Last weekend, I took a two day workshop with Rhiannon Alpers that was sponsored by the Rocky Mountain Weavers Guild.
The workshop was held at Inner Ocean Studio in Denver. Inner Ocean Studio is the former studio of Ray Tomasso, a well-known artist who worked in hand-made paper sculptures and print-making. Ray and I were members of the Ice Cube Gallery so I knew him well but had never visited his studio. He died suddenly a couple of years ago and his wife decided to convert his large studio into an artist workshop space. It's a fabulous space so I hope you can visit and take a workshop there in the future.
I have made a lot of artist books but learned a lot about how to make a "professional" book — making and using bookcloth and as well as adding tapes and mull to secure the text block to the cover.
Who knew book-making could be so exacting and time-consuming! But the books I made are truly works of art.
I had a wonderful time, meeting other creatives, and seeing the future vision of what Inner Ocean Studio is becoming. We needed a creative place in Denver for making fine art and I'm happy that Rhiannon has taken on the job of being the Director of this space.
She is a wonderful instructor and is a perfect person to engage the artistic community in Colorado (and beyond!)
I will be back!
Here are the directions to make this arty necklace. Have fun!
11 regular size pipe cleaners
Various colors of Sari ribbon (or thin strips of silk/cotton/poly — whatever you have in your scrap bin)
Hairy yarn remnants (Eyelash yarn or any other textured yarn)
Various colors of thread (solid, variegated, cotton, poly, metallic, anything you have
Colorful elastic hair ties (adult or child size)
Light weight rubber/metal charms
16mm jump rings
Couching foot (optional but very handy!)
I know this sounds complicated, but really, its not. Once you get the hang of making the pipe cleaner circles and how to attach these together with jump rings, it goes pretty fast. Every time I wear this necklace, people notice it and love it. I’ve listed the materials I use but feel free to substitute your own. I tend to keep everything light-weight but I encourage you to experiment using the materials in your stash.
Printing & Stitching With Leaves #2
Looks like I'm starting a new series!
Fall is here and the leaves are starting to dry up and blow into the wind so if I want to capture some leaves while they are still alive, I need to do it now!
I'm loving combining printing with hand stitching so here is the second one I finished this week. Working of the third and fourth so I guess I'm starting a new series.
I love working on these pieces since I have no idea what I will create along the way. But somehow, they all turn out pleasing to me.
Have a wonderful creative day!
Printing & Stitching With Leaves
I always come back to hand stitching.
No matter how many paints, book-making, print-making,, mark-making, tool-making, or anything else I experiment with, I always love working with thread and fabric. It's calming. Meditative. Healing.
Here is a finished piece that started out as white cotton, dyed with black beans in the sun (see my July 17th post), gel printed with blue acrylic paint, over printed with real leaves using yellow acrylic paint, hand stitched with French knots and a running stitch with variegated embroidery floss and pearl cotton, and then layered with batting and a backing, free motion stitched on my Bernina and finished with a rattail binding.
Whew! That was a lot of different techniques all packed into one piece. But satisfying. So I'm working on another.
This weekend, I visited the Kirkland Museum in Denver along with 4 fiber friends. I hadn't had a chance to visit this museum since it moved into a new building, next to the Clifford Stiles Museum and the Denver Art museum. It's a beautiful building, much larger than the one before.
But honestly, no different.
I remember the first time I visited this "collection" and was overwhelmed with the amount of objects. It felt to me like going to a garage sale where lots of things were crammed into a small space. And while the new space is much larger and the things are enclosed in glass shelving, I didn't lose the same feeling.
Vance Kirkland was an eclectic painter. He is most known for his "dot" paintings which he created while hanging vertically over a canvas. His studio is part of the gallery.
If you are into decorative art (furniture/dishes/glasses/etc) you should visit this gallery. I found it too eclectic for my taste, making it hard to see anything with a cohesive view. But as we all know, art is in the eyes of the beholder!
Carol Ann Waugh
I am a mixed media artist and love color and texture!