Posted in colorwork, painting

Colorwashed Landscape

Fireweed

We are busy day today, getting ready for hosting company. So instead of working up a new fiber object, I thought I would share this colorwashed piece of fabric which I made a few months ago. How it came to be is somewhat interesting, at least to me.

I started with a square of white cotton poplin. Using slightly wavy strokes and starting at the top, I applied blue, purple, red and green. Before the fabric dried, I used the “scrunch” technique – crumpling the fabric in various places. This causes the paint to run and dry unevenly, resulting in the dark creases you see above. Immediately, I thought it looked like a view of the Rocky Mountains. Dark brown and black appeared in the creases where the red paint met the purple and green. This reminded me of the mountains in recovery from a forest fire. To enhance the effect, I printed on the fabric in brown and green with blocks cut in jagged shapes, to represent the tree trunks, both living and dead. I painted snow on the mountains. Then I used fabric markers to delineate the sky and a field of pink blooming fireweed.

This landscape feels to me as if it appeared by magic.

Posted in drawing, quilting

In the Mood to Doodle

For no apparent reason, I woke up this morning with the urge to doodle. Well, really, I was thinking about a project to offer my young fiber artists. The older group is working hard on their mini string quilts. But the five to eight year old students aren’t ready, skill-wise for such a complex task. In the spirit of quilt-making, I decided to let them design 4-square blocks using fabric markers. Hence the desire to try it out for myself. I started by cutting a 9 by 9 inch square of muslin, then ironed in creases to divide the block into four 4-inch squares (plus seam allowance.) So here I am, staring at a blank canvas. I found the experience slightly unnerving. Ultimately, I let the sights of nature in spring-time inspire my doodles.

Here is what I came up with.

Tall Grass Prairie in Spring
Postage-stamp Flowers
Strawberry Fields
Cold Water Game Fish

I have to admit that sharing these drawings is not easy for me. I am still such a novice at it. But I’m told that to improve drawing skills one must practice daily. I struggled with the markers bleeding a bit. The fish were the most fun to draw.