Feb 26, 2015

'Blown Away'

I am truly blown away !
Visiting a fellow blogger, Leah Hughes , yesterday  and found this on her blog ... had to share it with you ! .... if you haven't seen this already, please take a look!
I wish I was savvy enough to show you an image of this sculpture by Penny Hardy.

'Through Our Hands' Magazine; this months issue is full of interest, but the article I love the best is  Linda & Laura Kemshall's Soapbox~ deja vu.  Something to think about !

Feb 25, 2015

One More Kick At The Cat

Propped up against my shelving unit, 
'Sunset~Parry Sound~Killbear' 
is looking pretty good to me. 
I stretched it by myself, and the palm of my left hand is feeling abused still 
... hammering those staples home & stretching the canvas 
is no picnic for arthritic hands ;)
This photo isn't the best ... too pink in the sand (cheesecloth) area. Did I tell you that the background fabric was tea dyed ? looking a little greyer than it's actual warm beige.
Ontario, Canada has been under 30C for over a month !!!!  OOPs ... meant under 0C  !
Mama Nature ... we've had enough ! ! !

Feb 17, 2015

A Fabulous Week !

As some of you know, I house-sit for friends and look after their animals while they take well-deserved breaks and jaunt off to a warmer clime. 
I love doing this as it gives me a chance to get away from the busy house that is my home. 
I take minimal clothing but take lots of 'stuff/stash/projects' to do while I have the peace and quiet of an, otherwise, empty home. Once I have settled in and figured which to do first, I just lay it all out and get to work ... the dining table turns into a conveyor belt of activities. This past week, snow came often or the days were sunny and very bright. Colder than heck  but the sun warms up the space that I occupy and is just so conducive to working on my stuff.  
My charges, 3 cats, don't care what I do as long as I am available for a quick snuggle/rubdown, when it suits their fancy, or a meal... and a clean litter box. They don't even need to be walked ;)
So, I started with a sketch of a rose (one of my own photographs),
then free-handed a Zentangle Rose
It took the whole week to decide what patterns to use and then fill up the petals (I take my sweet time)
The back of 'Sunset, Parry Sound, Killbear' before the tree is added to the front
... the back always has its own special interest ... the stitches wouldn't pass muster at a quilt show ! ;) I was using a rayon thread to do the quilting part ... it kept breaking and was the right colour, so I continued for many days to cover the background 
Some hand-stitching to secure the paper pieces and to connect the water
on both pieces of brown paper.
Then some machine sewing in the ditches to secure the previously made tree (see 2 posts back) in place ... easy-peasy :)
Hanging from my ironing board today ... off to get a stretcher frame in a few days after my truck battery is deemed ok ... the freezing temps have played havoc with my little truck.
This finished canvas is slightly smaller than the original measurements due to shrinkage when 'quilting' the background, but I quilted beyond the basting line, to cover that little problem ... so finished piece will be 18" x 22"
Sunset, Parry Sound, Killbear
... couldn't change the direction of this photo ... it's upright in my 'Photos'  :(

Feb 15, 2015

Good News, Bad News, Sad News

I am just reeling from the news I received today !
I have been house-sitting for the last 9 days and my email inbox was full !

Good news !   ~   I won a CD from Fil as part of the Grow Your Blog Party (of earlier this month) ... fantastic ! Fil is an Irish folksinger ... can hardly wait to hear her beautiful Irish voice coming from my computer ;)

As well, Monika has announced her article has been published in STITCH magazine ... in which she has mentioned my name and my blog address :) I phoned our Chapters/Indigo store and they have a few copies (he thought, but may be an older issue .... the important thing is they carry it !)... I will check that out next week ;)

The bad news was to find that there is trouble in one of my daughters' marriage ... I am not surprised but disappointed, none-the-less.

The sad news ... to occupy myself (while trying not to get overly involved with my daughters news) I decided to catch up on my blogger friends ... many blogs later there was a message that Pam (The Crafty Mugwump) has succumbed to her disease. I had just gotten to know her a little before she wasn't posting much anymore ... her son broke the news. Rest in peace, Pam.

