Thursday, January 31, 2013


13" x 13" bleached, over printed stamped cloth and stenciled cloth, leather piece, canvas sides cross-stitched and blanket stitched top and bottom framing, Hebrew, Aramaic & Greek writing examples found at Qumran.

Creating this piece was interesting and involved many efforts and changes. I was considering the forty years of desert life reported in the bible and for a time it felt like this piece might take me as long to finish! It started with the frustration of tearing apart my old leather purse.There was a fuzzy backing glued to the underside of the leather making it impossible to remove or to stitch. I wound up using a decorative panel from the purse as it had the X stitching motif. A high point for me was teaching myself cross-stitching. The two white narrow side panels have a row each of my cross-stitching. I like learning and getting out of my comfort zone and I'm all for breaking rules but I do find in these older years high levels of brain freeze! I really had to practice on those cross stitches and looking at examples and reading instructions became a waste of time. On that same note I'm going to attempt screen printing. In all my printmaking courses, I never took silk screening? I want to explore some innovative approaches but before I do that, I need to familiarize myself with the basics. I'll post some of my samples in the next few weeks. Still staying with the desert series focusing on texture & colors. Wish me luck....might need a few dinners out, some catalog shopping therapy and if all else fails....champagne!

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Cloak Panel

10"x17" panel, bleached overprinted stamped cotton, red & blue beads, fringe with silver beads with dark navy satin background.

Cloak panel is in the colors of the (red, blue & purple) high priests of the Bible. It was written that small bells were attached to the fringe on the hem of the cloaks. I couldn't find small bells so silver beads seemed to be a good enough choice. I'm getting quite good at sewing on beads and especially enjoyed sewing them in circles. My apologies about the photo as the winter light is confounding me and my camera...I will re-post when I get better light. The saleswoman at the fabric store suggested I email a photo of my fabric pieces to the manager and in turn I will receive a 10% discount on my next purchases...good deal!
This 'Walking the Bible' has been great inspiration for art making....I believe a few more in this series and I will be ready to change directions in a slightly different way. A more abstract view....dealing with mainly the color and textures and therefore the strong feelings attached to desert life as real and as metaphor. I have a list of next methods and I tore apart one of my leather purses so I have truly given myself a challenge!
Happy studio hours!

Saturday, January 12, 2013

"Caravan of Vanities"

10"x12", bleached and overprinted red cotton, four layers of silk and netting, gold metallic embroidery, photo transfer, glass beads.

Caravans have an interesting history. The 'Spice Route' from Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Israel carrying hundreds of pounds of Frankincense on hundreds of camels. The sounds of bells ringing, camels chewing spitting and making whatever other noises they make along with smells of smoke, food and people...would make quite an entrance off the dusty desert sand. Most  caravans carried for trade exotic silks, beads to simple ointments. The photo transfer is just such a jar (NY Metropolitan Museum)of ointment....all of this shopping makes one think of an ancient traveling mall! Most of my fabrics came from my stash but the bottom piece was one of my stamped bleached and overprinted cotton which I'm trying to use in each 'artifact'. I was trying for a look of a colorful tent or a makeshift top on a camels back.

Update: I've changed my preview on my catalog to include all pages. If you would like to view the whole on the sidebar photo!

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Desert Wedding Veil

12" x 16" fragment, old curtain, assorted glass beads, silver beads and three large glass turquoise beads, silver metallic embroidery on printed olive shaped leaves, finished with varied shades of fabric paint.

In my book "Walking the Bible" (PBS special), it stated the Pharaohs of Egypt had extensive copper and turquoise mines in the Sinai Desert. This inspired me to consider a few stones stolen out of the mines and onto a desert camel caravan and miles away being traded possibly to a shepherd for wool??! From what I've read this was a colorful time and a bridal veil would have had embroidery as well as beads. I've been composing these pieces on the fly so I'm having such fun with the materials and combining with the dream. I've also ran myself into trouble too but that is just part of art making?! I framed this veil on white with a white metal frame and it holds up nicely. I've gone a few times to the fabric store but most of what I've used has come out of my bottomless fabric and misc boxes. I'm set for the winter and a lot of art making!

I hope everyone is having a great new year. I've been hunting around for a 'word' to carry me through the year and thought I had one several times. I happened upon a blog (india flint) with a post  she titled "Stillness" and I knew right away it was my word for this year. I have "STILLNESS"  taped up on my studio wall and I just know it will remind me how or when to go to my own 'stillness'....a place I'm sure my thoughts and feelings can find a better peace.. Do you have a word that might guide or serve you as a reminder throughout the year?