To see a video of the Seasonal Palette exhibit featuring Martha Seilman, executive director of SAQA being interviewed by Luana Rubin, click here.
Posts Tagged ‘SAQA’
As usual, I am putting a lot of quilting on the seasonal piece. I think it is looking good and I guess I need to think up a name for it and stop calling it â€śthe seasonal piece!â€ť
I finished the quilting last week; it took so long because itâ€™s big (32 x 78â€ť finished so Iâ€™m working at about 35 x 83â€ť) and I was putting in a lot of stitches, but also because I used so many different threads, so was constantly changing colors and burying ends.
I blocked and trimmed it for the binding over the weekend. Trimming was tricky, as it is so long, and the size requirements are precise! Measure twice and cut once didnâ€™t even feel safe. I measured at least four times. I was up in the air about the finishing – facing or binding? I decided on binding a little larger than usual at 3/8â€ť. That was sewed on yesterday and since when I do the binding I always incorporate the sleeve and the documentation tag into the binding seam, I had to commit to a name for the tag. I settled on â€śDecember Dawnâ€ť. It is short and to the point.
Now all I have left to do is to finish the hand sewing on the back of the binding, the sides and bottom edges of the sleeve and two edges of the documentation tag, sign it, and it will be DONE!
Here you can see the machine stitched signature and a corner folded back to show part of the documentation tag.
Finished March 14, 2012.
Well, have you enjoyed the journey?Â Do you want to see what’s next?
Last week (late Nov. 2011) on one of the quilting lists someone posted that she was being sued by a fabric designer for having used that personâ€™s design in a piece that was published in a book. She wouldnâ€™t elaborate or name the designer. Since what I do is all wrapped up in using commercial prints, this was pretty scary! Especially since this piece I am currently working on features so prominently the use of a printed panel cut up and rearranged.
One has to wonder why they would produce quilting fabric and then sue you for using it, but crazier things have happened. I didnâ€™t even want to continue working! I wrote the designer and explained what I was doing and asked for written permission to proceed. It took a couple of days for the answer, during which time I imagined worse case scenarios, like â€śNow she knows what Iâ€™m doing and will be watching and waiting to sue meâ€ť But no. Michelle Mara was happy to grant permission. Monday I finished up the last of the seams and the top is finished. I think now it will be set aside since it has an April deadline and Iâ€™ll be concentrating on a new piece with a January deadline.Â (Harrier Hunting)
Post from Feb. 28, 2012
Time to get back to Seasonal Palette. Iâ€™m using Matildaâ€™s Own Wool for the batting and trimming it to a little larger all around than the top. This is the first time I have used wool but I have been hearing good things about it.
I prepared a back using another panel that I found online and purchased because I thought that it would be a good thing to show that I did not just use a printed panel as is, but how the panel looked before I cut it up and rearranged it.
In my stash, I found an old piece of fabric from the late 80â€™s when I first started quilting, that was the perfect blue to compliment this piece. You can see a bit of the top peeking out there at the bottom as I am trimming to size.
The three layers were pin basted and made ready for the machine quilting. I do free motion machine quilting on my Bernina 1260 with no stitch regulator.
I have spent the better part of three days now quilting on it and have about one third of it finished so I am in good shape to meet the deadline.Â Today I will finish the foreground and hopefully get started on the sky.
Iâ€™ve been putting it off, but it is time to finish the integration of the deer into the main piece. Since I altered it by removing some from the bottom and adding some to the top, the seams no longer line up. I have to make some templates to transition between the two areas. This is not easy! You can see the registration marks on the back that help with correct sewing and some proposed seam lines that I have not used. As last minute decisions are made, often seam lines are altered, eliminated or even added!
In order to piece the ear in, I would have had to redo part of the tree, so I decided to appliquĂ© that little bit. I replaced some of the dark fabrics that I had in the foreground that I thought were distracting.
Itâ€™s time to actually cut some sky pieces. I need some nice strong color at the tree line to transition the tree line into the sky.
I thought I would like the cloud print fabric that I had ordered,
but I liked the striated batik better.
The past week was spent tweaking the Seasonal piece, changing and adding fabrics. It is still in two pieces but bulky and awkward to work on. I think that I have at least one more change to make and then I will just live with it for awhile and see if anything else demands attention. At this point every change requires that I rip something apart and add in new, sort of like mending, which I hate.
