MoFA Conference…just what a working girl needs!

This spring I got to attend the the MoFA conference. This is the only professional organization I belong to right now. I love the variety of work represented by this group. I can go as far in my work in one direction as I want to and then go in another direction and still fit in fairly well! This group encompasses weavers, knitters, dyers, paper artists, etc. Some people use bones and skins in their work. I think I will leave that to them…I don’t think I will be going there with my art.

The conference is a wonderful event. There are classes, vendors, great food, a members’ show, a style show, usually a national teacher/speaker. This year the speaker/teacher was Judy Dominic, who works with a lot of different materials. At this conference she had held a 2 day workshop prior to the workshop teaching how to create mud cloth. I was unable to take the two day class because of work, but the girls who did take it had beautiful cloth.

I thought I would post some photos of the members exhibit in this post. Three awards were given. One for best use of color, one for best use of stitch, and one for best overall composition. I am always stunned when I see MoFA exhibits. I think they are stunning in their variety and are such a great display of the unique talents of all of the members. This year our projects had to all be mounted on 12×12 inches canvases that could be wired and hung on a wall. This would keep the show uniform in its size. About 35 members entered the members’ show.

I was not disappointed when I arrived and looked over the entries. They were all so wonderful, I felt like my puny, sort of thrown together at the last minute entry paled in comparison. I oohed and ahead over all of the entries. A lot of them were felted. There were so many clever ideas. I loved all of them. Another feature of the conference was that each artist could schedule their own private critique with Judy. I didn’t schedule one, not wanting to hear how bad my piece was! And Judy was also the judge for the show.

Imagine my surprise on Sunday when the three awards were given, to receive the Best overall composition award! I was shocked. And the funny part is, that I have always felt that composition was my weak point.

So without further ado, here is a panorama of the show. Drool, ooh and aahhhh all you want. It’s even better in person!

Starting on the right hand side of the exhibit….in the upper left hand corner (#26), Leandra Spangler’s lovely piece won the Best use of color award. My Fragments of a Life is in the first row, third photo on the right in the very middle and bottom of those on the wall.

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#17 in the photo below, with all the trees, I believe was awarded best use of stitch.

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The show continues to the table with samples of papers and books with marks on them.

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More papers with surface design.

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I’m Back

Where have you been, you say? Nowhere. Just extremely busy with job and all of the sundry other things life hands one in the way of errands, holidays and shows. Not that anything has slowed down now!!!! Bwahahaha!

But I do have pictures. Pictures of all the things I have been doing since Nov. 27. I guess we’ll start there.

This particular piece of art has been in a cheap little black frame for years while I hauled it around from show to show. Last year there were some people that expressed interest in it but they never made the great leap to taking it home with them. (Heh, heh) I read something about art one day that said a nice frame sells everything, so I decided to get it put in a nice frame.

the message resized

I am still waiting! That was almost a year ago! The frame and the framing job is lovely. A master framer lives just outside of town and she did it for me. She is also an awesome pastel painter. Stop in my shop and see some of her work! This little gem will be here too…maybe….

Not Much News, But a Little

I haven’t posted for quite a while. My father-in-law reminded me this past weekend at our family reunion. He said he checks in from time to time to see what I’m up to! Well, I work a lot now and get very little done creatively.

A couple of weeks ago I stopped at a yard sale and purchased 14 old t-shirts for cheap because I want to make this. It just looks like fun.

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Isn’t it the cutest? Can’t wait to wear one, but it’s too hot here right now.

I entered this is in a show and it was rejected. 🙁

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Still a Collage

TriState Artisans will have a new name this year and a new brochure for our studio tour in December. We are losing a few artisans on the Illinois side and adding a couple of new ones. You won’t want to miss it! Here is a photo of my work that will be featured in the new brochure.

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More news: I am working on moving into a REAL studio space! A 20 x 80 foot building has come open across the street from where I work. The biggest portion of it will be my workspace and classroom for teaching. I am planning to put a small shop in the front part. Although I can’t be open every day, the shop will have my art for sale as well as consigned items by other artists/artisans. I am looking forward to getting in and getting some work done!

Another piece of good news…I was going to order another Square swiper yesterday because the one they sent me didn’t seem to work in my Android tablet. On a lark, I thought I would stick the one I had back in and check it. Lo, and behold, it worked! I could actually SWIPE the card, so I made two $1 payments to myself. Besides, I need to practice so I know how to use the darn thing. I guess the fees I paid were worth it! I think I’m going to love this little tool.

Art Quilt Portfolio: People and Portraits

I received a fascinating new book in the mail! Martha Sielman has hit it out of the ball park again with this next book in the Portfolio series. Many of the artists I am familiar with and many I became acquainted with in this volume. Twenty-one specific artists are given feature status, endowing the viewer with a perspective of their work in six-page spreads. Other artists’ works are sprinkled throughout, amply adding to this comprehensive look at current work featuring people and portraits in the textile art world . Each of the featured artists’ work is accompanied by a rich narrative of what makes them who they are and how they arrive at their finished works.

Enjoy Bodil Gardener’s work with her playful, exaggerated characters. So much fun!

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Collette Berends uses a very painterly effect in her work.

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I adore the quirkiness and simplified forms of Yoshiko Kurihara. I especially like Morning Breeze.

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Morning Breeze

Mary Pal’s amazing works using simple cheesecloth on black backgrounds portrays details not thought possible by this writer!

