Friday, April 30, 2010

Time for Another Bra

Well, it's time for another bra! This time the bra is for my church, which is doing a "Bras for a Cause" exhibit in North Carolina in June. The bras will earn money that will go to breast cancer research.

This time I started out with a different bra - I think it was a cheaper one, because when I tried to dye it using Dy-Na-Flow, like I did before, it didn't take. It was so strange, I would go to bed and the bra would be awash in wonderful color, then the next morning, there would be a blue-green spot of color in the center and the rest of the bra would be white again. Polyester doesn't take dye well, so I think this bra has a higher percentage of polyester. Sooo, I ended up painting the bra with Lumiere paints and loved the way it came out! You can see in the picture, all the great blues, greens and turquoises. Also, that gold in there is great.

I started on the right side, with the undersea embroidery and beads, pearls, shells, charms - it's so much fun! I'm not quite finished with this side; I want to add a jellyfish at the top.

Some closeups of the sea...It's amazing, when I'm doing CQ or jewelry, I don't like the misshaped beads or the stone beads. Then, when doing something like this, those beads are so valuable. That just fuels my desire to never get rid of anything....

I'm not quite ready to divulge my plans for the left side of the bra - you'll just have to be surprised!

Happy Stitching,
Lin Moon

Friday, April 23, 2010

Quilting Arts Books

I've been looking at a couple of books on Quilting Arts, pictured above. Quilting Art by Spike Gillespie features the works and ideas of 20 contemporary quilters. Although all the artists are contemporary, the range of work shown in this book is quite extensive. In addition to the many quilts shown, there are 3D sculptures, as well as my favorite (by Mary Beth Bellah), a quilt that lays on ground, then curves upward to be vertical(!) called "Rising Water", featured at Quilt National in 2007.

When you read this book, you feel like you're visiting each artist; you hear how they got started, how they think, see how they work.... Each artist's section includes a feature entitled "Advice From ". Many of them advise the artist to "do it your own way". One piece of advice I found surprising was rather than pursuing new techniques, instead you should work on yourself and deepen your ability to express yourself through your art. I tend to get excited when I hear about a new technique, and I think this artist has a good point.

The Quilting Arts Book, edited by Pokey Boulton contains sections on many different techniques, each discussed by a different fabric artist. The first few chapters are by Linda & Laura Kemshall and talk about where they get their ideas (their most frequently asked question.) The following chapters include information on reverse applique', fusing, eco-friendly quilting, foiling, beading, wax pastels, paintstiks, discharge dying, and many other techniques. Although there are other books that include this type of information with a similar format, I really like the fact that a different artist discusses each method and suggests ways to try it out. It makes the technique seem more personal, like getting advice from the artist herself.

I love what Lyric Kinard says about being artistic. She questions why so many people think artists are simply born creative; instead of considering creativity something we can all learn and develop, step by step, similar to the way a young child learns to read simple books, and develops her ability, so she can go on to enjoy something as advanced as Shakespeare. (She says it much better, but I hesitate to quote the book, since it is copyrighted...)

I found these books both a joy to read...

~Lin Moon