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Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Hard Times Art Quilt: Fabric Paper Collage and Fabric Portrait

Currently hanging at the Vacaville Art Gallery Annual Juried Art Show April 25-May 20 2009

I belong to a group called Art Quilts Around The World (formerly Around The World In 20 Quilts) The theme for the latest challenge quilt there was Brave New World.

My “Brave New World” idea struck me as we entered into a decline in our economy hitting an all time LOW. (Our home value dropped over $200,000, stocks took a nose dive, and at age 68 retirement is nowhere on the horizon). As we watched our assets plummeting and this recession leans fearfully toward a possible depression it lent to the name: “Hard Times” and the suggestion of the challenge to use recycled pieces.
It was also suggested to do something you'd not done before, learn something new. I took on the challenge of learning to make fabric paper and fabric portraits.

I learned to make fabric paper from glue, water, paper and muslin. Words and phrases cut from newspaper and magazines tell the story in collage form; fabric portrait, using multi-layers of fabrics in 3 shades with cutouts showing the various layers below gives the emotion to the piece and sets the tone. It is then top free motion sewn with various threads and designs.
Making the portrait was a labor intensive experience, and a challenge in itself, but satisfying in the end.

I also used stencils, paint, Paint Stiks, thread painting, recycled newspaper, tissue paper, embroidery floss, hand embroidery, muslin, cotton, Punchinello ribbon and old beads, all things I had on hand. Many of which were found at thrift stores and/or garage sales second hand.

My main foundation piece measures 11 ½ X 10” approximately (it’s an odd cut shape) with a few extra inches for the green Punchinello pieces I laid under it for a little added dramatic flair.

I framed the small art quilt in a black shadow box to show at our local Art Gallery show in February.

The portrait made from a photo I took of myself is approximately 4” X 5 1/2” at its largest sides (also odd shaped).

I learned how to make the fabric portrait by reading Maria Elkins contribution called "Making Portraits" in The Quilting Arts Book by Patricia Bolton on page 122-125. And I learned the “Making Fabric from Paper” from the contribution of Beryl Taylor on page 84-85 in the same book.


Judith said...

Like your screaming face on this quilt piece. Yes times are hard,but hopefully we will all come out of it ok and soon.

Clare W said...

I like the paper collage idea - must have a go. All the more reason to get that book!

Alexiev said...


Best wishes from Buenos Aires...
Alexiev Store


Amiga teus trabalhos são fantásticos. SUCESSOS!!!!!!

Lynn said...

Judith, thanks Judith,

Clare, yes, the book was helpful.
Thanks for your comment here.

Alexiev, thanks for coming by.

Ana, I am amazed I could read what you wrote in Spanish!!! Had it in 8th grade. Muchos gracias!!!

Leigh said...

Love your work. It is very inspiring. I keep wanting to do work in fabric and I might just get started. Lovely

Efrat Dalton said...

It's beautiful, Makes me want to try it. I promised my mother-in-law to make her a small wall quilt from my father-in-laws ties (he passed away last March)and I wanted to add to it his portrait in the center I'll have to get the book and learn the techniques they sounds like fun. Thank you for stopping and visiting me love your visits.

Lynn said...

Leigh, thanks for coming to see my art work. Do give it a whirl. It gives me much joy.

Efrat, did you see the piece earlier here where I did a wall hanging art quilt using the old Hawaiian shirts my friend used to wear? He died last summer and I made the art for his daughter. She loves it.

Joyce said...

I'm impressed! You tried so many things. I just heard about making fabric paper and can't wait to try it.

Lynn said...

Joyce, do it. It's fun!

Clevelandgirlie said...

THIS is stunning Lynn. I had no idea you have TWO blogs! Ambitious. I'm following as of today. I've been wanting to do a self portrait - are they hard?