Friday, July 29, 2016

Week in Review 2016 - 07/29

A recent photo of my granddaughter,
Mikayla wearing one of her favorite outfits.

Tips, Thoughts and Techniques:

One of the joys of obsessively focusing every free moment on making Siren's Song is that it gives me plenty of time to listen to books. Most of the books I select aren't exactly vaporous but I wouldn't categorize them as weighty, either. I select books for my own enjoyment. Sometimes, like this past week, I stumble upon one worth sharing. I listened to The Art Forger, by B. A. Shapiro. 
Girl in Pink Tutu done in
the style of Jean Dubuffet.
Can you guess my inspiration?

What is it about The Art Forger that grabbed my attention? Well first of all Shapiro has set the novel in Boston, where I grew up and spent the majority of my adult life. Second, one of the side plots is the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum heist. Third, the protagonist is a legitimate art replicator persuaded to forge a painting. It is that final point that gives Shapiro the excuse to discuss the layering of paintings and how paintings are restored and can be forged that is riveting to those who are fascinated by such things. If you read Girl with a Pearl Earring, then you understand the type of insight into painting that I am referring to.

Paul Klee did many color swatch
style paintings to understand how
the position of one color next to another
impacts the colors. I used this exercise
to send a message to Mikayla.
This week, when I wasn't working on Siren's Song, I was creating art projects based on Carla Sonheim's Kids Art Week lessons. Each lesson focused on a different artist. Some I knew, such as Paul Klee and of course Picasso, but others were knew to me, such as Hundertwasser and Motherwell. Studying art, even replicating by masters is common practice amongst artists. It is after studying the masters, that one can breakaway and begin to develop one's own artistic voice. Isn't that what quilters are doing, in a way, when they start by making patterns?

Every princess needs a castle. This one
is based on Hundertwasser's distinctive
layered lines method.
I knew that doing the projects in Kids Art Week would take time from my own studio work. However, I had asked if my grandchildren would be interested in doing it with me. One had expressed an interest. Therefore, there was no way I wouldn't do my part. I made each of my artworks with Mikayla in mind.

1) Create 11 Siren's Song blocks. Came Close.

I actually made 9 more blocks and started 2 more this week. Not bad considering all the "extra" art I crammed in.
2) Free motion quilting practice - No

3) Do some surface design work - No

4) Beware of when I find myself shutting down and find a way to stay open. - Done!

Siren's Song after nine more blocks
were created and positioned on the
design wall.
One of Carla Sonheim's caveats to the students who took her Kids Art Week class is accept the lines as drawn, the paint that drips or any other typical "whoops" moment when making art. She particularly admonishes parents who are guiding children through the exercises to let the children do the project their way. Since I was both kid and parent to my inner kid, I stayed open to never "fixing" any of my projects. No ruler was used. Not even an eraser. :) 

My goal for next week is to keep the momentum going on Siren's Song. Who knows, I might just be able to make my block quota AND work on other items on the following list:

1) Create 11 Siren's Song blocks.

2) Free motion quilting practice

3) Do some surface design work

4) Beware of when I find myself shutting down and find a way to stay open.

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. I also liked The Art Forger and learned a lot about art forging. Your granddaughter is absolutely beautiful and your Siren Song's background is yummy, reminds me of sherbet, so cooling and refreshing.

  2. As always, your blog is a feast for the eye and good for the soul!!

  3. Love your granddaughter! What a perfect photo. Love to see Siren's Song growing! You look like you are really having fun with Carla's class - can't wait till JK is old enough to share with me.
    Happy sewing!