Saturday, July 18, 2009

Chuffed, again

Last Friday was a great day. The weather was lovely, I gardened, got the washing dry on the clothes line, opened windows to air the house, and the birds were singing. Then I got an email to say that my entry into this year's Montana World of Wearable Arts had been accepted! A day for celebration indeed!
This entry is my fourth submission to WOW. I was successful in 2006 and 2007, unsuccessful in 2008, and now success again in 2009. It is not easy getting selected for this prestigious event, especially now that entries come from all around the world. It is certainly becoming a true international event of significance.
My entry this year is in the FOLD section. I am unable to show you this of course because of the rules, but here are my entries in 2006 and 2007. Both are being modelled my daughter-in-law Angela.

The Eye Catcher 2006

Spotty Dotty 2007

And on a totally different subject. I now receive a New Zealand blog called Over the Net and on the Table - more stuff about art than you can shake a stick at it claims. A recent entry was about the Swedish Bunny Project which uses the rabbit as a symbol of subversive activities. It showed the following images which at first glance look very threatening but look again and you will see that the dynamite sticks are carrots! I love it! How do people think of such things.....

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Next Signal Designs

While at the Surface Design Association conference I visited the Merchants Venue (for me who usually has a stall at such events, it was very pleasurable wandering around browsing) and spent time at the stall of Next Signal Designs, owned and operated by Ruthie Powers. I was impressed with these contemporary rubber stamps, and purchased a couple. Below are some samples I have done using the Comb design. I like to mount (using carpet tape) any stamps I make or purchase on to clear perspec which allows for sighting the edge through the perspec thus allowing good registration. I also save small pieces of picture frame glass for the same purpose, but first taping the edges of the glass for safety. The Comb stamp has been secured to a piece of scrap perspec found in a gutter while out walking one day. As one edge was abit rough I have taped them all. I also like to put some sort of marking on the mounting to determine orientation when printing.

The Comb stamp 6cm x 12cm (2.5" x 4.5")

Below are some of my experiments with the Comb stamp. The first couple of images are just some different ways of using the stamp; and the third is a fat quarter.

Simple experiment with Comb stamp...

... and some more

Here I have used a pre-dyed background and created blocks with the stamp in alternating directions. A second colour has been printed over the top in a reverse direction. The colours have been reversed too in some blocks. I also masked circles of freezing paper on the fabric, and then added some stamped rings, green overlaid with white for added interest.

Working in a Series

Among other things, I am currently working on a series of 12 pieces linked because of their uniform size and the same base fabric (silk pongee). Each piece is 22.5cm x 31cm (9" x 12") which is the size of the blank silk screen I am using to work these pieces. Eventually they will hang as a group, four pieces wide, three pieces deep.
And if anyone is thinking that smaller pieces should be 'easier' than larger ones (which are more normal for me), then I would like to inform you that this is not so! Everything takes just as long to think through, prepare, then accomplish. I have now completed the third in the series.
Once again I have used some torn paper resists which I screened with pigment. The pigment is opaque and will often look 'heavy' compared to previous (dyed) applications. So before the pigment had dried (and before heatsetting) I washed the fabric and gave the pigment a light scrub. This removed some of the pigment and left a much more subtle result.

A detail showing the washed pigment application. I like the more transparent result and the outside edge definition

Now finished, detail only. On to the next one now.....

Monday, July 13, 2009

Feeling chuffed

Lovely surprise this week when I received the latest Surface Design Association e-newsletter, followed by the hard copy. On the cover are nine images from the members' exhibition at the recent conference which I attended. Over 200 pieces were displayed in this exhibition so I am delighted to see my piece featured in the centre of the cover of the newsletter. All pieces are 45cm x 45cm (18" x 18").

The SDA newsletter cover, my piece Three Sisters #3 is the centre image.

This last weekend I travelled to Rotorua for a family get-together. It was a great time just blobbing out and enjoying each other's company. On the way there I travelled over the Desert Road in the middle of our North Island and the mountains were stunning. Clear blue sky, crisp air and they seemed so close...

Mount Ngauruhoe

Mount Ruapehu