Posts Tagged ‘inspiration’

The Inspiration of Landscape Forming Processes

Saturday, July 25th, 2015

Many years ago, I found inspiration in volcanic activity which resulted in two quilts with design lines reflecting the ballooning and layering of molten lava emerging under the sea, and both  carrying the title ‘Pahoehoe’  as this particular resulting landform is known by earth scientists.  (with apologies for the quality of 20-year old  technology photos)

Pahoehoe

Pahoehoe  #1,   1995,  80cm H x 70cm W  is irregular shaped and photographed against a black background.

Pahoehoe 2

Pahoehoe #2  1997  is 12cmH x 13cm W and hangs against a sand coloured wall in our home in Australia.  I do need to photoshop this pic and remove the blue-ish background, because those patches of blue in the middle of the quilt are actually faced holes, openings.  I should have named it ‘Tricky’, perhaps.

Browsing around Pinterest,  as one is want to do with saturday morning coffee, I was thrilled to find this beautiful silk wall hanging on the artist Petra Voegle’s blog site   It was interesting to see that we’d found inspiration in the same natural force process.

Pele by Petra Vogle  blog

Titled “Pele” (from her Hawaiian Symbols series)  48″ x 17″  (c) Petra Voegtle.    She writes about the significance of Pele, the god, not the soccer playing legend – so click the link and go visit this lovely site. (which has lain dormant for some time, however)  There are some intriguing detail shots if you follow the link below the pic on her page.  She calls her process ‘silk carving’  but from her description, for my quilter readers she’s talking about a whole cloth quilt.  It’s stunning, perfectly capturing the drag and flow of the lava’s movement out across the landscape.

The Bungle Bungles Series Continues

Thursday, July 9th, 2015

first seam of a new project

After all the fabric auditioning, consideration of scale of the units for this piece, there was a satisfying moment doing the first seam of a new project – all keen piecers of fabric know that feeling!    And, even though I was certain that the block/gold pin spot fabric will  be an important part of this particular quilt,  to test that theory I took the time to consider another option –

choices to be made

 

– and now think for this work I must make a choice.  It’s either the horizontal lines will all be black/gold spot, or the rock units will be striped with other rock unit fabric.   And while I’m considering that,  I’ll have a spot of lunch and a total change of activity, outside, as it’s a beautiful day.

 

I’ve just bought a new gold paint for the hand made dots I plan to put on the work I’m just finishing.  Samples are so important – so I tested it of course on a scrap of the background fabric – set with the iron, and it is really permanent.  I also bought a couple of cheap paint brushes and cut the ends off to use to make round dots….. and I especially like the fine ones on the RHS.    Fiddling with samples always suggests more than one idea, and I like the gold brush strokes against the black – there’s some real potential there….

gold paint sample

 

 

There’s Nothing Like a Bit of Scrap Bag Diving!

Sunday, May 24th, 2015

I keep a large bag of small scraps., principally offcuts from projects.  When I’m clearing up after finishing something, anything worth keeping goes into the large clear plastic bag on the floor beside my sewing table.  The bag being clear helps, just a little, when I’m looking for something in particular, as I was this morning.  I needed more earthy colours to add more shapes to the current Bungle Bungles piece I’m working on, you may remember.

earthy colours

Relatively speaking, piecing like this uses as much fabric in seams as shows on the front.  When I’m doing pieced work, I use a large variety of different fabrics in small amounts; and nothing is cut out in advance, its all cut freehand and sewn seam by seam in the technique known as ‘improvisational piecing’. The Ebb&Flow quilts in particular are assembled in this way with a lot of scrap bag diving along the way –

SCRAP BAG  Ebbs and Flows

 

 

Needing more of some fabrics including some of those little one-offs that add spice, I took a deep breath and began scrap bag diving – well, turned it all out on my table, and started sorting though, selecting things I can use, and putting most of it back into the bag.

SCRAP BAG archeology

SCRAP BAG  save all yellows

I carefully save all offcuts of every yellow, partly because although I rarely buy any yellow fabric, a touch of a yellow value here and there in every piece of art, whatever the medium, is vital, literally giving life to the work. The more valuable the fabric/colour, the smaller amount I am prepared to save…. and the smallest piece of a strong almost acid yellow I came across this morning was barely 3cm x 1cm!

