Here we are, already seven days into 2017. I would like to wish you a happy and creative new year!
I've been busy, but I'm also taking time to relax.
Remember this piece? I'm back at the job of machine quilting it. I made the piece a year ago but never finished quilting it.
I've also got my pattern all ready for the hosta blossoms. I'm going to be building on it this week. Stay tuned!
Since I last wrote, I've completed a few pen and ink drawings with watercolour. This first one is based on photo I took in France.
This one is based on a photo taken in Italy.
Originally I intended my art journal to be more about quick sketches from my life, but I'm finding myself using my photos a lot. This next drawing was more what I had in mind. I bought this polka-dotted cup, saucer and plate at HomeSense over the holidays. I can never resist black and white polka dots. It was just begging to become a pen and ink drawing, especially on a day I was snowed in.
One thing I'm loving about being home is making good food from scratch. I'm experimenting with making bread right now. I've never been fully happy with the way bread bakes in my bread maker, so now I'm using it just to mix the dough and then baking it in the oven. This French Bread was a success.
This week I'll keep on working on quilting the ferns, start building the hosta blossoms, prep for my upcoming Art Quilt class at the Ottawa Valley Quilters Guild (the series begins on Saturday) and yes, I'll probably bake some bread too.
Christmas 2016 is quickly approaching, and I've been busy baking numerous batches of shortbread. In addition, I created my second in the Smoke bush series. It's a triptych, on the chartreuse green background I originally planned to use. There might be a few small changes to come, but for the most part, this is the final version.
I will need some time to think about how I am going to quilt the above piece. I want more of an impression than a completely realistic piece I'm also trying to come up with a clever name for this series. In the mean time, I will start quilting the first piece that is more realistic due to the veins. Looks like I have lots of thread colours that will work!
I've been journaling a bit more. Here's my latest pen & ink drawing with watercolour. It is based on a photo I took at Peggy's Cove, Nova Scotia, a few years ago.
Sunday was cold, but the sunlight made me want to go outside and photograph. I took my car and drove around some of the country roads a few minutes from my home. Between 3 and 4 pm the sun was lower in the sky, so the light was magical. It also allowed me to capture some wonderful shadows.
These two are very similar but I couldn't decide between the two!
As the sun lowered, sometimes I found the snow actually looked like golden sand!
Since I probably won't be blogging again before Christmas, I'd like to take this time to wish you a Merry Christmas, Happy Holiday, and a wonderful time with friends and family.
2017 is quickly drawing to a close. This is the time of year when people start thinking about plans and resolutions for the new year. What is it you want to learn in 2017? Have you always wanted to design your own original art quilts? If so, you might be interested in my "Art Quilt Series", a 5-day workshop running across 5 Saturdays in January, February and March 2017. If you've ever thought about taking this class, do it now! There are still a few spaces left, and it probably won't run again in Ottawa for several years (last time was 2013). Now would be the time to take it when it is so close to home and you can sleep in your own bed, and avoid the cost of accommodations, travel, and meals when you take it elsewhere.
Do you want to see what we did in previous classes? This link will run you through all my blog posts about previous classes. When you get to the end of one page of posts, click on "Older Posts" at the bottom of the page to get to earlier posts.
I would like to specifically draw your attention to this post. I laid out information about the class in a lot more detail the last time I taught it in Ottawa in 2013.
One change we've made to the class for the upcoming sessionf is that I will be teaching free-form piecing on one of the five days instead of dyeing. Why? Because many members at the OVQG have already taken my dyeing classes. However, I am flexible to the wishes and needs of the class and we can discuss that at the first class.
Let me also reassure you that you do not need to be an artist already to take this class. This is a great class for people who want to break away from using other people's patterns and designs.
Let me share just a few of the design exercises students completed in this class. You can see more by running through the links above.
One of the things I enjoy a lot about being home right now is spending time with my feline companions. Every day at 5 pm Peekaboo snuggles on my lap while we tune into CBC's Power and Politics. We snuggle again later at night for the 9 pm or 11 pm news.
We have snow now, and Wilma does her "Google Street View" looking out at snow from my studio window these days.
I've been journaling and doing pen and ink sketches with watercolour. Here's Peekaboo sleeping on my lap.
When I'm not sure what to sketch I rely on photographs I've taken. This one of two boats near the dock in Haliburton.
This drawing is from one of my favorite photos I took in Venice. It is interesting how one can simplify what is in the drawing but still get the idea across. I like doing these drawings because when using ink I don't view them as "too precious" and there is no temptation to erase and start over. I just keep going and accept the imperfections. They are fast too.
