Sunday, April 29, 2007

Garden's Gate for Juried Show

I would like to hear any & all opinions on this piece that might be my first time ever entry into a small art quilt juried show. It measures about 14x14" and features hand applique & chunky hand quilting with natural linen thread. I like how it looks now but wonder if it needs more - maybe hand embroidered cascading vines & flowers? Are judges so used to seeing art quilts that feature new innovative techniques and methods that an abstract using traditional skills will be passed over for consideration?

I appreciate your input.....Denise

Saturday, April 28, 2007

Cro-magnum & Evolution

Sometimes a group of us are given a topic to ponder and then write about. This week's word is Peace. The unfinished PEACE above was created one winter's evening when I was thinking about humans and how we feel it necessary to harm one another in the name of rights, freedom, religion, money and territory. My husband says that we aren't that far out of the cave. If we look beyond the BMW's, designer clothes and supposed sophistication - I believe he might be right.

Fabric Altering - Session 2

I am happy with the ongoing results of my altered fabric project. I think this piece is done and ready to be combined with other altered fabric - that I have to between pretending that I'm cleaning the kitchen......

Thursday, April 26, 2007

Floating Logs

I love the texture that can be created with acrylics on a board. Somehow, some way I need to replicate this earthy, worn, organic look on fabric. Do you think I could heavily paint a piece of fabric, then spray it with alcohol & then rub it? Wonder if it would look like the background of this painting? Then I could add natural threads & embellisments. Oooooh, I 'see' it but can I make it? I think I just made plans for my evening ---- sorry hon ----- wanna have pizza for dinner?

Monday, April 23, 2007

Carpe Diem on a Caffeine Buzz

I love coffee. I love the smell of it, the ritual of it (special pottery coffee mugs, you know), and the taste of it. I drink it naked – no milk or sugar to get in the way of that robust flavor. It’s a Monday after a busy, beautiful weekend and I’m dragging. I either need more caffeine or more sleep....think I’d take either!
The wonderful phraseology on this piece "carpe diem on a caffeine buzz" is a line from the Terri Hendrix song 'It's About Time'. She gave me permission to use it. She creates some incredible songs - I am especially drawn to her lyrics. I recommend her 'Art of Removing Wallpaper' to anyone who enjoys well done folk fusion music with a kick. See her link on the right......

Sunday, April 22, 2007

Peace, Love & Woodstock

A photo I took last evening while my husband & I enjoyed the near dusk by our pond....a beautiful spring evening that all the money in the world can't buy....

I consider myself very fortunate to live in the Hudson Valley, at the foothills of the Catskill Mountains, right up against the Shawangunk Ridge (documented as some of the most unique terrain in the world), and within an hour's train ride of Manhattan.

Yesterday my husband and I ventured just north of us to Woodstock. Yes, the same Woodstock of the festival fame (although that was really held in Bethel), Bob Dylan & The Band (Levon still holds concerts in his barn - which we will be attending next month.....hoooray!!!), The Woodstock School of Art, the Ashokan Resevoir, and the home of various famous - near famous - and should be famous artists. There is a tremendous crafts gallery there that carries some of my work. Over the years we have gotten to know Mary & Rudy - wonderfully gracious people whose gallery, set in the woods on 25 acres of land, in addition to being a top notch venue displaying some very impressive artisan's work has also become a gathering place for some laughs, a glass of wine & good conversation.

Mary and I had a lengthy conversation about passion and obsession in regards to art work. She is a jewelry maker extraordinaire but her real passion is oil painting. To listen to her yesterday describe some of the techniques she is using and how she creates some of her realistic paintings was a joy. We talked about the compulsion to keep working on an art piece for hours on end...while Rudy & Steve commisserated about missed meals, undone chores of daily living and being art widows.

It takes special, selfless people to support and live with us creative souls. Peace, love and Woodstock indeed.......

Friday, April 20, 2007

A Bit About Blogging & Creativity

An artist's online group I belong to proposed we bloggers answer the following questions.....never been interviewed before!

1.) What's your day job?
I work in sales for a specification grade lighting manufacturer (which means I get to help light a lot of stores and office buildings)

2.) How do you define Creativity?
The inspiration to try something different, the confidence to take risks and the fortitude to not get discouraged when the different & risks turn out looking like a 2 year did them.
For instance, the unfinished piece above began life as a whim (liked this fabric laying next to that fabric) and is now growing into - what I believe - will become an entry into a National Juried Art Quilt show I hope to enter.....if the piece continues to make me happy!

