Monday, January 31, 2011

New Work finished

Well, I finally got the right staples in the right stapler....I must say that the pneumatic stapler does a much better job. The electric stapler only gets the 1/2 inch staples in half way. Which means that I have to use the hammer to hammer them further in and sometimes they go really wonky and get smashed down rather than neatly hammered down.  Well, until the weather is nicer and the big compressor is fixed, this will have to do.

I have decided that this is a really nice way of doing the mounting of my work on stretched canvas. This time I tried something different and it really worked well. I cut out the canvas with enough to overlap the back by two inches. Then I centered my art work onto the canvas, gently pinned it down, and then machine stitched it to the canvas. The I could center from the back side of the canvas since it has a stitched line outlining the artwork and stretch the canvas onto the stretcher bars.  Works neatly and quickly without having to do hand stitching. So now I just have to attach the D rings and wire them. I found a source of plastic covered wire so there is no bare wire showing.

So, continuing in the circles motif, here we have three of the five....

 Circles 7
 Circles 6
Circles 8

These are each about 10 x 12 inches and mounted on 14 x 18 " stretched canvas.

I have the hardest time getting my pictures straight on so they look squared. These really are squared and I tried to straighten them up but it just doesn't work.

Well, I guess things will need to go to the photographers....

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Some Days can just be Frustrating

I decided that I wanted to attach my new collages onto black canvas stretched around stretcher bars.
Easy, I thought.

A couple of years ago when I first started doing this, my dear husband got me a hand is not strong enough to use the regular staple guns so he went out on a quest for find a stapler that I could use and that would work well.

He brought home an electric one but the staples didn't go all the way in to the stretcher bars. So then he kept on looking and finally brought home an air that uses compressed air to fire the staple. It is really cool and shoots out these wicked looking staples.

I can use it at home on the back porch because the huge air compressor is outside and I have a long hose to connect the stapler to the air compressor.

However, it is rainy and cold outside and I have the perfect set up at my studio for doing this...the fabric, a place to cut the fabric, the sewing machine, the stretcher bars, a big, high table to work on, etc. Plus it doesn't rain may get cold but if I am moving around it isn't too bad.

So last week I decided to stop by Home Depot and get an electric stapler.  Found a good one and got a couple of boxes of staples that the person told me would fit the stapler.

It was in my trunk and before I could get it out, my husband saw it and got upset that I had purchased a stapler without discussing it with him....well, he still had the original electric stapler from before. It is a Stanley but I needed staples. So I went off to the Ace Hardware to get them and came home with a couple of boxes of staples that seemed to work. However, when I got down to the studio, they just jammed in the stapler.  So I pulled out the stapler that was still in my trunk and loaded it with the staples that were supposed to fit it....nope, just spat out staples two at a time...

So, I have one piece of fabric with the collage sewn one and two staples holding it to the stretcher bars.
Decided that I just could not face Home Depot to take the staples back today to exchange them so will do so tomorrow.

And I had so hoped to get these five collages done...finished, wired and everything....ughhhhhhh!

This seems to be the way things have been going for me. Something that shouldn't take very long seems to take way too much time!

Ah well, tomorrow is another day.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Getting Little done

While I was away for a week, I came down with a horrific head cold and had a very sore throat and lots of coughing. For the first time in many years, I simply gave in to the cold, for about the full 10 days that it takes, slept, napped, drugged myself up with decongestants, and played games on the computer since I wasn't able to do much else.

But now I am feeling much better and am ready to tackle the art world. What has happened though, which happens to me any time I am away from the studio for any length of time, is that I become overwhelmed with ideas.

Of course, when I go back to the studio, there are always things in progress to some point or other. But then, while I have been away, I start getting new ideas, which I wake up with in the morning, or fall asleep with at night or just dream up during the day. Sometimes I wish I could shut my brain off.

