Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Snowflakes the easy way!!!

 I have already done a few snowflake rubbings here. #80 WHITE opaque ink ( use as a dry brush rubbing with the stamp underneath the painted background.  Before I began... I placed several different snowflake stamps in areas I wish to have them appear.. then I filled in with some smaller snowflakes.

The more defined the stamp surface... eg below.. the better the end result.

Love it! 
All needs to be heat set with a dry iron cotton setting... but frankly I will first hair dryer dry these rubbings.   
This will be taught as a one day class at  the San Diego Quilt Show in September and The Orange Quilt Bee ( Orange Ca)  in October.  It's so creative and fun. 

Father Christmas Classes Oct. 12 2013

If you've been following the Father Christmas development on this blog,

you could join me 

Oct 12 to create him for yourself or a friend

at The Orange Quilt Bee Shop in Orange, Ca


I will prepaint the face on your fabric before class, so in class you play adding fun images to "YOUR COAT!"

Hope to see you there!! patt 

2 Pieces accepted at Houston

Nice news while I was away in Mexico.  I have 2 pieces accepted for Houston International this fall.   Best Friends.... and Winter's Veil!  Yeah!! Gotta get them shipped to Texas post haste!

Sunday, July 28, 2013

It Was a Cold Dark Night

Starting on the background, I came first to the foreground with an icy blue added just under the edge of his coat. No. 19 is electric and the perfect choice in my book.  I snuck in a wee bit of #58 sky mist too.

As I start working with the darker background ( I like #93 Blue Bayou) I saved a few circled areas as if  for large snow drops.  Not too many... just a few as you'll see. I used a dark blue ( #162)  Fabrico marker to outline directly adjacent to the white coat... then the fantastix and no 93 bottlled ink near  the coat.
As I got a couple inches away from the white coat, I used a paint brush of mixed ink ( #93) with Folk Art Floating Medium  found (near acrylic paints.. usually bottom shelf) at Micheals.  I've been getting good feedback on this product but know that with a medium, the wet ink can still bleed which is why I used a fantastic with straight ink directly adjacent to Santa.  I felt I had better control this way. 
Now to get this 100% dry( a hair dryer is your friend) before  the final step of adding snowflake rubbings. 

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Filling Santas Bag and Decorating His Coat

Now it's a matter of putting whatever you want in delivery pouch...  I did base painting of the teddy bear, marker work,  and dry brush  rubbings much like the previous posting. When the teddy is fully dry, I will add shading, painted neck bow, eyes, etc.... some greenery around teddy, etc. so the bag looks FULL.

Then some of the pen and ink drawings I previously gathered from old english  settings, will be placed underneath my white fabric coat and traced with a fine tip micron pen. I placed the drawing atop here after I had already inked the tracing. I will add limited color to these drawings as things progress. I want the old world feel of the sketch to remain.

I'm laying various stamps around as possible choices for the rest of his coat.
I will do dry brush rubbings followed by inking for color.
Some color on the pen drawings.. Less is more.. let the sketch-like drawing be seen.

 A rubbing in sky mist blue.. plus a bit of color. Sorry a bit fuzzy... 
After each of the elements are added... a wee bit of soft sky mist blue is placed here and there around the element to represent the cold of the season.
The additions can be whatever you feel like.  I just thought this dress form was fun.
 An old fashioned sewing machine... first rubbed, then colored as well... plus a little holly added to keep the machine base from floating in thin air
Now Santa is starting to look like something fun. Time to get ready for a background of snow and dark cold. 

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

That's Bull!

Returned from Mexico... still projects to finish but am posting a pic from my hubby's trip to the running of the bulls in Pamplona, Spain.  He's playing tricks on some with this photo, but he came clean before revealing it to me.  All a set up with real bulls ... once alive.    Apparently, I married a real ham.

