Adventure

Adventure is the word that resonated with me today. Every single time that I enter my studio, I feel as though I am embarking on a new adventure. Whenever I say ‘what if…’ and sparks of ideas fly into my imagination, the next escapade begins. And there is always a piece of fabric, or a color, or a bead that inspires action. I cannot imagine that I will ever run out of inspiration, though I am old enough that I CAN envision running out of time or physical ability!

This experiment is wrapping up. All the concepts are roughed in and it is at the point of filling in the blanks with the technical, mechanical details. Always fun, as well as being important to strive for excellence, but the mind is free to start exploring territory for the next undertaking.

Quite a few more sun ray lines to do, with some metallic thread added for a bit of sparkle! And more quilting to do with the leaves and grasses, but essentially done.

My mind has wandered on…and that’s a fitting phrase for what it wandered onto. Alzheimer’s is an affliction that is near to my heart, since my father had it. Every now and then I try to express my feelings about this utterly devasting disease with a piece of art. Not the cheeriest of subjects, of course, but art is emotional–ALL the emotions.

This is started and my mind now gets to ask ‘what if…’ for the next steps.

I believe it is headed for the foggier brain side of the disease rather than the loss of function of the physical side.

The daily adventure that is now my life continues!

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Series, or not a series?

A while back I thought I had a great idea for a series of work. I made a contemporary black and white tree, on a black background and added all the oddball leftover leaves that I have made and collected over the last couple of years.

I have a LOT of leaves, plus a huge collection of leaf beads that might have made their way into this series. I was going to make a series with the trees getting darker and the backgrounds getting lighter and various leaves carrying across the series.

Even had the grays picked out. And then I decided that I don’t feel like working with all that gray and black and the series idea kinda died. Maybe ’cause it’s in the dark of winter. But I DO want to make the original piece and I’ll use as many leaves as I can—at least as many as possible while still finding the piece attractive!

There are a few lines quilted and I think I will continue with the minimal straight lines since it is a background, not a focal point.

Sheesh–look at all the lint that shows up on that black fabric! I was interrupted by the grandson’s hockey game and thought I’d get right back to it when we got home, but now I’m distracted.

THIS piece of fabric has been hanging on my design wall for quite a while, waiting to decide what it wants to be.

It’s only a fat quarter, but it’s quite demanding. It does NOT want to be cut and does not play well with other fabrics. Other prints neither contrast nor blend well and my other hand dyes don’t match in a happy way. It will tell me eventually what it wants to be, but I’m impatient and I want to work on it NOW!

So, I’m ignoring the whole studio this evening! My brain will undoubtedly work on both projects subconsciously and those thoughts will work their way to the front of my idea lobe. It just takes time………….sigh! So I may or may not end up working on a leaf series and I may or may not have a ‘circle fabric’ project to work on.

It may be time to knit a sweater!

Nothing doing….

Haven’t been doing anything productive for several days, so I really don’t have a thing to show you!

Did some driveway hockey over the weekend, as well as a real grandson game.

And spent time doing this

while the car was getting serviced and then some more of the same when I got home!

This is not a week that I am feeling motivated to get a lot done. I have my guild workshops and meeting this weekend so I am prepping for that. However, this morning’s weather is telling us there will be a snowstorm this weekend! Sheesh! No snow for the whole winter so far and it has to come THIS weekend. Yuck!

Well, we shall see what happens. In the meantime, I have to go out to lunch with friends and attend a couple of evening meetings and mostly be lazy. I may even squeeze in a nap or two. I’ll work hard next week………..

 

Working on what to work on

Spent some time tooling around the internet, trying to decide on a concentration to study, but still not quite there. There are some projects hanging around the studio that have to be finished, so trying to get at those while thinking about other things!

This is finished and ready to be mounted. Of course, I had to paint up a canvas and wait for the paint to dry…tick tock tick tock tick tock! I have decided to change the title that it had while being constructed (The Light Cannot Be Constrained) to the meaning of the symbol that I found for the center–The Light That Makes You Gasp. That phrase struck a real chord with me.

And I had too much paint so I had to use it up. It doesn’t go back in the tube, or in the jar if you mix a custom color! I grabbed a piece of fabric and some alphabet stencils and printed some dark letters.

My friends Chet and Jan have a commission piece that I’m working on, too. I showed you the planned out major stitching areas (which is unusual for me, for sure!) and here it is all cleaned up with straight lines and ready to go.

It’s sometimes a pain to remove the paper, but  it’s still waaaaay better for me than marking up a quilt top. I never have the danger of non-removeable marks this way.

I’ll probably spend some time on the internet again today, visually exploring, but I want to get more of the quilting done on this piece, too.

No deadlines is strange, but wonderful!

My happy place…

Background beading is boring! I wanted an instant gratification project to offset that slow and boring stuff, so I headed to the studio and grabbed up a couple of the little pieces that I put together while on vacation. I decided that I would combine them rather than make 2 smaller pieces. Quick and easy, right? Actually, yes it was!

And then the ‘bright idea’ kicked in and I decided to place the piece on a large background. I pulled fabrics and played for well over an hour, and it’s always so much fun to be reminded of what you have in your stash. And when I finally did make a selection, it was hand dyed with lots of visual texture and I wrestled with orientation for a while!

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Sooooooo, I got that settled and ready for stitching and you’d think it would be go-go-go. But nooooooo! I had to pull more fabrics for a backing and that led to more fabric discoveries and time wasting.

I had such a delightful afternoon!

In the end, though, I got my little quilt put together and ready to stitch.

Even got a little decorative stitching on it before I spray basted. See that little decorative edge around it? I’ll show you how I did that on tomorrow’s blog.

Maybe not instant gratification, but pretty darn enjoyable!

Winding up…or is it down?

It’s kind of hit or miss around here as far as studio work goes. I took some final photos of work after sleeves and labels, but not sure I ever posted them for you. And if I did, well, here they are again!

Renovations 28 x 29

Mountain Sunset 17 x 25

Fall Fire 15 x 26

Calliope

And I may have found a stone to use for the focal point in the one I set aside!

Now to get that silver bail off and decide how I am going to attach the stone to the piece. Shiny and bright and I think just right!

My Knot Even Quilters group is working on a new challenge. We talked and talked and made so many suggestions and I think we finally worked our way around to an idea that will work! Fall leaves on a black and white background.

This is my attempt at the concept, even though I don’t need it for a few weeks. My friend Gayle said that she calls this kind of work ‘procrastination work’ and I have called it ‘avoidance work’ because I’m avoiding what I should really be doing!

Graphic, improv and simple to execute. Then I laid on the oddball collection of leaves I have accumulated through several projects.

I really think this can work!

Did I tell you that I had a few pieces sell over the weekend? That means a slight adjustment to what goes to which gallery for the upcoming shows and the Artisan Showcase here. Administration duties, cleaning and organizing for the next week!

Good thing we have Halloween in there for some fun before the show! My favorite holiday–looking forward to it.

 

Mountain fun

Most of these pictures are from the top of Bell Mountain, which now has a steep, paved road to the top, with a nice little parking lot and an observation tower. When my family first started coming to this area, it was a dirt road and a steep climb. I’m glad we are doing it the easy way now!

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Looking forward to our next hike…whether it’s high up in the hills or down in a deeply shaded valley!