Friday, December 11, 2015

Week in Review - 12/11

Tips, Thoughts and Techniques:

One thing I've learned to do from
my year focused on mixed media
is start the next piece with the
leftovers at the end of the day.
Judy Warner, my fellow Tsukineko ink experimenter, asked me (and I paraphrase here) "why are your experiments producing such positive results?" I had to think about this for a while. Now, as I compose this blog, I realize the answer is very similar to the one that I give when I am asked "how long does it take you to make a quilt?" The questioner wants the facts. Judy wants to know all the details of tools, set-up, ratio of ink to shaving cream, etc. Those asking the time question want to have the work encapsulated in something easy for them to interpret, such as 100 hours. However, for me the answer is the same for both questions. It isn't the set-up for a particular experiment or the time spent from start to finish on a quilt that produces the results I get. What is key is how I have spent my time leading up to this experiment or that quilt. All those hours making other quilts, taking a year to study mixed media, teaching classes on color, and taking classes on technique all influence the intuitive way I work with something new. Are all my experiments successful? Of course, not. However, and this is key, even the unsuccessful experiments are successful, because it is through failure that we learn.
Not every piece is successful. I tried
adding a single drop of yellow to
blue drops. The yellow is too
dominate and distracting for
my personal taste. This cloth was wet
when I worked on it. I was hoping
for more natural migration of the ink.

I tried printing versus stenciling
on this piece. Then couldn't resist
adding some dot collections with
a stencil.
Remember Night Vision? It was rejected from three exhibitions in a row. What experience has taught me is not to give up. I continued to enter it and this past week it was accepted into the 21st Arts in Harmony exhibit that opens in February in Elk River, MN. Light, Space and Time's online "Animals" exhibit includes Night Vision, too. Both exhibitions are art exhibits as opposed to fiber exclusive exhibitions. Details for both exhibitions may be found on my website.

Here is what I experimented with this week:

I'm in love, LOVE with how this turned out. It was created
by painting multiple layers of ink/shaving cream mixtures.
Each layer was heat set before the next one was added.
My goal with the experiments is to create work that reads
like water. That is why I love this so much. 
 1)   Deconstructed Sunrise #3 - Add sleeves and label - Not yet

The top split sleeve is attached. I have pinned the bottom sleeve to the quilt, but haven't sewn it in place yet.

2) Free motion quilting practice. - Done!

3) Post the number of days I have worked in my studio in 2015 - 103.5/126

4) Experiment with Tsukineko ink - Done!

5) Perform a random act of kindness - Done!

I'm also hoping to capture sea foam. This is my pressing
cloth from all the work I have done. Sometimes
the "accidental" art is the best. :)
The plan was to give myself the month of December to play. That commitment lasted a few days. Then I had one of those eureka moments where I just knew what I absolutely, positively needed to make for my next quilt. It will be a departure into uncharted territory. I'm super excited. This is the absolute best time for me as an artist, when everything seems possible. You've heard of runner's high? I have artist's high. I'll need to reign myself in, though, so that I can focus on the plans for next week which are:

1)   Deconstructed Sunrise #3 - Add sleeves and label

2)  Work on Sea Fever - (Due March 15)

3) Free motion quilting practice.

4) Post the number of days I have worked in my studio in 2015
While my ink experiments were drying I took some
time try out another Whirls and Swirls motif. Not sure
what Tracy calls it, but I have named it
Jacobean Flourish.

5) Experiment with Tsukineko ink

6) Perform a random act of kindness

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. Experimenting and playing is the best. I think it because there is no expectations, at least for me.

  2. I agree everything feeds the creative process to get you where you are now! Fun experiments you have shared!

  3. Congratulations on those acceptances! It's inspiring that your persistence paid off. I agree about "happy accidents". They're the best kind! :-)

  4. Thank you for such an insightful post......we all need to be reminded that it doesn't ''just happen"!!!

    Congrats. on your the exhibit!!!

  5. Yay, Gwyned, on your acceptances! And, thank you for elaborating on your process which I sum up as Experiment, Experiment, Experiment. And, all that experimenting over the year grows and meshes together so when you have an idea, you have the background to begin to play with creating it.

  6. Dogged persistence is your trade mark, Gwyned. Congratulations on getting Night Vision in the exhibition. I love that little frog.

    The experiments are really interesting. I am drawn by the stencilled flowers hiding underneath the white dots. Fab FMQ, too.

    Thank you for linking up with Free Motion Mavericks!

    Love, Muv