Tuesday, November 12, 2013

The Life and Work of an Artist

How many of you have ever lived with, worked with, or loved an Artist?  

You may have already figured this out, but we see the world a bit differently than other folks.  I think we are wired up in our brains in a completely different fashion.  Believe it or not, we don't exactly realize this, until something happens which makes us take a step back and look.    

What in the world is Kelly talking about you may be asking yourself?

Ever since 2004, I have been completely, passionately, immersed in Needlepoint as my Art-Form.  I was happily committed to my Craft.  Whenever I would get a hankering to work on something else, (quilting, felting, rug-hooking, scrap-booking, punch needle, miniatures, doll-making to name but a few) I could do a small project, but quickly re-align myself back to Needlepoint. 

 So last April, I was happily stitching away on my Scaredy Crow:

When out of left field, Boom!, came the overwhelming urge to get back to my fabric designing.  Some of you may know that my first career, BK(Before Kiddos), was in Textile and Wallpaper design for the Home Dec Industry.  I took some of my copyrighted painted designs from back in the late 80's, scanned them, started playing around with them in Photoshop, found a consignment printer, and started churning out textiles again.  

Here is a photo of the Halloween Textile Group:

And here are some of the Gorgeous Halloween Pears Finished with those fabrics on the back:

The Pears were stitched by Ilene Levine, my Office Manager.
and Finished by Funda Scully in Fort Worth, TX.

 Here are two photos of Christmas Textile Groups:

Then I started Hankering to make a quilt from some of the Textiles I had printed up.  The problem was that I had never done piecework quilting before.
Applique and Trapunto and Crazy- YES, Piecework- NO!
I took a beginning block class at my local JoAnne's Fabrics and then I was off to the races:


So, I learned a few tricks at the class, bought a few tools of the trade, and had enough knowledge to keep my head above water.  I decided on two styles of Album Blocks that I saw in a Civil War Quilt Book.  I also decided to make the Blocks from little 8" square fabric swatches, rather than yardage...so in a way, that makes it a Stash Quilt!  There are 49 Blocks on the top which are 9" squares, plus Borders.

This is the Quilt Top:

It still needs it's borders.  I finished the top on October 19th, although I had started the Blocks back in August.  The Border fabrics just arrived, so maybe this weekend?
Once I get the borders attached,the top can go out for quilting!  Hooray!

Then, of course, since I was already off on a quilting tangent, why not dive off and do
some of my Paper Mache' Figurines?  There were two weeks to kill, waiting for my yardage for the quilt borders, so Why Not?
Here are the fruits of that labor:
Three sweet Christmas Angels.
Four Folk Art Santas:

A couple of my Primitive Halloween Gourd Characters:


All of the Mache' Characters are up for sale on etsy:

So, to bring us to a close.  I am finally winding down on these tangents...it has been a bit of a frenetic, schizophrenic journey in a way.  And it was impossible to stay on course with any needlepoint stitching while I was in the swirling Vortex of my insane textile-quilting-character work.  In fact, I literally could not stitch.  My brain was being pulled by this unseen force to work in the other mediums.  There is no part of what I felt that was rational.
It felt more like an Obsession.  
But I can feel that it has released me a bit...
Over the weekend,  I  pulled out some stitching and was able to work a bit on Scaredy Crow and hope to finish him very soon.  No New Projects until I clear up about 7 needlepoint pieces from my UN-finished project pile!  More about that next time!