I love simplicity in design. It’s not easy to achieve but I always admire when a piece is taken back to the bare essence of an idea. So when announced a challenge by Emily Jo Gibbs, I was intrigued with her style. The instructions were to find a stick or an object such as a paintbrush to be your inspiration. Then, sketch the item and use that sketch to create an applique. Ha! Applique is perfect for another homework assignment. Plus, the simplicity of using a sketch as the design. I have hundreds of sketches that I could use. But I found a stick, and did a sketch of it, including the shadow.

Then I created a pattern for the applique pieces out of tracing paper, chose some hand dyed organza and a linen background.

Here’s the documentation in my sketchbook for Level 3 Stitch class.

Then on to hand stitching while listening to a portion of an online class given by MOMA. I love the simplicity of the piece. A bare bones sketch in applique. As I said, I have loads of sketches that I could recreate this way.

For the MOMA class, the artist featured this week was Barnett Newman. I had never heard of him before and it was interesting to learn about his style. Again, simplicity is evident. His work that he is best known for are his “zips”, the line of yellow oxide down the middle of the painting in a solid colored background. But the “zips” weren’t usually exact and had more complexity to them as you get closer and view the painting at more length. Many of his paintings are really large so that as you get closer, you are engulfed by color. The painting above is done in his style. Acrylic paint on sketchbook paper. I don’t think it quite gives the same impact as it might have on canvas or board. But it was an interesting experiment.

It’s a fun course and now we are studying Willem de Kooning.

Thanks for stopping by and stay safe!


With or Without?

Yesterday I showed you gold leafing on the back of my Stewart Stephenson challenge piece. I put that photo into Photoshop and made a “brush tool” out of the gold leaf bits. I then added that in several layers over the challenge piece photo so I could see what the gold leaf might look like on the front. The gold wouldn’t be in the exact same places or shapes but it would still have the same feel.

So what do you think? With or without? I’m not sure why the gold leaf photo is bigger – it’s from the same original photo. Weird.

Mixed Media Piece for Third Quarter Challenge

Over at the Felting and Fiber Studio, Karen had challenged us to make a mixed media piece that included something fiber, something metal and something in the paint variety. This is definitely not the way I usually work but I had started a stitched piece that I thought would work. I showed you the stitched part last week. It was free motion machine stitched on to a painted fabric background. After it was stitched, I colored in the flowers with Inktense pencils and then wet them down with a water brush to simulate water colors.

Trying WashersThen I started working out how I would add metal. I tried a variety of rusty metal washers but I didn’t really like how they looked. It just looked like I was sticking them on there because I had to add metal.

Adding Rusty WireI liked the addition of this rusty metal wire better. I guess it had a more organic feel to it.

Third Quarter Mixed Media Challenge PieceThen I painted the fabric with a slightly watered down Golden gel medium. I also painted a couple of layers of the gel medium on the wood too. Once that had dried. I use the gel medium straight from the jar (no water added) to glue the fabric to the wood. You can see that the red fabric bled a little bit onto the green background but that didn’t bother me. It took a couple of days to completely dry,

Close up Indian PaintbrushI then stitched the metal piece down to the fabric to hold it in place. I’m happy with the results and I am planning on doing a series of Montana wildflowers like this piece. I also started a second mixed media piece which I’ll show you soon. Thanks Karen – this was a fun challenge!





Final Daily Dose of Fiber

I can hardly believe it but it’s the end of the first quarter and the final day of my Daily Dose of Fiber Challenge. I have really enjoyed the challenge and learned that I need to work on a reliable method of posting while I’m traveling. I guess I’m just not a mobile kind of girl. But I did get a lot accomplished this first quarter. You can see my post about it on the Felting and Fiber Studio.

 Today I laced the print to stitch lichen piece around a card.

And then mounted it to matte board. I probably won’t get a frame for this one as it is quite small, only 3 1/4″ x 4 1/2″. It was a little tougher to lace this one because it had a couple of layers of batting under it so there was a lot of extra layers especially at the corners.

Prep Work for Lacing Around a Card

I was volunteering at Brewfest all day today so I didn’t have much time for fiber. But I did manage to get one of my small pieces ready to lace around a card for presentation. I will lace it up tomorrow and then mount it onto matt board.

 Here’s the front, all pinned and ready to go.

And this is the back. I”ll use the strings to attach the piece to matt board.