I haven’t been able to sew for most of the summer due to a pesky injury, so returning to my sewing machine was great joy. I love all fiber and I am happy being able to choose to work on collage, sculpture, artists’ books or art quilts.
But, after being forced away, I was thrilled to be putting a new blade in my rotary cutter, oiling and cleaning my beloved little Bernina, and smelling that delicious smell of an iron heating. Why make art (besides having the overwhelming need to SAY something) if you don’t love your tools and materials?
This artwork was purely for myself. I haven’t done free motion quilting (FMQ) in years and have come to regard stitching as a construction tool and supporting player in my artwork. But I was in a mood to sew and I wanted batting (shocking for me) and I wanted lots of quilting. FMQ is a use-it or lose-it kind of skill, so we won’t be looking at any close-ups of that! But I was very pleased how the blue yarn was exactly the finishing edge I wanted and went on perfectly (love that couching foot).
The writing was done using 3B Staedtler drawing pencil (a technique I used before in the Portage series) and tells the story of my sister and I in the Boundary Waters returning from an expedition and seeing billowing smoke behind our campsite on the opposite shore. We weren’t sure where exactly the fire was or how fast it was moving, so we took emergency measures (some of them quite hilarious) in case we had to take the canoe out to the middle of the lake and go in the water to save ourself. The fire was put out before it came to our lake – whew! – but it was an occasion worth commemorating.