Monday, November 15, 2010

Embroidered Selves

I finished this right before the art show a few weeks ago, just in time to slip it in. It's hand embroidered, 18x24 inches on unbleached muslin.

My intention is for it to be the first in a series of embroideries. My brain has already moved on to trying to wrap itself around quilts, though, so it might be a while...

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Prints Are Done!

I finally finished all the intaglio prints I've been working on since January, just in time for the art show I'm in next week at Thread Space. :)

The prints:

Wednesday, September 29, 2010


One of my friends broke the screen on his phone a few days ago, and made a passing comment about wanting a rotary cell phone. The idea took root in my head and almost without planning it I made him one.

Embroidered dial and ear/mouth piece.
It's a little crude, but it's the first thing I've ever sewn! Which I didn't even realize until after I had started sewing. 

It has a pocket. To keep phone numbers in or something.

I'm really bad at representing myself. I hadn't told my friend anything about making this, I just handed it to him at a time when he was distracted, and walked away. Then I had to ask him later what he thought of it and he was pretty confused until I explained myself fully. 

I really am making progress on my prints, too. I'll post more about them when I have more to show.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Finsh Fix

I got antsy yesterday and had to do something different. Something short, so I could say I'd finished something.

So I did some blind contour drawings of nearby things and just had fun with it. I liked one of them enough that I refined it and decided to do a quick and simple embroidery of it. I had also been curious about embroidery on paper for a while. The result:

I don't know what I'm going to do with it, but I feel better and can now get on with my long, slow projects.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Print Swap!

I just sent off my print edition to the Pussy Cat Press print exchange. I'm super excited about it and can't wait to see what I get in return! I'll post my print when the exchange is over.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Ah, So Close...

But not quite done yet.
The darkest shade on the Cave print didn't turn out. So now I have to re-aquatint the plate and etch it again. Here's hoping I don't muck it up.

I realized that my video on This is Handmade is going to become harder to find as more videos get added to the site, and I should post it here also. So here it is in all it's 5 minutes of tedious glory:

There has been some internet dramas over the message behind This is Handmade. People not getting it, being put off by the presentation, etc. For me, it was a great way to blow off steam over the people who have in the past offered me $15-20 for something I worked for days, weeks, or even months on, as though they were doing me a favor. I can make that in an hour waiting tables on a decent night. I would rather hold onto something I spent that much time and love on than to give it away for so little, because it's obvious I care more about it than they do. And who wants their art to wind up with people who don't care about it?

Saturday, September 11, 2010

This is Handmade

I've submitted a video to This is Handmade, a video blog by the great Penny Nickels, of me stopping out an intaglio plate.

I'm kind of amazed - its up there next to videos of crafters I've admired for a long time.  :)

Thursday, September 9, 2010

I'm almost done with the aquatint on the Cave print from my last post, and started on a new one, the Mesa print, today for the third time. :P  Things just keep going wrong with it.
This will be #3 in a series of 5 prints. The Cave is #4. 

I've been airbrushing Z*Acryl hardground onto the copper plates for my hardground. It was humid today so it didn't dry as fast as I'm used to, and I ended up with it dripping down the plate the first time. Z*Acryl works best if applied in several very thin layers and will chip if it's too thick, leaving you with a blobby open-bitten line, which is why I like to airbrush it on. It means I had to wait patiently for it to dry between applying each layer, however.

In the end I did get it nice and even and matte. Sweet.
The color variations in the photo are from me sanding the plate in different directions. I sanded it with 400 grit sandpaper to give it a little tooth for the hardground to stick to. 

While cleaning the airbrush my air hose broke. It's lame but at least it waited to break until I was pretty much done with it. 

I transferred the image to the plate by laying it over a piece of embroidery tracing paper and tracing through both papers. I originally got the tracing paper for an embroidery project but found that it didn't work well for transferring images to the fabric I was using. It works great for this though. It comes in bright shades of yellow and blue and the colors show up very well against the hardground. It also actually sticks to it, unlike graphite.

I then traced the image AGAIN with the scribe, which is a pointy piece of metal, to scratch though the hardground. Considering I've done this whole process three times now and drew the image several times before that, I've lost track of how many times I've drawn this same image. o_0

The plate has now been etching in the ferric bath for 5 hours. I think it's time to take it out and go to bed.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Joining In

I've been lurking on so many art and crafts related websites for so long now, I've decided it's time to join in. I'm starting here. 

My current project - an intaglio print on copper. I've done the line etch and am working on the aquatint. This photo is after I etched the first shade, the shiny parts are what will turn out to be white. 

I forgot to take a picture for the second etch, so this is before the third. I kind of just like the way the plate looks.