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Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Keep Your Eye on the Horizon

Well, it's getting there.  As I took this picture I realized I will have to square up the edges by measuring off the straight horizon line.  I had to retake the photos because I made the bottom hang horizontally on my first attempt.  I got a wave of seasickness when I looked at the picture on the screen and realized the horizon was definitely NOT level.

I think I will still tweak the rock on the left a little bit and add another small one in the foreground.  The yellow dandelions still need stems and leaves but I'm pretty pleased with this so far.  My drawing classes have helped tremendously when doing this piece.  I can "see" in my mind where highlights and shadows might fall if I were doing this in paint.  The stitching comes next.  That really pulls everything together and helps the raw edges blend together almost invisibly. 

Friday, April 8, 2011

Don't Mind the Painter's Tape!

Yes, I know, I know, I need a design board so I can pin up works in progress.  One thing most art quilters learn  is that as you work on a piece, you should view it in a vertical position from time to time.  It is truly amazing the differences that appear when you take a project off the flat table and hang it on the wall.  Shape, size, color and perspective can all change in an instant.  Unless you're Jackson Pollock throwing paint around on the floor, most painters work on a vertical canvas for a very good reason.  The eye sees the relationship of all the elements in a more natural plain.  And, color is reflected differently in the vertical orientation as well.  This is true for fabric as well as paint.

So, here is my latest workings, a commission piece, in progress.  I cut up parts and pieces of fabrics where they have the color or texture I'm looking for.  All the pieces are backed with a fusible web (I'm partial to Lite Steam-a-Seam2).  Basically I am trying to "paint" with fabric the way one would use real paint.  At this point I'm working my way from the horizon forward, fusing little bits in place as I go.  Standing back at a distance to check perspective is a definite must in this situation.  So far so good, I think.

Here are a couple of the inspiration photos that were taken along the Oregon coast between the towns of Florence and Yachats.  There are some nice stretches of beach surrounded by rocky outcroppings.  These can create dramatic wave action.  While my scene does not exist exactly, it is a good representation of that stretch of wild coastline.