Friday, December 14, 2012

Working in a Series

Over the past several months, I have completed two courses, both of them called "Working in a Series". They were taught by two different instructors. I want to thank both Elizabeth Barton and Lisa Call for their support as I plowed my way through the fields of colour (yes, pun intended).

I found that my biggest challenge was to maintain some consistency--making it a series--and yet maintain my own interest in the next piece.

Here are four pieces in my series Fields of Colour (yes, that is another play on words, alluding to the Colorfield School of abstract art).

What greater image for a field of colour than fields of tulips, seen from above. Full bloom shows sharp contrast among the fields, against a backdrop of roads and fields still coming into flower.

Fields of Colour #1

Fields of Colour #2
River Way
Fields of Colour #3

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Waterworks now in Edmonton

The Waterworks Exhibit will be up in Edmonton December 17, 2012 to January 23, 2013.  If you are from there, or find yourself in town, please stop by.
Extension Art Gallery
University of Alberta - Enterprise Square
10230 Jasper Avenue, Edmonton, AB
(780) 492-0166
I was able to see the whole thing when it was in North Battleford, SK. I am always astonished to see the scope of art quilting. So many ways to make art!

Monday, July 23, 2012

WaterWorks show

This is the show my Working Water quilt is in...

It says…

Waterworks: Fibre Art Network

a thematic collection of recent fibre art from Western Canada

FibreArt Network (FAN) is a cooperative of self-defined artists based in British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, the Yukon and Northwest Territories committed to promoting quilting and fibre arts and each other.

Please join FAN for a meet and greet reception

Friday, September 28, 2 to4 pm at Chapel Gallery, North Battleford

Show runs: August 1 to September 30 open daily from noon to 5 pm.

Gallery Closed: August 4, 5, 11, 18, 20, 21, 23, 25, and September 10, 11, 12, 22.

891-99 St, North Battleford 306-445-1757

If you are travelling the Yellowhead Highway across Saskatchewan, do take a break in North Battleford, and check out the FibreArt Network`s art show of quilts.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Line of dyes

I am continuing to explore dyeing fabric. In the Quilt University ( course I'm taking, this week we were given recipes for the 12 colours on the colour wheel.

That sounds so easy. I am discovering that dyeing is a lot more than recipes. Maybe once I've been dyeing for decades--like I have been cooking, it will be as easy and intuitive. Things just do not come out as hoped for many times. Lots of times the results are close but not quite what I wanted or hoped for.

I am learning NOT to answer the phone, or check my email while it is soaking up the dye, waiting to be turned. Distractions do not help at all!

Oh, this being a beginner again. Not an easy feeling.

Here are the results of my dyeing, drying on the line.

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Working Water

I have finished a piece for the FibreArt Network's upcoming show "WaterWorks".

It's blue, of course! and entitled "Working Water". It's about 40" square.

my artist's statement:

It is as it runs downhill that water does its work, whether it is for us humans, or not. Water moving, whether down the stream or lapping on the lake shore, attracts us. We know, deep in our bones, that water is essential for life. Water works within us for our souls.

and here is a close-up of the quilting:

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Dyed piecing

I did already use some of the cloth I dyed a couple of weeks ago... in an art quilt called Fields of Colour, referring to both fields of tulips, and the colorfield school of art.

It was fun to abstract the roads and fields into strip piecing... and here's what I came up with.

The quilting is subtle, and supportive of the colour choices. Here's a detail.

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Dying cloth

My newest adventure is learning to dye cloth for textile art. I found out that it's a bit like chemistry class, what with measuring as accurately as possible, and getting the timing down right.

I'm looking forward to having fabric that has more nuance to it than the manufactured kind.

My first run of just primary colours came out pretty well. I've added photos of the dying buckets and the end result... So I have red, and pastel red (pink); yellow and pastel yellow (it doesn't have any green tinge that shows on my screen), and blue and pastel blue (well, not really pastel, but lighter). and the one on the left is what resulted when I poured the three dye colours together. it started out a mulberry mud, which I didn't want to go darker, so I pulled it out early--and the red washed out, leaving the blue/yellow mix--which gave a light teal green. lovely actually.

Now I can't wait to try them out on a piece of textile art!

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Cherry blossoms galore

The show opened last night, to a room filling crowd. It was great fun to see the myriad ways that others interpreted cherry blossoms, and to meet some of the artists. I only knew two others previously.

