Thursday, October 31, 2019

I like #137

Happy Halloween!! And welcome to another list of things to like this week!

The first thing I like is visiting my sister.  I had a great laid back weekend with her and her family.  We did crafts and legos and games with the kids, and worked with them on rollerskating.  Becky and I took a nice hike and went shoe shopping.  All in all the best kind of weekend time with family without an overpacked schedule.  One of the things Becky planned for us was to paint coordinating Thanksgiving t-shirts for us and my mom.  We made one for Becky's husband Andrew, but not my dad, who I'm sure is not willing to wear one.  It was a lot of fun, we put big adult handprints, then the kids did handprints, and then we filled in the body details.  I'm looking forward to seeing everybody again at Thanksgiving.

The kids and I took an evening walk down to the lake, and while it was really lovely and wonderfully cool out, we returned home quickly because of the swarms of mosquitoes.

The pups also loved going to my sister's; Auto and Blue rumpused all weekend and Bentley took great advantage of being in a house with more hands to pet him.   We were all sad to go home.  Recently my sister recovered her dining room chairs and she saved me all the old foam.  I put it together into a quick dog bed, and both dogs approve!  It turned out really large and very cushy, so will be a great addition to our complement of beds (provided they don't tear it up too much).

It's been cool but not freezing lately and the small dahlias are still going gangbusters (though the big ones seem about done).  It was supposed to be 31 last night, so yesterday I cut all the yellow ones left.  I'd say I think this is the end of them for this year, but I've thought that before and they've kept on, so who knows.  Hooray for fall color!

I finished my fall quilt earlier this week, and managed to promptly get both pictures taken (not really good ones, but this won't be a show quilt so it's less important) and the blog post written!  It was fun to do a traditional pieced quilt and I got it hung up just in time for Halloween!  Click on over to see more pictures of it!

I hope everyone has a great week!  Click on over to Lee Anna's for more things to like!

Wednesday, October 30, 2019

Halloween quilt

Over the past couple of weekends I have pieced two fall quilts, and today I wanted to share the results of the first one.  My goal was to use some of the fun fall fabrics I'd painted and sun printed in the workshop with Betty Busby.

 I made a bunch of stripsets using fabrics both from the workshop, from previous dyeing experiments, and from my stash.  Most of the stripsets were for a different project but I incorporated the leftover bits into this quilt.

This was actually two pieces of narrow border fabric cut off of the edge of an orange silk sari (they're stuck together in the middle here from the painting), so it made sense to use them as the border for the quilt.

This Nautilus guy I sunprinted and then painted wasn't particularly Halloweeny, but his fall colors made him feel thematically appropriate.

The spider web (seen here midprinting) was the central motif for the quilt.

This was taken while I was piecing,

All the fabrics are either silks or polyester satins, so the whole thing has a very nice shine and luster in person.  It's banner shaped (long and narrow), limited by the fact that I wanted to use those narrow pieces of sari border.  It was a fun, relatively quick and traditional quilt, and now I just have to find somewhere to hang it!

I love these middle randomly pieced sections,  they were assembled from all the stubby little scraps of stripsets I was determined not to waste.

Thursday, October 24, 2019

I like #136

1. I finally got around to blogging about my most recent quilt finish, High Plains of New Mexico.  This was one of those projects that just seemed to go really smoothly and the end result was what I hoped for.  That's pretty rare in my experience!  Click here to read the post about the whole quilt!

2.  Loving snuggling with the pups (of course this is every week).  Bentley got some good scritches this week and I had some fun ball playing with Blue.

3.  I got to do some fun fall piecing this week, I worked on a small fall banner using some of the fabrics I painted and printed in the Betty Busby class.  I'll hopefully get it quilted soon!

4.  A couple weeks back we had a touch of frost and I thought for sure the dahlias were done!  But since then it's warmed back up, and even though it's been delightfully cool in the mornings and evenings, thus far the dahlias, particularly the small yellow ones have been going gangbusters.  The yellow ones did well in the early summer and then took a break during the hottest part and are now thriving.  I hope they'll keep going for a while, I keep looking at the forecast for a freeze!

5.  A good friend of mine hosted a cookout this week so it was an excuse to make a batch of my mom's delicious potato salad.  I love it but never get to make it.  And I put it in one of my favorite bowls (it's actually a casserole dish with a nice lid not in the picture).  It's one of the earliest pots my mom made, from several years before I was even born, and I'm so grateful to have it.  And of course I'm still enjoying the delicious leftover potato salad.

6.  And it's thrilling that knit sock weather is back,  this is a pair made for me by my friend Kristin and I was excited to pull them out this week.

I hope everyone is having a great week!  Click over to LeeAnna's for more things to be grateful for!

Monday, October 21, 2019

High Plains of New Mexico

A few weeks back, I finished a new quilt inspired by this photo I took on the eastern New Mexico plains between Portales and Roswell.  I'm usually traveling through that part of my trip around sunset (depending on the time of year) and for years I've been taking quick pics of the sky from the side of the road.  So often the colors and clouds are just amazing.

I put the picture into photoshop, did some digital adjustments and abstractions, and sent it to spoonflower for printing on a shiny white satin type fabric.  Of course I forgot to save any of those files- I'm sure they're somewhere but I can't find them.  After starting I pieced a background out of these three other shiny fabrics-  that dark blue is one of my favorite fabrics (ever), it's shiny but not too much, it has a great hand, and a beautiful subtle color shift from navy to dark turquoise depending on the angle.  There's a piece of gold in the middle and then on the right is a shiny textured brownish gold that I love-  it was the background for my yucca quilt many years ago, and the scrap I had left was perfect for this project.  I cut the printed abstracted photo into about six pieces and mosaiced them onto the background.  It was pretty tricky to get them straight and the grout lines even.

