Wetlands of Queensland

Today, as the big wet (compliments of ex Tropical Cyclone Debbie) drenches the southeast, I recieved notification that my latest artwork didn’t make the grade for the Moreton Bay Regional Art Awards – no matter! It was the very first time I have entered this competition. I’m not much given to entering competitions, but sometimes they pay off and often in the most splendid and unexpected ways! Just not this time, alas. I ought to have approached this piece with 4 intact sides perhaps, and no empty – literally!  – spaces…. but no, not me, who likes to make it complicated.

I made this to be

1) part of a series I am working on at the moment (Anfractuous Continuance)

2) as a possible entry in the Australasian Quilt Convention Challenge – Fauna and Flora of Australia –  but it transpired that by it’s very nature, it would not fold well, therefore would not travel well, and as a consequence I opted not to enter – clearly I didn’t think that one through…

3) it being not entered in AQC decided to give MBRAA a shot…. never mind, I think it looks good on my wall!!!

I have named it “Cooloola Flight”. Because it’s an aerial view of the Cooloola wetlands and it features a wonderful bird we saw there – a Black necked Stork. An Aussie would call it a Jabiru. We spotted it out in our canoe on Lake Cootharaba, and was the biggest thrill of all of our canoeing excursions. He was just sitting on a little island, minding his own business, then as we drifted closer, he casually got up and strolled away for a drink, and eventually flew off to feed around the corner.

In  this piece the lake and river systems of Cooloola Wetlands are depicted by the empty spaces….. it will be exhibited as one of my pieces at Pine Rivers Art Gallery along with the Reddy Arts Textile Group’s work in December and January…. until then here is a wee sneak peak because I’m too excited about it to save it for a few more months! But you will be able to see it in the cloth there.

Lots of you have seen my first piece in the series – see “Cudgera Creek”  and my previous post for photos. This quilt is now in Melbourne and can be seen at the Bernina   Best of Australia Awards at AQC 20-23rd April 2017.

I am currently working on my third piece, which is based around the Tinchi tamba wetlands, on the Pine River. Now I really must go and sew!!!

Amazing day

This was a day right up there with those pinnacle of your life days – you know the ones, high school and University graduations, Wedding day, Births of the babies days…. today was the day I won the Bernina Best of Show award at the Queensland Quilt Show!!  still on a high, can’t stop smiling!!

Thank you to the judges, Glad Howard, Lyn Hewitt, and Rachelle Denneny;  to  QQ President Judie Bellingham and the management committee of Queensland Quilters Inc; Bernina Australia; all the other many Queensland Quilt Show Sponsors, and Expertise Events –  wow what a day! Thanks to all my lovely friends and acquaintances and fellow quilters and all the ladies(and men!)  for your fabulous support and kind words and admiration today, it was a fantastic experience and you all contributed so much to my brilliant day!

Completely excited that my textile art piece won, and now we are off to Melbourne for AQC and Best of Australia awards early next year, so exciting to be a part of that!! Will be celebrating all week.

Many thanks to Bernina Australia for their wonderful and continuing support of the craft of patchwork and quilting, to Queensland Quilters Inc who organise the quilt show, (see the rest of the fantastic and beautiful winning quilts at the link) and their dedicated members who do the most amazing behind the scenes work for many months in the lead up to the show, and to Quilt and Craft Fair (Expertise Events) for hosting the show. It all takes a great deal of planning and plain hard work to bring it all together every year so that the rest of us can not only enjoy making our art but also sometimes reap the rewards, such as I have been blessed to do so, today. I am so happy, so grateful and just plain astounded. Thank you all.

 

Cyclic Tetrahedron aka Tetraspinner, and other pieces

We have lift off! The Panel Kit Instructions are now available from 2Sew Textiles – we have made up a kit and you can order up to 4 colour panels and/or a black and white panel for your own colouring . The direct link to our etsy shop is here. Choose from four colourways: Grape Soda (the original), Blueberry Pie, Lime Juice, and Tangerine Fling. Or of course, Black and White. There is more information on Brenda Wood’s Blog Addicted to Fabric.

My tetraspinners are currently being shown until October 8th 2016 at the Hub Gallery in Caboolture Qld Australia along with works by Textile Art Group members Cynthia Morgan, Di Flint, Brenda Wood, Tricia Smout, Alwyn Bowyer, Elaine Campbell, Rebecca Dundon, Jean Hill, Bernardine Hine and Fran Robinson.

