Here’s the result of the piece shown in progress in the previous post. I decided not to add any text over the water in the central portion; anything else would make it too busy. I used Surikomi Bake (dyeing brushes) to paint on multiple layers (3-4) of natural pigments using soy milk as the binder. I enjoyed working with the canvas. Katazome materials and techniques are so elegant and adaptable; it is a joy to use them to explore ideas like this.
I was thinking today how monotone winter can be. This weekend it’s been raining, sleeting, the snow is dirty and the skies are dark gray. Then I found this photo I snapped a couple of weeks ago …
I’m dyeing this work with fuchsia and turquoisey-teal, and where they overlap makes a kind of violet. Keeping a softer focus with my eyes and a looser grip on the brush feels great after the concentration needed to paste a repeat. Less fussy. And this approach to the painting should give some softness to the details and edges defined by the stencil.
The little tulips that inspired this pattern are the first bulbs to bloom in my garden. We won’t see them again until mid-April or so.
I recently joined the Slow Cloth Facebook group, created by Elaine of Red Thread Studio, Jude of Spiritcloth and Glennis of Shiborigirl. The group will provide a place to discuss process, textile traditions, ideas on marketing with integrity, and what sustainability can mean re: textiles. Check it out to learn more.
Talk about slow, I’m finally posting the photo of My Sister’s House 2, which incorporates layering of various stencils and natural pigment dyes. It took a long time to finish the piece, and almost as long to post a photo. The fabric ground is a pale blue piece of raw silk I’ve had in my fabric trunk for years, probably a gift from my mom. I mounted it w/raw edge sewn to a Japanese cotton border. I could have worked on the piece more but at some point you just have to stop! I think the result is somewhat spooky, while my sister’s house is very welcoming. She lives in the woods of mid-coast Maine, within a nice walk of the shore. She designed the house herself, and put a lot of sweat equity into it. This post shows a view of the inside. The finished piece now hangs on my brother’s wall in Minneapolis.