How does it look in your life?
I'm not sure - sometimes creativity is stimulating and sometimes it's annoying (can get in the way of life a bit when one is always viewing people, places & things from a design aspect).

3. What allows you to be the most creative?
My husband's support.

4. When did you start blogging?
About a month ago

What prompted you to start?
Seemed like a good way to journal and.....might as well face facts - I'm a glutton for anything that might bring attention to my work.

5. Who/what are your major influences and inspirations in your blogging?
Ideas and the writings of other bloggers. Sometimes random thoughts might spur a blog entry.

6. How does blogging reflect (and/or feed) your creativity?
Keeps the juices flowing!

Sunday, April 15, 2007


I love funky, raw, edgey abstracts. Many people believe they are easy to do....just throw some paint on a canvas and call it a day. They are wrong. To combine colors, shapes, textures and movement on a canvas can be difficult.

The piece above will be offered on Ebay this Friday, with a starting bid of 99 cents. Each month an art group holds an en mass listing where all the pieces start at 99 cents. On 4/20 after 7p.m. Eastern time search NFAC (acronym for NibbleFest Art Contest) on Ebay to view all the art available at this low starting price.

Saturday's Creation

This piece was not a favorite of mine and has been hanging around my studio for a few months. Yesterday I figured....Why Not?...and altered it with paints, stuck it on a painted canvas and collaged altered cheesecloth collaged. Sometimes these Why Not? things work and sometimes they don't.

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Monday, April 9, 2007


Tonight I took a piece I was working on, soaked it in water & then dropped colored ink from an eye dropper on it. It looked awful. Then inspiration told me to iron it & rub hard. It didn't look as bad. Then inspiration told me to add some paints. Then I really started to get excited. Inspiration can so often change a mess into something with potential. I hope inspiration stays around for a nice visit.

Friday, April 6, 2007

Where Have All the Flowers Gone?

I did another one this afternoon. I don't know if it's good or not but I like her. I even posted her in Ebay.

Finished Vase

Painted, sanded, stained & varnished.....think I'm going to try another.....

Thursday, April 5, 2007

What's in a Name OR the Absence of One?

Little Red Riding Hood is a painting I bought from Dixie Redmond of NorthDixieDesigns (see her link on the right side of this page). I call her Heidi since the tale does not divulge Hood’s given name and somewhere in my mind I have combine the tale of Heidi with Little Red Riding Hood. Given the tremendous amount of allegory in this tale the fact that Hood’s real name is never mentioned could make for some interesting theories and conjectures as to why. It might be a great exercise to research & pursue this in another blog musing at a later date.....hmmmmmm....

Anyhow, I was so inspired by Dixie’s painting that I had to try my hand at painting on wood. The In-Progress results are above. I still have detailing and more color to drop into the painting (tendrils & berries I think) and also want to try my hand at lightly sanding the painting, then staining and varnishing it. It will be an attempt to make my painting look like a time worn piece of folk art.

Tuesday, April 3, 2007

Fine Art

Is quilt making art? I know it is an artful undertaking – what colors work well together? What design elements, shapes, sizes should be brought into the creation? How skillful is the construction executed?

In the past years quilt making has grown out of its roots as coverings for beds and snuggling throws to be placed nearby a favorite sofa or chair. Art quilting has become a multi-million dollar a year industry, with all kinds of materials, classes, techniques, etc available for the buying. I started combining fabrics and sticking them up on walls about 35 yrs ago so I am no stranger to the concept of art quilts as wall art. And – believe me – my stock of necessary creative supplies (!) is staggering.

In the last months I have been hankering (for some reason this IS the right word) to return to the Art of the Quilt. My checkerboard inspiration piece is growing. Right now it is a 13" block. Oh, I could add the sepia photos I printed on fabric to add an artful element. I could use rusty wire to hang found objects off it –maybe add some strategically placed embroidery or beading but you know what I think I’m REALLY going to do? I’m going to create another 17 blocks, combine them together, sandwich a hunk of batting between them and a backing & then quilt the layers together. It will be the first traditional use quilt I’ve made in years. In some ways I think this will be one of the most fine-artful things I have made in a long time.