SCRAP BAG  save yellow

This piece of yellow with airbrushed red and blue is gradually running out – so its very precious. I have about  3cm x 4cm left of a fat 1/4 bought years ago from Deb Lunn in Denver.

 

SCRAP BAG good grief

This morning I realised scrap  bag diving is rather like archeology, digging down though the past – and like archeology, it throws up some puzzles, of which this is one!  I don’t remember putting it together, but these are definitely my fabrics, and all sewn together by me, for sure – but why?  I certainly don’t remember anything in which this sequence appeared.  It’s a nice yellow in that striped print, though….

 

SCRAP BAG elegant snippets

I really don’t remember the work these offcuts came from – they were trimmed off after the gold stitching along each place the cream meets the print…. quite elegant, really, and I may do something more in these gentle neutrals soon. With gold stitching/quilting.

 

 

 

SCRAP BAG extra units CynthiaSCRAP BAG raided block

I often work in repeat units – and always make a few extra to get the best possible result when juggling them at the assembly stage. From ‘Cynthia’s Quilt’ top, and ‘New Directions’ below, come these ‘spares’ which have useful sized pieces – and the raiding has already begun on the lower ‘block’.  The fabric in that block terminating in the triangle/arrow head is destined for salvaging for use in the next set of strip assemblies I need to put together; I only ever had a small amount of it and I’m down to last few square centimetres…

 

SCRAP BAG one glove

And finally, much to my delight, virtually at the bottom of the heap, I found one of the pressure gloves I’ve been missing for a while, since last spring really….so then I had to tip it all out again and go through more carefully to find the other.   And sure enough, it was there.  The weather’s getting cool again, and some days now my hands are feeling a bit in need of pressure on the arthritic joints – so this find was timely and welcome!.

New Bungle Bungles Work – Questions Arising

Thursday, April 9th, 2015

Well I’ve pieced shapes and set them in, and things have gone together well – all finished and bound with sleeve on the back.

 I won’t show it all to you, but just enough to give an idea of an issue I have to decide on –  whether to go with dots, or not.

Are they a bit of a cliche?  Is their use cultural misappropriation? Are they just a readable reference to Aboriginal art?  Will they offend anyone?  On the left side is a segment of the quilt top design, and on the right you can see a strip that came from trimming to size, and it was very useful to use to paint some gold dots on to get an idea of what the overall effect would be:

bunglebungles 2 copy web testing

 

Although I have decided how to deal with it, if you would like to give your opinion please feel free!

The Bungle Bungles of Australia’s Kimberley

Monday, March 9th, 2015

Known as “Purnululu” to the indigenous people of the region, and later known by Europeans as  “The Bungle Bungles”, these ancient landforms are located in a remote region of Australia’s north west known as The Kimberley.    It’s hard to get to, distances are long and rugged travelling, and though very expensive, flying over it is a very popular way for some to experience it.  I haven’t been there yet though I have travelled over a lot of the Kimberley region, including all the towns mentioned on this location map.

The Kimberley map

The Bungle Bungles have long been depicted in Aboriginal art from the area, and the formation has become a familiar motif in collectable art  in formats ranging  from paintings to Tshirts, graphic logos and 3d sculptures.

I’ve been inspired myself.   Back in 1993 I finished a quilt called Nightfall In The Bungle Bungles  155cm x 148cm part of which is shown here on the left. When finishing off this quilt, I went to a workshop by Nancy Crow at which I learned the basics of improvisational piecing which changed the whole way I piece fabric.  If I’d left making  NITBB until a month later, it would not have looked like a row of Egyptian pyramids 😉

BBungles Kimberley 2 collage blog The idea stayed with me and in 2002 I had another go, and the result, above right, was Kimberley 2, 70cm x 110cm.  

 

Wherever you go in this area it is impossible not be be impressed with distance, remoteness and dramatic scenery including waterfalls gracefully falling over over towering cliffs into the clear refreshing pools at their base.  Such cliffs inspired Kimberley 2, 1996,  110cm h x  70cm w, an irregular shaped peice photographed against a black background.

kimblerley

 

This morning I came across a call for entries for a textile art competition to be called ‘Kimberley Dreaming’ to be shown in Australia later in the year.  The required format is 30cm x 30cm.  I have some ideas gelling and enough time to put one or two into effect before the closing deadline – so I’m off to dig through my scrap bag for suitable fabrics to begin putting something together.

 

 

 

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