Foto Friday

July 3rd, 2015

So I’ve been taking this online photography course (the 52-week challenge) with Ricky Tims this year.  I decided maybe I should start posting my photos, as we have learned a lot.  So I’ll begin with my photo for Week 25, which was “Do Over #2,” meaning we could re-visit any lesson.   I re-did a number of lessons, then selected the best photo to submit.  I like this one so much I may turn it into a quilt!

Detail of the train engine at the Shelburne Museum, Shelburne, VT.

Detail of the train engine at the Shelburne Museum, Shelburne, VT.

Whooda thunk it–me, the lady all about color, considering a somewhat abstracted black and white……hmmmm……Anyway, ENJOY.  And to my fellow citizens, Happy Fourth of July!  To our neighbors to the North, Happy Canada Day two days late!

PS:  since I expect I’ll get asked, the class is closed to new enrollees.  Our sign up was in December, and I expect Ricky will offer this 52-week challenge again.  To see all his offerings, visit www.letsquilttogether.com.

 

Kimonos in Texas–memories of Mother

July 1st, 2015

Tomorrow, two new exhibits open at the Texas Quilt Museum:  a solo show of work by Judith Content and a companion exhibit Kimono Quilts and Kimonos.  Judith’s artwork often takes the stylized form of a kimono on display–I so wish a trip all the way to Texas was affordable.   I am honored that a quilt I made as an 80th birthday gift to my mother is on display in the companion exhibit.  It is especially rewarding since I made this quilt long before I became a quilting professional, so I am thrilled my work meets the high standards of the museum.

Happy 80th Birthday, Mama. Exhibited in the first year of the "I Remember Mama" exhibit at International Quilt Festival Houston, in honor of her mother, who had recently passed. Published in Karey Bresenhan's  book of the same name which featured quilts from the three years of this special exhibit.

Happy 80th Birthday, Mama. Exhibited in the first year of the “I Remember Mama” exhibit at International Quilt Festival Houston, in honor of her mother, who had recently passed. Published in Karey Bresenhan’s book of the same name which featured quilts from the three years of this special exhibit.  PS:  my photo editing skills weren’t so great when I processed this photo–the black binding really is even in real life!

To read about the exhibit, which runs from July 2 through September 27, 2015, please visit this page.  I am honored to be included with such famous artists and quilters, and know Mother would be so pleased and proud!

Detail of my kimono shaped quilt.

Detail of my kimono shaped quilt.

I chose the kimono shape and Japanese-inspired fabric because Japan was so important to Mother.  She grew up during the Depression and World War II, and always wanted to travel.  I expect *her* mother was terrified when my mom went to serve in Japan with the Occupation Army in 1946 and -47.  Those two years were formative in her life; she developed and abiding love the the people and nation of Japan and, lucky me!, she took me on a trip there in 1996.  The quilt features photos-on-fabric of three generations:  mother and her parents/siblings, my parents and me, then at the bottom me, Paul and our boys (with a photo of Eli on his way home from the hospital–he was still a baby when this was made!).

Today marks the fourth anniversary of her passing.  As Maya Angelou said, no matter what your relationship with your mother, you will miss her after she is gone.  Some years mother was my best friend; other years were more difficult.  But in the end she finally allowed herself to show that she was proud of me and cared for me.

The last photo of us together, on Mother's Day 2011.

The last photo of us together, on Mother’s Day 2011.

My last photo of mother, taken a week before she died, and the last time I saw her sitting up.  Mama, I hope you are with Daddy, Charlie and Tom J., comfortable, memory intact and happy.   I'll see you all one of these years (but I hope not TOO soon--I still have my sons and husband).

My last photo of mother, taken a week before she died, and the last time I saw her sitting up. Mama, I hope you are with Daddy, Charlie and Tom J., comfortable, memory intact and happy. I’ll see you all one of these years (but I hope not TOO soon–I still have my sons and husband).

If anyone actually gets to the Texas Quilt Museum and can take pictures of the gallery space with my quilt and those around it shown, I’d love to see it!

