Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Bill and Jean

Been spending quality time with my grandmothers' sisters, Jean and 'Bill" recently.  Doing their hair, fixing their faces and clothes.  Getting up close and personal.  Aunt Bill just celebrated her 96th birthday, and she is the last of the Shepherd sisters.  This is an 'in-progress' shot of a project using a photo of Jean and Bill in their younger days.  I'm working on reproducing their portrait in cheesecloth, in the style of artist Mary Pal, of Canada.

It's fussy work, because the cheesecloth wants to stick to you and everything else, but I'm getting the hang of it, and I know the results will be wonderful.  Right now, I have an enlargement of the photo under a sheet of Duralar, and when all the layers are complete, I'll peel the cheesecloth off and stitch it to a black fabric background.  This will be a precious keepsake when finished.  My siblings and cousins spent many happy hours with these ladies when we were growing up.  Cherished memories indeed. 

Sunday, June 11, 2017

Shirt Tales

Friday, June 9, 2017 was the reception for my solo exhibit of 47 portraits at Dunedin Fine Art Center - Dunedin, FL.  It was a beautiful full moon evening, with music and lots of admirers, and four fiber exhibits in one venue!  Behind the speakers were quilts from New Quilts From an Old Favorite - New York Beauty collection.

That's me on the left, talking about my Shirt Tales, and Sandy Snow, who had an award winning NYB quilt on display. I was very fortunate to have Michael Dunn take some wonderful photographs for me throughout the evening.

There was a nice crowd of folks attending who appreciate fiber art.  They asked good questions and laughed at my jokes.  Below is one of my favorite photos from the event.  It is no less than thrilling to see people enjoying your work, and each of my quilts has a story.  Patrons told me that they enjoyed knowing the stories that went along with the images.  This one is titled, Grandma Magic.

Also exciting for me was seeing my 'name in lights', or on the wall, anyway.  Truly felt like Cinderella most of the weekend!

I was pleased that the curator, Catherine Bergmann, had selected this piece of mine to show in the atrium of the Art Center.  The title is Driving Lessons.  All the work was beautifully displayed and lit.

Another of the exhibits is a regional SAQA show called Growth!  (Studio Art Quilt Associates)  I'm very proud of this collection of work by my colleagues in Florida.  Here are some scenes from that gallery:

All four exhibits will be shown until August 18 at DFAC.  I'll be teaching a fiber collage workshop there on Saturday, August 5.  Contact DFAC for information.
                          And there were a few outtakes.  This is not what it looks like.

                                     And I have no idea what I was thinking here:


                         Thank you Michael, for taking pictures.  It's not an easy job!

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

I'm back

My goodness, it's been nearly a year since I last posted to my blog!  I have been busy!  I was especially busy in April of this year - beginning with attending my annual retreat in New Smyrna Beach - Focus on Fiber.  I was happy to meet artist Mary Pal from Canada there.  She shared her beautiful portraits made with cheesecloth, and her techniques for achieving super realistic results with such a simple medium.  This retreat is always such a wonderful reunion with fiber sisters, and an inspiring, relaxing, soul filling experience.  Big thanks to Mary McBride for organizing it every year.

From there, I went to Chicago, where I met my sister Jan and we spent some time together at the International Quilt Festival.  We had a wonderful time and saw some very inspiring work there.  I had the honor of leading a small group around the Dinner @8 exhibit called Patterns.   Took a class with Jamie Wallen, bought (and won) some more fabric, and had lots of giggles with my sister.   Came home with a new little sewing machine!!

While we were there, my sister joined SAQA - Studio Art Quilt Associates!  That's Jan on the left with SAQA president Lisa Ellis and me.  Jan and I had our own private Portraits 101 class in our hotel room.

Came home to unpack and repack, and headed off to the international SAQA conference in Lincoln, Ne. This conference was jam packed with fantastic art and networking experiences.  The SAQA special events committee, led by Deb Cashatt, really outdid themselves keeping us busy seeing, learning, and enjoying our time in Nebraska.  One of my favorite activities was a spontaneous walk to the state capitol building on a Sunday afternoon, in horrible cold, windy, rainy weather.  The experience of seeing this magnificent building and the enormous mosaics, paintings, carvings, and columns was SOOO worth  that difficult walk.

Some of the mosaics on the floor were so beautiful, I felt we shouldn't have been stepping on them!
So, now I have arrived home in Florida, and have spent some weeks preparing for a solo exhibit of my portraits at the Dunedin Fine Art Center this summer. 

You can get details about the exhibit, (and three other fiber art shows that will be there at the same time!!) by going to  and look under Current Exhibits.  The reception is on Friday, June 9 from 6 to 9pm.  It will be a wonderful collection of fiber art, including a regional SAQA show called GROWTH!, and an exhibit called New Quilts From an Old Favorite.

So, I'm ready to stay home for awhile, and relive my adventures, and plan some new ones.  For a minute, I was all caught up on my customer quilts, but I'm now back in the thick of that activity.   And the grass has been growing, and the fence needs to be painted, etc. etc.  Life is indeed good.