Cynthia St. Charles Store

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Gelatin Plate Prints

Design Wall

This is what I have up on the design wall so far. The squares are cut from a group of gelatin plate prints I did last spring when the leaves were just greening. I just love the yellow green color of newly emerged leaves. So vivid - I just feel infused with energy when I see it.
Sigh. Everything is pretty brown now. Except for a few springs of green grass and my petunias. Still green, but no longer blooming. I had no idea petunias were so hardy!

Monday, November 24, 2008

Gelatin Print Design Study

Springtime Leaves and Twigs
This little piece is a study for a larger piece I am starting today. The background fabric is gelatin plate printed leaves. The twig fabric is hand painted and hand stamped. I've done one similar to this previously, although in fall colors.

This color palate provides a much bigger challenge.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Glue Gel Resist

Structures I - Study

This is a small study I did for a much larger piece I will be working on today. The process involves first painting the lines on white cotton using Elmers Glue Gel. I've tried both the new clear product and the white washable, but the blue gel is the best. The others are too runny and don't hold a good resist line.

I painted the background in a watercolor style, first wetting the resisted fabric, then painting large color blocks of diluted Pebeo Setacolor Transparent Paint.

Next, I filled in with block prints from stamps I've cut myself from plumbers rubber gasket material. After the paint is set, I gently remove the resist lines by soaking in warm water followed by a long wash cycle with plenty of water and a little soap. Line dry.

Then it is ready to layer and quilt.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Deconstructed Screenprinting

Seeing Red - and I like what I see. This is the first print I did:Align CenterToday I did my first experimentation with "Deconstructed Screenprinting". This involves using some material as a resist on the screen while applying thickened dye (that has not been activated). I used rubberbands and black dye to create my screen. This was set aside to dry.

Then, I used thickened activated dye to screen over the dried black dye. This released some of the black dye onto the fabric, but mostly the yellow and red came through. The print below was one of the middle prints.

The print at the bottom was the last one I did in the series. By this time, the black was nearly gone and my print was pretty red/yellow. I did about 10 prints in all. I can see why people get so excited about this process. I will do more later this weekend!

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Central Park

MX Dye painted on Cotton Broadcloth
Elmers Glue Gel Resist
Machine Quilted
36 x 35"

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Quilted Fabric Ornaments How To

To make the Quilted Christmas Ornaments in my last post, I start with a block print. I cut mine from plumbers rubber gasket material mounted onto a wood block with water resistant carpet tape.

Yesterday, I cut a new block using a photo I had taken of a chickadee in the backyard birdfeeder as a guide so I could get the markings right. (I really can't draw all that well, but I can adapt!)

This morning, I printed a bunch of little birdies on a piece of hand dyed fabric. When it is dry, I will iron fusible web onto the back.

Last evening, I put the Trout and Wild Horse Ornaments up for sale at my Etsy store

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Fabric Christmas Ornaments

As a promotional gesture for Elements Gallery for the Holiday shopping season, we will be giving away a handmade Christmas ornament with each purchase. I searched online for a project idea, and when I struck out, I came up these little fabric ornaments. They were fairly simple to construct - mass produced, but rather time consuming because of the multiple steps involved in making them (and because I was making so many!).

Each one is unique because I used hand dyed, hand painted, rust dyed fabrics.
I might offer a tutorial in another post if anyone is interested. I think there are a lot of good design possibilities for the technique.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Little Orange Village

18 x 19"
Setacolor Opaque Fabric Paints on Cotton Broadcloth
Machine Quilted
November 2008

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Surface Design Association - Montana Members First Show

Whooping Crones Gallery
508 East Broadway, Missoula, Montana

I apologize in advance for the quality of these photos. I was having difficulty with the color settings on my digital camera. I did feel this event was important enough to blog anyway, even with discoloration. The first meeting of the Montana members of SDA - Surface Design Association was held on November 7 at Whooping Crones Gallery. The group was celebrating it's first show together.

It was so much fun to meet the other members and have the opportunity to see their work.
Above, is Joan Renne from Rollins. She grew up in the Gallatin Valley, same as I and we had a great chat about that. Joan is weaving on a loom using copper, gold, and silver wire. She has gone to making these large structures!

Here are two of my pieces hanging on the red wall - Mammograms from A to DD - Breast Cancer Survivors (on the left) and Side Effects (on the far right).

This group includes Gail Cluff, Carol O'Bagy, Karen Burton. They are standing in front of Karen's work here.

Our wonderful host and gallery owner, Judy Hartz is on the left. She is an amazing clothing designer. To die for work. Judy told me that she vended in a lot of American Craft Council shows and had a big following during her tenure as a resident of New York! Now she lives in Missoula. What a treat to have her and her gallery here! Yum!
Well, here is a washed out picture of me with my Winter Birds quilt. This one created a lot of chatter. Everyone seems to love their birdfeeder birds! Note my outfit - a discharged cotton kimono.

Here is a corner of the gallery. Beautiful stuff here.

Gail Cluff is a silkpainter. Her husband built these frames for her incredible silk pieces. The one on the left is painted with Dynaflow paints. The blue one on the right is painted with acid dyes.

Carol O'Bagy created this incredible sculpture using 5000 bullets!
Another corner of the gallery. This is an older house, so there are lots of corners, etc. Charming.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Pryor Mountain Bear Canyon Hike

The weather has been unseasonably mild for late October and we decided to take advantage of it by exploring a part of the Pryor Mountains we'd not visited before. We drove south from Billings, turning off at Warren. We followed the road into the foothills, turning off at the Bear Canyon marker.

Bear Canyon has a rustic beauty and there was nobody around for miles and miles. It was SO quiet. No insects or birds, even! We saw quite a bit of bear scat, but it was at least a week old. It was full of red berries but dried out.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Pryor Mountains - Bear Canyon

Pryor Mountains - Bear Canyon

This time of year, when the Beartooth highway is closed due to snow, we turn our attention to the vast areas of BLM and State land in the Pryor Mountain area south of Billings. Above, a view to the west from Bear Canyon in the Pryor Mts. This area is primarily high desert. Very arid.
Bear Canyon Parking Area

We followed the rough road into Bear Canyon. This is essentially a 4 x 4 road. High rocks and deep ruts. The road passed through the high desert of sagebrush and rabbit bush. Remarkably, we discovered a different ecosystem as we climbed deeper into the canyon.Although the creek is dry this time of year, it appears to be very wet in the spring. There is a dense deciduous forest of cottonwoods and aspens. Brambles, underbrush, and vines grow higher than our heads here.

Align Center
The trees are changing color and falling off now.