Tuesday, 29 March 2011

Beading and journal covers

I'm thoroughly enjoying the beading course with Lisa Walton - and this week have added more to the surface of the journal cover. I did a HUGE amount of work on the sampler piece of fabric - and somehow in between tidying up after 2QAQ and Mark the Pest Control Guy arriving yesterday - I can't find it. Looked everywhere - in all the usual and unusual places - and there's not even a vibe that I'm getting warmer. That said, the studio is incredibly neat and looks like a real professional lives there.  I did comment to the WMBM  when I got home this evening that the house is just so beautiful and clean to come home to. He reminded me that it was always looks like this when I am away travelling. I'm still thinking about that one.

Update: Found it just, on the pinboard. Which probably says it needs a bit more "ooomph" if I could walk by it 10 times and not have it catch my eye ....

Saturday, 26 March 2011

2QAQ March meeting and SmartArts

SmartArts sharing their many  talents
We had a terrific meeting @ Wellers Hill Bowls Club today - and shared the marvellous efforts of the SmartArts group from Redlands. Loads of laughs and sharing of ideas and so much more - it's always one of the highlights of my month!  Next month we're making Quilts4London   - the project that's going to provide a pennant for every Olympian and Para-Olympian at the London Olympics in 2012. Can't wait to see what we come up with ...

Friday, 25 March 2011

SotAQ11 and 2QAQ 2-morrow

In the very beginning .....
Congratulations to all the art quilters who were juried into the State of the Art Quilt 11 (SotAQ11) and I can't wait to see all the quilts together at the Brisbane Textile Festival in June. Thank you Barbara Macey and for Barbara's comments that will be helpful for next year's efforts. Well done to everyone - and I'll be posting a full picture of "Journey to Quilt @ 30000 feet" once the show opens. Looking back at the early pics I am reminded  not of the satisfaction of finishing the piece, but learning to work through the unknown and making connections on different levels. It is a "changing perspectives" quilt and the SotAQ process has certainly helped make positive changes to mine. And now to pack for 2QAQ tomorrow - please join us if you can @ the Wellers Hill Bowls Club, Esher Street from 1pm!

Blue Sky Mornings of Autumn

My favourite time of year is autumn and in our part of the world, summer is at last giving way. An early morning appointment saw me heading out an onto the Cunningham Highway ... and across Churchbank Weir to avoid roadworks and the Mutdapilly Music Festival early birds. Rather serendipitous and I found these gorgeous quilting lines in the muddy banks. then home again ... the slow way.

Thursday, 24 March 2011

Beading with Lisa Walton

Last night I started beading with Lisa Walton's online course - the impact and improvement on my work has been immediate - and we're only into Week 1.  The course is a mix of video and course notes - perfect for a visual learner like me - and timely before I get into some serious embellishment of  the nests I've been making each week in readiness for a future exhibition. Thanks again Lisa.

Tuesday, 22 March 2011

The Flood is finished!

I finally got the binding and sleeve completed for one of my flood quilts - and it was such a calming process compared to the frenetic way in which the piecing took place. Quilting as therapy perhaps? Certainly a sanity enhancer!

Journal cover and retreating

Three days of bliss @ Boonah and I managed to complete a few UFOs and create a journal cover for Module 2 of Playways.
Loads of fun with new friends and such a creative group - inspirational on many levels. Can't wait for the next retreat - only 12 more Saturdays .....and I'm already planning a series of works from our upcoming trip to New Zealand!

Wednesday, 16 March 2011

Conference Challenges and tea towels

I've been at the Brisbane Exhibition and Conference Centre these past two days listening to some incredible tales and visioning about rebuilding and resilience after the flood and cyclones. It is impressive to see just how much has been achieved already - and sobering to look at how much work is ahead of us all. During a break, I visited the Ergon stand and souvenired this tea towel, part of the goodies package promoting energy savings! So I'm quilting it into a wall hanging for future exhibitions and stands! I hear a group of ladies up near Tambo are making a dress from said tea towels .. I do feel a challenge, of sorts, coming on .... and I'm off to finish this little project tonight.

Sunday, 13 March 2011

Who goes there?

Something about this door is attractive. I think it's the lines, the repetition the sage grey and white ... but what got me interested was that this door belongs to the electorate office of a politician. I'm wondering who goes there?
Up a nearby detour and the sun was beating upon this empty arc of shops, and again I had to wonder, who goes there?
Not some ancient stone carving, nor exquisitely arranged art piece but the most alive thing in the dark place. Once upon a time, a tile had gone there.

True Grit

Beaudesert and Ted

Meet Ted. Ted was shopping with Master in Beaudesert last Thursday and was terribly uncomfortable at being addressed, by name, while he was meant to be guarding the ute. He refused to make eye contact and stared into the distance for Master while I backed up to take a photo of something else. The only give away was the top half of his tail sweeping the dirt in a casual, haphazard way that said "I hear ya but I'm ignorin' ya".
My real target was the stone sculpture gracing the middle of the main street at the Art Gallery. I was tempted to do some rubbing, then thought better of it.

Saturday, 12 March 2011

Out of the box

In one of the shoe boxes in the cupboard behind the door beside the quilting table I found these ... various blocks for a sampler that I'd started some time ago and never put together. For various reasons they had stayed in the box.  All it took was a little bit of this, a little bit of that, some fudging and "that's-why-it's-in-the-box" moments and sometime tomorrow there will be a new little quilt with Lazareth like features. There might even be a better picture!
Today the WMBM was busy with kids so I took the opportunity to get back to basics. Get back to beyond the basics really as I drafted a block, made the templates, added the seam allowance, cut the pieces with scissors and pieced it together by hand. An absolute first for me to hand piece - something I've always avoided because it was going to be "too hard". I was reminded of Judith Baker Montano's motto: "only believe half of what you think".