 

DVD sale and checking in

June 6th, 2015

Well, it would appear I can make quilts or I can blog, but apparently I can no longer do both at the same time!  Sorry to have been away for so long!   Anyway, first some good news–if anyone is interested in my DVD, Interweave is having a HUGE sale this weekend, including my DVD:

Learn my collage process from photo to finished in my comprehensive video workshop.  AND it's on sale this weekend!

Learn my collage process from photo to finished in my comprehensive video workshop. AND it’s on sale this weekend!

It’s an AWESOME storewide “friends and family” sale this weekend . If customers enter the code “FFSUMMER40” they receive 40% off their entire purchase, including your DVD. It’s a win-win for everyone.

Here’s the link : http://www.interweavestore.com/dvd-fused-clg-free-motion-thread

Please share and BTW: other products are also included in this sale!

During my absence, I’ve made a 40×40 quilt that I LOVE, but cannot share until jurying is over (mid July).  I’ve also nearly finished a 21×28 quilt using photo printed on fabric and digitally created companion fabric–as soon as that is done I can share it.   Then I’ve got another top in similar style done, about 25 x 38 but will likely be cropped down when quilted.   AND I’m teaching and judging at Vermont Quilt Festival.   I’d love to have you in my classes–Birch Pond Seasons on Saturday and Inside-Out Bag on Sunday!   Go here if you are interested.

I’m hoping to get some blogposts with pictures up before I head to Vermont in two weeks but am crazy busy….see you soon–I hope!

Vermont Quilt Festival–come play with me!

May 18th, 2015

Wanna come play with me?  It is time to look forward after a very busy winter and spring! I’ll be teaching at Vermont Quilt Festival at the end of June.  I’m so looking forward to it…pretty much my three most popular classes and a new one.   Balinese Garden teaches you decorative machine applique in your choice of pillow top, small quilt or table runner.   Fussy-Fiddly is about how to use those  (not really) challenging threads successfully; we’ve got so many wonderful thread choices available to us now, so let’s USE them!   Birch Pond Seasons teaches you skills and techniques to make not only this “north country” pattern, but go on to work on your  own designs.  Finally, Sunday’s half-day class, Easy Peasy Inside Out Bags, is about making quick and easy, lovely bags:  any size you want, easy zipper installation and addicting like potato chips–bet you can’t make just one!  I sure couldn’t–I keep making (and giving) them!

Here are my classes:
115    Balinese Garden                                                                    Thursday, June 25
218    Tame Fiddly Fussy Threads for Machine Quilting        Friday, June 26
314    Birch Pond Season                                                               Saturday, June 27
410    Easy-Peasy Inside Out Bag                                                Sunday, June 28

To sign up, click on this link:  http://www.vqf.org/all_classes_view.php .  Once there, look just below the purple “Basic Sewing Supply List” for “view by instructor.”  Use the dropdown list to select Sarah Ann Smith, and it will pop up information on all these classes.   Also, I’m happy to answer emails with questions!

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Balinese Garden Table Runner–Class is Thursday June 25.  As always, I encourage students to cut loose, be creative, and make the project their own.

115    Balinese Garden  Thurs June 25

Here are four versions of my tossed leaves.  You learn to make a freezer paper stencil and paint on cloth.  While the paint dries, learn key tips to success with metallic, holographic, heavy and shiny threads, then free-motion quilt your piece.

Here are four versions of my tossed leaves. You learn to make a freezer paper stencil and paint on cloth. While the paint dries, learn key tips to success with metallic, holographic, heavy and shiny threads, then free-motion quilt your piece.

Here’s a closer view:

The original quiltlet which happens to be on the cover of my book!

The original quiltlet which happens to be on the cover of my book!

218    Tame Fiddly Fussy Threads for Machine Quilting        Fri June 26

Learn all sorts of fun tricks for making free-form fabric collage quick and easy

Learn all sorts of fun tricks for making free-form fabric collage quick and easy

And the autumn view.  I encourage students to personalize their quilts.  Bring a photo of your favorite mountain and make it the featured hill.  Make it any season you want!  Be creative!

