Tuesday, March 4, 2014

The Need to Experiment

I have found that as I continue creating with whatever media I am obsessed with at the moment, that I have a true NEED to push it , to experiment and to follow the call of the What IF voices. . Blog hopping has led me on a very rewarding journey where i have met some amazingly talented and like minded artists. I have often struck up conversations with artists and have increased my desire to explore with my media exponentially.
I find that I am always combining the things that I love to work with to create new pieces and lately that has resulted in felted pieces full of layers of texture and bead work and stitch.

Lately I am having a very rewarding experience doing hand work.  perhaps this is because this hearkens back to my very first experiences with art.  As a young child of 4, I was given large squared gingham and a not very sharp needle with embroidery floss to do cross stitch.  All the women around me were constantly knitting and that soon became my focus with creating doll blankets.  Then living on the ocean and collecting treasures was a passion and so the story goes.
Above you can see the third piece in my Tide Lines series of work titled Nantucket Sound.  This began with my embellishing machine with bits of lace and yarn and gauze and hand dyed cheese cloth.  All were combined with merino wool fibers and then wet felted to further connect the fibers and add dimensional texture through the fulling of the wool.  Stitching through felted pieces is a joy as the needle glides through the fabric  so easily.  some evenings I can sit for a very long time creating oodles of French and Chinese knots
 before i am ready to add the found treasures collected in my beach walks.

All of the found bits that were added as the last step were collected along a beach in Chatham MA, which is part of the area known as Nantucket Sound, hence the title.  this piece will be framed in a shadow box for display.

I have also used my felting and beads combination of creating art in my most recent experiments.  I have created Nuno felt- ( the combination of many different fibers and fabrics to create a NEW or Nuno piece of textile.)  Merino wool fibers from Opulent Fibers- my favorite supplier- has served as the glue for these pieces .  Hand dyed silks, silk fibers, bits of lace and scrim and hand dyed cheese cloth has all been added to generate the texture and interest that I strive for in all of my pieces.  All of these pieces were felted together around a heavy copper wire core.  I was not at all sure this would work but there was nothing for it but to have a go! I followed the advice of the What IF? voices.

I was thrilled to find that the wool/ silk mix felted and fulled beautifully around the copper core and left me with some glorious texture for adding stitch and bead work.

I did do my first experiments with this white, blue piece and then jumped in, with both feet, to create other colorways.  At the ends of the felt work I wrapped and stitched a bit of turquoise silk gauze as the felting there was a bit thin.  I like that finished look and it taught me to make the felt a more uniform thickness along the wire.  Then I went to the bead stash having reached the stage for the FUN part, the Hand Work!!!

And here they are ready for display at Artful Dimensions Gallery in all their texture filled and beaded softness.

  Don't be afraid, follow the What IF ??? Voices

1 comment:

Monica said...

Wow, very inspiring, Elizabeth.


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