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Thursday, 12 January 2017

Creativity in Unexpected Places

Have you noticed them? Keep your eyes open when you are out walking or driving on city streets. On many street corners stand utility boxes. I'm not sure what's in them but I assume they have something to do with wiring for electricity or telephones or something like that. You may have driven past these boxes without even noticing them because they were painted grey and kind of blended in with the surroundings.

Well, someone decided that they would be great canvases and here and there I have been noticing some that are brightly painted with various designs on them. I've tried to photograph them when I see them. Usually I only have my I-phone with me so the images aren't great but you can see the designs.

This one is downtown somewhere and is covered with
Queen Anne's Lace flowers. This one looks like a photo
that was printed on decal paper and then wrapped around
the box.

This one looks like it was hand painted and it looks like
various stones on a beach-like background. It is on Islington Ave
between Finch and Steeles.

This one is on the Southwest corner of Finch and
Islington. It has been hand painted with a tree
with exposed roots.

This one was hand painted by members of the Franklin Carmichael
Art Group as a copy of a Franklin Carmichael painting. Franklin was
a member of the Group of Seven. It is located on the corner of Albion
and Thistledown Blvd near the Shoppers Drug Mart. It is beautiful.

If you happen to see any others in your city travels, why not take a photo and send it to my email address. I'll try to post them in a future blog.

Thursday, 5 January 2017

Some Results of my Batik Class

In the Fall I had enrolled in a Batik class that the Toronto District School Board offered. It was being held at the Central Technical School on Bathurst Street.

I missed the first class because I was out of town but attended the next few. I was really enjoying them in the beginning and I did learn how the waxing of fabric is done, however, there wasn't very much in-class instruction so I was quite confused as to how many times to dye the work and didn't know exactly how to get the wax out of the fabric.

When the Christmas season came around I decided not to finish the course. I wasn't enjoying it anymore and it was a long drive to get to Central Tech.

I still had some unfinished fabric that I wanted to do something with. Some of it was dyed and waxed several times so I decided to try to get the wax out and see what I ended up with. I googled how to get wax out of batik fabric and it told me I could iron it out with newsprint between my iron and the fabric. I tried that and my fabric looked like it had an oily residue on it and I wasn't able to get that out.

So then I tried to boil it out. That worked better but it took three attempts at boiling before most of the wax was out. It still was the better method.

Below are some samples of my fabric.  I am pleased with them but I may experiment with other resists that are easier to get out.

This was only dyed once therefore it is very pale. Where the wax
was remains the original colour of the fabric.

This was dyed twice with the same colour. You can see some areas
are a darker shade and the wax left the original colour of the

This one turned out better and was dyed with yellow first and
then blue.

This was dyed yellow before the wax was placed on it, then dyed blue
and then rose.

This one turned out the best with yellow first, then wax then red
and then spots of green.

I love the colour of this one but I should have used more wax.

Thursday, 29 December 2016

Art Quilt Top Completed

The art quilt top has been completed. I just have to add borders and quilt batting and backing and then I will quilt it with my sewing machine.

I would like a little advice. Should I leave the border off or put one on. If I put a border on it, it will be a very narrow 1 inch border.

I think I'll title it "Dramatic Skies".

Thursday, 22 December 2016

Art Quilt Progress

Well, it is the week before Christmas and I really thought I'd be able to get this art quilt  top finished before Christmas. I've completed another section and may get a little further on it but I know that putting the layers together and quilting will be happening after Christmas.

I'm still not sure if it will look like I imagined it but hopefully it will work when it is all sewn together.

Wishing all of you a Wonderful Christmas and a Blessed New Year!

Thursday, 15 December 2016

2017 Calendar Completed

I am happy to report that I managed to get my 2017 Art Calendar done and printed before Christmas. I've posted the pages below. If anyone of my followers is interested in one, let me know and I will try to get one to you.

Saturday, 3 December 2016

Updates Re: Calendar and Art Quilt

I was quite productive this week and was able to get my Calendar pages done, photographed and to the printer. It looks like the Calendar will be ready before Christmas but sadly not for tonight's Christmas Celebration with my family. They'll be getting an IOU.

Our Art/Craft Exhibition and Sale in support of our Refugee Family was more successful than I even dared to think. The evening was well-attended, there was lots on exhibit and also lots for sale and we sold a lot. Thank you to all who gave of their talents and generosity to make it happen!

Even though my Art Quilt was unfinished, I brought it to the event and did a small demonstration of my working method. Surprisingly, it sold and it also generated interest in a commission for another one which will also be donated to the cause.

I was also able to work on the original quilt this week and so it is slowing coming to fruition.

It is still hard to see what it will actually look like but I still love the colours and am hoping it will turn out as I envision in my head.

Thursday, 24 November 2016

Month by Month Inspiration

I am still busily working on my Calendar and I'm feeling a little pressed for time as it is moving toward the end of November. Today I finished my November Calendar page and when I was ready to put the dates on it, I noticed that I had done the dates for October incorrectly. I skipped a date which made October only 30 days. A bit stressful, since I had finished painting it and it was ready to go. I managed to fix the dates without having to do the whole page over again which made me feel so much better. That will teach me not to rush and always check twice.

I also want to redo April because I am not satisfied with that page. It was a page that I had measured wrong so it was bigger than it should be on one side. I had cut off the extra inch but then it really didn't work anymore. So today I started a new page and hope I can get it done quickly.

Then the last one is December. I have some ideas for that calendar page and will think on it some more while I'm working on April. I may also get some inspiration from Christmas cards that come in the mail.

Once all the pages are done, they will all be photographed and then I'll take the images to a printer and have them print the calendar. I'm really hoping it will work out since I've put a whole year of work into it.

Below are parts of July, October and November.