Archives for June 2016

A Slight Detour

May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous,
leading to the most amazing view.
May your mountains rise into and above the clouds.
Edward Abbey

About two weeks ago, fellow artist Margaret Blank included a knit hat among the projects that she had completed in the past week. Now Margaret is a stellar knitter and the hat was a bit unusual. She did an impressive job of knitting it. I immediately fell in love with the hat. I looked up the reference to the pattern that Margaret kindly included in her post. The write-up did not sound too difficult……..and I really liked the hat. So, I ordered the yarn, Knit Picks Swish Worsted, and waited patiently for its arrival.

Well, it came this week and I simply could not focus on anything else. The yarn was absolutely beautiful and so soft to the touch. I simply had to start knitting.

Fortunately, I had brought along my knitting/crochet needles when I moved  – all nicely organized in the case I had made from an Indian sari.

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I had the required needles, checked my gauge and started knitting……..and couldn’t stop.  😛

I have nowhere near the talent that Margaret does but I am persistent. I admit that my hat is probably not as perfect as the one Margaret made, but I completed it in a few days and I like it!

It was a pleasant break from my class with Elizabeth which is now winding down. I did do some more sketches for that class and expect to be sharing more as I translate my rough sketches into actual art quilts in the coming weeks.

In the meantime, here is my hat!

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Linking as usual to Nina Marie’s Off the Wall Friday. Let’s see what everyone else is doing!

 

On Course

My legacy is that I stayed on course…
from the beginning to the end,
because I believed in something inside of me.

Tina Turner

This was a challenging week to stay on course here in the U.S. The events in Orlando were horrific and rightly monopolized the new media online and on screen. Juxtaposed for anyone who follows the soccer world were major series in Europe and the Americas that offered hours upon hours of sports relief. Still, I did manage to use the week to plug away at my drawings for Elizabeth Barton’s course and make progress on other fronts.

Hidden nicely away in a corner of my studio was a quilt waiting to be completed for Quilts Beyond Borders. It offered an easy opportunity to stitch away at my Bernina in the midst of all my sketching. It now off to QBB headquarters and will soon be on its way to a young orphan or refugee somewhere in this world.

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I continued to sketch for Inspired to Design and produced many images, a few of which I deemed worthy to share with Elizabeth.

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I found her comments quite helpful, as always. She thought the last of the three did hold promise. The first sketch of the flower stalk also was ‘interesting’ but likely needed some companions to be a successful quilt. The middle sketch of the woman walking excited her the least – being too static. Of course, that would be the sketch that I most want to follow through on. I do like the flow of veggies in the bottom drawing and will probably work on that more in this week’s exercises. However, that woman intrigues me. She was dressed totally in black and walking along a street in a village in Crete. I definitely see an art quilt entitled Morning Walk in it and will continue to play with it on my own. While I enjoyed sketching the flower stalk, I don’t feel it would hold my interest long enough to follow through with its detail, so I suspect it will be filed away in a folder for another time.

I did spend a number of hours watching both UEFA Euro 2016 and COPA 2016 soccer this week and that fit in very nicely with my hand stitching. You might recognize the background of this piece. I am working on the back side of what will be a pouch.

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This coming week promises more sketching with Elizabeth and undoubtedly some more hand sewing as I follow both soccer events. I will be linking to Nina Marie’s Off the Wall Friday, so please go check out what other artists have been up to. I always find the entries inspiring.

 

 

Play, Play, Play!

One finds limits by pushing them.
Herbert Simon

A little over a week ago I was catching up on my blog reading and ran across a post by Elizabeth Barton that she was offering a class, Inspired to Design, in a few days. I have taken a few classes with Elizabeth and I have grown to respect her skill in online instructing. She provides a wealth of information and good feedback to her students. I had just completed my latest art quilt, so I decided to sign up for her class. I have taken a number of design classes over the years and always found it a challenge to be ‘disciplined’ in designing a piece. Aware of this limitation on my part, I asked Elizabeth to really push me.

The result has been great fun! Remember my post last week about play? Well, I decided to make this brief 4 week class an opportunity to play. And, play I have.

The past week I focused on a photo of an Irish cottage that holds a special place in my heart.

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I filled my design wall with sketches – here are just a sampling of a few!

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I discussed my progress with Elizabeth, assessing why I was attracted to the photo, and gradually isolated an area that really spoke to me. Many more sketches followed as I honed in on an idea.

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I actually went back to my original photo and cropped that more, revealing more detail to play with.

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Which, of course, lead to more sketches.

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I am now entering into week two of this four week class. The instructions for week two are more sketches! My goal is to hang in there with Elizabeth and continue to play.

I took a brief excursion to Seattle early in the week with one of my granddaughters to visit a zoo. It gave me time to process all that I am learning with Elizabeth. And, yes, to experience discovery and play on a different level. These photos suggest definite success.

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Now back to more play with Elizabeth!

Linking as usual to Off the Wall Friday.

The Art of Play

Just play. Have fun. Enjoy the game.
Michael Jordan

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Learning a lot about play from my new granddaughter. It is how she learns. She finds joy in the simplest things – a drawing of a frog on her play mat or the smile of her mother as she plays pick-a-boo with her. And, all the time, she is learning how to use her arms, her voice, and get comfortable with being in this world.

So, this week I decided to take the time to play and ‘stop and smell the roses.’ Coincidentally, I found some great roses to smell during a hike in Manito Park in Spokane.  🙂

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In my studio, I played with some silk net that I purchased last year but just hadn’t stitched on yet. Silk net is soft and delicate. I used it to create what Karen Ruane calls ‘lace cloth’ through a process using my sewing machine and hand embroidery.  I then joined my lace cloth with another piece of commercial lace that I had embellished slightly. In the coming weeks I intend to add more odd pieces of lace and other cloths. Where it will go, I don’t know. It is just play and it feels great.

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Hope that you will find time to play in the next week too!

Linking, as usual, to Nina Marie’s Off the Wall Friday blog. Check it out!