Craft Book Challenge

A Whole Year

It’s been a year since my last post. That amazes me.

The year has been full of changes in my creative life. I have tweaked and retweaked my branding. There are some major elements that I will never let go of. I want to be a positive force through design. Adding a bit of magic to people’s lives by creating things that make them happy, serene or uplift their day is something I will always aspire to.

My next posts will feature a project in which I will do a mini work of art everyday using one of my too many craft books. I look at them daily and know that I should be delving into those pages that I faithfully paid good money for yet they sit on the shelves tightly mushed together just waiting for some attention. Well, attention they will get, finally! I will use a different book each day.

Below is the chosen one. My first in the series of my Craft Book Challenge. Wish me luck!

I’ll start tomorrow.

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Color Study Thoughts

It’s feels like so long ago since my last post. Ugh!

Anyway — the color study exercise is still fresh in my mind. It actually taught me more than just about how color relates to emotion. It taught me what shades and tones I didn’t really care for. It showed me how the differences within an individual color danced playfully with each other and how sometimes those variations did not play well together at all. Also, how textures read differently depending on the interplay of the shades. The mini monochromatic study was fun yet frustrating and tedious at times but well worth every minute.

The reason I force myself into various art exercises every so often is because little surprise lessons spring up every time.

I will be moving on to making some pieces from the serendipitous fabric I created by scrunching random paint splashes.

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I Photoshopped this pic as simply an ode to color.
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New Year — New Journey

It’s a new year! I have a new company name! It is now eclectic clothI have been honing my art brand and it has graduated into a more fun design style. Textile collage displaying various themes from love and spirit to pure whimsy fits my all over the place way of creating much better than my previous scheme. 

Procrastination will take a back seat this year. Well, that’s the intention anyway. I also intend to make posting on my little art journal blog a priority.

I am ending my posting hiatus by continuing my exploration into color and featuring some monochromatic studies in the form of various textile pieces. 

This first piece is a study in white. White symbolizes purity and innocence and is considered a cool color due to it’s relation to snow and ice. There are many shades of white. Snow, pearl, cream, antique white just to name a few. Even beige is actually a shade of white. I have attempted to display some of the soft and beautiful versatility of white in the art quilt below.

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wish in white

I named the quilt wish in white because it’s a big bowl of ice cream and I don’t eat much dairy anymore — I miss vanilla ice cream so much. It is 11 1/2″ x 13 1/2.”

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Finding A Way To Create

It’s kind of funny that I call this blog an art journal. I have been resisting actually creating from my journals. Drawing is not one of my talents but I have noticed that actually drawing more often seems to be aiding in that. In any case I have come up with a way to create samples displaying the elements and principles of design and at the same time using my slowly developing journaling skills.

I wrote the elements and principles on index cards, cut them out, put all of the words from each category in separate bags and randomly chose pairings. I chose an element first then a principle. For example, I chose line out of bag number one (elements). Then I chose movement from bag two (principles). I put those two together and will now make a sample textile adhering to both line and movement simutaneously. I had three principles left at the end of this exercise: proportion, balance and rhythm so I put the elements back in the bag and chose three, etc., etc. I quickly sketched some ideas in my journal that I will use to make the pieces. I didn’t want to get bogged down worrying about trying to draw perfectly so I had all of the sketches done in less than half an hour.

Here are the prompt combos:

line & movement

shape & variety

form & pattern

space & repetition & proportion

texture & unity & balance

color & emphasis & rhythm

And here are the pieces:
I like wonky. I guess it shows in the following misshapen felt samples.

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Elements and Principles

By knowing and absorbing the elements and principles of design you attain a valuable intuitive resource. As with the layouts, experimentation is the best way to gain familiarity with these pesky but important precepts.

Elements 

Line – a mark with greater length than width which can be thick, thin, diagonal, straight, vertical, horizontal or curved; defines contours; indicates movement and direction; can suggest a mood.
Working with line can be enlightening. It can turn what starts out as a little dot into a beautiful work of art. Paul Klee is one of the artists who took line to a spiritual plane in my view. Check out some of his work if you want to learn about the art of line.

Shape – a closed line that can be organic (my favorite–for now), geometric or flat expressing length and width.

Form – 3-D shapes that express length, width and depth; conveys volume.

Space – the area between and around objects; referred to as negative when around the object and has shape; can refer to the feeling or illusion of depth; real space is 3-D.

Texture – the surface quality that can be seen, imagined or felt; can be rough, smooth, hard or soft.

Color – the light reflected off of objects; hue (blue, green, etc.), value (the lightness or darkness), intensity (how bright or how dull).
Color is my utopia. I am eternally, desperately in love with color. Although, a blank canvas can make quite a statement.

Principles

Balance – the distribution of visual weight; concerning the heaviness or lightness of objects, color, texture and space; balance can make a design feel stable or chaotic.

Emphasis – the part of the design that catches the attention of the viewer; usually a focal area that stands out due to contrast; a difference in size, color, texture, shape, etc.

Movement – the route the viewer’s eye travels while observing the work; usually along line edges, shape and color planes.

Pattern – repeating of an object or symbol all over the artwork.

Repetition – creates unity within the work.

Proportion – brings the feeling of unity through the appropriate use of size, amount and number.

Rhythm – when one or more elements of design is used repetitiously in order to create a feeling of organized action; creates a mood.

Variety – the use of several elements of design to hold the attention of the viewer; guides the viewer’s eye throughout the work.

Unity – the feeling of harmony; all parts of the work create a sense of integrity; completeness.

I will attempt to create some good examples of each in my next post. Wish me luck!

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So Happy to Be Blogging Again!

I am starting over in blogville. Since accidentally deleting old artsy notions and philosophical musings (due to my being indecisive and impatient) I have been so anxious to get back to sharing what I know about one of my biggest passions–collage. I will delve into many techniques that will help bring this expressive art to life. My intent is to learn as well as teach.

Collage has several technical definitions but I like how the thesaurus explains it: a mixture of pictures, an abstract composition, found art, photomontage. This is what I attempt to do with fabric. I adore “material.” That’s what my Grandma used to call the sweetly patterned light blue  dotted swiss, the beautifully sheer organdy and all of the other meticulously cared for fabric she owned. The vast variety of textures and colors that make up today’s delightful choices make me swoon. I love it all. From the flimsiest georgette to the heaviest canvas, it all thrills me to the core. Walking into a fabric shop is like finding new money. So when something as liberating as collage is available to be toyed with in relation to the textile realm, I am all in! The general principles and elements of composition and design do come into play with collage in order to help a piece of work make art sense but many times instinct takes over. Doing exercises in order to learn and absorb those principles have helped to bring cohesiveness and order to my work which is sort of a weird concept when talking about collage which most of the time is without any order at all at first glance. I guess the challenge is to produce a sort of jumbled harmony. I like to work fast without much conscious consideration and I want my designs to adhere to that jumbled harmony notion. That is exactly why I have put those pesky rules safely in my subconscious where they silently come to my aid whenever necessary.

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My next post will be a brief overview of composition and the principles and elements of design.