Monday, February 23, 2009

SUDOKU Art Quilt... Thought Process

I'm starting work on a new No-sew SUDOKU Art Quilt so I thought I would use this blog tofollow my thought process from beginning to end. It won't be a step by step how-to but rather my decision making-- starting with theme, fabric choices, and colors...
While shopping at Fabric Depot (a huge 1 1/2 acres of fabric store in Portland) during one of their 35 percent off fabric sales, I came across a pear fabric (above). I love pears and my house is filled with pear art... a preponderance of pears... I like to title or have a theme for my SUDOKU art quilts, then create with that theme in mind. The pear fabric set the theme and "Preponderance of Pears Sudoku" became the title. Next to choose the fabrics for the 81 sudoku squares (9 squares each of 9 different fabrics). I wanted the art quilt to include colors in my living room (raspberry/blue-green or yellow- green/yellow-orange) and decided on the rose fabric (above). I later learned that pears are part of the rose family so this fabric enhances my pear theme.

I used this fabric as a basis for my other color choices. A handy way to see exactly what colors are used in a fabric is to look at the color chart (circles) on the salvage of the fabric where it breaks down every dye that is used. Colors in the fabric include opposites on the color wheel: Red-violet (closest to red) and Yellow-green (closest to green) and accents of opposites Violet and Yellow.

These are my preliminary fabric choices. There are more than nine so I still have to decide which I want to use to represent base squares and which for embellishment or not to use at all. Notice I have a variety of values (light and dark). The squares of the sudoku quilt are only 2 x 2 inches. I'd loose my pears if I used that fabric as a square so I'm definitely going to cut out the pears and use them as a 3-D focal point embellishment on top of the #1 squares. That's where I am so far in this process...

Just to give you a sample of some of the preponderance of pear art that I have in my home... This is my Pear Wall in my living room. All the art, except the lower right corner art, is done by a local artist, Lin Haak. I love her whimsical art and of course it doesn't hurt that she highlights pears. Lin's art makes me smile.

I also use pears in arrangements to highlight other art. This arrangement is in my converted dining room built-in hutch. It use to have glass doors and shelves -- I took them out and now it's my art gallery. The watercolor is done by another local artist, Kaye Synoground. I framed and matted the watercolor print. Probably can't tell from the picture but I added texture to the white mat with a stamped clear embossed weave design and the inner dark border is fabric.

Monday, February 16, 2009

SUDOKU Art Quilts from 2008 Art & Soul Class

I want to show some of the SUDOKU quilts, students made in last year's "No-sew SUDOKU Art Quilt" class. In the excitement of teaching my first Art & Soul class, I forgot all about taking any pictures of the participant's art or of how I'd set up my classroom with the fabric square choices in a colorful color wheel arrangement. Duh... I'll take pictures this year. Three students were nice enough to send me pictures of their art...
Karen Barr's SUDOKU Art Quilt.
Karen represents some of the SUDOKU puzzle numbers with button and fiber embellishments.

Bridget Benton's SUDOKU Art Quilt and close up.
Bridget used her embellishments to create an overall design.

Marcy McKenzie's "By The Sea" themed SUDOKU Art Quilt. This is a close up of the #1 through #9 squares of the SUDOKU puzzle pattern. I'm guessing the starfish is #5...

Overall view of Marcy's "By the Sea" SUDOKU Art Quilt.

I consider my first Art & Soul "No-Sew SUDOKU Art Quilt" class a great success. My ten students seemed happy and each student created a lovely and unique piece of art. Everyone completed the 81 squares of the quilt base (Hooray!) with students in different stages of the embellishment process. It was so much FUN to see all the colorful quilts. I look forward to teaching my 2009 Portland Art & Soul classes. The classes are now listed on the Art & Soul website.

Other ART Stuff to talk about... "Coraline"
I want to enthusiastically recommend the 3-D version of the animated movie "Coraline". It is one of the most artfully skilled movies I've ever seen. It's been a long time since I've been to a movie that took my breath away (and left me a little motion sick Ha!). The story, color, animation, and 3-D that jumped out of the screen are beyond words... ART at its best. One of my favorite parts was the deconstructing of the doll at the very beginning before the story even starts. I also related to the locations... Coraline moved from Michigan (my state of birth) and her father was wearing a Michigan State University sweatshirt (located in the city area where I lived) and she moved to Oregon (where I am now). Curious who has connections to Michigan in the making of the movie. Coraline lived in Pontiac Michigan and nobody just pulls that city name out of a hat.

Valentine Flight...
My husband is a pilot and co-owner in a small 1952 Cessna 170 airplane. To celebrate Valentines Day we took a sunset flight over the Columbia River Gorge and Cascade Mountain foothills (beats dinner and flowers anytime!). The art part is the spectacular scenery. A picture is worth a thousand words... but I didn't think it would be so pretty and didn't take the camera, so you're stuck with the thousand words more or hopefully less. It was like entering another world. We departed snowless/mostly green Portland into a mountainous landscape covered in fir trees with just enough snow that they looked like they were covered in frost. The hillsides shown in the setting sun (orange and pink sky to the west) with a backdrop of bright white snow covered Mt Hood to the east and pockets of clouds below us in the ridgeline valleys. One valley /canyon looked like a lake of clouds and the clouds were rolling over the ridgeline in such a way that it looked like a huge wide waterfall flowing into the cloud lake... Fantastic! I'm always so thankful and feel so lucky to be able to see the world from a perspective most people will never get to see...

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Teaching at Art & Soul

Sample for my Art& Soul class, "COLOR Play", where you'll play with the color wheel and color harmonies then make a no-sew collage art quilt with a color harmony and design of your choice. The color harmony for this sample is: Two Colors Separated by Two Colors with an Accent -- Red, Yellow-orange, with Blue.

Color Harmony: Opposite Colors with an Accent -- Red-violet and Yellow-green with Blue-green.

Samples for my Art & Soul "No-Sew SUDOKU Art Quilt" class. As you can see, I like to title my Sudoku Art Quilts.

I started this blog last year in January 2008 because I was teaching a class at Art & Soul. I only made several entries and gave up. Now with more determination, I start this blog again. I'll try to follow my friend Paula's advice and "keep it simple". This blog will include information about my up coming Art & Soul classes as well as other art related stuff in my life.

I'm happy to announce I'll be teaching two classes at the 2009 Portland
Art & Soul Retreat: "COLOR Play" on Wednesday, Sept. 30 and a return of my "No-Sew SUDOKU Art Quilt" on Saturday, October 3... The pictures were suppose to come after this, but I still haven't figured out how to get words before the first picture. I know it's possible, I've seen other blogs do it... I'll keep trying.