Friday, 11 March 2011

Treading on beauty

One of the best things about having a really rude cardiologist (as opposed to the new and really nice one) is that you can spend a few minutes outside with the camera in the carpark debating whether you suck it up (the rudeness and the god complex) or stick it up (and attempt an adult discussion about the value of listening, respect and how his 70% statement of accuracy does not inspire confidence. I opted for the latter approach).
They say success has a thousand fathers while failure is an orphan. The feedback didn't go as well as I'd intended so Orphan Ali and camera headed off to the carpark to seek solace and beauty underfoot. Leaves, roots and nuts - treading on beauty.

Sunday, 6 March 2011

A tribute to Y-Fronts

Go figure. I spent most of today making a pennant for Quilts4London that I could take to the April 2QAQ meeting - and use as a workshop example. What I ended up with (and how I didn't see this before WMBM pointed it out is beyond me) is a tribute to Y-Fronts.. Definitely NOT going to London ... but may well make it to 2QAQ for a giggle. Can anyone imagine receiving this on a stick with  two dangling tassels after breaking the world record for the 100 metre sprint??? What was I thinking?

2QAQ April meeting and Quilts4London pennants

The old girl guide is coming out in me now ... be prepared! So in readiness for the 2QAQ meeting in April I'm getting ready for our pennant workshop supporting quilts4london where every Olympian and Para Olympian will receive a pennant made by a quilter or textile artist from across the globe. Imagine that. Some 16,000 pennants are needed. The wood turners of the world (not excluded by quarantine I presume) are being asked to make hanging rods, and the braid and cord people of the world are also working on tassels and the like .... the textile and timber Olympics perhaps? Perusing the gallery of the 600+ pennants already received I came across this distinctly Australian contribution - by our own Jan McPike, a member of 2QAQ. Titled "Australian Red Gum" the pennant comprises hand printed gum leaves, machine quilted and hand beaded. It is another beautiful piece by Jan. Back to preparations for the April meeting ...

Saturday, 5 March 2011

Pocket challenge from The Thread Studio

Dale Rollerson is running a pick-a-pocket challenge through The Thread Studio. Apart from the "why not?" aspect, it seemed like another great way to stretch - so I gave myself a 6 hour time frame - and spent the first two going "nup" "no" and "oh dear"  and a variant of "blessed bovine" ... before finding a piece of fabric that lent itself to the double challenge! Using Madeira soluble a "shadow" dragonfly was created in black thread (actually it took two attempts)  and it was stitched to the pocket front - as if the source of light was coming from  the other side. The orange silk thread used to secure it was intended to diffuse the sheer black but it may just end up looking like really bad applique! Beads for berries and some green silk to define leaf veins .. add a 3-D leaf and butterfly. Lots of fun and anyone who would like to participate has until March 25 to create some pocket magic.(And apologies: the rules preclude me from sharing the finished pocket for now so here's the one from Dale's website)

Friday, 4 March 2011

Gulf Streams - a new series

The Studio Art Quilt Association (SAQA) is an organisation where you can take as much or as little as you need - quite literally. About the middle of 2010 it felt like I was on a launch pad, engines burbling and ready for lift off. These days I'm in outer space, tethered lovingly to the ground by a few people and organisations whose influence, input and encouragement  have guided my professional development as an artist. SAQA's mentoring and visioning programs have offered me the support and tools to transition from "passionate quilter" to "professional artist". Part of that professional development relates to the creation of bodies of works, and Gulf Streams is a new series that will be my focus over coming weeks... and months. The lino cut was inspired by  my time working with the Mornington Island community in the Gulf of Carpentaria. The cliffs on one part of the island meet the swirling waters of the Gulf and the debris of washed up offerings lies on the upper most tidal mark. Dugong, turtle and crocodile inhabit the fast moving waters. Exquisitely large snakes frequent the warm road shoulders in the late afternoons.  Mornington, Bentink and Sweers Islands are some of the most beautiful and unmolested places on earth and I hope the yet-to-be created series goes some way to doing that beauty justice.

Wednesday, 2 March 2011

Tea Bag Lamp

Light of my studio
 One of my all time favourite things is this lamp, made using black cotton and recycled tea bag papers -  by little sister and acquired by moi at least 10 years ago. Some of the papers are heavily stained with tannins - reddish, pinkish, brown - and others are the result of people who dunk just a few times to vaguely colour the water. Tea bag papers have had a special place ever since - appearing with Angelina fibres in post cards or sprinkled with dyes and inks ... for use in some other project. They've been torn into strips and found their way into bowls or nests, laying quietly beside kitchen string and silk threads of unknown origins.

Power off ....

Tuesday, 1 March 2011

Storm front @ 31 degrees

More site lines that are sight lines. Chocolate earth, the black soil of the Fassifern, smells good enough to eat. Not. This is seriously tempting for stitch lines. Sometimes in the rush of "get-to-work-mornings" it is nice to stop. A shop front. A wall of bricks.A paddock freshly ploughed.
Paddock clearing this afternoon ahead of the storm coming up from the New South Wales border region, about 200 kilometres across and looking like we will catch its edge.
And here it comes, pushing towards the coast, sending rumblings our way. It is still 31 degrees on the verandah and time to log off!

And the recipient of a TEXTILE magazine subscription is .....

Lexie ... I really hope you enjoy TEXTILE for the next twelve months! Thanks for leaving a comment !