A new dog portrait and a new exhibition – 2017.05.21

For the past few weeks, I’ve been working on a new dog portrait.  Here’s the original photo next to the finished quilted portrait.

  

 

Below are some of the photos I took as I was constructing this portrait.

I assemble the fused pieces on a small design board covered with parchment paper (so I can fuse the pieces together when I’m ready, and then later peel it off the parchment paper).  I also trace the major design lines onto another piece of parchment paper which I pin to the top of the design board.  As I position each piece or section, I flip up the top piece of parchment paper, then flip it back down to ensure everything is in the right position.

When I’m working on a specific section (such as the mouth in the photo below), I can assemble and fuse the pieces on top of the parchment.  When that section is complete, I move it into position under the top layer.

 

 

I do all the quilting on the dog before adding the final layer of batting and backing.  That way, I don’t have to be concerned about any messy thread ends on the back of my work, and I don’t have to bury the thread ends.  For Sitka, I quilted the dog through a thin layer of white eco-felt.  I use threads that are fairly close in color to the fabrics.

 

 

Then I added a layer of batting and the backing fabric, and quilted the green background.  This gives a dimensional quality to the dog – the background area surrounding the dog is flattened by the quilting, and the dog’s face and body are slightly raised.  The final step is to outline key areas of the dog’s head and body to add even more dimension.

On my Tips and Tutorials page, the first 3 items in the list are links to previous posts I’ve written about the techniques I use to create quilted portraits.  To see other pet portraits I’ve made, check out my Gallery page.

 

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If you live in the Vancouver area, I hope you will visit a new exhibition that includes two pieces of my work.   Here’s a link to an article in the local paper – with a photo of one of my pieces!

(in)finite: spiritual conversations in cloth
May 25 to June 4, 2017 – Christ Church Cathedral, Vancouver, BC
Opening reception: Saturday, May 27 from 5 to 7 pm

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Thanks for stopping by.  Today, I’m linking up with these blogs – click on the links below, where you’ll find many other creative and inspirational projects.

Creations by Nina-Marie    Confessions of a Fabric Addict

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SAQA Auction donation – 2017.05.10

Each year, SAQA invites each of its members to create a small piece of art and donate it to the annual SAQA Benefit Auction.  The auction has a dual purpose – to increase the recognition of quilts as art and quilters as artists, and to raise funds to support SAQA’s exhibitions, publications, and education outreach activities.  Last year, over 350 quilts were donated and the auction raised almost $80,000.

You can see some of the 12 x 12 inch art quilts here.  Keep checking back because many more will be added in the next couple of months.

Here’s my entry for the auction, ‘Heron Reflected 2‘.  (If this looks familiar, that’s because I used the same photo in March for my donation to the SAQA Spotlight auction.)

 

In May 2015, while walking along the Fraser River, I spotted a Great Blue Heron perched on a tangle of roots (actually a log with roots attached, which had floated down the river and embedded itself in the riverbed).   I snapped a photo, and posted it on Instragram.

Heron with reflection

I was struck by the almost perfect reflection of the Heron in the very still water, and thought it would make a great subject for a quilt.  But I was not thrilled with the lack of color in my photo.  So I used a photo-editing app called Sketch Guru to add some fanciful colors.

I printed the enhanced photo twice – once on cotton sheeting and once on cotton sateen.  I was experimenting with the various inkjet fabrics I recently ordered from Dharma Trading Co.  The cotton sateen had more of a sheen, so I thought it would be more appropriate for water.  I layered the printed photo and machine quilted the water lines.

Then I ironed fusible web to the back of the cotton sheeting print and cut around the Heron and the roots (but not the reflection).  I fused this on top of the cotton sateen print, and stitched around the edges.  This made the Heron and roots appear more solid, and the reflection look more like a reflection.

I used shiny rayon thread for the water lines (on the right below).  I outlined the roots with gray and purple thread.  I outlined the Heron with purple thread, then again with yellow-orange thread to give him more presence (yellow-orange is the complimentary color of the Heron’s blue-violet, which means outlining him in this color gives the strongest contrast – subtle, yet effective).

 

Here’s a close-up of the outline stitching:

 

Thanks for stopping by.  Today, I’m linking up with these blogs – click on the links below, where you’ll find many other creative projects to inspire you.

   Esther’s Blog   Sew Fresh Quilts 

 

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More Canada big quilt bee blocks – 2017.04.30

This week, I made another 4 blocks for Canada’s Big Quilt Bee.  I used a new-to-me technique.  I made 4 large log cabin blocks (approximately 13 to 15 inches square).  Then I stacked them on top of each other, and sliced through them all to cut them into quarters.

 

 

Then I mixed and matched the quarters, and sewed them back together to make 4 blocks.  For a couple of them, I had to add one or two strips of fabric to make the finished blocks the required size of 12.5 inches square.

 

 

Here are my four new blocks.

 

Here are the blocks I made previously.

 

 

You can read about Canada’s Big Quilt Bee here, and you can see many of the completed quilts on Instagram #bigquiltbee.  More than 600 quilts have been completed so far!

 

Thanks for stopping by.  Today, I’m linking up with these blogs – click on the links below, where you’ll find many other creative and inspirational projects.

Creations by Nina-Marie    Confessions of a Fabric Addict   

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Year of the Rooster – 2017.04.23

The newest Quilting Arts magazine reader challenge is ‘Year of the Rooster’.   I took this photo several years ago, and have been waiting for a reason to use it.

After I followed him around for awhile, this handsome fellow posed nicely for me.

