mining the past again

That’s a page from a 2007 “fabric art journal”, a time for me of experimenting and heavy machine embroidery. “Kirlian Hand” is a portrayal of the so-called phenomena of a person’s “aura”. Named after Semyon Kirlian’s accidentally discovered observation in 1939, that if an object on a photographic plate is connected to a high-voltage source, an image is produced on the photographic plate—- and touted in the 70’s as captures of the human spirit! (My ex was heavily into this, Hollow Earth theory, pyramid power, Chariots of the Gods alien conspiracy, and the whole “new age” crapola of the time….used to drive me nuts…but then *he* was/is.)

Anyhoo, i did like the design possibilities of this, so wth. The hand was cut from screen printed fabric, all of the embroidery is by free motion and the abalone shell piece was attached with glue and beads (i think..the page is somewhere in a box with other relics of the time, in a little room at the back of the house so stuffed i can’t get into it. Note to self: do something about that this weekend, there’s some Good Stuff in there too…)

It’s interesting to look at old work and not only remember how and why it was done, but to go forward with it as well, in a new direction. Yeah, some of the results from the way back machine are either embarrassing or weak, but some of it is still valid, good, intriguing, and touches a chord. Let’s roll with it!

As i mentioned in a previous post, i’m working on improving my ecoprinting skills, and while my little tests are very quite promising, i’m not completely satisfied yet, BUT, i can still use some of the bits in the Summer of Madder Study project 🙂 I’m going to “condense” the above layout a bit, due to the size of the moon i want to use, because the original layout would make too big a section to work on comfortably, considering the scale.

I’ll have to be tender with the moon too: a silk, i always have problems with stitching on this fabric, by hand or machine, as the threads of the fabric tend to “pull” when the needle goes through. I’ve tried finer threads, and smaller eye bulbed needles, but haven’t solved the mystery yet, so minimal stitching on the moon. Given though that the details are so fine and so delicious, less is more anyways: not everything has to be encrusted!

And the potential layout–just pretend/imagine the fingers are separate so the moon shines through 🙂

It’s now time then to set up the outside stitching corner!

 

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small happies

Can’t be exciting all the time, and don’t always get everything done we need to, but the first peas and peppers from the garden, a teeny bouquet of purple, pink and white crane’s bill blossoms from the front flower bed, and this:

 

Small happies. Good days.

while the water’s away, arlee will stitch play….

Some idiot at the major BRT construction site last night hit the water main feeder that supplies our two blocks. We’ve had no water since 7PM last evening, and nothing was done until about 10 this morning, because of course first priority was a fight between the city and the construction company about who was responsible for fixing it. ASSHATS. An emergency water services thingie showed up sometime in the night, and we have to lug big bottles in to flush, wash and water the animals. No word either as to when it will actually be DONE. Better i suppose than having to lug a bucket down to the river——which is impossible at the moment anyways, as the riverbank is unreachable now due to the construction of a new bus bridge and remediation of the banks after the 2013 flood………………..probably a good thing also because i have a hard time keeping a DogFaced Girl on a leash out of the river and balancing a bucket on my head at the same time. Things slosh.

SIGH. So, dyeing requires water. Ain’t got none. Pause in the dyeing escapades then, perhaps a good thing, as i am capable of other things in the studio.

I pulled out the threads again, and have almost finished the first section of the garment for the Summer of Madder (Study) project.

I have a few leaves left to do, a bit on the yellow strip, and have decided that the big floaty roses that worked as big floaty roses on the pocket, need to be “grounded” on this section.

I love these little figures!

wings

Admittedly, i overthought this section, but i’m happy anyways with the results (still in progress). The idea/execution however is getting a bit *too* “figurative”! It’s time to think of texture and effect as well as the “embrilting”.

As soon as i finished the wing on the upper right figure, i flashed back to 2014, when i was working on “The Weight She Carries”. At the time, though i wanted redder madders than i was getting, i used synthetic dyes (Procion/Rit/Dylon, whatever was in the drawer) to get a range of reds. (The coral/peach “puffs” in the photo are the madder results i was getting at that time.) The feathers on this wing are a textural smorgasbord, and perhaps i can draw from these, literally, in shape, and figuratively, in feel.

I could see wings on the back of this garment,  but that might be a bit much! I can’t/don’t want to make them smaller to fit in a section either, as they would be too fiddly to work, and would lose the point and effect. Perhaps a few scattered?

embroidery finished on pocket!

I just have to add some beading, and a bit of vintage lace (also madder dyed 🙂 ), a top band and then can move on to other parts of the garment.

I think it’s wonderful that all shades on this, except for the greens, are from various mordants and modifiers with madder on cotton (background), and wool, silk and cotton threads.

I *like* getting madder!

looking rosey

I do love this detail.

 

They were a bit naked without the leaves, so dipping into the stash, i found a bit more of my naturally dyed greens.

Of course, as it so often happens when one falls in love with something, the supplies run out….  I have very limited quantities of these wools, because i “never use them”—-HA! Fortunately, i found a small ball undyed, so guess what i’m doing today? (Yes, i hear you groaning “oh fer…more damn madder dyeing….”) AND i have to dye more greens as well, as *that* part of the stash is also very low.