Trees and science fiction – must be Art Quilt Santa Fe. Betty Busby was the teacher this year. Her award-winning quilts are fabulous, as was her four-day workshop. She had us painting on silk, which I have done before without much success. This time was different. Betty encouraged us to relax and let the fabric and the paint take us on a journey. Once I let go of my expectations and allowed the end product be a surprise, I had a blast.
As with last year’s workshops, I planned to use my projects for my tree series. We started with our backgrounds. Betty had us painting from light to dark vertically. I painted a sunbeam filtering through a forest.
Next we made patterns. I sketched out a tree trunk with branches, then Betty enlarged it with a computer resizing program. The design is printed out in separate sheets, and taped together.
We cut our designs out of Remay, which we had also painted in a light-to-dark gradation, and fused them to the surface.
I’m not certain what I’ll do for borders, but I left my options open by leaving the tree branches loose over the edge of the silk.
We also worked with paint sticks. Here is a cedar I painted on a scrap of satin. The trunk is a line of copper paint stick.
I promised you sci fi, and here it is:
We painted another piece of silk in a circular gradation from light to dark. The idea was to fuse a single organic image graded from dark to light on top of the silk. By this time, however, my silk was chattering away and made sure I could see it was a galaxy. And it wanted space ships. Pink and blue space ships.
Who am I to argue with the galaxy?