Archive for December, 2008

A holiday greeting

I thank each of your for your support and readership and look forward to sharing my artistic adventures with you in 2009. I’m taking a little end-of-the-year break from the computer, but will be back in January. Warm regards and many thanks, Virginia


12 2008

Collage Mania Preview – A gorgeous art quilt

Gravid by Beth Wheeler

Beth Wheeler, author of Altered Photo Artistry, has donated this gorgeous art quilt to Collage Mania 2009.

According to Beth, “Gravid” is the first of a series exploring the relationship between the fiber artist, the basic straight stitch, and how powerful the ideas can be when expressed in the most-simple unit we have.

The piece is 8″ x 10″; constructed of rust-dyed fabrics, touch-print painted symbols, thread, and freshwater pearls.

I asked Beth to describe “touch printing” as I knew you would want to know.  She replied, Touch printing refers to dipping an object, such as a leaf, lid of a water bottle, edge of corrugated cardboard, or some other object in paint and then pressing it on the fabric.  This technique is also known as printing/stamping with found objects.

Beth finished the artwork with a rust-dyed backing and a satin-stitch edging. Just a reminder that mounting to a backing board is NOT required this year.  All artwork merely needs to be finished OR mounted to 8×10.”

It’s REALLY not too early to submit YOUR jpegs for Collage Mania 2009.  

The Call for Artists is here.   

The deadline for receipt of jpegs to Karen Stiehl Osborn is April 1, 2009, but collages are displayed for patrons to peruse in, more or less, the order in which they are received.  I also will be featuring collages here on my blog right up to April 29, the beginning of Preview Week.

Let Karen (Karen(at) know you are planning to participating this year and she will add your name to the growing list – 85 artists already have committed to donating their artwork.

Our goal is to raise $20,000 for the American Cancer Society in three days. Last year we raised over $13,000.  Can we do better for this final Collage Mania?

Please let me know if you have any questions and thank you in advance for your support of this Fiberart For A Cause fundraiser for the American Cancer Society.


12 2008

Inspiration for Tuesday, December 16 – 2008


Nature is always the best pattern maker.  How could I resist the tightly packed red berries of sumac, backed by the effervescent dot, dot of some kind of little flower seedheads?  I took this photo about two weeks ago.  Since then we have had tons of snow, watched most of the snow melt, been covered in ice, and now we expect more snow. 

I will have to try this shot again against the white. Won’t that be something?


12 2008

Surface Design – Fields and Forests

October: Field and Forest (In Progress)

I’m working on the above art quilt for the members’ show, Surface Matters, for the Surface Design Association conference.  Under the influence of the organization’s focus and my recent peace artwork, it’s all about layers of surface design.  The theme of the conference where the members’ show opens is Off the Grid. Well, that’s a theme I can work with on both literal and metaphorical levels.

I started with a basic quilt (sort of a crazy-pieced top, batting, backing) with the theme of forest and fields in October in the Midwest.  We have a certain glow going then with the tawny empty fields and the brave sun.

I used a variety of my hand-painted fabric in an orange/peach palette with creamy beige highlights and a little green.  Some parts of the pieced top were made of a vintage polyester scarf with dark-colored swirls fused with Mistyfuse to a painted fabric.  

I added machine stitching in green thread in a jig-jagging hedgerow-kind of pattern.  Then I added “forest” with hand-stitching with Laura Wasilowski’s Artfabrik’s hand-dyed cotton variegated thread and some tiny sun stitches in variegated rayon thread (only for the totally stitch obsessed- very slippery stuff for hand-stitching).  

Onward from there to oil paint sticks (Shiva), adding some irridescent gold, copper and turquoise highlights.  I let that dry and pressed it well. Then I hit the top ridges of the piece with a dark pigment ink stamp pad. Then I added some strips cut from my big Boundary Waters 32 that include painted fabric, Lutradur and velvet. Then light washes were added of several colors of Golden liquid acrylic paints in the gold, copper, and yellow families.

October:  Field and Forest (detail)   

To top it all off, I added a tilted machine-stitched grid of variegated rayon composed of squares and rectangles.  I still need to square it up to 18×18″ (required size) and, believe it or not, I’m thinking of a 1/4″ binding.  I haven’t done a binding for a long time, but this seems like an artwork that would benefit from a strong edge. I also marked this artwork as “In Progress” because, to be honest, I haven’t decided which edge is the top yet.

The Surface Design Conference is May 28 – May 31, 2009 in Kansas City, MO.  More information here.


12 2008

Liz Berg postcards benefit American Cancer Society

Fiber postcard by Liz Berg

Liz Berg has a special postcard sale in progress to benefit Fiberart For A Cause on her blog.  What a great idea and especially so during the holiday season when many people are seeking unique and handmade holiday gifts.

100% of the proceeds go directly to the American Cancer Society through Fiberart For A Cause’s donation page.

Thank you, Liz!

We have several other Fiberart For A Cause fundraisers in progress; check out the details here. Fiberart For A Cause has donated $165,000 to the American Cancer Society and will continue to grow that number through 2009.


12 2008