Sunday, October 26, 2008

Elemental Dance


Journal Quilt Project II: Elements-Earth, Water, Air, and Fire: Elemental Dance

Elemental Dance is the first Journal Quilt I have ever made. It is inspired from a desire to create naturescapes using both conventional and unconventional materials and methods in a somewhat realistic manner. This piece began as a study on how to convey water working with fiber as a medium. The ocean background was formed using both commercial and hand painted cotton. Transparent and opaque fabric paints were incorporated along with pearlescent powders. Trying to capture the waves crashing against the rocks was especially challenging. Sheer fabrics, sparkled organza and cheesecloth were used to impart a wet and foaming feel to the piece. Angelina fibers and tinzl were also added to reveal the sparkle effect that water carries. Still, it needed more of a textural feel. The first few months, I began collecting all sorts of plastics from everyday household use. Some of these items included cellophane and wrappers from packaged products, assorted foam packing materials and really anything I could get my hands on. I spent a lot of time trying to determine how these synthetic materials behaved when they were heat distressed either with an iron or a heat gun. The prospect of recycling plastics to include in a naturescape was so appealing as I felt I had a hand in keeping the environment clean. The sky was hand dyed with procion fiber reactive dye. Rocks were raw edge appliquéd to communicate a rugged feeling. Machine pieced, appliquéd and quilted; metallic threads and cotton batting. Elemental Dance refers to the show that Mother Nature orchestrates as a cool brisk ocean breeze accompanies the rolling tides dancing along the rocky shore. Earth, water and air are major players in this audio and visual interplay that entices all the senses of the human body.

9 comments:

norma said...

It's a beauty! You really have conveyed the feeling of surf on the rocks. Congrats on getting in the show. You deserve it!

Rayna said...

Barb, this is simply gorgeous - your use of materials to convey the feeling of the ocean scape is so well done! Thanks for sharing it.

sue andrus said...

Beautiful!! I feel as if I'm really at the ocean!

Dale Anne Potter said...

FABULOUS! LOVE how you used cheesecloth and sheers to get the effect!
GREAT JOB!!!

Tanya Brown said...

Stunning and clever. You did a great job of using the media to capture the sense of the water. I have a feeling that your quilt is going to be studied closely!

Rosemary Claus-Gray said...

This is an exceptional piece of art, that captures the water very well. The rocks and sky are well done, too. The composition works. Excellent work, IMO. Rosemary

pcoxdesign said...

Beautiful! Congrats!

tante sue said...

fabulous use of various media...the waves are smashing!
Sue Walen

Jeanne Turner McBrayer said...

I think this is my favorite of all your pieces so far. Love your thorough description of your creative and technical process. Who would have thought that household plastic could contribute to something so lovely?