Friday, August 1, 2014

Week in Review 2014 - 08/01

Reference photos, sketches and tracings
currently on my design wall as I make Night Vision.
Tips, Thoughts and Techniques:

Before I start assembling a new work I create the foundation. In this case I am using the architectural meaning of a foundation, that aspect of the work upon which the remainder of the work will rest. For me, the foundation of a quilt is composed of strong lines and a focal point. I am easily tempted to rush the early stages and start piecing the work without a reasonably clear vision of how to best assemble the work. In the case of Night Vision there are many different ways to piece it. For instance I could use raw edge appliqué, turned appliqué secured by machine or hand turned and sewn. I could use large swaths of fabric for each leaf, piece each leaf segment by segment or even breakdown each leaf segment in multiple pieces. 
The .pdf of the 9" x 12" drawing has
been blown up to a scale of
approximately 36" x 48"
Close up of the to scale drawing showing the overlaps
and joining required.

One of the advantages of tracing and retracing the lines of Night Vision, is that I get to study it slowly and conscientiously and even subconscientiously as my mind drifts during the repetitive process. The more I worked with the lines, the more ideas of what I could do to build on the foundation occurred to me. I even have a few experimental ideas to play with. I can't wait. This is the time when I am most in love with my work, when it is full of possibilities and promise and I haven't started to tear my hair out coping with the consequences of my genius. :)  

The scaled drawing is then traced to muslin
and a reverse copy is traced to freezer paper.
The freezer paper image will be used to
create templates for the piecing.
This week was about laying the foundation for a new work and building on the skills of foundations laid down weeks and even years ago. It was a week full of creative energy!

 1) Wild Apple 12" x 12" Opportunity - (Due August 15) - Done!

a) Mat and frame the work.
Now it is time to select the fabric
for the leaves. Yummy! 

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

a) Finish the line drawing - Done!
b) Print out the line drawing to scale!
c) Bonus - marked the line drawing on muslin and in reverse on freezer paper!
d) Start the piecing - Not yet.
The fabric is a preprinted panel
designed by Leah Day, available
through Spoonflower. It makes
for a great practice sandwich.
I tested out my Flower Power
FMQ motif in the pink tresses.

3) Free motion quilting practice. - Done!

A close up of Flower Power

There are signs that our flower gardens are beginning to fade. So, it is no surprise that I found myself desperate to cling to flowers, hence the Flower Power FMQ design I devised this week. It begins with a simple six petal daisy that I echoed three times before stippling around the flower to allow it stand out and then starting the next flower.

4) LifeBook 2014 - Do the assignments. - Done!

This week's mixed media lesson
taught how to add traced images
to a background. The drawings are NOT
my original design, but the placement
of the drawings and background
are all mine.
Often our final lesson of the month is earmarked as a bonus lesson and therefore assumed to take less time than one of the "main" lessons. In fact it may just be to watch a video interview with one of the artists. Not so this week. Our teacher had a technical glitch creating the second video for the lesson, so that the work demonstrated in video part one didn't match up with the work that was finished and completed in video part two. Life happens. Once I got over my personal confusion I looked at this as a learning opportunity. It was up to me to make the bridge from one video to another. I doubt I would have had the confidence to do this with mixed media back in January, but was delightfully surprised to discover that I can now problem solve my way through a mixed media work on my own.

My hope is to build on this confidence and momentum next week. I think I can. I think can. I know I can, to build on The Little Engine that Could. This is my plan for next week.

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

a) Start the piecing

2) Free motion quilting practice.

3) LifeBook 2014 - Do the assignments.

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. Night Vision looks like it's going to be fabulous! It's interesting to see how you approach a project. Of course I love all those greens.

  2. Like you, I love the stage of many possibilities, before the reality of the making sets in!

    Looking forward to seeing how Night Vision evolves...

    1. Thank you for dropping by and the kind words, Margaret.

  3. Thanks for sharing how you work, now I'm excited about how Night Vision will turn out.

  4. Agreed, night vision is going to be great and looking forward to seeing it as it moves along. Those fabrics are great together.

    1. A personal theory is why use one green when one hundred greens are available. My study has a window that looks out to the top of a tree and piece of sky. I study it frequently, amazed by the deep dark blue greens, muddy olive greens and vibrant chartreuse leaf colors depending on whether the leaf is close to the trunk at the tip of the branch or somewhere in between.

  5. Hello Gwyned,

    I'm looking forward to seeing your little frog come to life! The greens are really lush and tropical.

    The FMQ is really neat - you really excel at small scale designs. I'm not so sure I would keep track of myself with such a tiny design and using thread the same colour as the background.

    I've said it so many times before - LifeBook background, fabric design...

    Thank you for linking up to Free Motion Mavericks!

    Love, Muv

  6. Many thanks for sharing your design process with us. Your work is so inspirational!

  7. I love the review of your process too. I find my process gets longer with each quilt - I love it too! I will be really interested to follow as you make your selections and put together.

  8. Can't wait to see more of Night Vision! Love those greens!!!