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Viola Burley Leak uses highly expressive images. Her works are colorful with lots of movement. The use of black gives weight to her use of brilliant colors.

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The cartoons of Pam RuBert entertain, as always. She is probably the most humorous textile artist I know.

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St. Louis…Wish You Were Hair

Kathy Nida is provocative, daring the viewer to be offended by her raw depictions of women in various social situations.

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United

Jenny Bowkers, depicting her middle east travels has work included in this volume. Olga Norris with her faceless figures, and Lora Rocke, Joan Sowada, and Maria Elkins, all with the most breathtaking realism, are in the Portfolio. The painted work of Inge Mardal and Steen Hougs is here.

Sielman has gifted us with another stunning compilation of art in textiles. Purchase here.

The Month of May

May has been a busy month here at my house.  The farmer’s and artisans market in New Harmony started much earlier this year on April 21st and has continued.  Normally we don’t start til mid-June.  The artist festival, Arts In Harmony, was the first weekend of May.  The heat was pretty bad that weekend, but I was indoors in the air-conditioned gymnasium, even though they did leave the doors open!  It was much cooler inside than it was outside.  Sold some scarves, some note cards, some art.

Then came the highlight of my month.  I traveled to Tan-Tara resort in the Ozarks of MO for the Missouri Fiber Artists conference and exhibit.  The reception for the exhibit was on Friday night and juror Bob Adams chose my piece, Compositions #2, for the Surface Design award.  That was a wonderful surprise.

Compositions #2 Mixed Media and stitch

I took a glass fusing class Friday afternoon and learned a little bit about that process.  I made some pendants and earrings.

Saturday was an all day class with Bob Adams on building images.  That was fun.

Some of Bob Adams’ samples

This is the paper mock up I did in class. My bottle turned out looking too much like a milk bottle for my taste. That was not my intention!

Saturday night was a barbecue with everyone together.

Sunday morning was the final day…we had a delicious buffet brunch, short business meeting and a speaker, Annie Helmrichs-Louder, who shared her journey and her work.  She is one of the featured artists in the new Portfolio book out by Martha Sielman, The Natural World.  It can be purchased here. You can read my review of the book here.  Her work is wonderful.

That’s Annie facing this direction and chatting with some MoFA members.

To be continued….

Wax and Collage

No name for these yet….Paper collaged on cradled wood, then coated with beeswax/damar resin mix, then I “drew” in the wax and colored with paintstiks.  Then I used a tracing paper to make marks.  Love this whole process.

At The Gallery Part 2

Here’s a couple more pieces of my exhibit that have not been seen on my blog before.

Sticks and Stones #3

Rust dyed cotton sateen, silk screening, stenciling, applique, hand writing, paint, ink, dyes, stitching with polyester thread.

Sticks and Stones #4

Rust dyed feed sack, discharge dyed cotton sateen, silk screened, stenciled and stamped, paint, dyes and automatic dish washing liquid and other discharging products, hand writing, inks, stitching with polyester thread.

New Mixed Media Part 2

If you scroll down to the New Mixed Media post on October 17, you will see the beginning of a new mixed media piece.  I am going to go back to that process and show the next couple of steps and you will see it beginning to change and transform from the initial fabric and paper collage.

First stage: Gesso on the top part, then paint and some gesso on the bottom part

More paint on the bottom part, then oil pastels on the top part...a shape has been sketched in place

I love using oil pastels…I guess it’s the whole blending with my fingers attribute that I like.  I seem to be able to do it better that way than with paint and a brush.  It’s definitely more up close and personal.  With my finger I can make the pastel go where I want it.  I have even been known to apply liquid paint with my finger and rub it in.  Anything that gives me a bit more control and blending.

Now more elements are added and some ink lines...

And then it will sit while I decide what bothers me about it.  It is not finished.  More to come…stay tuned.

At The Gallery

I thought I would post a few photos of my exhibit, Surface Matters, for you to see how it is hung.  These photos are of the Flow series.

Flow #2, #3, #4

Flow #2, #3, #4

Flow #5, #6

Flow #7, #8

Flow #7, #8

And then of course, the one that started it all…

The original Flow

Flow

Working Like a Madwoman

Ever have those times when you wake up in the morning and something starts talking to you?  I woke up yesterday morning very dissatisfied with how the mounting technique for  some mixed media work was coming along.  I have gone to great lengths to order everything to do it in this particular method, even ordering acid free coreboard which then needed the edges painted because I couldn’t find it in black.  But I awoke with a nagging dissatisfaction about it all.  I got up, looked at the work again, and said, oh, it’s ok…but then later the nagging unhappiness came back.  So because they measure 14″ square and of course, no canvases are made that size, I found my self shopping for a new idea, then shopping online and ordering more stuff and spending more money.  But at least I have peace now…these composition pieces are going to look much better, I think. And they deserve to.

Compositions #2

The time until I hang the exhibit is going fast. Today I feel I made much progress.  I worked on Black and White Compositions #2, #3, and #4.  These are compositions on canvas, made with cut pieces of cloth but they will not be stitched.  I don’t know if anyone realizes this or not (surely I’m not the only one!)…our type of work is much more time consuming than the average painter.  For me, there is the creation of the cloth, then the composition, and lastly, the layering and stitching part.  It is slow work.  In the interest of time, I am creating a few like this that will fill in my exhibit in a different color palette.

I also finished the handwork on the back of “Fading Glory” during tv time!

Tomorrow I will get up and do more of the same.  More mixed media Compositions are in the works too.  Can’t wait to get started on them.