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Broken Color Exhibit

I have the good fortune to have my work hung with two other artists, a ceramicist and a painter, for a group show entitled Broken Color.

Black Oak II, 12" x 12", 2014, Private Collection

Black Oak II, 12″ x 12″, 2014, Private Collection

You’ll be treated to ceramics by Bobbie Altman and paintings by Heather Robinson.

 

Broken Color Group Show will be on view

September 1st – October 31st, 2015

Creative Framing & Gallery
2700 Park Blvd.
Oakland, CA 94606

Opening Art Reception, First Friday:
September 4th, 2015 from 6-9pm

First Friday, Artist Reception:
October 2nd, 2015 from 6-9pm

Franki Kohler, Broken Ginkgos IV, 12"x12", 2012, For sale

 I hope you’ll be able to stop by during this extended exhibit period. If you do, please let me know what you thought about it.

Happy Creative New Year

My last posting was on Christmas Day. From there daily events took over and I missed my usual schedule of posting. It happens. I’m over it.

I’m on to the new year now. I know it’s official because I just took the first images of 2015 and created a folder for them. Here is a peek at what is moving and shaking in my world.

I don’t think I’ve mentioned the revision that I made to Hand of the Artist. I’m a member of a critique group which meets monthly. I shared this piece with them and one of the members suggested a slight change in arranging some of the beads. I played with the idea and liked it a lot. Click on image for a larger view.

Hand of the artist, changesThe change is rather subtle: a number of the turquoise beads have been moved to form small clusters. You can see the original design by clicking on the link above.

I put the final touches on Black Oak and printed a label for it.

Black Oak label

And just in time, too, because it goes to the photographer tomorrow (along with Hand of the Artist).

I’m working on a piece that was begun in Lorie McCown‘s class in Tahoe. I removed the original straight-line stitching (you can see the white marking line which is not permanent) and stitched large free-motion loops over the surface. Then I started cutting out circles.

Work in progress

Right now I don’t know which end is up on this piece — literally. I’m simply putting down one thing, then the next, making decisions as I go about color and stitches. I’m enjoying hand stitching and the go-with-the-flow approach I’ve adopted for this small piece. I’m keeping the stitches simple

Work in progress, detail 2

and will let the work tell me what it needs.

Work in progress, detail 1

I have been seriously missing sketching and watercolor work. Somehow I let the time for that creative pleasure vanish. I’m resuming the on-line class with Val Webb for sketching cats and dogs later this month (I had to drop out of it because I was over committed. I know that doesn’t happen to you!). I’m so looking forward to her instruction and getting back into a regular habit of sketching.

I have also signed up for an on-line class on blogging with WordPress. Yes, I’ve been doing this for a while but I know that I’ll learn from the class and it will also help me get back into the swing of regularly writing.

Some of the artists that I follow have a practice of adopting a single word as a mantra for the year — an interesting prompt. I’m not sure that I’m ready to do that, but if I did, my word (at least for now) would be DAILY. I am a person who thrives on order and schedules. The kind of habit I seek is not only good for my psychic well-being, it means that I am productive in the creative areas I choose.

New lessons don’t begin for a few days though, but there is no reason not to pick up a pencil and paint brush now. This charming teacup was a gift from a dear friend many years ago.

teacup

I’m off to sketch!

What are you doing to get 2015 off to its creative start?

Rain and Quilting

These two are a natural — rain and quilting. Here in Northern California we’re well into our worst drought on record so we’re especially happy to see the rain. Everything in the garden looks hopeful with a clean face. Click on an image for a larger view.

Sorrel, blood veined Blueberries in bloom Climbing camelia Cotoneaster Mandarin oranges PansiesAnd while the garden was getting a bath, I started quilting on Black Oak, a top I completed in August.

Black Oak being quiltedThis is part of my series on Native California plants. See the entire piece here.

More rain is predicted over the next few days so I am determined to make serious progress on this piece. Stay tuned.

Black Oak II Done

Black Oak II, the companion piece to Black Oak which is in progress, is done. Click on the image for a larger view.

Black Oak III tend to quilt every inch of background on my art quilts, but for this 12″ x 12″ art quilt, that didn’t feel like the way to proceed. I kept hearing ‘simplicity’ in my head so that was the approach taken. I like the thread sketching on the appliqued leaves and the simplicity of repeating those shapes as the quilted background. I also enjoy the ‘surprise’ of finding the quilted leaves in the darker fabric shapes. And with less quilting, it’s easier to appreciate the subtle design created in the sunprinting process (the golden fabric is left from the sunprint images I did for Black Oak).

This was a very satisfying experience and has definitely informed how I will approach the larger companion piece.

This is being shared at Off the Wall Friday — click on over there and check out what’s happening.

Black Oak

I’m still working on my Native California plant series. I completed the top for Black Oak which will finish about 26″ x 60″. I really enjoyed putting this one together using some of my ‘radiator series’ fabric created in Lonni Rossi’s surface design class at Asilomar, some rust fabric experiments and some sun prints. Once I pulled out a stack of likely-suspect fabrics to use, things just seemed to jump together for me — or did they? I loved the fabrics but something was wrong. Here’s where I pick up the camera and start taking pictures. It’s amazing what one sees on the computer that one cannot see on the wall. Click on image for a larger view.

Black Oak rejectThe large piece of rusted fabric on the left jumped out way too much. And the background doesn’t show at all. I took everything down and went shopping for a new background fabric. When I had the new background up the answers became clear. Here’s the final top.

Black Oak finalI’m thinking about how to quilt this piece.

While thinking about the series in general — there will be a minimum 3-5 large pieces —  I decided to expand the series. I’ll be making a foot-square piece as a ‘partner’ to each of the larger pieces using this pillar format. I’ll be using the same fabrics in each pair of quilts but I’ll use different techniques in the smaller ones. I think that the two sizes hung together could be a very interesting exhibit and working out issues in the smaller piece can lead to decisions for the larger pieces.

I’ve constructed the top for the foot-square Black Oak II piece. I’m allowing myself to think about just one section at a time, quilt it, then move on to the next section. Some days I just can’t tackle deciding on the whole top at once. It’s surprising how this one decision has relaxed me, allowing me to focus and just have fun.

Black oak Foot SquareI should have this piece completed very soon so stay tuned.

I’ve promised myself to go back to finishing my Sunflower Scrap VI piece — not done, but not forgotten! — before I turn to quilting the large Black Oak piece.

This posting has been shared at Off the Wall Friday. Click on over and see what’s happening there.

Sketching

Last week I snipped a couple small branches of my friend’s black oak tree to do some sun printing. The black oak is a native California tree and will fit nicely with the art quilt series I’m working on. I am quite taken with the shape of the leaf. It has so much character and grace with those very deep lobes and multiple points on the edges. The leaves are very soft and supple, bending gently to the breeze. I couldn’t resist sketching one of the leaves along with a feather found during a recent walk. Click on image for larger view.

Black Oak and Feather SketchI was a bit nervous about sketching my first feather so I started with the more familiar leaf shape first. I painted the leaf with 5 layers of watercolor paint to achieve the look I wanted. Between layers of green paint for the leaf I sketched the feather. I used the same multi-layer approach and 2 micro pens to capture this Scrub Jay feather. I feel like I’ve broken the ice with this sketch, so I won’t be as nervous about attempting a new feather in the future.