I did the 5 collages for ONE and have started doing some along the same vein but larger for myself. These are done on upholstery fabric, have various items in them, including circles cut out of other fabrics, vintage linens and silk screening. They have a minimal amount of stitching in them.

So on my mind has been the question of how to display them...I thought about matting them, ready for framing and then thought about mounting them on rigid board, and then decided that they would really look best sewn to a piece of fabric that is then stretched onto stretcher bars....I will tell you, storing these babies is not as easy as storing regular quilts! I can't pile them up on the bed and they are not beginning to take up lots of room on my new storage shelving....oh well, I guess that is what the shelving is for.

But, to backtrack some, on the 15th I had to get my Sketchbook Project sketchbook mailed out which I had finally finished the night before. The entire project moves along and you can see a progression in my work as I did the book over 6 months' time.

So, here are a few pages from my sketchbook project....this page has lines on the left made with graphite and the lines on the right are stamped using cardboard.

On these pages I started making a grid with an ink pen and then began coloring it it with multiple glazes.

On two pages that I painted and over painted, I just made lines with my ink pen....very similar to a lot of stuff I have been doing in my fiber work lately.

And more lines, similar again to the fiber work machine stitching I have been doing a lot of....

So, today is Thursday and tomorrow I am back in the studio, having spent a day this week doing clean up and organizing. I purchased a new electric stapler so I can more easily staple fabric to stretcher bars, so that is one thing to do, I need to trim up a couple of quilts and get facing on them, mount the new collages of the new stretched fabric. and then I am ready to figure out how to displace my felt pieces...those may also go onto stretched canvas...and then, I can open the sketchbooks and really look at all the ideas I have been jotting down....

Thursday, January 20, 2011

A nice week away

I have returned after spending a week up in the cabin in the Sierra foothills. The first day was cold but then the weather turned spring like. Just beautiful. I spent time creating new samples for my on line class lessons, read an entire book, had naps, thought about quilt ideas, and just generally enjoyed myself. The only complaint was that I picked up a sore throat and head cold which I am still trying to shake! oh, well...and next week it will be time in the studio...just hoping that the weather stays a little warmer longer as that studio gets so cold. When the outside temperature drops past 60, so does the temperature in the studio. Someone told me I could get fingerless gloves as WalMart so I guess I will have to venture in to find some.

But, I am going to share with you the other collages for ONE!

ONE is a 1 day sale of 100 collages created by 20 artists. You can follow the link to get all of the information. This is another Virginia Spiegle fundraiser for the American Cancer Society. Many beautiful things to purchace!

Save the date! Feb. 16!

Meanwhile, I have continued with the circles in a larger format and will be posting them soon!

Sunday, January 09, 2011

On line classes starting up

I have just announced my on-line classes on my website.

Better Art by Design is a six week class. Students leave this class feeling more confident about creating their own original quilts. Work is done at home and lessons are posted each week with a critique by me to help you understand the ideas better.  This class begins on Jan 31. Information is available on my website.

Advanced Better Art by Design is a four lesson class given over 8 weeks. This class is designed for those who have taken Liz's Better Art by Design class and are ready to do some more intensive work. Critiques are given as work is uploaded to the private Yahoo site. Again, go to my website for sign up information.

 I will also be teaching three classes at Quilt Nebraska in July.

In October, I will be in the beautiful Hudson River Valley enjoying a stay at the Greenville Arts 1889 Inn teaching Better Art by Design. This is through Hudson River Valley Fiberart workshops. Would love to have you come join me at this delightful time of the year!

Today was my last day as Rector's Warden for my church, All Saints Episcopal. I have turned all responsibility back to the rector who returned this past Monday and will be going off to the cabin for week on Wed. afternoon. I am looking forward to this peaceful time although I will be doing some fine tuning for my on line classes.

I am including a few more of the collages for ONE

 Yellow Circles 1

Yellow Circles 2

Put Feb 16 on your calendar so that you may bid of one of 100 collages available from twenty wonderful artists!