Monday, March 29, 2021

 On March 23rd, we had a very enlightening and entertaining presentation by our own: Tracy Visher.

Armed with not one but two glue guns, she played the infamous Annie Oakley, disguised as an art quilter, for almost an hour and hit her targets right on every time!

She demonstrated several ways to use a glue gun to make art that can be transferred to cloth. Basically, you draw out your “pattern” on parchment paper, let it sit and cool for a few minutes, pull it off the parchment and voila! You have your own stencil to use as you please. But you don’t actually place the stencil on your fabric and leave it there as a design element (perhaps you could??). First you need to “frost” it with paint and then transfer the painted image onto the fabric—or as Tracy pointed out, place the fabric over the painted glue stencil for a more accurate rendition of your design. And later, you can add to the stencil if it seems that something is missing or askew. Just use that glue gun again and draw more marks on the original glue glob.

Tracy showed us several methods of getting color onto the stencil: 1) Maribou fashion spray, 2) Acrylic paint brushed onto the stencil, 3) Inktense blocks (be sure to liquify beforehand), and 5) alcohol inks—which were a flop.

Other options for adhering the painted stencils to fabric were:

1)      create your own wood or lucite block for ease and repetitive use of said stencil;

2)      glue the stencil on to a cheap ceramic tile (which makes it reuseable);

3)      adhere your stencil to a glass bottle and paint it from there;

4)      4 place stencils on the bottom of a muffin tin for a series;

5)      You can also make a rubbing with shiva paintsticks or crayons (make sure to let them dry adequately).

So much fun. And So many ideas to play with! Thanks, Tracy.



Thursday, February 25, 2021

It was a beautiful day yesterday for our monthly meeting and Show & Tell.  We had a program for this meeting, facilitated by MAQ members Tracy Visher and Shelli Fried. It was an exploration of sources of inspiration and the link to creativity. Research was shared that reinforces the understanding that inspiration is a whole body experience. There are things we can do to open ourselves and engage our senses, bodies, hearts, and minds to create the condition for inspiration and creativity to flourish. From the program, here’s a great quote from Katrina Pfannkuch: “The only difference in the quality of personal creative expression among any of us is how open or closed we are to allowing creative energy to flow through us, and stepping up to own the gifts that are uniquely ours.”

We had 3 quilts to share for Show & Tell:


"Challenge Accepted" by
Tracy Visher
31.5" x 34.5"

"Challenge Accepted" closeup.


Tracy took a class during “Craft Napa” from Irene Roderick called “Dancing With the Wall”. It was her first improv quilt class.  Materials used were Bella solid cotton. cotton/wool batting.

Her two weakest quilting skills are piecing and quilting. That explains a LOT about why she is an art quilter vs traditional quilter, and ergo the name of the quilt! She was intrigued by the sample Irene showed for the class in its description. Tracy had been interested in improv and had re-read some books she had, so she was seriously thinking about diving in. This pattern seemed more “artful” than any improv design she had ever seen. She began the quilt in the class with 2 yds of 2 colors. It became a love/hate thing she just could not stop working on. She decided to quilt every bit of the blue fabric in a spiral design.  She sewed across seams where she felt like it and was able to make what she thought was an interesting second pattern on the quilt surface.

"Legal Eagle" by Stephanie Bennett-Strauss
86" x 94"

"Legal Eagle" closeup

"Legal Eagle" closeup

"Legal Eagle" closeup

"Legal Eagle" closeup

Stephanie made this quilt for her husband of 39 years.  He is an Attorney, and has immensely enjoyed the wildlife around our home in Lake Wildwood. Although he has admired most of my quilts throughout the years, this is the first I have made explicitly for him. He LOVES it! Stephanie is an Art Quilter by nature, following her own whims and the guidance & suggestions that her fabrics give her as she works. Most of her artwork is play, and therefore helps to keep her sane and balanced. Thank you for looking.

She used mostly cottons, pieced, quilted free-hand on her gammil Longarm; the Cougar image by Sherrie Spencer was printed with her permission onto fabric by her inkjet printer, then protected with a sealer.

"Transom" by Michelle Peerson
25" x 25"

"Transom" closeup

This quilt was inspired by a photograph taken by Sherri Lynn Dobric Burke.  It is approximately 25” x 25”.  Michelle loves that it appears so abstract, it is actually the transom, or back of a Chris Craft boat with the reflection in the water. It is printed on fabric and thread painted.