Archive for the ‘sewing’ Category

unknown butterfly species

October 29, 2010

More butterflies.  These are inspired by Seguy.   Whether he created them in his head or copied them from life, I don’t know but there aren’t butterflies like this in my backyard.   I can’t remember even seeing a monarch this summer.  But the scraggly butterfly bushes do bring in the swallowtails. Lots of black and yellow swallowtails.  I’m guessing they are gone for the season…



October 20, 2010

Here is a “practice” butterfly.  I like it so much I have decided it is practice for the one I am committed to making for a project sponsored by the Holocaust Museum Houston called The Butterfly Effect.  (I get to keep the practice one, see???)  Anyway,   participating in The Butterfly Effect project was suggested by one of my artful sisters, Karen Owen.  Each butterfly will represent one young person or child killed in the holocaust.  That is 1,500,000 children killed!  It is such a big number but I personally  have a hard time conceptualizing how big.     Seeing 1,500,000  butterflies will have just the kind of impact it should have.

Okay, so maybe I should send two.

Two Bee(s) or Not to be

October 17, 2010

Two bees I finished up this weekend.

I was playing with an edging idea on the one above.  I am going to have to work on this… I think it has possibilities.

Sorry for the overdone pun.  Comedy is not my specialty!

Avocado Green and Harvest Gold

October 1, 2010

If those words bring up images of refrigerators and ranges then you must have lived during the 1970’s.   I was stitching on a little pouch today and realized I  had chosen the very same colors that during the 80’s, I (along with the rest of the American population) was anxious to eradicate from my life.

And here it is popular again.  Along with polyester and double knits.  (Have you been shopping lately????)

Let’s just hope those colored appliances stay in our distance past.

This pouch is made from cheap craft felt.  I can’t find wool felt locally and probably couldn’t afford it even if I could.  But I found the more I handled the polyester felt, the more pliable and softer it became.  I stitched it over a piece of thin cotton batting to give it some heft.

Back in the 70’s, we had red shag carpet that came with its own rake.  Covered up those ugly hardwood floors…..

Thayer’s Tangled Trees

September 23, 2010

Abbott Thayer was an American painter lucky enough to live thru that period of time that produced so many great painters.  This of course is my opinion; someone else might think the mid 20th century produced some of the finest painters, but I keep going to those early 20th century paintings to drool over and think it would have been heaven to live amongst their creators.  Of course, I would probably have lived in Georgia on a dirt farm and would never have had the opportunity to hear of them much less meet them, but the works of (relatively obscure to the general public and those who have never studied art history) painters such as Dewing, Tarbell, Hassam, or Lilla Cabot Perry (women get the whole name typed out) to the works of more well known artists like Sargent and Chase, are among the most fabulous paintings ever.   Don’t tell the French, but I think they are every bit as marvelous as those Impressionists you hear so much about.

Anyway,Thayer did a series of beautiful angels that you may have actually seen before, but he also did a series with his son, Gerald Thayer, of wildlife  showing how camouflaged they are in their natural habitat.  Seems he even collaborated with the government to create camouflage for the army.

I chose a small portion of tangled tree limbs of Gerald’s painting, Male Ruffled Grouse in the Forest as inspiration for this piece of tangled thread stitching I finished yesterday.

If you are unfamiliar with the artists I mentioned above, take a few minutes and look up their works.  I am sure you will be as awed by them as I am.

An English Gatehouse

September 10, 2010

The last couple of weeks have been filled, just not with  much art.  I worked on a fiber piece (I don’t like the terms that are generally associated with this technique, wonder if I can coin a new phrase….) of a figure sitting in a chair.  I learned that you can excise a portion you do not like and patch it.  I learned that you do not wash out the stabilizer if you intend to  stitch on it more.  It spreads.  My figure’s arm grew to twice the size it originally was.  I was sad, I was liking that piece.  I guess this is to be expected if you are teaching yourself a new process.

There is something that jumps out at me when you google (when will Webster’s declare google a noun and verb?) thread painting.  It is that you should not try to copy a Vermeer in thread.  It just doesn’t work.

But, we try all things…

I tried architecture in thread.

making fabric…

September 1, 2010

Several years ago I bought a book entitled Glorious Inspiration by Kaffe Fassett.  He wrote it for needlepoint and knitting but I feel some images interpret quite nicely in thread.   This image is taken from a section of Marcello Provenzale’s Landscape with Birds in the Pitti Palace in Florence.  I am really pleased with the texture of the thread.  It looks like old cloth!  Imagine!  Not your typical warp/weft weaving method…

The image size is 6.75″ x 5.5″ and is done in cotton threads over a wash away stabilizer.  All that remains is the cotton thread.

Robin’s Nest

August 28, 2010

Growing up, I listened to many sermons in church on Sundays about perseverance.  Such a big word for little ears (okay, Karen and Donna, so my ears were never little) but when you pair it with the apostle Paul’s lesson on racing to the end the meaning is easily understood.  It has always been a word that catches my attention when it is said (and never fails to remind me of our beloved pastor,  Rev. L. Howard  Gordon).  Now that I am adult-ish, I realize how important perseverance is in all aspects of life.  Prayer is best answered with perseverance, exercise is only effective with perseverance,  relationships take tons of perseverance,  goals are met with perseverance and with a little perseverance you can correct and finish an a disappointing  piece of art.  The robin’s nest and eggs below were slow in coming together and I almost gave up.  I couldn’t get it right.  But, I cut away 1/3 of the image, I increased the size of the nest, I added leaves and twigs and I just kept adding thread.  I tried to put my painting lessons to use and actually used knowledge to fix it.  It is now pretty thick and stiff but I am pleased with the image.

I do wish you could see it in person, photos don’t do these thread pieces justice.

Hummingbird Repose

August 22, 2010

I watched the most beautiful Nature episode on PBS yesterday about Hummingbirds.    The show showed all kinds of hummingbirds captured  in the most wonderful photography.  It showed their wings in flight, their tail feathers spread, their ability to catch bugs in flight (did you know hummingbirds were carnivores?).  And it showed their nests.  Wonderful tiny creations the size of large walnuts and when the birds were perched in them, they look just the sweetest, most perfect  creature ever!

What a treasure it would be to find a hummingbird nest.  The show inspired me to create the thread art below.  This particular nest is only in South America (I think I am remembering correctly).  It was just about like you see it below, with bright green fibers intertwined to make a long (much longer than my piece shows) hanging nest.

I sketched my composition in colored pencil first and thought I would show you the beginning and the end.  This was a good way to repose myself this weekend while nursing bronchitis and an ear infection.   On the mend now and ready to sketch some more!  Lots more  hummingbird inspiration.  But then again, I am thinking I want to play with a Maxfield Parrish image.  I think that his color use would be perfect interpreted in thread!  Stay tuned…

Outside Looking In

August 19, 2010

Computer problems this week.  What’s up when you can access your programs thru the task manager but the whole windows operating systems is kerplunk?  But it is the only computer in the house attached to the scanner.  It is very slow and very taxing to use…

Also slow these days is my desire to blog.  My apologies to my loyal followers.  Both of you.  I have been working on some textile art.  Actually started a small tapestry to get back into it.  I was trying to do something simple, but perhaps it’s a little too simple.  It doesn’t  have much pizazz. I will share it when I finish.

I started the little thread art, shown below, last night with a colored pencil sketch and started stitching this morning before I left for work.  I just finished it this evening, easy enough to do when it is only about 3.5″ x 5″.  I used the ever popular house shape.

The first person who tells me it looks like a patch best beware…