Tuesday, 10 September 2013

Weekend Retreat

In conjunction with the weekend quilting retreat in Berry was the second 'One Red Thread' textile competition. I found myself absorbed by the theme 'The Power of Red' and found a purpose to put my reading and a number of my experiments into action to see what I could come up with.....

For me 'The Power of Red' lies in the fact that red is used to express so many different emotions and capture attention - in nature as well as the built or created environment. I called my work '4 Faces of Red' ( a little play on 'Three Faces of Eve' or 'The United States of Tara') - examining some of the many meanings attached to the colour red - a colour with multiple personalities......the list is enormous..

The covers are made from fabric paper using the instructions on my "Tips and Tutorials" page. The four small pictures (each representative of one of the quilts in the book) are connected by a single red thread......(to represent the competition title.)

I also made a calico bag for transporting it which gve me the opportunity to try out Leslie Riley's transfer papers. I took a photo of the front cover and reversed the image on the computer before printing it out onto the transfer paper. Then it was simply a matter of ironing the image onto the calico. I provided 2 pairs of white gloves because I wanted people to actually 'read' the book.... (3 out of 4 gloves came home so someone may be wondering why one of their white gloves has SK scrawled on it.......)

The 'Contents' page hopefully gave an insight into the thinking behind each of the quilts.

First quilt was about romantic love - told through song titles. The song titles in themselves tell a story - from the beginning to the end of a romance. ( 'Roses are Red', 'Crazy Little Thing Called Love' 'Love is All You Need', 'Love Me Tender', 'Addicted to Love', 'When a Man Loves a Woman',  'Dream Lover', 'Love Hurts', 'How Deep is Your Love', 'The Power of Love', 'What's Love Got to do with It?', 'I'll Never Fall in Love Again'.)

The second quilt represented an Indian wedding with all the glitz and colour with red as the main feature. This one started life as gold tissue paper bonded to a fusible then layered with a tulle and metallic paint sandwich, curtain fabric and braid. (It was suggested I had omitted the most important thing - the dowry...... in hindsight maybe he was right.......)

The third quilt was based on the title of Nathaniel Hawthorn's novel of the same name where the adulteress was required to wear a scarlet 'A' stitched onto her dress to broadcast her sin. I could imagine excited, scornful conversations among the righteous members of the community - we've all seen that kind of thing in action, haven't we? It's also to do with the second oldest (?) profession and the attitudes to these working women....

Back - 'The Scarlet Letter'

The final quilt was about the red of heat, fire, anger rage.....the colours of the hand-painted shibori style fabric were intensified with Inktense pencils.
Back - 'Hot, Hot, Hot'
The index listed the materials used in each quilt......

......and the blurb on the back cover ws basically my 'Artist's Statement'......

All in all I was pretty pleased with it - though the judge(s) didn't rate it among the winners. The first prize winner was a surprising choice I thought - I would have given it to the third prize winner. I really thought her piece was powerful and answered the brief as a textile art piece really well. It leapt off the wall into your line of sight.....'power of red' in action.....

I learned a number of things through participating but won't be in a hurry to enter another  competition.......I have a huge backlog of things waiting for attention.....

My workshop with Dijanne Cevaal was fabulous fun. The group was intelligent, witty, supportive, helpful, experimental and at times raucous, but boy did we stitch!!!! Very rewarding experience and a basis for further work.

Day 1 we used transfer paints (or disperse dyes) to paint onto papers. These were then ironed onto Lutradur, then stitched onto a quilt sandwich and quilted.
(Incomplete but coming along nicely)

Day 2 we worked with our own photos which had been printed onto 'Printfuse'  ready for us to stitch over. (A bit like painting by numbers...)
'Sascha' - still a long way to go but should come out OK - eventually...

That's it for now - and possibly a while. We head out west tomorrow so hopefully I'll have photos of Ningaloo Reef and WA wildflowers to share sometime soon. I'll be focussing on colour......

Take care til then,
Sue xxxx

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