Thursday, August 10, 2017

Growing Up!

The kiddos are growing up fast!  Evelyn is in 9th grade, Spencer in 6th, and Fletcher in 2nd. Gone are the days of naps and changing diapers. The kids are more self efficient, and self entertaining, and Mama is sewing again!

I have rediscovered my love for putting together different fabric colors and prints, and have gone on a roll making baby quilts. Feels good!  I will be listing these on my Etsy site soon.

Saturday, August 22, 2015

Sun Inspiration Doodle Designs

I have noticed this Sun theme popping up over and over again in my art over the past couple of years. I love to doodle with a brush and india ink on large(r) sheets of paper, like 18 x 24 inches, to get my creative juices flowing. I try not to overthink as I am putting brush to paper, but just focus on filling the page with brush strokes.  I work as fast as I can, intuitively, and that helps me from getting stuck on what to do next...Just Do It!

One of these sun doodles translated to the sewing machine. I used the same concept of filling the wholecloth muslin and doodling using black thread on my sewing machine to emulate the black brush strokes of the india ink.  Later, I colored this piece in with crayons and acrylic paint. This quilted piece measures about 18 x 18 inches.

And then look: in one of my recent ceramic pieces, here is that sun ray motif again, or perhaps it is a sunflower?  I made a clay slab bowl, and then incised the design into the clay. I highlighted it with black glaze to make the line work pop.

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Ceramic Bowls and Vases

I am continuing to play with ceramics, making bowls and vases. I love doing the surface design on the bowls with either dimensional glazes and/or painting designs onto the pieces. 

The vases were made using texture stamps in the clay to create the design--I am using the green one to hold my paint brushes--much more decorative than the tin can I used to use!

Thursday, July 2, 2015


Last semester, we did a project with ceramics, making a food dish/ platter that had meaning to our family traditions. I chose to make this tortilla holder in honor of my Mexican heritage, that we had tortillas with our holiday meals and I remember my Grandma Josephine making the BEST hand made tortillas!

This summer, since I am not able to take classes, I decided to do some "home schooling".  I have been playing around with clay, the textures that I can make in the clay, and the beautiful glaze colors.  Of course, I love jewelry, so I have been making some focal pendants as well as buttons. Small bowls are also a favorite--coming up soon in a blog post.

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Escher Style Tessellation

We have been learning about tiling and tessellations in my Geometry for Design class--right up my alley with my quilting background. But specifically, I have been fascinated with M.C. Escher's tessellations. I made about 10 different prototypes out of regular colored paper, and then selected one that I wanted to turn into a painting for my final project.

This shape started with a 90-degree triangle. I traced the shape out repeatedly onto a piece of 15 x 20 illustration board, and painted in the shapes with turquoise, teal, orange and red.

I then developed the design further by drawing the lizard figure and leaves with black charcoal.  Put a final coating of spray clear acrylic, and voila--my first tessellation!!!

Monday, April 27, 2015

Final Project Fail and Success

I have been working on my final project for Art Practices II--the assignment is to explore Time Based Media.  So, this could include a performance piece, something that is an installation like an ice sculpture that melts away, or an event that the artists creates (and may or may not participate in).  So, less about the art piece, and more about what happens over the time of the art process--kind of hard for me to explain.

Anyhow, we had watched a video about the recreation of a giant ice block wall installation (can't remember the artist's name now...), and it was a pretty neat project.  An 8 foot high, 4-sided wall, that took 30 people to create.  And then it melted all away....

I liked the idea of the melting ice, but wanted to have something tangible remain at the end. Have the melting ice make the art (kind of reminds me of snow or ice dyeing).  I put liquid watercolor paints into ice cube trays and froze them. Then set them out on watercolor paper and filmed them melting. 

The first two experiments were Epic Fails!  On this one, the colors were too concentrated, and just made mostly black. I used salt to make an interesting design element, but that part didn't really work either.  

On the second sample, I diluted the colors, but they didn't really flow or absorb into the watercolor paper like I was hoping.  

The third sample (not shown) worked out better, because I switched to using fabric instead of paper. The paper just wasn't absorbing and moving the colors the way I wanted.  The third sample was OK, but I tweaked it a bit more and got this one--Success!  I filmed for about 2 hours, and will speed up the footage and set to music.

Saturday, April 25, 2015

Block Party! Geometry Style.

In my Geometry for Design class, we had a "Block Party" a couple of weeks ago. Basically, my professor, Peter Steinbach, supplied several different kinds of foam, plastic, and wood blocks, based on different Tiling Systems--from different cultures, using different angles--, and let the class have at it!  This worked out perfectly, because it was the day that two of my children came to school with me because they were on Spring Break.

We were able to arrange the blocks into whatever designs we wanted. It was a lot of fun to be able to work hands on, and see how the shapes fit together. This also blended in perfectly with my quilting background, and there are several designs that I would love to turn into quilts one day.

It was so funny, part way through the class my 4-year old asked, "When are we going to go to your REAL class?". I guess he thought this was too much fun to actually be a college class. My 12-year old daughter said that she wanted to go to college now too!  Yes, kids, college can actually be fun!