Monday, March 29, 2010

my painting for class

Can I just say again how much fun I am having and how much I love my Goddess & Poet class with Suzi Blu... this has been a wonderful experience for me all around.

So this is my first painting for the class, Lesson Four. Keep in mind that this is a mixed media class- thus the many layers and textures.

I just love it! There wasn't a lot of conscious thought throughout the process, I tried not to over think things, but just DO.

I am just thriving in the "no mistakes in art" zone too.

When I took a class with Heather Thomas, she commented to me that I was not a perfectionist, and I didn't know if that was a good thing or not, and I worried a little. But I believe it was meant as a positive thing, because perfectionism can definitely get in the way of letting our art out, of letting it be what it wants to be!

I have accepted the fact that I will never make a stunning pieced quilt with perfect corners or curves. But someday I might make a stunning art quilt that speaks about what I want to create...

There is just one lesson left for this class, another painting on wood. I did the sketch for it this morning while I waited for poor Heidi to get her wisdom teeth out. (She is now resting comfortably on the couch with an ice pack and a movie line-up...)

I am also in Suzi's Angels class but haven't gotten too far on it yet. I have a sketch ready for wood and will hopefully get it going this week. I need more modeling paste... can't do decent angel's wings without modeling paste!

Just last week Suzi introduced a brand new class: Piety & Passion- 3/4 and profile portraits based on the Tudors. How fun is that?! So of course I signed up for that as well. Expect to see a lot more art work in the coming weeks!

AFter that, Petit Dolls... I am going to learn it all and then cover our walls and my studio with it!!! lol

If you like mixed media and fun, check out the classes Suzi offers- they are WELL worth the small price. You get to keep the instructional videos forever, and the critique is available for the whole semester, which is usually four months. Plus you can keep in touch with other artists on the same pathway as you are on! Here is a link to the class descriptions:

Friday, March 26, 2010


I just finished a small mixed-media art quilt that I am pretty happy with.

I started by drawing a picture of a woman who looks a little lion-like, printed it onto Lutradur that was treated with Golden Digital Grounds, and then I fused it onto a piece of fabric. The background fabric is sepia-toned sheet music all overlapped. You can see that behind the face a little and that is just what I wanted.

I added a couple of borders and then went to work!

Using yellow-gold, green, and yellow-green, I painted some hair- with acrylic paint mixed with glazing liquid so it was transparent.

Then I laid strands of this gold-toned fuzzy yarn I had and I loved the look! I attached it temporarily by dabbing points here and there with gold paint.

I fused some snippets of the gold border fabric under her chin, and I like it, though now I can see that they probably stand out a little too much and I will need to decide how to tone them down, make them recede some.

Then I stamped some words throughout her "mane".

I made it into a quilt sandwich and did a large meandering stitch to tack down the yarn. I did do a tiny bit in between the larger areas too, but not much.

I stitched around the fabric snippets and then kind of filled in the rest of the bottom area with a mirroring-type of quilting stitch. I did all of this with a metallic thread and even though I went as slowly as I could (and still keep my stitches fairly even), the paint made it tough overall, and I broke FOUR machine needles on this small project!

I trimmed the quilt and simply used a machine blanket stitch to finish the edges. I didn't want a raw edge, but neither did I want the feel of a tailored edge; I thought it would seem too finished for the composition.

So with all I have done to this poor fabric, it is not laying completely flat so it is currently blocked and stretched a tiny bit- I want to hang this in the house here and need it to lay flat...

Here it is- please feel free to make suggestions, especially about how to make the fabric snippets become more of the background because I have not yet figured out what best to do. I thought it best to look and think on it for a while rather than rushing in and ruining what I like...

Now to finish my latest Suzi Blu class project- I will be posting a photo of that too as soon as it is dry!

Friday, March 19, 2010


Well, shocking I know, but I actually made my bag right and it is awesome. It's better than I even dared to hope, and I LOVE it!

For those who may be interested in making this bag for themselves, the Pattern is: Professional Tote by The Creative Thimble. If you like bags, you surely won't be disappointed with this one. It's a lot of work to make, but well worth the time.

I really love everything about it, especially the drawstring end pockets that will easily carry our water bottles, and even pull tight enough to contain other stuff. It's a little larger than a purse, but certainly something I can carry every day with ease while on vacation.

I did follow all of the instructions and I have to say, many times I had to read them over and over before I fully understood what was meant. I did not make any changes to the actual construction of the bag, it is perfect just the way it is designed.

I did however make a few small adjustments to accommodate some of the things I know I will need in our travels.

One inside pocket was supposed to be pleated but I left it flat and that made the other pockets reach right to the seams. I didn't want the bulk I knew would come with being able to stuff a pleated pocket! lol

The pattern called for one small vinyl pocket for a business card; I instead added two of those and made them the size to fit a driver's license or credit card and then two more, the size to fit passports- these are all inside the middle zippered section for security.

I added an extra couple of hooks instead of just the one D ring called for; these can hang outside or go inside each respective pocket.

I added some beaded ribbon to cover the outside of the magnetic snap on the back side of the bag.

I added some grosgrain ribbon loops- one on each side and one front and back- they are big enough to loop a snap-on strap through to hold the bag firmly on my roller suitcase. Plus that gives me the option to lock the bag with either a split ring or a small lock by using the zipper and the loop together.

I am really happy with it and can't wait to try it out! What do you think?

Thursday, March 11, 2010

My favourite books right now

Just thought I would share the books that I have been reading and using and loving just lately!