Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Grandma's Brag Book

Today I'd like to share with you pictures of my grandchildren--well, most of my grandchildren.  I have five (2 boys and 3 girls), but only 4 have been immortalized in fabric, so far.  Oddly enough, the only one that hasn't been done yet is the oldest.  I know what I want to do with him and I will get to it--just don't rush me, okay?

The first is titled "A Boy, A Rock, and A Puddle".  It was based on a photo of Mitch at about age 2.  This was the second art quilt I made and I'm very proud of it.  It was chosen to be included in an exhibit, curated by Ricky Tims (famous art quilter) called "Expressions:  The Art Quilt".  There were entries from around the world and those chosen for the exhibit toured the country for 2 years, ending with an exhibit at The National Quilt Museum in Paducah, KY, aka "Quilter's Heaven".  I actually got to make the trip to Paducah and see it hanging in the museum.  That was a very cool experience.

My "Portrait of Olivia" is based on one of Robin's great photos of oldest granddaughter, Olivia, at about age 1 1/2.  It has won several awards, including a 1st place and Theme Award at the 2010 North Carolina Quilt Symposium show.  The eyes are painted, but everything else is either fabric or thread.  Her hair was so much fun to do.

"Josie" is my middle granddaughter.  I took the photo this piece is based on when she was about 2 years old.  I made a lot of changes to the background.  Finding the John Deere green fabric for the tractor was my biggest challenge, but I really enjoyed "building" it.  This one is all fabric and thread.    It was awarded a Best of Show at a local quilt show.  She was also juried into the Denver Nat'l Quilt Festival and the AQS (American Quilt Society) show in Nashville.

Oops!  I don't know why the close-up is sideways.  I warned you I'm not good with technology.  I'll try to figure it out and fix it later.

Last, but certainly not least, is "Cowgirls Just Wanna Have Fun".  This is Sarah, the youngest, based on a photo by her Mom, Marla.  This is my latest portrait and I used a bit of paint and crayons to help with the shading on her arms and legs.  I love the bare feet and this really captures the real Sarah.

My apologies to Devin, who's still waiting to become a quilt.  I just don't have the right photo yet.

Sunday, May 27, 2012


I can't seem to stop making changes to the format here.  I'm still not completely satisfied, so you can expect even more different looks.  But, it is a woman's prerogative to change her mind. 

I wanted to alert everyone to an event coming up next Friday, June 1st, 2012.  I recently donated 3 pieces to the Alzheimer's Art Quilt Initiative (AAQI).  The website is www.alzquilts.org.  Art quilters from all over the world donate their work (nothing larger than 9 x 12 ") to be either sold or auctioned to raise money for Alzheimer's research.  Since 2006, they have raised $722,000.  One of the ladies in my art quilt group (Art Tarts) coordinated our donations and took care of all the logistics of collecting the pieces and getting them to the right place.  Thanks, Edmae. 

One of my pieces, "Reminders of You", above, has already sold (woohoo!) and another is currently for sale (#9810).  The really cool thing is that the third piece was chosen to be included in this month's auction.  The auction opens on June 1st, so I encourage everyone to visit the site and either buy a piece from the group for sale or bid on one in the auction.  It doesn't have to be mine--there are lots of great works to choose from and it's for a great cause.  Look around the site.  I'm sure you'll be impressed.

Friday, May 25, 2012

Some of my photos

I've been through the photos I took on Wednesday and done a bit of cropping, etc.  I will post a few of them as a preview of better shots to come from Robin's work.  The first one is "Bonsai", based on a photo I took in the bonsai garden at the NC Arboretum in Asheville when we were up there for the quilt show a few years back.  I found the background fabric in my stash, which made it even better.
The second is "Dos Amigos".  I took this shot of some mushrooms growing in my front yard.  I thought they looked like two little guys in sombreros, just hanging out.  I did lots of thread-painting to blend the colors.

"Just One Day" was based on a photo I took in my back yard.  Since the blooms of day lilies only last one day, I thought the name was appropriate.  I did some beading (yellow beads for the bits of pollen on the petals and some clear beads for dew drops on the little spider web I quilted into the corner).  This one uses thread to blend the different fabrics.

"Top Gun" came from a photo my brother-in-law sent me.  I usually do raw-edge, machine applique for all my pieces, but I had taken a class with David Taylor and decided to make this one turned-edge, hand applique.  I did enjoy the process, as I like to do hand work, but I haven't done another piece this way yet.

I'll post more photos later.  Thanks for sharing.

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Learning, but slowly

I know I've only posted one comment so far, but that doesn't mean I haven't been working on this site.  I'm still trying to figure out how to set this up the way I want it, including lots of photos of my art quilts.

Yesterday was both exciting and exhausting.  My daughter (in-law) Robin, and I met at an 1830's plantation house not far from me to take photos of my art quilts.  We wanted to use the grounds and outbuildings as a backdrop, so we could take advantage of the natural light.  It's a gorgeous place that's been restored and includes an outdoor kitchen (under renovation), a small rock building, which we were told was used to imprison slaves (it really looks a lot like my granddaddy's smokehouse), a playhouse, complete with fireplace, and several barns.  Vicky, who is the caretaker, along with her husband, has the grounds and flowers looking fabulous and she was incredibly gracious to us. 

We started about 9 a.m. and finished up around 1 p.m., just in time to share lunch at the local cafe.  I'm anxious to see all of Robin's photos.  I took some, but my camera malfunctioned, so I'll have to wait til I get a disc from her.  She's the expert photographer in the family--I'm strictly into the PHD (push here, dummy) type of camera, though, it doesn't take much to be a good photographer with a digital camera and a computer these days.  Robin actually knows how to use the manual buttons and knobs on her camera, so she doesn't have to rely on a computer program to make her pictures shine.

My goal is to publish a book of photographs of my art quilts that I can use as a marketing tool to sell my work, and, sell a few books in the process, as well.

The photo above is my "Portrait of Olivia" hanging on the front of the playhouse.  It hasn't been edited yet, but I thought I'd give a small preview of what we did yesterday.  I'll add more pics later.

Friday, May 18, 2012

Getting Started

Hello.  I will be setting up this blog over the next few days and weeks.  I'm new at this, so bear with me. 

  I am a textile artist/quiltmaker.  I began making traditional quilts in 1999 and discovered art quilts a few years later.  I was hooked and the addiction continues.  I hope you'll enjoy sharing my work with me.