Call for Entries – Digital Alchemy – Juried Exhibition @ International Quilt Market Houston

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My Warhol hot lichen, on sale at Spoonflower, where I go by wordnerd411

Jane Dunnewold is the creative force behind this first ever exploration of how quilters are using digitally printed fabrics from print on demand companies such as Spoonflower.  Of course Spoonflower is the leading company in this groundbreaking field, and they are co-sponsoring the exhibition.  It will premiere at the 2015 International Quilt Market and Festival in Houston this fall.

Jane has put a link to the pdf of the call for entry here.

Details of size, etc. are all on the pdf.  Worth calling out:

Quilts must be made from at least 50% digitally printed fabric.  It is not a requirement that fabric be designed by the quiltmaker, but the designer must be credited.

The other pertinent rule is no online/social media sharing of work in progress until acceptance and rejection notices have been delivered.

Submissions open March 1 to April 5.

Spoonflower turns orders around fast so even if there’s nothing lurking in your stash of too beautiful to cut, you’ve got time to design and order your own fabric — trust me on this, it’s not hard — or just go shopping for other designers’ fabrics.

Since this is for a quilt show (as opposed to bed quilts) you don’t have to confine yourself to cotton.  Spoonflower can print designs onto silk, jersey and now even Minky (think pushing the envelope with soft fuzzy baby blankets in non traditional colours and designs).  Of course quilts have to be quilted and quilting on Minky might be a bit challenging, but interesting.

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Spring Quilt Festival

Finally we are having somewhat spring-like weather here on Vancouver Island although our jackets stayed on throughout our family picnic last weekend.

This is my entry for the Spring Quilt Festival.

It’s just 12″ square, and beaded with vintage beads from Austria (among others).

The cut-and-slash style has developed from a workshop I took eons ago from John Willard

It’s similar to my Geode, but on a smaller scale.  For ages I’ve been talking about working smaller, blah, blah, blah, but the impetus to actually do this was the upcoming Artists in Motion at the Empress Show I’m going to be in, for which I need a body of pieces to sell, especially as we’re all donating 20 percent of our sales to the Canadian Red Cross for Japanese earthquake relief.

Knowing that my work will be displayed alongside painters and photographers I quizzed Dale MacEwan about how to mount them on artist’s canvas, which I think is very appropriate for this size of piece, what do you think?

The painterly fabric is Paintcubes, designed by Ormolu, a.k.a. Jay Trolinger from Spoonflower, so you too can get it!  The orange is my own hand-dyed.

Am so looking forward to the online Festival and the chance to see what everyone else is doing.


Just Magic Challenge

The local fibre arts group I belong to that meets at Satin Moon decided to set ourselves monthly challenges this year to keep things interesting.

The challenge for January was anything starting with J, which one member dubbed the J-Cloth Challenge.  Here’s my finished piece, well finished except for the hanging sleeve.  The centre medallion is a sketch I made in the fall in Melanie Testa’s drawing challenge.  Thanks to Spoonflower it’s now on fabric and you can even buy it!

I considered beading this, but Young Sprout greatly admires it so I think I’ll leave it child proof at least for a couple of years.  Plus, his last name is different than mine and it’ll be cool to be able to say “Just Magic, in the collection of Mr. Young Sprout.”

This detail shows Dale MacEwan’s sunpainted fabric. It’s the pale pink and green in the middle between the green batik and my red and green shibori made in Susan Purney Mark’s class.

Combinations of red and green fascinate me.  It’s often found in nature from rhubarb and red leaf lettuce to geraniums, yet not exploited that much by artists for some reason, nor in decoration.  Maybe people think it’s too Christmassy?  What do you think?  Can those apparently overdone combos like orange and black or pink, red, and purple be revamped into something that doesn’t scream “Boo” or “Goo”?

More lines, two steps forward, one step backward

after missing a couple of days in the challenge preoccupied with Spoonflower designing and ordering I got back into it and experimented more with the ruling pen.  Everything I’ve done is in the Flickr group under “wordnerd411.”