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For my other pieces, suffice to say, I have been BUSY. Making modern quilt tops and pursuing my latest enthusiasm , ruler quilting! My first to be finished is this table topper (hiding my large cutting mat!)

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I have almost completed another quilt-as-you-go lap quilt, which will be dispatched soon to it’s recipient, but first I might show it off to the ladies at Queensland Quilters along with a couple of the others…

By the way, Queensland Quilters annual Quilt Show commences on Wednesday 5th October at the Convention Centre at South Bank, Brisbane, for any of you in the vicinity who don’t already know about it. It is bound to be excellent as usual, and I am really looking forward to seeing all the quilts. It is part of the Quilt and Craft Fair, and there is more information here.  I hope you can make it as I have a pictorial quilt “Cudgera Creek” (Hastings Point, NSW) on display, which I would love everyone to see. I will be there on Wed 5th October. Brenda Wood also has two art quilts on display there, and they are a treat indeed, lots of talent on display!

Here is a preview of some “in progress” detail shots of “Cudgera Creek”:

That about wraps it up for this week. It’s back to the sewing machine for me!

 

 

Project overload – or when you can’t find your scissors

Lately I’ve been engaged in several textile projects concurrently….  Somehow I seemed to keep adding more to the pile…not quite sure how it happens but I think it is because sometimes you are waiting for something to arrive, so in the meantime you start something else…. and so it goes.  The consequence of course is that eventually I become engulfed in a deluge of fabrics, battings, off cuts, threads, papers, rulers, and quilt sandwiches….. It was difficult once again to find even one pair of scissors,  and I have several….they are always under something, but which something is it?  What to do, what to do? Trying to find stuff slows up the creativity, and the pressure to complete things was building, building, building…

All this despite a post  I wrote last year,  in which I concluded that tidying  up after myself was the solution to avoiding being snowed in yet again by textile flotsam and jetsam – at least in theory. Actually, I still believe it’s a sound strategy, although I have in reality been less than successful. How can this be made to work, I asked myself? My conclusion was, that every project (currently I have 6 upon which I am working, and several more that could be added to the list)  needed its own box, into which it can be tidied, before I tackle the next bit of the next project, and so on! The short way would be to rush out and buy 6 new boxes. Easy you think? Sure. But wait. Where will the boxes be stored? Every inch of space in the tiny sewing studio is taken… And it overflows into the bedroom….. And the art studio is also full of things…. The store room is chockers, and the spare bedroom is overwhelmed by artefacts and equipment and books and boxes of things – all belonging to various offspring…

I sent out an SOS to a very good and patient friend…

Who said, “no, you don’t need new boxes.” Who said, “throw out some stuff.” Who said, “donating is good”. Who said, “throw away 20 things”. Who said, “start with the plastic bags” ….. “what plastic bags?” I cried. They have important stuff in them. They have useful stuff in them. There are only two…. Or three…

“I have to make a list,” said I. “No lists, ” said she. But I did have to have a list. It calms my mind, to make a list. So I made a list. Of my current projects. Then I knew I definitely needed at least 6 boxes.

“No” said she. “Just start!!”

It took me two days.

The payoff is – I can find all of my scissors, see my ironing surface and cutting mat…. and I have repurposed 6 boxes into project containers!

ps: to my lovely friend – here are the photos you requested (see comments in the post referred to above) !!! there is even room for Bailey.

pps: Oh and did you notice the tetraspinner fabrics have arrived? that is a fat quarter which will make one tetraspinner ) Not long now! That is project priority number one.

 

 

 

Deviant (quilt) art

Lately I have been doing a bit of machine quilting…. In daily doses. But when you work for a while in those bland neutral fabrics, beige and white and taupe, a craving for colour develops, especially on dull and cloudy days such as today… One deviates from the task at hand (mastering  rulers ) and springs into temporary insanity… There is a new quilt in the pipeline, and the top is almost finished… But I have to be a secret squirrel on this one for a little while as I don’t want to show it off until the recipient to be has had first look! decisions needed to be made as to the back of this quilt. I needed to use up some of the “stash” and the front didn’t consume even half of the designated fabrics…. the remainder, I thought, could provide the back…. For a week now, I have been toying with ideas – I have a vast number of trial designs (now mostly deleted – there were more than 90…)  in my EQ program…. But nothing was satisfying…. And ok I could just throw the leftover rectangles and squares together – big blocks of leftover fabric, to keep it simple and quick, after all no one really looks at the back unless they are the quilt police! That was the logical, practical and sensible person’s solution. But I’m dealing with myself here, nothing too simple … Today I cut out and pieced  24, 9″ 9 patch blocks, black and white and coloured….

