Friday, December 12, 2014

Week in Review 2014 - 12/12

Tips, Thoughts and Techniques:

Poinsettia tutorial is available on Lori Kennedy's
Inbox Jaunt.
If you live in the northern hemisphere my thoughts this week will be timely. If you are in the southern hemisphere, perhaps you can bookmark them for six months hence. In the past I would be currently kicking, pulling and dragging myself through this time of year when there is more dark than light. Now toss in the fact that most days in Wisconsin are overcast so that the sky reads the color of a mourning dove. Finally add in the hype and hyperactivity of the holidays and it is easy to succumb to depression. This year is different. My husband discovered the SlimStyle 65W LED lightbulb. He likes it for its energy efficiency. I love how it floods my studio with brilliant daylight. The initial expense feels on the extravagant side, but between the energy savings and emotional boost this is one luxury I can highly recommend investing in. 
My first mixed media piece made
during the year long course of LifeBook 2014.

Here is where I placed my energy this week:

1) Night Vision - (Due January 31, 2015)

The final mixed media piece made as
part of LifeBook 2014
a) Finish blind stitching the frog in place - nearly finished.
b) Square up the quilt - Not yet.
c) Start the facing process - Not yet.

2) Free motion quilting practice. - Done 

I debated about whether to take the time to practice my free motion quilting this week. Just as it can be tempting to roll over and go back to sleep versus getting up and exercising, practicing free motion quilting takes discipline. I gave myself a stern talking to and sat down at the machine. I'm so glad I did. Lori Kennedy's Poinsettia motif was just what I needed to put me in the holiday spirit.

Sunrise over Little Lake Butte des Morts
The photo was taken by husband from our balcony. 
3) LifeBook 2014 - Do the assignments. - Done!!

It is time to celebrate. I committed to completing all the weekly assignments in LifeBook 2014 and this week I turned in my final one. It was worth the dedication. I've learned quite a bit about composition, highlights, creating a sense of 3D in 2D work and how to use all kinds of tools and supplies. The growth is apparent when you compare Week 1's piece with Week 50's. 

4) Design the piece to follow Night Vision. - Done!

Sunrise over Little Lake Butte des Morts - deconstructed
The sunrise photo, coupled with my experimentation and play last week have led to my next design to tackle. I have several opportunities that require small exhibition pieces and one must be an abstract. Between the  solo exhibition in Oshkosh and a few other venues all my exhibition worthy work is spoken for. I needed something that would work up quickly. Sunrise over Little Lake Butte des Morts is still in its infancy. A portion of the original photo printed on fabric will be incorporated into the pieced background. Naturally, I will need to do some quilting and finish work. I am optimistic that this piece will be done before 2014 comes to an end.

Family commitments mean that I won't be working in my studio next week. However, the following week I will turn on the lights in the studio and go town. When I do, here is where I plan on focusing my attention:

1) Night Vision - (Due January 31, 2015)

a) Finish blind stitching the frog in place
b) Square up the quilt
c) Start the facing process

2) Free motion quilting practice.

3) LifeBook 2014 - Bind my best mixed media work

4) Sunrise over Little Lake Butte des Morts (due December 31, 2014)

a) Finish the piecing
b) Quilt it
c) Do the finish work
d) Submit it for consideration

I am now linking up to two blogs on Fridays. The first is Nina Marie's Off the Wall Fridays and the second is Free Motion Mavericks.


  1. Replies
    1. Thank you, Maartje. It has been quite a journey to learn a new media this year.

  2. I love the bird with the nest! I almost took the life book last year and wondered if you think it's worth it? I work full time and have 3 dogs to walk so my time is very limited. I'm afraid I won't have time to do the lessons and will feel pressured - that's on the one side but then I see what you are doing and it looks like a lot of fun. I would be very interested to hear your review of the class as a whole.

  3. I love the poinsettia and you are right, it's very Christmassy. Your mixed media work has definitely developed - there is a marked difference between the two pieces you show here. The later one is very appealing.

  4. Hello Gwyned,

    Thank you for the light bulb tip. With the sun setting at about 4.15 pm at the moment I am going slightly bonkers, especially with the rubbish energy saving bulbs foisted on us by the EEC. Once my husband starts his Christmas holidays I am hoping we shall have a serious look at the lighting in our house.

    The FMQ is lovely. It is ages since I did a design radiating from a central point, and your FMQ this week is nudging me closer to doing it again.

    As for the little bird (a blue tit?) and nest, totally gorgeous! I think you have designed a perfect Easter card.

    Thank you for linking up with Free Motion Mavericks!

    Love, Muv