And the autumn view. I encourage students to personalize their quilts. Bring a photo of your favorite mountain and make it the featured hill. Make it any season you want! Be creative!

314    Birch Pond Season        Sat June 27

These bags are so easy and fun to make.  They are wonderful to use (in all sorts of sizes), to give as gifts, and can even be turned into iPad or notebook covers.

These bags are so easy and fun to make. They are wonderful to use (in all sorts of sizes), to give as gifts, and can even be turned into iPad or notebook covers.

If you watch Quilting Arts TV, these may look familiar, as they are on one of my episodes in season 1400 AND were in the 2014 Quilting Arts gifts magazine.

If you watch Quilting Arts TV, these may look familiar, as they are on one of my episodes in season 1400 AND were in the 2014 Quilting Arts gifts magazine.

410    Easy-Peasy Inside Out Bag  Sun June 28

For all my classes, you can check here on my “Classes” page for more information and PDFs of the supply lists, or look on my “Resources” page for the downloads.  I’d love to have you in class!

Thermofax 101: Lyric Kinard’s new DVD Workshop

May 15th, 2015
Don't know that I've ever seen #1 come up before! Well done!

Don’t know that I’ve ever seen #1 come up before! Well done!

Update:  comments are now closed.  I used a random number generator and astonishingly, No. 1 came up!  So I will be contacting Susan to let her know.  Lyric will send the DVD out directly, as will I.

Well, you aren’t going to want to watch this once–you’ll want to watch it several times, at least!   I can’t believe how much Lyric has managed to pack into about 65 minutes of instruction on her new video workshop Thermofax 101:  screen printing made easy, from Lyric Art Publishing.  You can order it here, http://lyrickinard.com/2015/02/thermofax-101-instructional-dvd/ .  OR you can enter the giveaway–for both this DVD and my own Art Quilt Design: From Photo to Threadwork (here).  Read to the end to find out how.

Thermofax 101, Lyric Kinard's new DVD workshop, is totally worth getting.  I can't believe how much she packed in.  Plus, how can anyone not want to spend time with someone with enthusiam and a cute smile?

Thermofax 101, Lyric Kinard’s new DVD workshop, is totally worth getting. I can’t believe how much she packed in. Plus, how can anyone not want to spend time with someone with enthusiam and a cute smile?

I was thrilled when Lyric asked if I would like to be part of her bloghop.  Not only do I have fun running into her at various fun places like teaching at quilt shows around the country, in Houston, at Quilting Arts TV taping in Ohio, and admire her art (made while being an uber-busy mom) and teaching, I’m also getting more and more into my own surface design.  I tend to use surface design differently than many—-for most who are really “in” to it, the cloth is the end product.  For me, it is something that goes into my artwork as a supporting player, not the star of the show.  So I was curious to see the “hows” and how what she teaches would fit in with my somewhat different approach.   The answer is it’s a fabulous DVD!

I watched the video as soon as I got home from about 3 weeks of being on the road, and learned a lot on the first run-through.  But I was pretty obliterated by all that travel, so I figured I’d better watch it again:  my goodness gracious but there are more and more gems salted in throughout.

There are four segments:

1.  What’s a Thermofax, which tells you just that, explains how the machine works and how you prepare the screen for use, including advantages and disadvantages of both ways.

2.  Creating Imagery:  the key here is to play.  Only YOU can figure out what makes you happy, what makes you itch to get to the studio and create.  The best way to do that is to mess around.   And then Lyric gives you about a bazillion ideas.  For those really itching to get deep into how to create your imagery, this section may be frustratingly brief.  Honestly, that’s because you could have 100 hours of video, from 33 different instructors, and you’d barely scratch the surface (ahem….pun intended).

3.  Printing Techniques.  For the FIRST TIME I’ve seen someone explain WHY you want canvas/cloth on the top of a print surface, not plastic.  Makes total sense—-why has no one in all the books I have on printing EVER explained that simple, logical (once you’ve heard the explanation) fact?  It’s at about 21:20 in the video.  And I recommend chocolate pudding, re-purpose the dishwasher detergent.  You’ll get it if you see the video LOL!  Lyric also shows how to hold your squeegee (as well as explaining what kind of squeegee or stand-in object) to get the best print, including demo-ing to you can see from various angles.  Helpful!