Feb 4, 2015

Post Blog Party Post ;)

We were advised to leave our Grow Your Blog Party post up for about 2 weeks before carrying on as before ... almost made it !
WOW - this party has been a blast ! Not only have I have grown my blog substantially, I have had a one hell of a fine time jaunting around the planet meeting some very fabulous ladies.  It has been especially nice to find like minds when it comes to my particular passion - free-motion machine embroidery ... but, there are so many just terribly interesting people, out there, whom I can hardly wait to get to know better, as friends, as fellow bloggers/mothers/grandmothers and artists.
It's like having Pen Pals  ... just a different format !

Is it just me ? ... I hate seeing a blog with, for instance, 50 lovely comments attributed to the artist/author but not a single word from the blogger ! ?   (yes, I know that she has most assuredly sent them each a lovely email  instead) ... but, it just looks cold, impersonal. Must just be me :) I'm kind of a Chatty Cathy (omg, speaking of 'blasts', do you remember her ?)

Anyway, nearly 2 weeks has passed and I am anxious to show you what I have been up to !
I went to house-sit for 3 days ... too short a time to haul in my sewing machine (very reluctant to use my hosts' newer machines) so I gathered my drawing materials, sketch books and a new book that Santa brought me 'Totally Tangled' by Sandy Steen Bartholomew. I was drooling over the many gorgeous 'tangles' and determined to try my own, by the rules. But right of the bat I had forgotten to draw 4 dots ! (provides a boundary). Then the decisions to make !!! So many patterns to use !
Or to devise !
 This one will become a part of my 'flags'...  

                             ... and this one reflects my tree love ;)------------>

Then I found this wonderful website  ... Zentangle ... oh, what lies in store for me ?
I have played with this style with pen & ink before, but apparently, there are rules for zentangles ...  like, they must be a certain size 3.5"x3.5" ... it's certainly a nice size to work with, because it takes a lot of time to work the designs to completion ... I like the 'zone' I get into ;)
While working with my ink marker I tried my hand at sketching/remembering a beloved 94yr. old, distant cousin ... must practise making an older person looked more aged. Her eyes were a very pale blue, but I have made them a too prominent feature.
She was a very sharp lady right to the end and politics was her 1st choice for debate. She died last year ... miss her a lot ! Until I found her through my genealogy search, I had never known she existed ... what a font of family information ! When I walked into her house for the first time, I felt like I had travelled back in time 8 decades ! She had art hanging everywhere ... we needed to know each other longer !
She trained as a nurse in New York in the 1930's, married an intern and emigrated to Venezuela where she lived for 45 yrs.  Frances and her husband came back to Canada in their retirement.
She had 3 children, while living abroad, who were all born in Canada, (dual citizens) and all 3 live in Canada, now. I intend to look them up and get to know them.

Progress is being made on 'Sunset ~ Parry Sound, Killbear' but I ran out of black thread on the weekend ... couldn't believe this ! Full steam ahead and the abstracted tree is finished ... now for the finishing, after the ironing, the basting, the drying, etc. ... sometimes I just don't have the patience to wait for the grande finale !
Pinning this to a piece of foam and rinsing did not remove enough of the water-soluble ... I took it off the foam and rinsed it well (in my hands) and pinned it up to dry ... this tree, with it's more solid stitching, is much easier to recognize, in this state than a previous cedar tree, in Lake Huron Sunset. (scroll a bit) ... but it still took a day to dry ! 
 The shrinkage (from the original drawing) is substantial but it won't affect the final piece at all.
Placement of the individual pieces took some time but I think I have it right, now.
Today it's on to the mundane, but necessary parts ... basting tea-dyed background to a piece of muslin, machine stitching/quilting these 2 pieces together while incorporating the brown paper bits and adding machine or hand stitches that will tie these floating pieces together.