I mostly quilted along the tile lines in the photo, with some other quilting continuing off to the side.

High Plains of New Mexico, Shannon Conley, c. 2019, 26" x 38", photo by Mike Cox

High Plains of New Mexico, Shannon Conley, c. 2019, 26" x 38", photo by Mike Cox

High Plains of New Mexico, Shannon Conley, c. 2019, 26" x 38", photo by Mike Cox

High Plains of New Mexico, Shannon Conley, c. 2019, 26" x 38", photo by Mike Cox

I really love the way it turned out.  The shiny fabric coupled with the colors in the sky make it feel luminous in person.  And even though it's very abstract, I feel like it captures a little of the feel of those wide open plains.  It's currently hanging at the 1894 Gallery in Texarkana Arkansas as part of the Our Heritage thru the Arts show.  It'll be up until November 30, 2019, so anyone who's in that part of the world should stop by and see it!

Thursday, October 17, 2019

I like #135

1.  I got around to posting about our Fiberworks 2019 show this week.  There were tons of great pieces,  these pics are closeups of a quilt by my friend Charlotte Hickman;  there is so much depth and detail in her work, it's just amazing.  Click on over to see the rest of the pieces I shared.

2.  I did a bunch of plant maintenance this week.  It was time to bring in all the houseplants that had been outside for the summer, but that required a lot of reorganizing and finding spaces for things.  I think most of them had a good summer outside, but one of the new plants I got from my plant guy this summer has just completely died.  I'll have to see if I can figure out why because I really liked it.  I really enjoy checking on my plants and taking care of them all.  I love the variety, and seeing who's flourishing and who might need a bit of a different environment or some help.  I'm pretty full inside now and I have a couple things rooting that will need homes, but there's always space somewhere.

3.  I got out my fall decorations at work this week; my favorite is this embroidered wreath I made a few years ago.  It was a fun project and I'm always happy to see it!

4.  My cacti are still growing!  I haven't shared them in a while, but they're doing great.  Still pretty small, but definitely alive and continuing to mature morphologically.

5. I enjoyed getting to do a little bit of knitting this week.  Project on this project is slow, but I feel like I'm slowly getting the hang of it!

6.  The pups are good.  They miss me-  it's been a lot of long days at work with after work obligations, but they're always up for a snuggle or walk.

7.  Fall is finally well and truly here.  We're starting to get a bit of color on campus, and I'm enjoying seeing it out my windows while I can (they're moving us to the basement sometime next spring).

8.  I liked getting to work on some quilts this week.  This is the back of what's going to be one of my abstract sculptural pieces.  I did a bunch of painting on the little petals with my Shiva Painstiks over the weekend.  It's fun experimenting!

I hope you all had a good week!  For more positivity, click on over to LeeAnna's!

Monday, October 14, 2019

Fiberworks 2019 Opening

Fiberworks 2019, the annual show put on by the Fiber Artists of Oklahoma opened last weekend.  I had a piece in the show, my large abstract flower bouquet, you can see it here. Betty Busby was the juror this year and last week I blogged about the workshop with her.  The show is always fabulous, it incorporates all different types of fiber art.  I didn't take pictures of everything,  I didn't even take pictures of all my favorites, but I have pictures of some that really stood out.

The first thing I noticed was how much hand embroidery was in the show this year.  I love seeing that, and it's definitely something that I've been seeing more of recently.

This piece is a sculpture made mostly out of dyed gut.  It has several layers, and it really glowed (hence the title I suppose) there in the gallery.  So luminous and fragile looking.

Glow, by Barbara Morrison

This beautiful kimono was covered in hand embroidery and reverse applique.  The artist sat next to me during the workshop so also got to hear a little more about her process and inspiration.

My passage to India, Janis Updike Walker

I thought these three embroidered portraits were really wonderful.  The artist is a new one to our group, but I loved all the texture.  Many of the elements are dimensional, really taking advantage of some of the flexibility that comes from using fiber, and the breadth of stitches and forms you can achieve with hand embroidery.  She won an award, but I can't remember which piece it was.

Life Drawing in Thread (top), and Nude in Velvet (bottom), both by Sean Tyler

Seated Nude, Sean Tyler.

I didn't get a very good picture of this piece, but it was tiny,  maybe 4x6 inches, and solid hand embroidery.  The artist is Darci Lenker and I love following her instagram, she shares tons of great pictures of her embroidery (@darcidolls)

Big Raven-Emily Carr, by Darci Lenker

I loved this quilt-  It has a modern sort of edgy design vibe but is filled with traditional piecing and tons of hand quilting and embroidery.  Really fun.

Inked! Or the Quadriga of Quilting, by Agnes Stadler

This quilt jumped out at me too-  lovely improv piecing with gorgeous resonant fall colors and just a pop of print. 
Cheryl Gebhart, Liberated Log Cabins

My good friend Charlotte Hickman had two pieces in the show as well.  Her quilts include collage, applique, tons of felting, and tons of embroidery/surface embellishment.  They're pieces that get more and more interesting the longer you look and it's always a treat to see them!!!

Azaleas in the Park, by Charlotte Hickman

Look at the beautiful embroidery and gorgeous beads? shells? on the trunks.  Such depth of color and texture!

And finally this giant stuffed fabric sculpture made me smile.   I love the neon colors and graphic shapes!
Stub Toe, by Sam Kennedy

The show is hanging at the AHHA gallery in Tulsa until November 24th so if you have time, go by and see it.  And many thanks to the organizers,  it's a ton of work to put on.