When my friend Lisa Walton asked me to review her eBook Creative Journeys: Fun & Easy Textile Surface Design Techniques and participate in a bloghop, I jumped at the chance. We’ve known each other online for many years n0w and met over the years in Houston, even done a couple video chats where our respective husbands wandered past in the camera while sitting on opposite sides of the planet–another “I love the internet” moment! Over the years I’ve watched her try on new techniques and absorb them into her voice, her way of doing things, and now she shares them with you in her new eBook, the first in a series.
When I met Lisa, her business selling hand-dyed fabrics was well under way. Then, I still remember that fateful trip she took to Hong Kong where she fell in love with beads and (I think!) came home with a full suitcase worth, or at least the pictures looked like that! Then she tried and fell in love with surface design, taking classes as part of the prestigious Jewel Pearce Patterson Scholarship she received.
In the incredibly modestly priced “Creative Journeys,” available on Amazon and which you can read via the free Kindle App (I have the app downloaded on both my laptop and ipad), Lisa shares with you some of these things, including the how and why. Her book is just as approachable, down to earth and fun as Lisa is. It’s like going to her studio and playing around with cloth and paint and fun stuff with her. The book is thoroughly accessible for the newcomer to using paint on cloth, but also provides meat for those of us like me who have been around for years. One great surprise was the link to a 15 minute youtube video lesson where you can actually watch as Lisa does several of the techniques from the start of the book, great those who learn better by listening and watching than by reading alone.
The book covers:
- Fabric Painting
- Decorative Rubbings
- Metallic Foils
- Simple Screen Printing
- Combining Different Fabric Types
- Creative Stitchwork
- Textural Quilting
- Resources (including hotlinks)
- About the Author
On the technical side, navigating the eBook was easy, even though I’ve probably only ever read one think on my Kindle app. You can set the font size, display (one or two pages at a time) and so on. This would be fabulous if you’ve got your iPad or eReader set up on your work table: you can enlarge the print so you can read it while working! The software allows you to add bookmarks and notes, too.
On the fun stuff side (everything else), there are LOTS of photos of in progress steps, walking you through each part of each process plus completed art quilts by Lisa that use the fabrics she creates. She also includes the photos she uses as inspiration, so you can see how she began with an idea, then worked through step by step. In Fabric Painting alone she covers washes, repeating shapes, sun printing with scrunching and twisting and pleating, salt effects and more. In Stamping, she shows carving your own stamps (easy and SO much more fun than buying something ready-made). Her explanation of creating a tiling design was new to me–a much easier way than I had learned!
And with rubbings and stencils, I have NO idea why it had never occurred to me to do a rubbing or paint with a stencil then use dilute paints to create a wash over the first layer! Nor had it occurred to me to use stencils with adhesive and foils…. As you might guess, my mind is (as usual) running amok with the possibilities.
Lisa’s book is highly recommended–it’s hard to find value like this at this price. For the price of a latte and a cookie you could have umpteen hours of fun playing with paint, cloth, textiles and color. Go for it! Now I’m going to go get out my paints, open the book up on my iPad and have a play-date with Lisa!