I am in the process of reworking my studio space to make it function better. As I move things around I am realizing that I just have way too much. So the purge of supplies has begun.
I have started listing some supplies on eBay - mostly scrapbooking at the moment but more will come. Knitting / Fibers, Fabric - hand dyed and commercial, notions, etc.
Check out my eBay and Etsy shops for more information. I am adding items daily.
Here are the images from my Indigo vat dye experiment.
Detail of indigo dyed cotton batiste.
Part of my work deals with textiles that have been dyed using natural materials. At the present moment I have a few plant bundles brewing in jars, and a several large pieces of cloth wound around rusty objects.
I have wanted to work with other natural dyes for quite a while, Indigo in particular. Looking back through my fiber / textile sketchbook it has been almost ten years since this amazing natural dye has inspired me. The delay in moving forward with this idea was that I really did not want to deal with the prep work to get the indigo ready and working with Lye. Natural Indigo takes a considerable amount of effort to get it into a working dye bath. Since it is not soluble in water, it has to be ground, pasted up, and reduced chemically with Sodium Hydrosulfite and Lye. The process is quite involved and extremely time consuming.
Not anymore, as Jacquard has this amazing product: pre-reduced indigo crystals.
It is amazing! The indigo has been pre-reduced chemically, and then dried, so it dissolves quickly in water. All I needed to add was Thiox (Thiourea Dioxide) and soda ash. It only took a few minutes to prepare the dye bath and, according to my research, it can be refreshed with the addition of more of the crystals and / or chemicals. I can keep this vat going for quite a while.
I tried several different types of fabrics (silk, cotton, and a cotton blend), yarns (cotton, wool, and rayon), and textiles (rust dyed cotton and silk) with a few different resists (rubber bands, carpet warp, hemp twine, binder clips, wood, stones, clothes pins, and rayon thread) to create the patterns. Creating these experimental pieces inspired me to move forward with larger pieces that will take time to design and prepare before my next dyeing session. Until then, the beautiful vat will live under the house.
Working on a new piece entitled "Layers." Using rust dyed fabrics along with some new eco-printed pieces, wax dipped fabric / pattern tissue, reclaimed coffee burlap, and whatever else I find laying around in the studio (or outside).
It reminds me of the layers of soil beneath our feet.
The deeper we excavate, the further back in time we see and discover.
Ever wanted to know what my studio looks like? Well now you can! I am honored to have been included in the Winter 2012 edition of Studios Magazine.
I am excited to announce that I will be participating in Yard Art Day this September 3, 2012.
Yard Art Day was created by Deborah Triplett, a photographer in Charlotte, North Carolina, as part of the Quasimodo Project.
The concept is simple, create a work of art and display it in your yard, window, or balcony on September 3, 2012 (which is during the Democratic National Convention). As described on the website: "Yard Art Day is a grass roots exhibition, curated by the community for the community. The 24-hour exhibition will take place on Monday, September 3, and is for anyone and all to express themselves creatively despite their age or level of expertise."
Deborah sent out the call to all types of artists: painters, sculptures, musicians, performance artists, photographers, etc. A website was created, an online map was marked, signs were made and put in yards, a Facebook group formed, and tweets were tweeted.
So what am I going to do? You will have to either check my blog on Monday, September 3, 2012 or come by my house. It’s going to be large, amazing, and you won’t want to miss it.
“It is my dream that for one day people remember that child within them that likes to play creatively without any judgment or restraint. And to show the world that Charlotte is so much more than a banking town. And for us all to get insight into the city in which we live – to cross neighborhood boundaries. To be inclusive. Art can do this.”
- Deborah Triplett, Yard Art Day creator
A couple of weeks ago I decided to switch the contents of two bookcases so my studio would flow better. The task, I thought, should have taken 30 minutes at most. As I began to move the items I decided to go through and really purge the shelves. Then I decided to paint the bookshelves white.
So while I didn't get any artwork done this past week, my studio is clean and ready to start fresh tomorrow.
Author / Artist:
I am the Mom to three, Wife, Mixed-Media Artist, Contemporary Quilter, Art Teacher, and the forever home to Josey and Lucy.