May 19, 2015

One More Done !

'Tangled Rose'


My zentangle in thread is done  I painted a grey/pink background (doesn't really show here) and simply echo quilted the background. 18"x18" square and is destined for a show in Sept.

I just can't pass up yet one more comment on the weather here ... the whole holiday weekend was warm with the chance of rain, not, and yesterday was so warm and humid. 
Today, there are brief flashes of sun but windy and cold - 12C ! Geeze ! 
There was just a brief moment where these lilacs weren't flipping around in the wind ... but they are beautiful !
Sure sign of Spring 

May 17, 2015

Recent Work Update

Time I settled down to post something ! 
I have been 'finishing' my commissioned piece and taking my time about it. Mainly because there are a lot of other things that have been occupying this tiny brain, lately. But, I have been reading your blogs and trying to comment when ever possible ... love your blogs !! ;)

Anyway, normally I stretch my work around a stretcher frame with 2 rows of staples and mitred corners to the best of my ability. With my fibre work being of 3 layers, it gets a little thick on the corners. A friend helped me once and steamed the corners with an iron and it looked crisp and clean. My regular, lazy self just finger presses those corners ;(

I decided that this piece should look a little more finished by hiding those 2 rows of staples. I went to Fabricland to search for a nice, inexpensive trim and found a webbing that was soft and pliable and almost the same colour as the wood of the stretcher frame. Boy ! how hard it was to hand stitch one side to the fabric of my work ! It was, after all 'wonder-sundered to the fabric below, as well as being stretched pretty tight ! My poor fingers were bleeding before I had gotten 3 inches stitched and when I used a thumbnail to push the needle through, it pushed straight through my thumbnail instead !! That's when I got the needle-nose pliers out !  Work progressed rather quickly and by the time I was done I felt like a surgeon !! ;)) The remaining edge was stapled down ... so just one row of the tiny steel stitches showing.

Along this particular journey I discovered another helpful tool that I can't work without ... a pair of tweezers from an old lab kit ... with teeth that grab onto tiny bits of thread and enable me to clip quite closely ... and, they hold my needle when I am putting a new one in place ! My first tool, besides my sewing machine, is my awl.
Below is Greg Meyer ... an old man, a town postman his whole life, looks a bit tired. I have feelers out to exactly how old he was. He would have been the age of my grandfather, probably born in the last years of the 1890's. I keep looking at this drawing and have added at least a thousand more dots since I posted him last ;) He is absolutely finished now !

please excuse the *pp*photography (pardon my french) no disrespect to the French ;)

May 8, 2015

Calling all Canadian Fibre Artists !!

As some of you already know, I am a coordinator for  Threadworks.

Threadworks is a Tri-annual, Juried, Traveling Exhibit of Exceptional Creative Needlework, stitched by artists from across Canada.

The theme for 2016 is .... ' FLASHBACK '

What does that word bring to your imagination ? 
Just how far does it take you back ? Yesterday ? Last  year ? Yesteryear ?
Your wedding/your mother's/grandmother's or maybe your great grandmother's ? 
How about your youth ? 
Your ancestor's or your ancient history ?
Anything other than this minute or tomorrow qualifies !!!
A few more suggestions; fashion, art deco, architecture, the environment/nature/fossils, summer camp, holidays, war, hippies, home, death. life/birth ... you name it ! 
There is something in your past that has been waiting to be stitched and recorded !

There are some new changes to this wonderful fibre art exhibit that has been in existence since 1987.

We now have  a website ! 

AND ... the jurying process will be on-line ! ...  in 2 phases; 
- a preliminary selection online 
- and a final jurying, on site, by our 3 jurors; 
Jane Dams, Dick Marvin and Lorraine Roy
Read about our jurors on the website.

Go to the website now to view/download your copy of the Call For Entry and for all the other pertinent information that you will need to know. 
As well, you can view a few past shows.

May 7, 2015

Happy Spring !

Well ...  more like summer !  I know I have complained a lot about our winter this year ... and, hell, we had a snowstorm2 weeks ago with an accumulation of 2 inches where I was house-sitting ! Now it  we have hot summer weather .... no easy transition from winter to spring, just winter to summer. Only in Canada can you get a sunburn one day and frostbite the next !

Anyway, I was having a very nice, peaceful time while the weather was transitioning.  My commissioned piece is done but for the stretching and my Zentangled Rose is waiting for stretching too. I even managed a pen & ink drawing (all tiny dots) and I read 2 novels ! A time well spent !
I don't have much in the way of progression shots and will post photos after the pieces have been stretched.
Red Maple Sapling will probably be the title of this piece ... I hate choosing titles !

From an old newspaper clipping of Greg Meyer, an old farmer who probably died in the 80's

white paper does not photograph well !
I tried to lighten it but I don't have good editing skills. 
I was very pleased with this pen & ink as it was a challenge to 'paint what I saw and not what I knew', and in this old, yellowed newspaper clipping, all I saw was light and shadow. Particularly pleased with his watch ;) approx. 4"x6"

While having coffee with my friend Helen, we saw a dead bird on the balcony ... probably flew into a window. I had never seen an Eastern (designated by the yellow feathers and spines underneath), Northern Flicker before ! Poor thing. This bird is a member of the woodpecker family but does his hunting on the ground (ants and beetles) and is the only member that migrates.

