Sunday, May 24, 2009

Fabric Collage

When people ask me what kind of artist I am, I usually answer "textile artist" rather than "quilter". Its what I put on my business cards, too. The term "quilting" just conjures up too many images of grandma's log cabin bed quilt and thats just not my main focus these days. And when I do make something in a more traditional theme, I still try to shake it up in some way with radical colors, additional techniques or materials. Textile artist covers it much better since most of what I do can more accurately be described as a fabric collage. I just don't use glue to adhere my separate pieces (well, actually, I do sometimes use a gluestick for temporary positioning), I use thread to sew down the pieces. The thread also becomes part of the design, so that's an added bonus. Here are some examples of my fabric collages.

A pretty simple design relying on the punch of bright colors on a black background (I do that a lot). All of the rays were adhered with iron-on adhesive and then the edges were stitched down (raw edge applique.)

Here's my textile stab at the trompe-l'oeil style of painting popular in the late 1800's. This "fool-the-eye" style was often used in a still life composition that included dead game piled up along with the more traditional fruit and flowers of a still life. I call this piece "21st Century American Still Life". American because of the turkey--can't get more American than that. After I finished the "painting" part, I decided it really needed a frame too. I like how it turned out--rather unexpected. I'm waiting for the right venue to exhibit this one.

And here's what makes it 21st century. Hah!

Here's a large passionflower I began in a workshop I took a couple of years ago from the outstanding quilt artist and fabric designer, Jane Sassaman She's all about large scale florals both in her quilts and fabrics so I was definitely spinning off of her energy when I designed this one.

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