Tomorrow I am going to join them up with 24 9″ squares, (this actually looks fairly horrible)image

Then I am going to cut them all up again into 16, 12 inch blocks, and sew them back together….. This will be the back of the quilt…..

If in the end I don’t like it, or decide it’s actually too awesome to be the back of a quilt, I will simply turn it into a second quilt, and go out and buy a few yards of wide backing and be done in no time at all!!

THIS BUSY LIFE : making plans

Lately I have been between projects, having completed the first in a series for the 2017 RATG exhibition next year, entitled TEXTile Translations. So I can’t actually show you yet just what I have been up to there…. maybe a little hint with a detail might be allowed…. 

The next piece in the series is planned out but not yet commenced. I am very excited about this series based on photos taken whilst out canoeing on the creeks, rivers and lakes in SE Queensland and Northern NSW…08_IMG_2297

And meantime I have been persevering with learning a few Illustrator and Photoshop skills…. I have signed up with Skillshare for 12 months, and have done some excellent classes so far with Helen Bradley. Here is a glimpse of what I have learned so far…. more to come! (I am a bit of a slow learner, but live in hope!) Screen Shot 2016-04-24 at 3.33.26 pm

I have another little project in mind for using some of my designs… again I have to keep it under wraps for a little while! It’s quite different from my textile landscape and bird work! Suffice to say it promises to be a real adventure into 3D work for me! Then there is the possibility of fabric designs… dream on!

There are thoughts of one or two exhibitions into which it might be worthwhile submitting work  – we will see how that pans out in due course.

Not only that, another Cot/crib quilt pattern is in the pipeline! To purchase,  keep an eye out on facebook:  2SewTextiles , etsy and craftsy…..  The alpaca backing fabric is my own design…if there is enough interest I will consider making it available for purchase through Spoonflower.  I have simplified the quilt pattern from this original… fewer applique pieces… five clouds instead of seven, for example. Overall size is 36″ x 52″.

 

2015 – how productive were you?

Do you reach the end of the year and wonder: whatever happened to it? Where did the time go? Did you spend it well? How do you assess it?

An interesting exercise was to take a look at how little or how much I achieved in 2015 in the textile art world. My feeling was that I maybe had not accomplished a great deal particularly in the area of actual textile ART, even though I seemed to be constantly busy, juggling part time work, home duties, designing and sewing.

To find out, I made up a Timeline.

There was some time out in November , and a holiday in January, apparently, but for the most part, it was a pretty steady year… on analysis, I found there was a very real relapse into traditional style quilt making, part of my designing and writing patterns , and some experimentation with the new movement of Modern quilting. I guess the alphabet  can be counted as art….  and true art work was completed (although commenced in 2014) for the two exhibitions, and there were little forays into thread sketching  and quilting… example: my quilt for the Queensland Quilt Show 2015

What next?  The timeline proved just how much I did accomplish, and encourages me to tackle the new year ahead with 12 whole months in which to draw,  paint,dye, stitch, applique, and quilt.  My aspiration for 2016 is to set aside traditional quilting, and to create a number of landscape and seascape textile artworks, with the intention to  exhibit in 2017. And a new timeline at the end!

NEBULA again!!

This quilt is now a downloadable PDF pattern available from 2Sew Textiles website,   or our  Etsy shop, or on Craftsy.

Here are some more colour variations which might help with your own colour choices. Alternatively, download the free colouring in pattern from Craftsy to trial colourways.

The slide show below shows some images of the colouring-in process – colour one quarter of the design and then use a pair of hinged mirrors to see the end result!

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You might also like the colours illustrated on this blog here: nebula revisited

 

 

Nebula Revisited

The pattern is out!

Playing around on the computer in my quilt design software and thought I would experiment a bit with the colour choices…

Autumn Nebula

Autumn Nebula: in time for the northern hemisphere fall – or maybe that’s nearly over! So just in case, here is a promise of the snowy winter wonderland to come!!

ICE NEBULA

ICE NEBULA

For some more colour choices see my post Nebula again