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November 14, 2016

Kraft-Tex for Mixed Media

Kraft-Tex is a combination paper/fabric product and like Ultrasuede, it doesn't ravel.  I took a half-day class with Australian Quilt Artist Cecile Whatman and had an opportunity to try it with many media.  Cecile brought a book she made, using Kaft-Tex as the cover.  It is a sturdy product and she said the book cover was simple to make decorate, and machine sew.  It is currently available in natural, white, black, gray, and brown and is distributed by C & T.

She used a tree stencil and dilate acrylic spray for the overall design.  The purple/blue square is painted and embossed Kraft-Tex, and the black images and text were transferred with TAP (see previous blog post). 

 

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When Kraft-Tex is washed it becomes more like a leather, and it is softer and can be used more like fabric.  This is a piece that I washed by hand and dried twice and you can see the difference in the texture.  Cecile once washed a piece with 20 of her regular washes.

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I spent our "playtime" trying many media on sample size pieces of Kraft Tex. 

 

1.  Blue acrylic stencil images, then gold Lumiere Acrylic painted over a Gelli plate and combed before printing.

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2.  Stencils sprayed with dilute acrylic paint (2).

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3.  Gold Lumiere acrylic paint on a Gelli plate - then lifted with a rubbing plate before printing. 

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4.  Stamped, then Inktense pencils - leaf painted with water mixed with textile or matte medium diluted 1:5 to make the color permanent.

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5.  Center image made with Shiva oil paintstick.   Then the piece was foiled using the following adhesives:  Adhesive thread, Misty Fuse pulled apart slightly, and Bonash adhesive granules.

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6.  My watercolor paints - painted on and then dripped. 

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The Kraft-Tex comes in rolls that are 1.5 yds long and 18" wide. 

 

November 10, 2016

Transfer Artist Paper (TAP) - on Paper and Fabric

Last Week I was at the International Quilt Festival in Houston - an annual trek I began in 1983.  It was so small then that it was held in the now destroyed Shamrock Hilton Hotel.  I watched it grow until now it takes up 3 floors of the HUGE George Brown Convention Center.  Tuesday I was preoccupied by the election and yesterday I was in shock and unable to think clearly.  So my first blog post of the week is several days overdue.

I took a 3 hour workshop on the use of TAP and wanted to share what I learned.  Here is my testing of the transfer of images and brushstrokes from TAP to watercolor paper.

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The tulips were a transfer of black and white Clip Art that was printed onto TAP with an ink jet printer and then transferred to my sketchbook.  Since the image is a polymer, I painted it with watercolors to see if the image could be painted.  It could,  I then painted a snippet of the TAP with watercolor and transferred it to the page as dirt under the flower stems.  We were told that you can draw-paint-color on the TAP as long as you don't scratch the surface.  The wide black line was a Pigma brush pen line I transferred from a snippet of TAP, and the single tulip on the right was an image drawn on another snippet of TAP with Tombow brush markers and transferred. 

I then transferred clip art images to fabric.   

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The yellow rectangle is velvet, the upper green rectangle is cotton, and the bottom triangle is silk.  They were all fused to a white fabric square with Wonder Under before transferring the images to the fabric square.  Each of the fabrics accepted the images well.  The "dot doodles" were made with Tombow marker directly on the Tap and then transferred.

Images are printed on the polymer side of the TAP with an ink-jet printer or created right on the TAP, and then placed face down on the fabric or paper.  They are then covered with Parchment paper and ironed for 10 seconds with a hot dry iron.  The images are permanent - and so is the color - so there are many uses for this technique - and it is lots of fun to play with it! 

Next:  Using Kraft-Tex, a combination fabric-paper with any mixed media technique.

April 15, 2016

Abstract Painting and Surface Design

When I restarted drawing, and learning about watercolors, I was most interested in documenting my life by drawing and painting in sketchbooks.  I've now filled over 100 since 2005 and I love how much I remember about events when I browse through them.  This semester I'm taking an abstract painting class using acrylics, at Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT) and was attracted to the course just to shake up my painting - not to switch my focus or medium.

