printing results

Ask, and sometimes you shall receive. Here are a couple of prints off of the same screen:

The screen was designed using water soluble Elmer's glue. The glue broke down some as I continued to print with it. I switched colors during the printing without washing out the old ones--I like the serendipity of what results from doing that. The long lines (some white, some dark) are from wrinkles in the padding underneath. Now that I know this setup will work, I'm going to get some cheap white acrylic felt and stretch and staple it to the piece of countertop. And I didn't really care this time as I was mainly testing the process.

And in the top one, you can see where I overlapped one print on top of another. The result of a sudden hard line amongst the softer blends of color is something I like.

So I got some decent pieces out of the test. And I see where I want to go next, which is always a good thing.

That is all.


a place to dye

I wanted to try screen printing on my own, to see if I could make a space to do it in without making a big mess. My only real choice was a small area in our unfinished basement where the washer and dryer and laundry sink are. Here's the result:

I have the old countertop from our island on top of the washer and dryer. A drying rack on top of a shower curtain to catch the drips while the pieces dry. Thickening paste made. Dyes I want to use. Fabric made to size. Other supplies.

And two silk screens, one with a pattern made with soy wax, and the other with washable glue. Both tend to disintegrate while screening them, at least to some extent. Here's the results:

The result is that there was no big mess. There were a couple of drips onto the plastic below the drying rack. So I think I can pull this off, dyeing and screening in a small space. Is it optimal? No. Is it free? Yes. And that's a big deal.

Meanwhile, here's another picture of my new hero, my pal Buddy. Enjoying the midday sun, not a care in the world. What a way to live in the moment.

That is all.


back to the boneyard

I'm working on a piece for a new group I'm in (more about that later). My first dilemma was I didn't like the finished piece that was my first attempt. It just came out differently than I expected. It's hanging on my wall, waiting for a spark that will transform it into something I'm willing to put my name on.

So the next dilemma involved two pieces of fabric I liked together. I had started with white cotton and made them into complex cloth in my Jane Dunnewold workshop--and they look good together and I could see a finished piece for this project in them. The dilemma is that generally it's a no-no to show or sell work begun in a workshop. But these pieces had no input from the instructor--she was around, but the designs and steps were all of my own making. So I have convinced myself that it is ok to use them. What would have been the difference if I had made them the next day in my own studio? Maybe that's a rationalization because I really like the piece they've become...

But they needed something else. So it was back to the boneyard--where I found the perfect complement. At first I couldn't remember how it was even made, other than it had been melted at some point. Turns out it was a piece of ribbon sewn together with acrylic felt. I only had a bit of it, but by cutting it judiciously and melting it some more, I made it work. Here's a glimpse (can't show the whole piece yet):

Nice color scheme, huh? Well, in real life it is because of parts you can't see here. But the main point (other than the whole ability to rationalize thing) is that it's nice to have this boneyard to pull from. Of course, that means I never throw anything out...you think moving would have taught me something...

Meanwhile, here's my current inspiration:

What a life. Lounging in the springtime sun, wasting the day away.

That is all.


Water based resist workshop

I spent three days last week at a Jane Dunnewold workshop on using water based resists (soy wax, washable glue, flour paste). Lots of work and knowledge passed on, and lots of good company. The host organization was a nearby art center, the Fine Line Creative Arts Center. It's an excellent facility, and only about 10 miles from my home.

The processes are messy, and there's never enough room to put your stuff. But the results, although sample sized, are good examples to inspire future 'real' work:

I need to work out a place I can be messy in my house, or else wait until I can do it outside. I'm thinking that won't be anytime soon--this picture was taken out my front door an hour ago:

Does anyone in charge of the weather realize that it's April? The saving grace is that it is currently above freezing, so this will all go away soon.

And as it always seems, some of the most interesting bits are from the cloth I used to pad the surface:

That is all.