Sunday, August 29, 2010

Call of The Wild

Call of The Wild completed August 2010 measures 26 1/2" x 24 1/4" and is the second piece in Nature Series Part III. Here, I had wanted to portray a more realistic looking bird in a wildlife setting. Inspired from a photo, this Red Bellied Woodpecker is inked on a satin/cotton blend, heat set and machine appliqued to a painted and inked cotton background. When I first created this background, I never knew what would live there. When I placed this bird onto the background, he immediately "moved in and found himself a home!!!" This piece really DID seem to take on a mind of it's own from the very beginning. In the original photo, this bird is resting against a blue sky but simply changing the background to a complementary color really allowed this little guy to have a dominant presence. This has been a very enlightening lesson on color theory and I am really happy with the results. The branches that he rests on are composed of various upholstery materials and dyed lace to convey a bark like texture. Once the composition was complete, I struggled with how to quilt it. Finally, I decided to quilt leaves in the background in shades of muted purple and green. This allowed the background to have texture while not detracting from the main composition. The quilting came out pretty nice though you would never be able to tell from the pictures. Sadly. I lost my Nikon on the way home from South Carolina last month and have not yet replaced it. There is really no substitute for a good camera and I am sorely missing mine!!! Guess I'm in the market for a new camera again.

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Key Largo and Margaritaville: Emerald Treasures Part IV and V

Key Largo pictured above measures 18 1/2" X 19 1/2" and is Part IV of the Emerald Treasures series. Margaritaville, pictured below measures 16 1/2" X 19 1/2" and is Emerald Treasures Part V. Both pieces are painted on antique damask napkin backgrounds as well as the turtles, themselves. They are somewhat 3 Dimensional and built up in layers. The turtle shells are composed of dyed antique lace, needle felted with wool roving, and embellished with beads, imported buttons and trinkets. Hand dyed lace, trims and doilies were soft sculpted to simulate coral and plants found along the ocean floor. This series involves hand and machine applique, and machine quilting with metallic and trilobal polyester threads. Both are available for sale to a good home and can be seen at the Copper Shade Tree Gallery in Round Top. I am really enjoying this series and have plans to begin incorporating wire in the next few pieces to add further lift and dimension to the sea plants. I have also been thinking of lifting the turtles up off of the surface as well and allow them to float more freely on the surface. I am hoping that in trying these new techniques, I might be able to truly create a 3Dimensional piece that lifts off the surface and reaches out to the viewer. Should be fun and challenging. Ideas? Suggestions?