This is a commissioned project for Quilters Companion’s ‘Great Australian Quilt Designers’ which is coming out this October 2017.
Showcasing three Australian creatures in aboriginal fabrics, this is a fun project that can be completed in a weekend. Display your triptych on art canvases or in the usual way.
Due to copyright, I am showing only details here. If you would like more information, follow my classes link.
This year I have joined the local Wildflower group in Nathalia. Once a month they go on a field trip in our local area to identify species. I find it truly inspirational and can’t believe how many interesting and beautiful places have been right under my nose all this time! In March we visited the Barmah Lakes and I became fascinated by the Reed Warblers (even though they would not sit still for a photo!).
The following piece of work is inspired by this activity. It consists of four vertical panels that can be viewed as a whole or in part. It started life as experiments in digital photos on fabric. I was challenging myself to make as many different pictures from the one photo as I could. When I pieced them all together it looked like a dogs breakfast! So I cut them up and pieced it with other fabrics in an improvisational way. This became the background for the birds and reeds.
These are only sneak peaks. You can see it in its entirety at my solo exhibition at The G.R.A.I.N store, Nathalia (Victoria, Australia) from October 5th until the 25th of November.
A big thank you to another local artist and naturalist, Anne Timm, who travels with me and answers all my questions.
Original and digitally altered photo of reeds for background piece.
A few weekends ago I had a wonderful time with the Centre Quilters Circle at Wangaratta. I stayed in a cottage nestled in an amazing garden belonging to the most creative and hospitable Sandra Makin. The ladies in my class designed their own landscapes after completing my pattern (you can see parts of the blue bell woods in some of the pictures) . We covered composition, colour, and fabrics that work well for landscapes. Thank you to all for an unforgettable weekend!
The following are ‘works in progress’.
Here are the artists.
Here are a couple of shots from Sandra’s garden….amazing! These are true colours, not photo-shopped!
I was thrilled and much encouraged to win the Australasian Quilting Convention’s challenge: ‘Australian made: Flora and Fauna’ for 2017. A good start to my full time textile art career. Thank you to the sponsors ‘Brother’, for their generous cash prize.
I enjoyed a dinner last night in Carlton with other SAQA members from all over Australia……very exciting.
The red kangaroo and golden wattle are famous as symbols that signify the uniqueness of Australia. They both appear on the coat of arms and are part of our shared cultural history. Aboriginal Australians have utilized them in many ways for thousands of years. Tourism Australia makes use of the kangaroo in its logo to “help ensure instant recognition for Australia around the world”. The Golden wattle is our national floral emblem that inspires our nations colours. It “has become our cherished symbol of celebration, of joy, of sadness and of remembrance and of home wherever we may be…”
Save this date:
OPENING 5TH OF OCTOBER
UNTIL THE 25TH OF NOVEMBER.
The G.R.A.I.N store art gallery, Blake St. Nathalia.
There will be a retrospective of my quilts plus new works; large and small, cards, a calendar and much more. I will also be in residence for a few hours per week, to demonstrate my works in progress. I will be posting further blogs on new pieces that will be for sale throughout the year.
Sneak preview (close ups) of ‘Kangaroo and Wattle’, my entry for the Australasian Quilting Convention Challenge coming up in April this year. The theme is ‘Made in Australia; flora and fauna’. I’m not sure if I am in the finalists yet -we shall have to wait and see….
SAQA have an exhibition coming up in 2017 titled ‘Layered Voices’. The following is my contribution. Unfortunately it was was not chosen, but I learnt a lot from making it and that is the name of the game. I feel sorry for the judges who had to choose 30 out of 500+.
The piece is called ‘ If these walls could speak‘. The people in this piece are all from my family, four generations, beginning from Albert Smith who was a soldier in the First World War(I am the baby). Fragments of people and times are revealed as each layer of wallpaper is peeled back.
The walls of a home stand in silence as life is lived within:
“It’s alright Bert, it’s just the same dream, you’re safe, you’re home”
I heard it night after night.
“Can’t you shut that baby up, I can’t stand it, I’ve got to get out of here”
I never heard that voice again.
Whispered voices and late night sobbing.
The baby grew up tall. The radio played constantly while he worked.
“I’ll take you home Kathleen”
He married the red haired girl from across the road. She was a talker!
“For they are jolly good fellows”
Soon there were many children racing through the house with their dirty fingers.
“Let’s put up the Christmas lights”
The girls daubed with shades of lipstick whilst arguing over what belonged to whom.
“Is that my petticoat you have on?”
A cheeky young man with motorcycle leathers takes one of the girls away.
“One for the money, two for the show”
The background was made with a gelatin plate and stencil. The collage elements are photos printed onto cotton, silk and organza and some lace. The quilting is a continuous flow of ‘writing’, which could be conversations, personal letters or literature. It was difficult to combine all the pictorial elements and fabrics in a visually pleasing way.