There are so very many techniques in art quilting--abstract (mine) to yarn... and I bet I've missed a few. Some of the pieces were tiny, only a few inches by a few inches in size. Others were quite large. Some were three dimensional--fairies! Some had much embellishment; others had very little. And, oh, those embellishments! Again, quite the variety. It's an education just to look, and figure out how they did it.

Thanks to all who came to see the show.

Monday, April 16, 2012

Cherry Blossoms Exhibit

April 17–29
“Cherry Blossoms: A Textile Translation”

Opening reception will be held Tuesday April 17th from 6-8pm , all are welcome!
in West Vancouver at the Silk Purse Gallery, 1570 Argyle Ave.

FibreEssence is a textiles art collective working with embroidery, quilting, sewing, weaving and surface design using traditional and innovative techniques and materials. This selection of work evokes the spirit of spring and rebirth, coinciding with the reappearance of the cherry blossom in our community.
Co-sponsored by FibreEssence and the Vancouver Guild of Fibre Arts.

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Amazing! One of my pieces has been accepted by fibreEssence for their upcoming show at the Silk Purse Gallery (1570 Argyle Ave, West Vancouver, BC). April 17-29,

The theme is Cherry Blossoms: a Textile Translation. totally appropriate for this time of year. The cherry tree across the street is blooming profusely right now.

I'm using the colours of cherry blossoms, abstracting them by strip-piecing and reconstructing them. I have a whole new appreciation for the colour pink and red-purple.

 I've added texture by quilting an expanding spiral, trying to focus on the pinks.
 I can't wait to see the whole show!

Friday, February 10, 2012

Cherry Blossoms

I've been playing with the theme of "Cherry blossoms" this month.

How can I convey the exuberance of the colour pink at the height of cherry blossom time? the drifts of petals and sometimes sweet smell that comes with it?

here are a couple of tries at it...

Cherry Lane
Detail of the "branches" and "flowers"

And for something entirely different, here's another more abstract "tree", if you really want to call it a tree.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012


Years ago, I took a course from the Anna Templeton Centre in St John's, Newfoundland, from Valerie Hearder. Make just a 5" x 7" landscape quilt. All hand sewn, and hand embellished. I just now realized it's not even sandwiched, or quilted. It is framed though, as I had one handy--it was framed the same day!
Made in 2000.

I didn't get back to landscapes for some time...

Then, a year later, between jobs, and living in my
cabin about an hour outside St. John's, I made a stole for myself. A vertical landscape quilt.

That's Cape Spear on the back, and Newfoundland trees and countryside on the front. I still use this one the most when preaching.

Now, I'm trying to picture landscapes again. This time I'm machine quilting, and trying more things. I wanted to portray winter in the Lower Mainland, and even had a photo for inspiration. Here it is.

How could I make the reflections real? How could I make a tree? It turns out that practice makes a great deal of difference. And so does standing back and looking critically. I had to keep adding bits to make it come alive. And here it is...

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Colour Study

I've been studying colour with Judy Villett ( over the past month or so. It's been so fun to take the time to think about and articulate the colour relationships I see around me -- I am usually only intuitive about it.

So this past week, I worked on a small Colour Study. It's 8 1/2" x 11".

I started with the print fabric, adding the solids to go with it. I used both cotton thread and monofilament for quilting, and zigzagged the edges.

Quick and fun. And satisfying colour-wise for me.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Exploring the world

My 6 month old kitten Tigger is starting to explore the outside world. I take it upon myself to accompany him on his almost daily outings. But boy, is it scary, for me more than him, I think.

Some history: an older cat of ours was killed on the street not quite a year ago. Blackie had no fear at all. His littermate Toes is so timid he's still around. Since he was lonely we now have Tigger.

Tigger is having a grand time exploring our yard, and the big trees, and the fence. He's learning that it's easier to climb up than down, and that often the way down is a big jump. Or a fall. I was much relieved when he only went up about 10 feet of the 60 foot pine tree. The cherry tree (in the neighbor's front yard!) seems much safer. That's the one he fell out of. Later he went way up, like 50' up! a cedar tree. See the photo.

Toes wants to show him all kinds of things--the way across the fence to the nasty neighbor's place; the way to the nice neighbor's cat door, the place to jump across the fence. Toes is not so patient though, and sometimes just disappears.

I can see that Tigger is more excited to explore and discover than he is frightened by loud noises and other things new. I just hope I can foster such an attitude in my quilting art....