Our first painting was "non-objective" meaning that it was not based on anything in reality. 

http://www.paperandthreads.com/2016/03/my_fiirst_abstract_and_acrylic.php 

The second painting was "objective" meaning that the artist begins with some images from his/her environment and then proceeds to abstract the image.   I like grids and quickly sketched a media wall in front of me as I sat reading. 

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My first painting in the course was in cool colors and I wanted to make this one in hot colors - and I added layers to the 16 x 20" canvas panel over 3 weeks.  This is my finished painting.

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After I completed this painting I quickly painted some of the things in our class studio - a stool, a high chair, an easel, a ceiling exhaust fan, and a wood stand that holds our paints, palettes etc.  Many of my classmates used the studio as their inspiration and I decided to try it as well.  I painted multiple layers on a 9 X 12" piece of watercolor paper, and this is the result. 

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I dye fabric for a variety of projects, including bookcloth for my handmade watercolor sketchbooks.  Most of the fabric designs are abstract, and it took me weeks to realize this similarity to my painting class.  This is my newest watercolor sketchbook - made with a piece of fabric that was tightly rolled and tied in a knot before soaking it in an equal mixture of red and black dye stocks.  The design and colors were a complete, and wonderful surprise. 

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I designed pen pockets for my sketchbooks this year and distribute Sewing Instructions if requested on my blog.  I have enough dyed fabric that I can make pen pockets to blend with the covers, and I'm able to use a similar color pocket with the new sketchbook. 

This is the new sketchbook and pocket - and below this photo are others that I made for prior books. 

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Please leave a request for the pattern PDF on my blog. 

January 30, 2016

Making Pen Pockets for SketchBooks

Pen Pockets for Sketchbooks:  I decided that I wanted a pocket to keep on my Daily Sketchbooks and designed this pattern last summer.  It fits around a book cover that measures 7 1/2-9 inches in height and  has a Velcro closure.  The pocket easily carries 5 drawing tools.  The Velcro tabs can even be wrapped around the whole book if you want to keep it closed when packing it in purses, travel bags etc.  The tabs can be seen on the Back cover of the Blue Purple Sketchbook.

 

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Pen Pocket for Travel Sketchbook:  I took this recycled book, that I made a watercolor paper page block for, and added the pen, eraser, and 3 pens before we went to Spain last Fall.  The pocket fits around the front cover, so you can easily grab whatever you would like and I frequently sketched standing up as I followed our Walking Tour Guides. 

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I make hand-dyed fabric and selected coordinating pieces for each sketchbook, but my friends each used my PDF tutorial and made one with a single piece of cotton fabric.  It only take 1/2 yd of fabric. 

Tutorial for Making Pen Pocket:  I created a 4 page PDF Tutorial for making this pocket, and would be delighted to share it by email.  Leave a comment on this blog post and I will get your comment, with your request in an email.  I'll then send it to you as soon as I can as an email attachment. 

 

 

  

January 12, 2016

I Love to Make Books!

Each year I make a "Remains of the Day" book - instructions by Mary Ann Moss - to keep photos and ephemera of my "Art Adventures" with friends.  I just finished the pages in my 2015 book and made a new book for 2016.  I love making these from my many dyed fabrics, and I refer to them regularly to remember the many gallery and museum visits we make during the year.  I have 5 completed books which were begun shortly after I retired.

This is my now complete 2015 book: 

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Here is a sample page spread, with a photo of Benedicte, Pat, and Me - along with photos from a day visiting galleries in Chelsea.  Some pages have pockets to hold things, other have lift up flaps - anything goes!

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These are photos of my new Remains of the Day book for 2016:

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Lastly, I made a new watercolor sketchbook with dyed fabric bookcloth and a pocket for the sketchbook to hold my pencils, pens, and eraser as I walk around sketching.   

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