That little place on the left will need to be fixed. The fabric that I was using there was not big enough and I was hoping that it would be in the â€śwasteâ€ť area and to be cut away when I trim it to size, but Iâ€™m afraid it will be too much.
Last evening, I folded and put away all of the fabrics I was working with and swept up the bits on the floor, the studio will not look too bad for company on Thanksgiving!
The fabric came last week, ( late Oct) I had ordered these sunrise / sunset fabrics for consideration for the sky. I do think they will work. Now I can be more confident in the selection of other fabrics for the scene.
I have chosen some orangey prints to give reflected highlights to the tree trunks. An old batik with both blue and orange will make nice reflections on the pond ice.
The distant tree line is the backside of another batik. It will look more like trees when the quilting is added.
I have integrated several other fabrics into the foreground to further fracture the panel, give added interest and tie into the piecing of the other prints.
Some peachy reflections on the snow have been laid in.
Sewing some seams tightens things up. That brush against snow fabric with the peachy background was a lucky find from my stash. The rusty batik will help the background trees blend into the sky.
Well, there has been a lot going on, it is now mid November, and I have been busy . Some days there is not time to sew at all, and some days time to manage only a few seams.
This week has been better and I have had a few days to really work at it. I am starting to lay in some sky color.
As I work at it, I am constantly tweaking and changing things so I try to avoid sewing all of the seams until I live with the fabric choices for a while but there comes a time when, just to get things in perspective, you just have to sew some seams! Inevitably then you have to UN sew some seams as choices made at the bottom affect choices made at the top and vice-versa. The long narrow layout (32 x 78â€ť) of this piece presents itâ€™s own challenges! Luckily the deadline is April, so I can take my time and enjoy the process.
The first step was to figure out how to place seam lines that would integrate the deer into the whole. I did this by tracing the print to freezer paper and aligning it with the full sized freezer paper pattern on the wall. Then I could plot out the seam lines to be able to cut and sew it to fit into the scene. I wanted to fracture the panel and make some changes in the placement of the deer.
I started the piecing with the bottom of the tree area, so that I would have a base on which to add the deer.
It has not been without drama though. After several dayâ€™s work, I was not happy with some aspects. I decided that the tree needed to be lower, more behind the deer allowing me to add more branches to the top of the tree to balance the composition.
I reworked parts and now I have the problem of fitting already pieced elements into a revised whole, but it will work out, Iâ€™m sure. I ordered more fabric from two different sources, as I found some sky and some coordinating foreground prints that might work in. The first arrived yesterday and the second is due any day now. Itâ€™s a little difficult to plan without the fabric here so I am working on the parts where I feel safe, knowing I may have to tweak later. This has enough challenges to keep it interesting for me!
To be continued……….
My work is machine pieced, in this case I will be using straight seams.
Transferring the original picture to tracing paper, figuring out where the
seam lines will go and dividing those into sewable sections comes next. I have to leave space at the bottom for the deer.
The finished piece needs to be 32 X 78â€ť , so my working pattern will be
about 36 x 85â€ť since I know that my intensive machine quilting will take up several inches in the end.
When I am satisfied, the lines are transferred to overhead projection film and projected in the mirror image to freezer paper on the wall in the finished size, which will be cut apart to become the working templates.
When these templates are ironed to the wrong side of the fabrics, cut with a quarter inch seam allowance and sewn, it will look like the original layout.
I have a pretty good stash of commercial prints and hand dyes suitable for nature inspired work. One of the first things I do when starting a new work is to pull any fabrics that I think have possibilities of working into the piece.
My studio has good natural light from windows and overhead fixtures so I keep my fabric behind bamboo and canvas roll – up blinds to combat fading.
Much of what I choose will never make it in and more will be added later, but this is a starting place. The fabrics are all 100% cotton, mostly commercial prints, though I do sometimes use hand dyes. I use a lot of batik fabric because I love the variations of colors within a piece that lends itself well to the nature inspired work that I do.
Behind the cutting table, you can see the blinds in the down position.
When I was teaching in Springfield, Mo., I found this wonderful panel.