And on another day I saw this on a window ... 
... can you see it ?  The muddy imprint of a robin that mistook the window for a fly-though ! 
Can almost hear it thinking it's last thoughts ! 

Apr 21, 2015

this was a picture of a dog with the saying

Take a lesson from your dog 
Kick some grass over that shit and move on

Thought it was cute

Glad you like !  ;)
Another I've heard a lot lately;

Not My circus, Not My Monkey 

I have found myself saying these a lot .... Very enlightening ;)

Apr 9, 2015

Today's Post Is All Black & White ;)

This was fun ! I think I will do more of this work ;)
I was very excited when I started my zentangled (computer always correcting this word !) rose and couldn't stop myself from finishing it ! 
Now it is drying. 
I also completed the construction of the canvases of my commissioned piece and my abandoned silo piece ;)  It's so nice to be in the groove again ;)

Not every zentangle pattern translates into stitches ... so 3 of the petals are black organza ... the empty 'flopped over' petal pieces will be the colour of the background that I choose to stitch Zentangle Rose to.
I have already painted a warm pinky gray fabric for the background but have left the option of a white background, open. It will depend on what contrast I like better when it comes to stitching it all down.
... water-soluble rinsed off and rose blocked while it dries (and drips ;) ... it is pinned to a 12" sq. piece of styrofoam and wrapped around a bit ... will be on an 18"x18" stretcher frame when finished.

I hope that Spring is well under way where you are ... still cold, and now rainy, here, but on Easter Sunday we awoke to another of Mother Nature's whims !! Luckily it was all gone 'cause yesterday ... freezing rain !! 
It didn't last too long and now it's just mean old cold & wet :(

Mar 29, 2015

"It Never Rains But It Pours" !

Hello dear friends and fellow bloggers !
Getting through these last 2 months has been a tough one for me. I felt so 'blah' that I was not very inspired to sew or draw or even read ! My health was occupying my 'art' time. I think I have finally/hopefully seen the last of the 'biologic' (for my RA) that was still lurking in my system ... coming out in many minor subtle health issues (my blood pressure, sore eyes, enlarged lymph glands, almost tattoo-like marks at the injection sites, a nostril that poured (but did not develop into a cold) and finally, zits on my nose ! At my age !
You can likely imagine how frustrated I have been lately.
Sharron Elizabeth Deacon and her mother Laura Irene (Currie) Deacon

It was my 67th birthday a few days ago and that fact certainly didn't help to make me inspired, revved up or happy ... but it's just another number, right ? Then I remembered running across these old photos ... isn't she cute ! Yeah, that's me !... I appear to be about 3-4 mos. old, being held in turn by my mother, Laura, and her little sister, my Aunt Donna (she is whom I jaunt off to visit a couple of times a year for some much needed R&R). She is in her early eighties now and loves to have me come for a week so that she can beat the pants off me at Scrabble. We talk a lot and I pick her memory for my genealogy stories.

I finally have my hands on 'STITCH' magazine out of the UK. 
My dear friend Monika had written an article for this magazine last fall and it is just now out in Chapters. She has written a lovely article that will prove very useful to stitchers who aren't into sketch books, yet. Monika has told the story of how my ink drawings showed her how she could interpret her own photos into ink drawings that would guide her in her hand & machine stitched thread paintings.
Monika does exciting work and I hope you drop into her blog and have a look around. She adores her prairie landscape in Saskatchewan, Canada and interprets it with a lovely mix of threads. 

see !! there's my name :0
 Thank you so much Monika !   
Anyway ... 'it never rains but it pours' ... is my lead in to the 3 projects that grace my right board now. We've had a couple of beautifully, brilliant days and the warmth of the sun coming in my studio window called me to get my pencils, paper, hand-painted fab's and water-soluble out and start organizing what I have and what I still need to get, to work on these projects. That was a bit of fun 'cause I discovered some painted fabrics that I forgot about ... but none were right for any of these projects : (  

Project # 1 is hanging from my ironing board waiting for some new painted fabric for the fore-ground (a plethora of autumn grasses) ... inspired by my own photo of a friend's old log cabin property from the 1800's, where the silo stands behind the foundation of the original barn. The scrawny little pine has been done on water-soluble and will be applied last.  The silo hasn't been entirely ironed down yet ... I'll be able to slip the 'grass' right underneath it.  A blown up photo-copied collage of the original photo has been taped to my wall for months now ... 'bout time I did something with it :) 
I have always been interested in these old abandoned silos and have many photos in my archives waiting for attention. Since I have been taking photos, of those that are on route back to the county first settled by my ancestors, I have seen that some have been demolished ... I'm glad I have the photographs.

Project # 2 is the one that a friend has commissioned last week and which needs a few newly hand-painted fabrics to get started ... tomorrow I plan to paint the colours I need. The 'SAPLING' will be done on water-soluble and applied last ... it will be a beautiful fall, crimson maple sapling.

Going back through my sketch books has inspired project # 3. 
The entangled rose that I posted on Feb. 17, 2015, has inspired me to try it on water-soluble ... to be applied by machine to a pale grey hand-painted background. I needed a subject for another 18"x18" piece for our traveling '18Square' show.

So ... lots on my plate that should keep me out of trouble for a few weeks  ;)