Sunday, May 28, 2017

where in we discuss "is it my work"

work has moved right along on this piece this week (actually last night I pinned in that last piece on the bottom right, so it will be done today)

I like the way this has come out -- at least to me the reflection of the sunset sky in the river is clear

now the there are two challenges to be handled -- how to do the quilting on this one (I have some ideas already) and where the cuts will be made -- this piece must be a specific finished size to enter in the show I want to enter it in, and I deliberately made it a bit bigger so no matter how much it draws up with the stitching, I will still have a piece that is big enough -- a whole new approach for my work

and I think I want to use a layer of gray tulle over the entire river under the silk to mute the colors of the reflections -- or not

it's still a work in progress here

this piece is moving along nicely

I have to say I haven't worked with this much pink fabric since I made a baby quilt for my great grand daughter a couple of years ago

and I'm glad I keep all those pieces of fabric that were left over from that project!

after "auditioning" several colors of fabric for the background of this piece, I decided that I like this combination

and I really like the whole look of this piece

so now it's ready to be sandwiched and stitched


and then there is this piece

if you've been following me here or on FaceBook, you've seen the step by step as I created this piece

this is the photo I took of a real dog that this piece of work is based on -- my idea was to stylize the dog, fiddle with the colors a bit (clearly this is a black and white dog -- no blue involved) and create a sort of impressionist style piece

I had (as I often do) a specific show in mind to enter this piece in -- it is titled "Going to the Dogs", which means I needed to do a dog as the subject of the piece (I was invited by the gallery owner to apply to this show based on a landscape piece of mine that hung in her gallery last year)

entering shows is what I do -- I want to have my work seen -- basically believing that if I'm just going to make stuff that no one ever sees I could go back to cranking out charity quilts and stop working so hard on making each one of the pieces a work of art

this week I had an experience with this piece that was a bit disturbing when I was told I needed to "confront the ethics issue" of this piece

and while you're saying "WHAT?!", let me explain -- I have a friend that does animal portraits -- she is very, VERY good at it -- she has done hundreds of them as commission pieces, and she encouraged me to try it for myself and I give her total credit for encouraging me in that direction and for sharing her knowledge and ideas

the "ethics issue" of this piece seem to be that I did an animal as the subject matter of a piece

did I set out to have my piece look like my friend's work? Absolutely not -- in fact, since I do know how she does her pieces, I went out of my way to do things differently in the original design phases of this piece -- her pieces are very literal, she's doing portraits of animals, many that are "memorial" pieces (the first dog I did was exactly that, and it was never shown or for sale because it was, in my mind, too close to her approach) -- I was more looking for the impression of a dog

and does no one else in the fiber art world get to make dogs? 

I talked with my friend after the discussion about the ethics issue -- I have her full encouragement and permission -- she doesn't think we're in competition -- she isn't doing shows -- she's too busy  doing commissions

I still feel a bit put off by the idea that someone thinks I'm not "making my own work"

I'll be thinking about this some more I'm sure, but in the meantime I'm going to finish the edges of this piece and enter it in that show.

no post is complete without an update on how Mr Benson is doing

this week's picture was caught one afternoon as the DH was finishing up his lunch and Mr Benson felt sure he needed a bite of that cookie -- he's doing his very best begging!

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

working on art and a visit to the ER

there actually has been quite a bit of work getting done this week
this piece is done

it's amazing how that dark outline makes the flowers pop up from the surface

stitching on the dog has begun -- and it's moving right along

the applique on this piece is progressing slowly -- I have hit the half way stage here -- and now I'm working on the reflected sky in the water below the horizon

this piece is just beginning -- it will be 12" by 12" and mounted on a canvas so it can be wired and hung

the deadline for this piece is in July, and it will hang as part of an exhibit with my other class mates

pretty cool!

and while all of that is in process, I'm thinking about some other pieces too

I have collected this assortment of paintings over the past few years from my dear friend in California

finally got them into a frame!

and now the hang in the family room gallery -- love seeing them every day

love these flowers from my daughter and Mr Cute that they brought me for Mother's Day --- hyacinths that won't wilt!

when they arrived Sunday afternoon, I was out planting garden --- having the extra hands made the planting of tomatoes, peppers, zucchini and cucumbers much faster

and Mr Cute put the green bean seeds in the trench at the end of the planter box -- I still need to get a trellis put up for those, but the most of the work is done

(so of course we are forecast to have SNOW in the next two days, so I'll be out covering all of those little plants with clay pots and newspaper)

after that hard work in the garden, Mr Cute and I enjoyed some Frito's as a reward!

when I was in the garden center getting tomato plants, I saw this cool plant in a hanging basket

I don't know what it is, but I love the texture and the colors

this piece, titled Parched Earth:  The Silos was accepted in a local show that will hang at Red Rocks Community College between June 9 and September 1

while the DH was cutting the slat that goes in the back to hang it from, he got his left thumb too close to the still spinning table saw blade

off to the ER we went, and he now has 8 stitches in the end of his thumb --- OUCH!!

in the future I will not be allowing him to rip 2x3s to make slats --- the ER visit is much more expensive than buying a piece of wood that is the right size already!  not to mention the whole injury issue

and Mr Benson is busy being his cute self ---

I'm starting to work on a map to do a quilted piece of his face --- a project for after a couple of others that are on the design wall, but there will be one!

Sunday, May 07, 2017

where does the time go?

seems like I was just out here to post last weekend

but no -- it actually was two weeks ago --

and in that time, you would think I could have actually finished something, but such is not the case

this piece, however, is very close -- just need to finish doing the outlining around the flowers and it will be ready for trimming and binding

this piece is ready to be stitched

I am very pleased with the way this one looks -- and the stitching should make it even better

progress is being made here too -- I'm almost half way with the applique here  (yes, it's folded in half so you aren't actually seeing the bottom half right now)

 since the dog piece is off the design wall, I'm thinking about what the next piece up there will be

considering using this photo that was taken by my daughter to do a piece -- I think I would call this one Cerberus Light
Benson has his own things to say about my doing another dog piece that isn't him

I'll have to think about that

meantime, I realize I haven't shared big news that I got early in April -- back in February I had applied to be Artist in Residence at Caribou Ranch this summer -- I did it sort of as a "what the heck, I'll never get in" thing

imagine my shock when I opened the email and was told  there were 60 artists that applied, 5 were accepted, and I'm one of them!  oh my

I'm already starting lists ---- and lists of lists ---- WOW