of her quilting.  Yep, on top as in after she quilts. I cannot tell what material she uses as a base or her sewing technique but it is clear that heavily quilting her pieces is an integral part of her style.  She takes a very painterly approach to her art quilts.  Deidre's use of color and space  reminds me a great deal of Mark Rothko's work.  Deidre does have a blog that she posts to on a regular basis.  Here is a comment about her process from her artist statement:
"Patterning and design from the base fabrics interact with the stitching and my own system of painting and mark-making to create a richly layered surface."

Lessons I learned from the artists:
1. They all have different techniques, processes, and results so I am not limited.
2. They all have an inspiration that they start with.  Sometimes I forget to do that and then I get uninspired and blocked in my work.  Duh.
3.  They all use "the formal elements of visual language, specifically line, shape, color, scale, and balance." (from Deidre's artist statement)  So, I need to understand what that means in my work.  Who said you need to know the rules before you can break them?
3.  Generally the point of abstract work is help the viewer to recall a feeling.  It is not to portray something in detail but to create a feeling in their work that resonates with the viewer.  So, focus on the feeling I get when looking at abstract art work and ask myself "What (e.g. color, composition, lines) about this picture makes me feel this way (e.g. happy, sad, content)?"  Once I get that, then I can use it in my work to create emotion.
I hope you have a creative week!

Because of the lovely print I showed at the top of the post, this post is now on Nina-Marie's Off the Wall Fridays.

Thursday, June 27, 2013

One block short

I am making good progress on my QAYG quilt.  In fact, it would be finished now if I had not discovered I was one block short.  I don't know where it went but I am going to have to sew, quilt, and trim a new block before the last row of blocks can be attached and the quilt top bound.  It is a very busy quilt--I don't know if anyone will be able to sleep under it--but I like it.

Monday, June 24, 2013

Texture and Patterns from the Beach

Took my grandson to the beach to celebrate his birthday.  And, of course, I took pictures for my inspiration catalog.
hole in a rock

 driftwood that looked like it might have  been part of a pier

 stone layers

lobster traps

pine pollen in a puddle

Friday, June 21, 2013

A Review and Friday Favorites

In the last couple of weeks I bought 2 DVDs: Soy Wax Inspirations by Susan Purney Mark and Scribble Collage with Hand-Painted Paper with Jane Davies. They were both the same price but not the same value.  I had expected lots of new information from Soy Wax Inspirations but it was pretty basic. Unless you are a real novice, I would skip this DVD. Very disappointing.  On the other hand, Scribble Collage is wonderful! Even with my background with print classes, I learned a lot!  Well worth the price since I''ll watch it repeatedly.  I really like Jane's art.  On July 5, Jane Davies has a show opening in Vermont.  I am planning to go.  I am so excited to get to see her art face to face.

Friday Favorites

Eye Candy
 Judy has been attending a workshop at Arrowmount with Elin Noble and been posting about it.  The link is to Judy's blog because there are several posts you want to see. Wish I was at Arrowmount with her!

Terry Jarrard-Diamond shows off a dark quilt named Vanitas.  It is created of stained, cut, and restructured fabric.  My kind of art!

I found a new artist that I really like.  Her name is Lisa Boardwine.  I am particularly drawn to her mixed media collage work.

Challenge Opportunity
A couple of blogs that I follow are participating in the Index Card a Day challenge (ICAD)  I was almost seduced to join until I remembered that I have limited time and too many projects already.  So, **heavy sigh** I am passing on the challenge but it is not too late for  you to join if you want.

TutorialsCarol Sloan on the Sketchbook Challenge blog shows how to make a tissue flower collage.  She uses a design from a paper napkin to make cloth paper but she doesn't stop there.  She enhances the design with drawing, painting, and stitching.  It is quite effective.

In addition to a new artist, I have also discovered a new blog that has lots of very nice tutorials.  The blog is "The Quilting Edge."  Two tutorials I really love are the wonky curves tutorial and the way to quilt spirals.  There are other tutorials.

I wish you a very creative week!

Wednesday, June 19, 2013


These are the two stamps that I made at Beth's with the National Geographic pictures that inspired them.  Both were carved from easy carve stuff--don't know the name.
Inspiration 1

 Stamp 1

Print 1 (well, two prints of stamp 1)

 Inspiration 2

 Stamp 2

 Print 2 (well, 6 prints of stamp 2)

Saturday, June 15, 2013

More Texture Pictures

Spent the day at Beth's house making stamps.  I'll show them later.  But coming and going I took pictures of texture and patterns.  Here are the best from today.

Sunday, June 9, 2013

Trees for my texture catalog

 It is surprising to me that once I stop looking at trees and look at them as pattern and texture what I can really see.

Friday, June 7, 2013

Friday Favorites

It has been a second busy week with my posting all week on the "And Then We Set It On Fire" blog on gelli plate.  All my experiments for the week are over there plus some links to a new fiber artist that I have discovered.  Here is my favorite print from this week.

I did get to watch an inspiring video this week.  It reminded me of our conversation last week about how we have better art when we create some rules or limits during the creation process.  For the life of me I could not get the video to load but here is the link: http://www.ted.com/talks/phil_hansen_embrace_the_shake.html  It is not too long.  I hope you enjoy it!

Friday Favorites

Having started my second QAYG quilt I really enjoyed Kathy Schmidt's post about her attempt. Hers is done very differently than mine and it has freed me to try some new techniques on my next scrap-buster QAYG quilt.

I did get Beth's video loaded.  She is showing off her Book of Marks from Dorothy Caldwell's workshop at the Barn.  This year Beth's theme is seed pods.

Penny Berens also attended one of Dorothy's workshop and shows off her book on her blog.  I loved looking at the two books and doing the compare/contrast thing.  You might also check out Penny's scrap recovery.  I love learning new ways to use scraps.

Events and Give-Aways
If you are in the Maine area, you might consider going to Topsham  on Sunday for the Reception for "Painted and Stitched Textile Art" and the Artist Talk by Catherine Worthington.  Or you might be more interested in weaving trigs to create buildings next week in Boothbay.

Vicki Welsh is holding a give-away for a Metal Quilt which I have signed up for. But more interesting are the quilts she has made and the tutorial she has provided for making them.

And last, going with my theme of a texture catalog, Here is a link to Ideas of Inspiration.

Wednesday, June 5, 2013


Beth loaned me two DVDs by Gwen Hedley. All that was on the DVDs were pictures of textures that inspired her.  So, I decided to start my own texture library to use for inspiration.  Here are some texture pictures that will go into my library.  All the pictures were taken in the steel yard at UMA.  Do you have a favorite?