 

This morning I finally got the pen beak open to the width that suits me and the acrylic ink, mid way through this doodle:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The “good bits” are from after and the crummy bits are from before.

 

Then I decided to use the pen in my sketchbook, practice stars and writing, and although it would be nice if this were on cloth, I’m actually quite pleased with it:

The step backward is that I had the house to myself, did the drawing, washed everything and put it away and went on my merry way making more assembled fabric and listening to jazz.  Family members came home and “You’ve been using that stuff again!”  Like, I’ve never heard that line before!

Although to me the acrylic ink has only a trace smell, it apparently hangs around the house and is bothersome.

So now I can either use ink on paper at a cafe (using cloth would be difficult because of stablizing) OR use a Pigma pen on cloth at home OR try Setacolor on cloth at home and see whether the odour is detectable.  Setacolor is basically acrylic and to me has a smell but not a smell that bothers me.  We’ll see, I like the thought of being someone who sits in a cafe sketching but things have a way of not turning out like  they do in my imagination.

Vote early, vote, vote, vote for me!

It’s okay, I’m not on Idol or anything, but my toile fabric is on Spoonflower.  There’s a contest this week and I urge everyone to go vote for this:

You can vote for as many of the designs in the contest as you want, BUT you can only vote once.  So do it now!

This image was made from a photo of a bouquet from an admirer, which I processed through dumpr as a line sketch, then further cleaned up in Paint, then at Spoonflower changed the colours from black and gray to shades of green.

Deconstructed Screen Printing Workshop

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Just one of the fabulous fabrics I worked on at the Susan Purney Mark workshop on deconstructed screen printing on Saturday.  This had been previously rolled up with bubble wrap and dyed in a baggie.

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This started life as sunprinting with Setacolor Transparent red and green (well okay, it started life as unbleached cotton, if you wanna be pedantic).  At the last moment before I laid it under the screen, I had the thought to use the “wrong” side of the fabric with slightly lighter shades of the original paint, and I believe it’s more effective because of that.

Susan was gamely teaching this technique to two of us, and other low-immersion dyeing techniques to the other three students.  We were all learning from each other, which is a hallmark of any great learning experience (and so much discouraged in formal education, sadly).  Click here to see Susan’s account and photos of us hard at play!

The other student who was taking screen printing used the wrong side of her fabric.  Then she made a round screen with a strong horizontal line, and by making multiple prints achieved a landscape effect.  Riffing from that, I made my round screen with landscape in mind.  However, looking at it you would never guess:

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I’m appealing for help here, folks: What are they? I can’t NOT see faces here, but which critter?

For some reason Saturday was mostly a red day for me, but I did a couple of non-red pieces:
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This is a screen print using soy wax as the resist medium. I’m pleased with the way the turquoise and peach combined. This piece is coming dangerously close to “too beautiful to ever cut or sew.” However Spoonflower provides a way to preserve these designs so that there could always be more.  Will post more later about Spoonflower.

By the way, the colour used in the workshop was Procion dyes thickened with sodium alginate.

Theme Thursday

The Emperor and Empress of Japan were in Victoria recently, which was generally exciting and caused a lot of media attention.  The Empress studied tanka poetry under a master writer before her marriage and has written critically acclaimed tankas.

I looked up Japanese poetry on Wikipedia, and from there found this link to  rengas written in English – a fascinating group artform.  Maybe we could write our own hypertext, who knows?  I’m still reading Riding White Roads.

For a fascinating YouTube video of hundreds of mandalas, click here.

And for fabriholics, go to Spoonflower.  This is an awesome service that lets you print fabric of your own design and order yardage.  At least one textile designer whose interview appears on the webpage had yardage printed there and used it for a portfolio that she shopped around to fabric companies.  She now has a fabric collection in production!

Last night I stayed up into the wee small hours just playing around with some of my jpg images (nothing whose copyright belongs to someone else, of course!).  The colour editing was educational because particularly with photos you can’t always tell what colours are really there.  But don’t take my word for it, go play!  Oh, the possibilities are just endless!