Lyric talks about the kind of paint you want, and mentions her favorites, but wasn’t fond of Speedball or Versatex.  I agree on the Speedball, but quite like the Versatex.  To Lyric, she doesn’t care for the hand of the cloth.  However, I have liked it on the small pieces I have done.  It’s one of those “try it all (before buying a bunch of any one product) and see what you prefer” things!

 

For the nest piece, I took some pale beige batik, my Queen Anne's Lace stencil and paint to create this cloth, which I love so much I can see making yardage of this to use!

For the nest piece, I took some pale beige batik, my Queen Anne’s Lace thermofax screen and paint to create this cloth, which I love so much I can see making yardage of this to use!  You can buy  Sarah’s Thermofax Screens at Fiber on a Whim at Fiber on a Whim.  To read more about my “nest” please see this blogpost.

4.  Designing Cloth.  Throughout the DVD Lyric salts in bits of wisdom about various elements and principles (E&P) of design.  I was SO clueless when I began art quilting.  I then got lucky and took a class at a local community college/extension service while living in Friday Harbor.  Since then I’ve looked hard at things, studied them, to internalize the “E&P” of design.  As you work with them, you get better so you don’t need to look so hard, but Lyric brings them up in an integrated manner that will help you have better results, sooner.  And she shares a tip I discovered the long way around:  if you have a yucky piece of cloth, or don’t like what you did, just add more layers.  After all, is it going to get worse?  No.  And it might well get better.

You also get a PDF on the disc with

  • a list of supplies,
  • where to get screens made in the US, Canada, Australia, England and Germany
  • info on suppliers of machines, screens, frames, textile paints and surface design supplies
  • footnotes for each chapter with internet links
  • plus Lyric has some helpful free tutorials on her website that will supplement the information on the DVD

I wish I had had this video when I started out.  Some videos about printing are Graduate Student level, and overwhelm you.  Some are so basic you could have gleaned all the good stuff from a four-page (with lots of large photos) article.   Lyric’s is correctly titled Thermofax 101 (so Lyric, will you do a 301 or 401 for us too?); it’s aimed at the newbie.  But those of us who have been doing this a bit can still learn plenty.  So I’m going to go play, then in a month or two view my copy again.

To win a copy of this DVD AND a copy of MY DVD,

my video workshop that takes you from your photo to a finished art quilt

my video workshop that takes you from your photo to a finished art quilt

leave a comment by 7 a.m. May 21st East Coast Time.  I’ll use a random number generator and whoever left that comment (please keep it to one comment per person, please) will win both copies.  Lyric will mail hers out directly, as will I.  International entries are OK!

Check out the other reviews on this bloghop:

 

May 14   Deborah Boschert    http://deborahsjournal.blogspot.com
May 13   Jamie Fingal http://JamieFingalDesigns.blogspot.com/  
May 12   Desiree Habicht  http://myclothesline.blogspot.com

May 11   Susan Brubaker Knapp  http://wwwbluemoonriver.blogspot.com
May 9    kathy york  http://aquamoonartquilts.blogspot.com
May 8    Carol Sloan  http://carolbsloan.blogspot.com

May 7    Liz Kettle  http://www.textileevolution.com/index.php/our-journey
May 6    Jane Davila  http://janedavila.blogspot.com
May 4    Linda Stokes  www.lindastokes-textileartist.com

May 2    Judy Coates Perez  http://www.judycoatesperez.com
May 1    Susan Price & Elizabeth Gibson  http://pgfiber2art.blogspot.com/
April 30  Judy Gula http://www.artisticartifacts.com/blog/

April 28   Sue Bleiweiss  http://www.suebleiweiss.com/blog/
April 27   Melanie Testa  http://melanietesta.com/blog/
April 25   Leslie Tucker Jennison  http://leslietuckerjenison.blogspot.com
April 24   Cheryl Rezendez  http://www.cherylrezendes.com