Friday, June 28, 2013

Sketching with Stitches

Today I was determined to get one of my sketches into a stitched form. I tend to hold on to my ideas and not execute them, for fear of doing a bad job and being disappointed in the results.

Enough of that! My new approach is to make mistakes and learn from them and, besides, how can you make a mistake in art anyway?

I jumped right in, making a sketch directly on to some linen fabric backed with white flannel, using a Pilot 'Frixion' pen. This pen erases with friction or heat, so as soon as you apply an iron to it, it disappears! Great for embroidery! How many times have I used a purple or blue "disappearing ink" pen, only to have the marks show up again after removing them. With this pen, the marks could reappear if the piece is left in extreme cold, but, no problem - I usually don't put my embroidery in the freezer!

I machine stitched with regular black thread over the lines of the sketch, at times changing things as I went along.

Here is the back of the piece with threads pulled to the back. I had fused white flannel to the back to hide threads and make the fabric more stable. I've been doing this for a while and find that it works well.

Here we are with all threads pulled to the back, pen lines removed by ironing, and a few extra hand stitches here and there to finish it off.

I'm beginning a series of stitched sketches of women. I usually sketch from imagination, or may use a real person or magazine photo for inspiration, but I try not to directly copy any image. This one was totally free form. I love drawing people and am working on sharpening my skills. I love the irregularities of the human face. Most people have one eye larger than or higher than the other, and no one's face is absolutely symmetrical. I also like strong features. And, I must admit, I'm strongly influenced by the line drawings of Henri Matisse. They are so fluid and effortless - really gorgeous!

Well, thanks for visiting and
I hope you're having a very good day!

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Drawing at the Library

Today was a very hot day - high 90's - and my house was noisy with workmen and plasterers. After a while, I felt like I needed to escape, so I took my sketch pad and headed to the library. It was cool and quiet there, and I tucked myself into a study carrel with my Pigma pens and began to draw. I felt myself going into a state of total absorption, totally unaware of what was going on around me, and I drew for nearly two hours.

I'm working on some drawings to use for line embroidery, and I feel like I got off to a good start today. It was such a good feeling to work without distraction. I'll definitely be going back.

Hope you've had a creative day, too!

Monday, June 24, 2013

Happy Summer!

I'm a bit late in wishing you a happy summer!
Our house is looking like a construction zone right now (which it is!), as our second bathroom is being renovated. 

the driveway

the garage

the demolished bathroom

plastic walls to cut down on dust

Rosie giving herself a bath on the porch table...

a thorough job!

I'm tucked away in the dining room with my sewing machine, content to be out of the way. The kitties are out on the porch, out of harm's way, basking in the sun.

I'm hoping to have some new work to share soon!

Hope you're having a wonderful Day!

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Busy Times!

These days I hardly know what I'm doing- 
Busy times, but time filled with good things.

My dear sisters-in-law came from California 
and Wisconsin for a family visit...

We all traveled up to New Hampshire for our nephews' graduations...


Back home, we visited the Wenham Tea House and had a nice lunch.

Our downstairs bathroom renovation was completed...

And now onto renovations on our upstairs bathroom and kitchen!
Demolition begins Saturday!!

Where is creativity in the midst of so much activity?
I'm searching for it, but feeling distinctly uninspired!!

While my "sisters" were here, we spent time around the dining
room table cutting up magazines and making collages.

These were mine.
It's a fun activity and can actually be meditative in a way.
I wish I could focus on some artwork. I'm getting that scary feeling that I'll never again make 
another worthwhile thing! Say it isn't so!!

I have committed to doing a show/sale in October, so I can concentrate on that.
I need to set up a work area where there are no workmen and where it will be cool.

So...all good things, and I'm grateful for that.

Hope your June has been going well!

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Fathers and Daughters

A quick sketch of my two favorite people -
my blue-eyed duo,
father and daughter...

So lucky to have them in my life!

And a photo of me with my dad about 15 years ago -

He was a great dad and I think of him every day.

Hope everyone is enjoying a 
Happy Father's Day!

Sunday, June 9, 2013

Handmade Joy Exchange

In February, the wonderful Anne of My Giant Strawberry organized a joyful exchange of handmade goods between some of her fellow bloggers. I was assigned to make something for Laura, a very upbeat architect from Italy, who now lives and works in England. She had some beautiful photos of herself on her blog, so I used one as an inspiration for this cut paper portrait.

I hoped very much that I did her justice, and she did say that she liked it.

The person who was assigned to make something for me was Baukje from France. She sent me a precious hand knit cat, French soap tied with a handmade bouquet of flowers, and textile napkin holders from a thrift shop. It was so much fun to receive such a package from another country from an artist I have  never met! My thanks to Anne for arranging such a happy exchange!

I hope that everyone is enjoying a happy Sunday!

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Drawing in a Collage

I'll confess - I did this earlier, 
but I love the idea of a drawing within a collage!

I may do more of these!

Hope you're having a great day!

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Perspective, anyone?

When I decided to draw something every day this month,
I knew there would be some bad drawings
and this is one of them!

A wonky sketch of our new bathroom, which was completed today.
The border color is a sample of the actual wall color. The floor is tan tiles.
I have made the space look much wider than it actually is!
In reality, there is hardly any space in the middle stretch,
but we're happy to have a shower downstairs now.

Hope you're having a great day!!

Monday, June 3, 2013

A Favorite Dress

When I was about 12, I remember having this yellow gingham
dress, which I wore to church, with white "pumps",
 white clutch purse, white gloves, and a hat.

It was nice to dress up on Sundays.
I always think it's too bad that everything is so casual now.

Hope your week is off to a great start!

Sunday, June 2, 2013

Saturday, June 1, 2013

A New Month!

For the beautiful month of

I've decided to draw something every day.

My basic tools will be my favorite 
Micron Pigma pens,
pencils, and whatever I can lay my hands on 
for a bit of color!

I hope this is the beginning of a happy month for you!