Thursday, May 27, 2021

We're still not meeting in person, although we're getting close.  But Zoom does have its advantages.  We had a wonderful meeting yesterday with a presentation by Sandra Mollen.  Her topic: Rock, Water, Reflection.

Sandra showed us a variety of beautiful quilts she has created using rocks, water, and reflection. She broke her presentation into four sections: Photos, Fabric, Process, and Machine Quilting.

The first category was Photos: There are many ways to search for a suitable photograph online: Facebook Pixabay, social media, or websites. Sandra stressed that you must always get permission in writing from the photographer in order to use it as your own subject matter, unless you are using a service like Pixabay or Shutterbox and then you need to check to make sure it is copyright free.  Or if you are confident in your own photography skills, you can use your own photos. Once you have decided on a photo, there are many methods to modify or enhance your subject in preparation for your artistic interpretation, three of which are: Photoshop, Artisto, and Photo Reflection—Water Effect which is her main choice.

Fabric choice was Sandra’s second topic. Her go-to’s are batiks and her own hand-dyes. She showed several of her luscious hand-dyed fabrics and batik over-dyes that she uses. She also has a great stash of commercial fabrics that work in tandem with her own fabrics. In addition, to get just the right dimension/shading/color, Sandra enhances her fabrics with inks and paints, specifically Tsukeniko inks and pens. She prefers the inks over paints as they do not change the hand of the fabric.

Category three was Process. Her method is to find an image and get it enlarged to the size of the finished quilt (she uses Vistaprint). And make sure to copy the photo in color. Next, trace the shapes, cut them out, and choose a starting point and go for it! It’s just that easy…for her!!

Sandra’s final category was Machine Quilting. She showed close-ups of her quilting, which she does on her trusty Bernina, and the quilting is as detailed as her landscape (or animal). Choosing the correct batting is an important element, depending on how tightly you plan to quilt your scene. And planning out your quilting in advance is essential for overall success. Her go-to batting for water in particular is Thermore as it is thin enough to ensure her quilts will lay flat when finished. Wool batting is used if she wants more loft.

After this fabulous presentation, we are all now ready to start our own landscape or animal portrait using some of these techniques. Thank you, Sandra, for sharing your well-honed skills with us. Your work is beautiful and you are truly an inspiration.

Show & Tell

The Mother Weeps by Tracy Visher 

Artist Statement:  I have read and seen much information about the melting of the ice caps and glaciers and the impact of this activity on the rise of ocean waters around the globe.   This was my way of expressing my concern about global warming. I used batik fabrics, metallic threads, Inktense ink blocks, hot fix crystals, cotton batting.  I challenged myself to try to depict the brightness of sun and the cold of water and the ice. As the ice edges have melted and softened, it was a challenge to show that but still have translucency and a feeling of the frigid temperatures.