the following day

another idea, a great idea. i’m reading thru a fabric book and suddenly see a reflections quilt, and read where the artist (that’s me) might as well get used to seeing these hand-painted fabrics not as ends in themselves, but as raw material to be cut up and sewn back together in strange patterns.

i see myself assembling a collage on a piece of muslin, then cutting it into strips and gluing them down onto the lovely fabric, echoing the fabric’s own echo of the scene. that way the awkward fabric becomes a picture inside the frame of the canvas, instead of being an integral part of it, which would require more shredding and cutting than i’m up to.

the wasted time part is the part where i envision what’s going to happen in the next step – that all goes out the window when i get to the next part, because the next part has me doing something completely unintended earlier. of course, sitting and dreaming is as creative as making pictures. they also serve who sit and stare.

after talking to jim, who suggested i make a full size picture of the clothing and cut it in strips and toss every other strip. i suddenly saw it going slantwise and saw rain on the landscape turning everything into something different instantly.

so there’s my theme.

finally i did what i’d been feeling like doing – putting fabric into the blender and then gluing it down – i just didn’t bother with a blender once i realized i could dip the fabric into gloss medium and scrunch it into aony shape. reinventing the wheel, the subtheme.

so i got a large piece of muslin from my stash, spread it over my work table, traced the design onto it with pencil, ironed the wrinkles out, and then started assembling the facbric for the sky, i stood there at the table and started doing papier-mache with my fabrics, and built clouds in the sky. i wet the back with watered down acrylic medium and put it down on the muslin, discovering immediately that i could mush the fabric into shapes. ooh wah.

 the sky, cashel is the blank triangle at bottom.

now i’m sitting here pushing down edges, recovering blank spots – i think acrylic shrinks as it dries. i’m thinking i’l l paint in the house in acrylic just for fun.


next day

correcting stuff that wasn’t stuck on enough.

last night all the acetate were still limp. not a bit sticky. the pieces fell off when i shifted the muslin to take out the paper i didn’t need underneath. this morning they were stuck, but i reinforced them with thicker acrylic.

 cashel hill, freshly laid on.

laid on the green dress for cashel hill, cut in 4 pieces and reversed them to show shiny on the right side and dull on the left. once i got acrylic on them i lost all detail, and it’s still so far remained dark which kind of screws up the design.

then the silk flower dress and dad’s gray jacket in strips for awhile on the ground beneath cashel. i had the house left bare muslin between 2 holes in the silk dress, but it was too sticky and kept moving.

i used thicker goop, mixed with my hands. dipping right out of the gallon thing of edium. at this point i began dunking the fabric into the medium and water  in a coffee pot, squeezing the excess out. yesterday i was carefully painting medium on one side of the fabric. carefully. on a piece of paper. today i’ve got gobs of acrylic on everything.

i took the button placket of the silk dress and squinched its lenght to fit, for the shoreline. leaving buttons gleaming at the water’s edge like seaweed (something). some purple stuff i used on the sky for a near hill extending out into the bay, and the waistband from dad’s pants for the shoreline. i  used one of dad’s pockets there. and for te near shore i used that and spencer’s black dress pants waistband, and some of dad’s gray jacket.

 dad’s pocket, purple waistband, silk button placket.

then i had to grab my light fabrics and try them out for the water. they were none of them right, and i totally forgot what i had selected before, so i did the once again. this one was too dark, that one was too light, and i ended up taking the blue-gray jacquard print i used inside the cloud and turning it over to use the much lighter back. it’s too blue for my picture, but suits the composition, and that’s all that matters.

then i used 2 sleeves from some fabric lisa was at one point making something out of – a peachy kind of synthetic, and put in the furze bushes. this will be one of the fabrics i’m going to have to paint over to get it the right color. (evil laugh. i feel so wicked getting paint on clothes.)

my acrylic mixture kept getting thinner as i did the middle ground. it was a papier-mache soup in the end, and i was slapping the fabrics down sopping wet. this morning they’re still pliable and not sticky, so i have to hit them with the hair dryer when i finish this.

 almost clear enough to be a scene. half done.

today i will work on the foreground. i expect it to take much longer, use more bits of fabric and be more confusing in the end because it’s so vague, representing mostly grass and dirt.

i’ve reached the halfway mark as far as lines on the canvas go. this has been the fastest part of the process so far, feels like. tho i can probably say that about each part of the process. i’m already looking forward to the breakthru moment at the end of the process i’m currently doing, even tho i’m only halfway thru it. i usually do that.

i’m having a great deal of fun cutting and ripping fabric and getting it all soppy with glue and then folding and wrinkling and pleating and bunching until my hands start to stick. acrylic is fascinating stuff. glue for sure, but i don’t know what. sure does smell like pee, tho.


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