And so this brings us to my first Smoke bush quilt. I cut a lot of leaves, and had planned to make a composition on this chartreuse green.
I procrastinated a few days while thinking about veins or no veins, and how to do the veins. If in doubt, cut some more leaves!
Finally jumped in and decided to do the veins with Prismacolor Artist Pencils. There are more choices for colour than my textile paints or Shiva Paintstiks. I tend to prefer dry media anyway because what you see is what you get. You don't need to wait until it dries to know. After doing all the veins, I decided to protect with diluted acrylic medium (3 parts water to 1 part medium). This will prevent the artist pencil from rubbing off on my gloves while I quilt the piece.
My wee studio is now a complete disaster, and I have to figure out where to put all those fabrics I dyed for my smoke bush leaves. Many of them are going to take up a lot more space because they have fusible web ironed to the back.
Here is the finished first piece in this series. At the last minute I decided I liked a monochromatic look so chose a light background in the same colours as the leaves. The piece is about 22" x 32". The next piece will be larger, and will be using that chartreuse green above as a background, and will be a triptych. I'm already working on it.
I also got inspired last week to dye some fabric for hosta blossoms, inspired by the two photos you see below.
This one is imminent on my agenda. In the mean time, my seasonal bakefest has begun, so I may be a bit distracted this week. It's great to be creating again!
Now that my teaching for the year has ended, I've had some time to take stock of the kits remaining from my 2016 classes. If you are a blog reader, you may remember that we worked non-stop this past spring to produce dozens of hand-dyed kits. Of course we over-estimated to be safe. We'll start dyeing kits for 2017 classes in January. In the mean time, I have a limited number of kits left, and am offering them for purchase until they are gone. This is your chance to get one as I normally only offer them to students taking my classes!
Kits include pattern and all fabrics (including background and binding/facing).
How to purchase? Send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org and I will send you a Paypal Invoice. Don't do Paypal? I'll send you my phone number and you can pay by credit card. Applicable HST/GST/PST will be added according to your province. Shipping cost in Canada: $12; Shipping cost to US: CAD$20 ($1CAD = $.75 US).
Sunkissed Poppy in red, 27" x 24", CAD $92
8 kits available
Sunkissed Poppy in BLUE, 27" x 24", CAD $92
10 kits available
Peony in pink, 30" x 24", CAD $92
7 kits available
This year marks the 20th anniversary of my devotion to making quilts. Let's just say that I have too many quilts. In order to clear out space for the next 20 years, I've drastically reduced the price on some of my quilts. These are quilts I no longer need for exhibitions or as teaching examples. This page contains quilts from the first 10 years. How can you purchase? Just send me an email at email@example.com, and I will send you a Paypal invoice. Don't do Paypal? I'll give you my phone number and you can pay by credit card. For Canadian customers, you will be charged HST/GST/PST as per your own province. American customers will be charged in Canadian dollars. Note our dollar is low right now so you will get a great deal upon conversion ($1 CAD = $.75 US). Shipping charge in Canada: $15. Shipping charge to US: $25 CAD = approx $18 US.
Betta Splendens 2, 2004, 24" x 32", $300
Betta Splendens 1, 2003, 24" x 32", $300
Opposites Attract, 2004, 23" x 28-1/2", $250
Ambrosia, 2004, 14" x 20", $150
Dawn of a New Era, 2004, Inspired by Ricky Tims Conversion Quilts using my hand-dyed fabrics, 37" x 37", $350
Substanshell Woman, 2003, 28" x 39", $500
Gerber Daisy, 2003, 18" x 17", $125
Ice Storm, 2002, 18" x 13.5", $100
Birches at Pink Lake, 2001, 22" x 26", $250
Red Sky at Night, 2001, 22" x 27", $250 (Pattern)
Hawaii Surf, 2001, 25-1/2" x 28-1/2", 2001, $300
Flower Power 2, 2001, 24" x 24", $250
Flower Power 1, 2001, 24" x 24", $200
Colour: The 12 Step Program, 2003, 34-1/2 x 34-1/2", $300
Re-Entry, 2002, 20" x 28", $200
Fallen, 2001, 49" x 38", $600
Forest Floor, 2001, 38" x 39", $400 (Pattern)
Where Angels Sing, 2001, 65" x 95", $650 (Pattern)
Flutterbyes, 2001, 36" x 36", $250
Winter Night, 2000, 29" x 25, $250 (Pattern)
4th of July, 1999, 46.6" x 58", $250 (Pattern)
Antique Fans, 1998, 23-1/2" x 23-1/2", $100 (Pattern)