Tuesday, 9 February 2010

Painting fabric and other colourful excitements

Yep, we're still on the graffiti kick. At the ATASDA Christmas meeting, the tablecloths were actually cream quilters' muslin (over plastic), and members were supplied with fabric pens to draw on the cloths. It certainly generated some enthusiastic art! Each person took home a small piece of graffiti fabric at the end of the day. This week, Fibrecircle decided to paint on our fabrics, inspired by Nola’s shaded painting on her Fibrecircle graffiti piece.

We used transparent paints, because this allows the lines underneath to show through and you don’t lose the sense of graffiti about it. Most of us used Setacolor transparent paints, which is what Nola used on her fabric.

We managed to find a bit of sunshine to dry our artworks, which suggests that our cunning plan to hire ourselves out to drought-stricken country areas with the promise of the rain that always seems to follow our painting endeavours may be be doomed.

We don’t have Before photos for the fabrics, but Nola took a photo of hers after she added more drawing but before she started painting. Her fabric was very sparse, with just the turtles and one fish, the lovely leaf shapes on the right, the trailing leaves (which were on all tables, to encourage people to start drawing) and the Christmas baubles. She add lots more shapes, based on what was already there, and on what had worked well on her previous piece. It looked like this after she had finished drawing:
Here it is halfway through:
The shading is done in the same way as graffiti artists - by overpainting with a second colour or blending wet paints with the finger or brush. The background was done in Inktense pencils, coloured on dry and then painted with a wet brush. Some of the highlights were done with the Inktense pencils on wet. And here it is finished. Looks great, doesn’t it?

Here’s Beverley’s graffiti:
Her original already had a lot of fluro colour from textile pens, and most of the drawing was in red pen.

Carol made one with Christmas graffiti but she didn’t like much:
It also had a lot of different colours already, in small areas that made it look spotty. So she took a monoprint from the wet tablecloth and used that as the basis of another one, mostly painted, on cream quilters’ muslin:

Our new member, Maz, produced this beautiful piece. We suggested she might be too high an achiever for our group!

Here is Prue’s:
And Tricia’s:

Isn’t it amazing? They are all so different and yet all so fantastic!

Helen couldn’t find her graffiti so she printed patterns onto paper-backed fabric with her computer and painted over the top. We wondered if the inks would run but they don’t seem to have.


During show and tell, Nola showed the bag she made with her Fibrecircle graffiti fabric and Helen’s cast-off suede leather scraps. It looks great but the leather is crocking red over everything that touches it. Does anyone out there know how to stop suede crocking?

Helen showed her book cover, made from her Fibrecircle graffiti, which she had also painted today. She made the new fabric using the stack and slash technique.
Prue brought along her graffiti fabric too. She really didn't like it, so she's changed it completely. You could hardly tell it was the same fabric! All the fabric strips were turned into tubes so there are no raw edges, and then they were woven together by hand. Isn't it clever?
She says it's going to be a cushion when it grows up.
Prue also finished her rug canvas piece from November and made it into this clever clutch bag.

Carol has been dyeing fleece with food colouring. She spun the fleece using a technique called fractal spinning. There’s a description of this process on A Sheep in Wool’s Clothing http://asheepinwoolsclothing.typepad.com/a_sheep_in_wools_clothing/spinning/  Then she knitted the yarn in garter stitch into this headband.
It's a great colour exercise, for you spinners out there!

We also swapped back our book pages today - stay tuned for more about that!

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