Saturday, July 20, 2013

Father Christmas Emerging

Uploading in Mexico is competitive... at least where I am at...   it must be a small data pipe we all are sharing at this resort. Early early morning is best to get pics uploaded. Finally an update to the project.  After the face, I'll move on to the beard and hat.  I'm using mostly a medium value gray/blue
 ( Tsukineko ink #58 Sky Mist)  and a drybrush gray  for his beard. Where darker darks are needed... e.g.... top of that hat brim... I chose a midnight blue #62.
I'm blocking in value on the christmas tree... first a fabrico marker in  mid value green, followed by a darker green(#194), and a bit of shadowing with bottled inks #58, #81.
The real fun begins adding images on Santas clothing... beginning here with his hat. I plan to use a rubber stamp as a rubbing plate of sorts. I'll place the stamp (rubber side up) underneath the fabric  then use a dry brush fantastix of #58 to rub with..
This produces an instant drawing, that is somewhat out of focus...
I'll use other inks to add interest to color the holly, add holly berries etc.  I'll likely darken these later, but you get the idea.

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

New Class in Time for a Special Christmas Gift

About a year back I created a special Father Christmas piece for a friend.  I've had so much positive feedback on this image, I am teaching a class at Orange Quilt Bee on October 12th.  Therefore, on my vacation, I am creating a new sample and will show the process here.   AS usual.. I begin with a line drawing printed on paper laid underneath my sheer white cotton. A simple outline of the upper eyelid , the nostrils, and edge of the nose. The black of the hair dryer is their on the left as a reminder that I must get the outlines "dry" before adding the skin tone ink.

Closeup below.. EEK no eyes!
Eyes in..Light blue in center, outer edges darker blue, black iris, white highlight! Not so creepy now.

I need to add contour so first used a dry brush sand color to add depth.

An addition of ever so subtle dry brush rose pink to the cheeks is helpful too. Yep... this guy is pretty pudgy.. but he's Santa after all. 

The addition of red lips and now we are on to something.  

Sunday, July 14, 2013

First Birthdays Aren't Always Pretty

Niece Jennifers first child Jessa ( named after my Mom ) is one year old. First cake is not always a happy eat! TOO MESSY MOMMY!!
Okay... The party got better!!
This is one cute little girl.  HUG HUG HUG!!!   from Great Auntie Patt

Saturday, July 13, 2013

No Bull for My Man!!

Many of you knew my hubby has been in Pamplona Spain for the running of the bulls. There were several injuries, none my hubby's.  Our agreement... rent a veranda, and so he did.  He emails me to say the excitement is everything advertised and more.  But thank you Ray.... for being sane and staying safe above the crowds.

Through This Door Tomorrow

I am packed and ready to travel to Cabo San Lucas and enter this door tomorrow afternoon. How cool is that?!  Drawings and inks easily travel with me so art can vacation too.... when I'm not cooking breakfast for grandson Max anyway.  Out of state family meets me there!! YEAH!!
Who wouldn't want  to take care of this cute guy?
Bigger sissy Kaley will be there too. I am one happy Grammie!!

Friday, July 12, 2013

See You in Asilomar next March

Check it out.  5 days of painting and quilting on the shore of the Pacific Ocean. Pretty sweet.  I will be teaching Mar 14 -19. It should be great fun. Hope to see you there.  Click Here to go to the hosts web site.

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Quilting a Roundabout

Well... this was certainly a time consuming challenge. First, the finished product ( sounds backward for a story yet to be told).
The center of the quilt started the process in Jan 2012 where I free motion embroidered Santa in the center and sashed him some solid red and white plus an interesting baltic-like red and white print. I placed the center piece in a basket with multiple "retayned" reds and whites and began a month by month basket pass amongst quilting buddies ( We all  take turns with each others projects) .  Each added whatever they wanted as the bed sized quilt top grew. The first 'round' of addition embroidered different names of Father Christmas in different languages/countries. Way fun!!  Once it returned to me at years end...I added a final print border and then the challenge of how to quilt presented itself. I quickly decided the quilting (but for maybe around Santa himself) was less important than the quilt tops design, so I chose to use the quilt top as terrain for a quilting motif sampler of sorts.  I'll try a bunch of different things.  Why not???   I'm working on my long arm which is largely unfamiliar territory so let's play. I gave myself permission NOT to try to create a masterpiece.   Good plan!!

Around Santa.... I used exagerated swirling motifs of different sizes, and a bit of Mucha-like lines immediately around his body. (Click on photos for enlarged images.)

I added various other leaves, trees, berry shapes in other sashings.... nothing exciting.  I admit I rather enjoyed this loose half-feather look in the outer sashing on each side.  Pretty fast to do too.
Nothing is ever really done 'til the label goes on. I love the busy back fabric on this piece...  Just 3 weeks back, I found it on a bargain table in a little shop in Solvang, Ca.   Little Denmark U. S. A. had just what I needed to get me moving to the finish line.