(Winter Whispers by Michelle Mara, Wilmington Prints)
The scale seemed right and since my specialty is working with commercial prints, and even though I didnâ€™t know if I would be accepted into Seasonal Palette I just had to buy two panels just in case! I needed two panels so that I could accommodate the seam allowances and still have things line up. I would want to fracture the scene, maybe rearrange the figures and integrate them into the piecing.
Deer often frequent the area of our farm pond and I thought they would bring life to the composition.
When my acceptance letter came, I was lucky enough to be assigned “WINTER” based on the committee liking the â€śIn The Bleak Midwinterâ€ť photo in my entry package. There were so many entries and over half of them wanted winter which surprised me! They asked that my new piece should be in the same style. I had said that even in winter there is much color to be seen and the one they liked had sunset colors reflecting on the snow.
â€śIn The Bleak Midwinterâ€ť 32 x 34â€ť 2011
The first step was going through my photos for a likely inspiration picture. I cropped long narrow portions of several before settling on this one, which is a shot that I took across our farm pond in the snow.
I isolated one tree to be the focal point.
Now that Quilt Festival is over for this year and Seasonal Palette has had itâ€™s grand opening everyone is free to post those long awaited pictures! My entry is called “December Dawn”.
Click here to see them all.
The process began with submitting photos of existing work from which 37 artists were selected to produce seasonal works measuring 78 x 32â€ť each. The working styles of the selected artists are vastly different, coming together to stage an amazingly cohesive body of work. The exhibit was staged in an enclosed, hard walled space with a tranquil gallery feeling that was so calming amid the crowds and bustle of the show floor. In progressing around the space, one walked through the seasons. In the center of the space was a table where artists journals of the making of each piece was displayed, with benches so you could sit and spend as much time as you wanted with the journals and the actual artworks. I wish I had had enough time to read each and every one!
There is a lovely catalog of the exhibit available for only $20.00 showing each piece with a more in depth view of the making of some of them, including â€śDecember Dawnâ€ś at the end.
At this premier opening, already two pieces were sold!Â I have been enjoying the posting of the making of some of the pieces as they are posted to blogs, so starting tomorrow I will begin to publish entries from my own journal.
I tried to get into my blog yesterday but I guess it was down for some reason.
I finished “Majesty”, 35.5 x 42″, last week and wanted to post the pictures! This is the first time that I have done a faced edge instead of a binding.
I am not sure about facings. I read that it gives a more “art” finish and less of a “quilt” finish. It does hang very nicely. It takes longer and there is more hand work because whereas when I do a binding I insert the raw edges of the sleeve under the binding and sew by machine, with the facing method I had to sew all of the sleeve edges by hand. All of the facing edges are hand sewn as well, just like a binding would be. We had the most gorgeous weather last week though, so I was able to sit outside for two afternoons and do the hand work.
It’s done except for hand sewing the twinkle in his eye – what you see here is the white head of a pin that I use to see where the stitches should go. I am pretty happy with the way it came out. There is a LOT of quilting on it!
Saturday I took a workshop with Patty Hawkins from Colorado through the Kansas Art Quilters; she has had many entries accepted to Quilt National, and the subject was landscape, so I thought it might be fun even though it was on raw edge bonded applique/collage which is not a method I enjoy. I was hoping to learn something, which of course I did! It’s always nice to just get away for a while and play. Here’s my start on a piece from a photo that I took on our Alaska trip.
I’m so lucky to have such a nice stash of “nature” type fabrics to work with! In fact I have so much fabric it is overflowing the space I have to store it so I was very happy last week to hear of a local group making clothing for Haiti that was in need of fabric. I boxed up two large boxes of calico type prints that don’t really work for me anymore in the type of work I do now.Â They would have been quite expensive to ship somewhere, so I was really happy to have found some place local to take it. A win-win situation for both of us! And now most of what is left fits on the shelves!!
I was accepted to participate in “Seasonal Palette” an exhibit through Studio Art Quilt Associates which will debut in Houston next fall and travel for a year or so after that. Thirty-eight were accepted out of hundreds of entries. We each will make a piece that measures 32″ wide by 78″ high and my assigned season is winter. So, as I have been going through the fabrics for stuff to give away and stuff for the workshop, I have been pulling out possibilities for this new work. I am starting to feel excited about it and anxious to get started……