BVI airport chickens rooster.jpg-436  BVI airport chicken and rooster

 

I cropped and enhanced the photo, until it looked like this:

BVI airport rooster HDRish compressed

 

I traced my rooster onto paper-backed fusible web.  Then I raided my scrap bins for bright, colorful fabrics.  For the background, I created a rising sun.  I quilted the sun first, then fused the rooster in place.

IMG_3722-001

 

I free-motion quilted my rooster with black thread for a sketchy look.  I called this little art quilt ‘Good Morning, Sunshine!’  It’s 9 x 9 inches.

AskeTerry_GoodMorningSunshine

 

Here’s a detail shot.

AskeTerry_GoodMorningSunshine_detail

 

Thanks for stopping by.  Today, I’m linking up with these blogs – click on the links below, where you’ll find many other creative and inspirational projects.

Creations by Nina-Marie    Confessions of a Fabric Addict   

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On my design wall – 2017.04.12

This week I made four more blocks for Canada’s biggest Quilt Bee.   These blocks are more wonky (and were more fun to make!) than the six blocks I made a couple of weeks ago.

Quilters across Canada (and in other countries, too!) are making blocks with the goal of  making 1,000 quilts for kids at Ronald McDonald Houses across Canada.  Some quilters are sending completed quilts, but many others are sending quilt tops and/or quilt blocks.

For 3 1/2 days in June 2017, at Quilt Canada in Toronto ON, the tops and blocks will be sewn into quilts by volunteer quilters.  There will be sewing machines, long arms, mid arms and an army of volunteers to sew the blocks together and create the quilts.   I’ve signed up for the Friday afternoon shift.  It’s going to be a lot of fun!

Canada Big Bee blocks

 

Thanks for stopping by.  Today, I’m linking up with these blogs – click on the links below, where you’ll find many other creative projects to inspire you.

   Esther’s Blog   Sew Fresh Quilts

 

Updated April 14 – linking to this blog celebrating Canada’s 150th birthday:

 

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My work on display – 2017.03.31

Here’s a unique concept for an art exhibit. It’s called ‘Photo 2 Fibre‘ and it’s presented by the Gallery Vertigo in Vernon BC.  The exhibit will open on April 6, and will run until April 29.

Participants were challenged to submit a fibre art piece based on, or inspired by, a photograph.  The exhibit will include both the fibre art and the photographs.

When I saw this call for entry, I was excited by the concept and decided to enter.  My challenge was selecting which 2 of my pieces to submit.  My selections were partly determined by which of my inspiration photos were good enough quality to print and display.

I’m thrilled to say that both my submissions were accepted, and that one of them was featured on the exhibition poster!

Photo2Fibre-poster

 

My first submission was ‘Golden Reflections‘.

I took the photo one evening on the seawall near the Vancouver Convention Centre.  The lights under the ramp to the nearby floating dock cast interesting reflections on the surface of the water below.

Using computer software, I cropped the photo and boosted the color and contrast.  I printed my photo on fabric, and further enhanced some areas with watercolor pencils.  I free-motion quilted the pattern of the reflections with variegated poly-sheen thread.

You can see more information about my process here.

TerryAske_GoldenReflections_with photo

 

My second entry was ‘Into the Wind‘.

While on vacation in the British Virgin Islands a few years ago, we were fascinated by the small Royal terns hanging out on the beach.  They have distinctive black caps, and they usually all stand facing in the same direction – into the wind (except when we tried to take a picture of them, when some of them would invariably turn toward the camera!)

I drew a stylized version of one of the terns and made 3 of them, each a slightly different size and with some variation in fabrics, and positioned them all facing the same direction – into the wind.

You can see more about my design process here.

BVI Royal Terns and Into the Wind-001

 

Thanks for stopping by.  Today, I’m linking up with these blogs – click on the links below, where you’ll find many other creative and inspirational projects.

Creations by Nina-Marie    Confessions of a Fabric Addict   

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Baby blocks and big quilt bee blocks – 2017.03.29

This week I’ve been working on blocks for a couple of group projects.

My guild, the Vancouver Modern Quilt Guild, has an ongoing project to make baby quilts to give to our members when they have babies.   The current project is using square in square blocks in rainbow colors.

Earlier this month I made 4 blocks and took them to the guild meeting.  We had a table covered with colorful blocks, but I neglected to take a photo of them.  This week I made 6 more blocks.  They’re quick and easy to make, and I love how they all look together.

VMQG baby_blocks

 

The second group project I’m working on is Canada’s biggest Quilt Bee.  To celebrate Canada’s 150th birthday, the Canadian Quilting Association is inviting quilters make blocks, quilt tops and/or finished quilts.  The goal is to make and donate 1,000 quilts for kids at Ronald McDonald Houses across Canada.

The blocks are 12.5″ slab blocks with at least some of the Canada sesquicentennial fabric in each one.  On the weekend, I bought some of the Canada fabric, and today I made 6 blocks.  They are quick and easy to make, and I’m using fabric out of my scrap collection.

Canada fabrics 2

Canada blocks 1

 

This was my first opportunity to test my theory about how my new scrap strategy will work.  I have several 11″ black fabric storage cubes labeled with color cards. Each cube holds 2 jumbo size zip-lock bags full of scraps.

I pulled out the bag of red scraps and then the one with black scraps.  When I was finished sewing the 6 blocks, my cutting table looked like this.

messy cutting table

 

I put all the scraps back in the appropriate bags, and plunked them back in their respective storage cubes.  Five minutes later, my cutting table looked like this.  It’s working for me!

clean cutting table 2

 

Thanks for stopping by.  Today, I’m linking up with these blogs – click on the links below, where you’ll find many other creative projects to inspire you.

   Esther’s Blog   Sew Fresh Quilts

 

Updated April 14 – linking to this blog celebrating Canada’s 150th birthday:

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