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Simplest and Favorite Lehman Trick

Libby Lehman is fighting her way back to a new health. Go Libby.  I think of Libby often... She's soooo smart about sewing machines and what works.  Though I am known as an art quilter, I do for fun with friends do more traditional work.... and thats where Libby's machine tips come in extra handy.

Before any blanket stitch is machine done or finished.... I do a forward and reverse straight line stitch and mentally thank Libby EVERY time.  This method eliminates those over time loose ends on a blanket stitch  DUH!!!!  Why didn't I think of that on my own???  It seems so simple.

 LIBBY... you are genius!!!

I'll be working upside down on the tail of this fused kitty.  First a forward and reversed straight stitch at the edge of the fused fabric.  I will then reset my machine to a blanket stitch and make sure the needle position aligns with the just completed straight stitch.
Then the blanket stitch all the way around to the other side of his little green tail. I now change the stitch to a straight stitch position at the same point I finished the blanket stitching.
And again a forward and reverse straight stitch to lock stitches in ..

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Living On "The Right Side"

This is a challenging and interesting post for me. Some weeks ago I had a request for a critique for improvement on a new artists piece of work. The work was quite nice to begin with so providing a worthwhile and positive critique seemed critical itself.  I am the last person wishing to stop an emerging artist with insensitive words.   So I've answered it with a couple pics of my older work wherein I also was and still am on a journey to be a better storyteller through what I do.  I feel like I will always be emerging/ moving forward to a better relationship with my painting/quilting.  We don't ever fully ARRIVE!"

I've chosen post comments on the lion "King" and a few long ago pics of my painting technique. I created The lion "King" as my first ready to go drawing so students who maybe never painted before could join me and create an exciting art piece to take home and show the world and themselves the talent that had been dormant or at least hiding inside them.

first here's the info I shared with a student asking for a specific critique of sorts on how to improve.   "    This is not "THE" panacea answer but it's an important thing to consider....   What I might suggest can be about more choice more than painting  technique/skill. I often say in class... "I'm pretty sure Michaelangelo didn't create "DAVID" right out of the gate.  So be nice to yourself.... It took one of the  best artists ever time to get where he wanted. I remain on my own journey, never to "fully arrive."  

One of the things in displaying elements in an art composition ( even within a live being) is to help the viewer see and enjoy a unified composition... "It makes the brain happy." (This honestly can apply to quilting patterns as well as painting, but let's just think about this for painting right now)  One way to do that is to soften transitions as the viewer's eye moves from one area to another. This sounds good lest everything is soft and the piece loses the viewers interest.  This underscores that old "everything in moderation" approach to life.  So, I like seeing some things in "focus" and others less so. This requires some self questioning on "whats really important to see clearly vs. what isn't?"  

I might interpret that question to myself on a portrait of the King of lions this way.  I want to see his piercing eyes quite clearly.... thus I may put them in focus!!! Bear in mind, I designed this piece for an absolute beginner so the details of painting an eye was not part of my goal. I kept it simple but still important from a viewed distance.   When I think of his mane, it's the feel/gesture of the mane that seems important to me. The ability to distinguish individual fur hairs or even groupings of fur is less important so I may keep the edges of elements a bit more soft...  slightly blurred if you will.  Maybe the 'bad hair day" spikey edges on the top of his head/mane could translate the gesture of his mane if slightly out of focus.

  And so the dance of art goes. 

What I'm really getting at is the path to improving is most about the questions we create for ourselves on how to best tell the story we want to tell.  If one can answer the in vs out of focus question for themselves, the how to do it on the page(or in this case fabric) will start to solve itself.  I do hope the ink rub or test cloth is always handy as I've long believed the success of our painted piece is largely dependent on our use and experimentation on our white scrap fabric BFF(best friend fabric) . One could say...the "what" needs to be solved comes through our brain ... the how to solve it oft comes through our fingers, intuition, and experimentation.

This  started to sound like a book... I hate sounding like a book but it is what I do with my own work... and now, you know my thinking. Use it or not... all your choice as some like everything in clear focus to begin, and the other game of in and out may come in play as time goes on. It did for me and the dance indeed continues.

I'd love comments on whether this was helpful to you.