Before I leave I want to share a photo of my youngest 4 gr. kids ( 3, 3, 2 &1 1/2) enjoying the fresh snow from the big storm the day before.

Jan 25, 2015

Grow Your Blog Party

2 Bags Full
Hello fellow bloggers,
A few months ago, while browsing blogs (you know how it goes ... read the posts, read the comments, find someone of interest, click on their blog, etc., etc.), I became  intrigued by a badge that showed up on a number of blogs, advertising a 'Grow Your Blog Party.'  I'm always up for meeting other bloggers, so I clicked and came upon Vicki Boster's blog '2 Bags Full' ... a lovely, cosy place to nose around in. Vicki knits 'nests' , has an Esty shop, writes about her travels, works full time and has 5 grand babies ... her energy seems boundless.
This is the third Grow Your Blog Party that she has engineered to bring blog lovin' folk together. Nearly 400 bloggers are involved.
"My "GROW YOUR BLOG" event is designed to bring more readers and FOLLOWERS to your blogs. The premise is simple-- just visit as many blogs as you wish and sign up to follow those that interest you. In turn, all the other folks will be doing the same thing~ we will all be growing our blogs!"

So here goes ... I am 'Threadpainter', aka Sharron, and I am a Canadian fibre artist with free-motion machine embroidery as my main vice.
Fine art 'thread paintings' are the result of working from my own photographs, painting my own fabrics and stitching with my trusty old Kenmore sewing machine. 
I have recently tried my hand at dyeing fabrics (without really knowing what I was doing) and, although rather exciting, I have yet to use these experiments much. 
I love entering juried shows ! Sometimes I even win an award ... all icing on the cake !

I have a small 'studio' which and it is nearly always messy (I will spare you the photographs of it). This tiny room also houses my computer, my office, my boxes of old, inherited family photos, my drawing materials as well as books fabrics, threads and paint ... and ... my multi-purpose ironing board (I need and use all available surfaces ;)).
My 'studio' is cramped but cosy and I know where all my treasured bits are.
I am wife of One, mother of Four and grandmother to Eleven ... life is full.

I had a brief career as a cartographer, first for the University of Guelph (pronounced 'gwelf') and then for a local surveying company. At the university I co-illustrated a textbook when I was just 22 yrs. old, of which I have a copy and am very proud ... the textbook is now way out of date. 
Drawing with pen & ink is a passion that I have had since my cartography days. 

A fairly recent addiction is genealogy. My maiden name is Deacon ... so if you have this name in your family, I'd doubly love to hear from you ;)

Why do I blog ? ... mainly, as a great way to record my journey in art.
I like to make connections with other fibre artists who love using their machines to create art ... who would love to share and learn from another kindred spirit (me ;)). 

I have volunteered to help Vicki Boster with this wonderful 'Grow Your Blog Party' to bring all kinds of bloggers together.

Welcome to my blog and enjoy the stroll. I hope that you will leave me a comment ... I enjoy my visitors very much and I will respond in kind ;)

'Sunset ~ Parry Sound Killbear'

Making some progress on my newest work. I drew up another quick sketch just to show how my zig-zag stitch will look as the treatment for the pine boughs. I used my aquarelles and my (black with 1/2 a sugar) coffee for colour ;)

Also started stitching the 'big' tree which will (when done and washed of the water-soluble)  be placed over the whole collage and stitched down - see previous post.

I am getting anxious for the great assemblage.
stitching on Wet N Gone by Floriana here
building a good solid base for the future zig-zag stit
If you are new to stitching on a water-soluble, I highly recommend 'Wet N Gone'. It is great to work with ... very strong and tightens in the hoop without worry of tearing, and takes loads of stitching without holes opening up before you've had a chance to take the hoop away.

*Watch for tomorrow's post (January 25) - Grow Your Blog Party - when almost 400 bloggers from around the world will be visiting each other, all day. This will be a great opportunity to meet and greet bloggers of many disciplines of fibre art ! This affair is engineered by Vicki Boster at '2 Bags Full'.