Sunday, August 14, 2016

PAPYRUS PILGRIMAGE

In May I had the privilege to visit Gallery Bellomo in Syracuse, Sicily to see papyrus paper being made from the fibrous inner pith of the papyrus plant. In Europe, the only place that this plant grows naturally is on the banks of the Ciane River.  

Here is a photo of the plant growing in Syracuse.


The process includes removing the outer rind of the plant to reveal the inner core that is cut lengthwise into strips. The strips are soaked in water with an antioxidant. This allows the strips to maintain their lovely creamy color. The strips are then arranged side- by -side on a marble slab covered with a cloth. Each strip slightly overlaps the other.




 The next strips are arranged at right angles on top of the first.




While still moist the two layers are compressed with a heavy marble roller.


The resulting sheet is allowed to dry. It can be used as writing paper or used to make art. 



Here is a piece of art I purchased.   


Written by Barbara James

August 14, 2016

Monday, May 30, 2016

Digital Design On Fabric

I muse over life I capture through the lens. Inspired by global travel, my current work is developed through digital alchemy, printed on natural fabrics and enhanced with surface design. I strive to create imagery with color, pattern and repetition to produce a magical moment in time.  
 In ACN’s last call for entry, “Anything Goes”, my juried piece was digitally developed in Photoshop with an image of a Vietnamese girl working on a tourist boat. 


After printing on sumptuous silk charmeuse, I applied potato dextrin and thickened dyes. Her Tapestry (30x60) depicts a woman’s simple life working day to day on the Mekong River, “a tapestry to feel & see, impossible to hold”.  

Most recently I created art quilts with a water theme.  I will take you through a series of steps to give you a better understanding of how this process works.
In this example I began with a photo I took while at the Amazon in Peru.
Next I went into an app www.picmonkey.com and redesigned the photo
Next I went into a folder of scanned images I use to layer the design.  I chose a fabric I had stamped (Hand-carved) with inks.

This is the result of adding the layer.

Working with the same app and photoshop I eventually got this result and had it printed on cotton.

 I enhanced the piece by painting with metallic inks and fusing with foil.  I free-motion quilted and bound.  
                                         
 Can You Hear Her Calling? (23x36).
Over the past 15 years I have intensely focused on learning about and working with dyes and numerous surface design techniques on natural fabrics as my canvas. Coupled with a passion for photography, my current work utilizes both mediums through digital technology. After exploring digital design and printing on my own, I took a full time class at RISD in Providence R.I., followed by classes at Cape Cod Art Association and Quilting Art Quilt Tahoe (Jane Dunnewold). I am passionate about creating digital design on lustrous silk and other natural fibers as art cloth and quilts.
I hope this gives you a better understanding of how this works.!